45+ Healthy Vegetarian Dinners (That Aren’t Salads!)

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A huge collection of healthy vegetarian dinner recipes that are all tasty, hearty, and full of goodness – no unsatisfying salads in sight.

A collage showing a collection of healthy vegetarian dinners.

After eating several times my weight in chocolate over the Christmas period, I always try to eat a bit better in January (at the very least, I save the chocolate until after midday…).

If you’re the same, hopefully you’ll find plenty of healthy vegetarian dinner inspiration here. I didn’t include any salads because, although it’s perfectly possible to make a satisfying vegetarian salad, I do generally prefer something hot and comforting in the evenings, especially through the winter.

How to make a healthy vegetarian dinner

There are a lot of differing opinions about what constitutes ‘healthy’. Some people say it means low calorie. Some think healthy meals need to be low carb. Some people think a meal’s not ‘healthy’ if it’s been within arm’s length of a block of cheese, or bread, or pasta.

I don’t really agree with any of that. My belief is that there’s a place for everything in a healthy diet – there’s no reason you can’t eat cheese, pasta or even the odd doughnut, as long as that’s not all you’re eating. A chickpea pasta salad, for example, is packed with fresh veg, protein and fibre.

For this collection of healthy vegetarian dinners, I’ve tried to make sure each recipe contains plenty of fresh veg, carbs and protein – which, to me, are the main building blocks of any healthy diet.

Some of the recipes are heartier and more ‘comfort foody’ than others – the Mexican potato bake pictured above, for example, is obviously topped with cheese. But underneath, there’s loads of fresh veg, beans and potatoes. So as long as you watch your portion sizes and don’t accompany every recipe with an entire stick of garlic bread (tempting as it may be), I consider these to all be healthy vegetarian recipes. I cram extra veg in wherever I can, and the end result is always a hearty vegetarian dinner that’s enjoyable to eat, but full of goodness too.

So, here goes – tons of healthy vegetarian dinners (that aren’t just salads!):

Healthy vegetarian dinner recipes

Cheesy slow cooker lentils (pictured above) – this one’s full of vegetables, fibre and protein, and is really versatile.
Mexican bean and potato bake (pictured top) – heaps of veg, beans and potatoes, with a tasty cheesy topping.
Low-carb broccoli pizza crust – perfect if you’re following a low-carb diet.
Sweet potato and lentil Thai curry [vegan] – it would be really easy to add extra veg to this if you like!
15 minute creamy chickpea curry – I added a dash of cream to mine, but you can easily skip this for a less creamy, but equally tasty, curry.

Mushroom bourguignon [vegan] (pictured above) – so incredibly tasty, and surprisingly low calorie!
Slow cooker lentil and quinoa tacos [vegan] (pictured top) – top with plenty of fresh veg for extra nutrients.
Rich and tomatoey white bean gratin – add extra veggies to bulk it out if you like.
Homemade falafel quinoa bowls – just skip the tzatziki if you’d like a vegan dinner.
Rustic vegan cassoulet with herby dumplings [vegan] – it’s definitely comfort food, but packed with fresh veg and other hearty ingredients.

Veggie burrito bowls (pictured above) – go easy on the cheese, and top with extra veggies for an even healthier dinner.
Cheesy tofu meatballs – serve with roasted veg and pasta, or whatever else you like.
Sweet potato curry [vegan] – the sweet potato makes this a really hearty and filling vegan dinner.
Slow cooker coconut chickpea curry [vegan] – use whatever veg you like that will slow cook nicely!
Easy roasted vegetable ratatouille with chickpeas – veg and chickpeas, roasted in a tasty sauce. So easy.

Easy falafel curry [vegan] (pictured above) – an easy way to liven up shop-bought falafel.
Mediterranean lentil meatballs [vegan] – serve with wholewheat pasta, couscous, or just a big salad.
Vegetarian sausage casserole – full of protein and veggies!
Creamy roasted carrot dal [vegan] – dal is such an easy dinner with heaps of nutrients!
Nutty tofu lettuce wraps – use brown rice for more fibre.

Cheesy lentil and veggie slice (pictured above) – serve a slice alongside extra veg, or in a lunchbox.
Black bean and lentil vegetarian koftas [vegan] – I served mine with couscous, but they’re really versatile – try rice or salad instead if you prefer.
Spicy bean hotpot with crispy potato topping – a tasty stew with lots of beans and veggies, and just enough cheesy potatoes to make it feel like a treat!
Veggie fajita bowls – just go easy on the halloumi and heavy on the veg!
Vegan cream of mushroom soup [vegan] – soup is always great for a light dinner, and this one’s made creamy with high-protein tofu.

20 minute vegetable stroganoff (pictured above) – absolutely packed with fresh veg, and easy to adapt!
Cheesy lentil pasta – the creamy sauce is made from lentils, with lots of added veg!
Very veggie lentil bake – serve it with sautéed kale or a big green salad.
Spicy three bean soup [vegan] – packed with flavour and protein.
15 minute Tuscan beans with artichokes and spinach [vegan] – an easy way to transform a tin of beans into a tasty meal.

Spinach and goat’s cheese self-crusting quiche (pictured above) – serve a slice alongside a big salad.
Nutty pumpkin seed baked veggie burgers [vegan] – serve them in lettuce cups like I did to make them lower calorie.
Black bean and walnut tacos [vegan] – add plenty of extra veg on top to make them extra filling.
One pot vegan jambalaya [vegan] – add extra veg if you like.
Cheesy lentil slice – a protein-packed dinner that’s great with a big, tasty salad.

Creamy chickpea bake (pictured above) – packed with veg and chickpeas.
Creamy three bean stew – full of protein and fibre!
Greek fajitas – don’t add too much feta, and bulk them out with extra lettuce and tomato.
Herby risotto stuffed peppers – an easy way to ensure your portions of risotto are reasonable.
Slow cooker ratatouille [vegan] – serve it as a stew with added chickpeas or beans, or use as a pasta sauce.

Enchilada lentil casserole (pictured above) – add any extra veg you fancy.
White bean mash with griddled veggies and homemade pesto – white bean mash is a seriously tasty, high protein alternative to mashed potato.
Crispy tofu escalopes – serve with a big salad or roasted veg.
Low-carb cauliflower tabbouleh – with some falafel on the side for protein!
Vegetarian Irish stew – use vegetable stock instead of the beer!

What are your go-to healthy vegetarian dinners for this time of year? Let me know in the comments if you have any more ideas!

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  1. All of those dishes look soooo good that I want to try them now! :) We were just discussing adding more vegetarian meals to our week so I’m definitely going to be back to your list very soon.

    1. We’re “low meat eaters” and I’m trying to increase variety while maintaining or lowering our meat servings. Your website is really helpful and I’m looking forward to exploring more.

      My philosophy is essentially that I think meat is delicious and highly nutritionally/environmentally, and ethically challenging. So for me, meat is something to eat rarely and really enjoy, not a default source of protein. However, meat is currently the easiest thing for me to cook and I want to change that status quo.

      Particularly excited about gluten free and slow cooker recipes as I am disabled and on a restricted diet.

      1. That’s a fair point of view! Cutting down on your meat intake can make such a difference, even if you’re not willing to go 100% veggie. I hope you’ll find lots of ideas on the site that will inspire you – meat definitely doesn’t need to always be the default :)

        1. With other food restrictions, full vegetarian would be really hard for me, especially when out to eat or at others homes. I know others do it, but I have so many other issues to deal with.

          We’re lentil fans, so I’m excited about the red lentil recipes. The only time I used red lentils before it, there was an over-cooking disaster.