Is a culinary tour through Europe one of the big-ticket items on your bucket list? Just imagine sitting in Italy eating fresh, handmade pasta with the freshest tomatoes and basil just picked off the stem. Or dining in France where you have the most delicious pastries known to man. Then you head over to England for some vegan fish and chips right before leaving for Greece with its Mediterranean lemony delights. Sounds like a dream come true.
Of course, you don’t have to wait until you can really travel to Europe to experience some of the continent’s amazing classic dishes. No, you can visit all your favorite European countries without ever leaving your kitchen just by cooking up some authentic ethnic cuisine. That’s part of the fun of making ethnic dishes – they transport us to faraway lands, and we don’t even need a passport.
If cooking global cuisine intimidates you, relax. It’s easy once you understand the flavor profiles of the different regional cuisines. Check out our Tips for Making Ethnic Cuisine Taste the Best for hints, advice and recipe ideas.
Another great reason to make your own ethnic cuisine is that you can tailor it to your likes and needs. Make it vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, or nut-free. Make it extra spicy, extra mild or make it raw. It’s all under your control. For inspiration, look at Your 60 Favorite European Recipes Made Vegan and see how delicious European vegan food can be. Then keep traveling because we have 12 more classic European dishes made vegan. Get ready to board the tasty train!
1. Cheesy Spaetzle
Spaetzle is a typical dish in Germany and Austria. This Cheesy Spaetzle recipe is made with vegan cheese and onions, but you can use it for so many other variations! Serve them with goulash or other creamy sauces like you would with mushrooms or pasta.
2. Betty Crocker Coq au Vin
This Betty Crocker Coq au Vin is a seemingly fancy dish that really doesn’t take anything special at all. A classic French beef stew, it’s made vegan with seitan and vegan bacon. This recipe uses a bouquet garni, which is a fancy term for a spice packet. Filled with whatever herbs you like, this easy trick can take your dish to the next level without a lot of work!
3. Caprese Salad
Transform a classic Italian salad into a plant-based masterpiece. This Caprese Salad has fresh organic Roma tomatoes and extra firm tofu. The tofu, with all the goodies added, is almost indistinguishable from buffalo mozzarella. The added bonus is how quickly and easily this comes together.
4. Greek Potato Stew / Patates Yahni
Made with just five ingredients and one pot in just under an hour, this traditional Greek Potato Stew (πατάτες γιαχνί) is rustic, potato perfection. Red ripe tomatoes, fresh parsley, sweet red onions, minced garlic and yellow potatoes simmered in olive oil combine to create one of the simplest, most authentic and amazingly delicious Greek dishes you will ever enjoy!
5. Polish Golabki (Stuffed Cabbage)
Stuffed cabbage, or golabki, is a traditional Polish dish usually made with beef. This Polish Golabki is filled with hearty vegan ground beef and smothered in a creamy tomato sauce. It’s so close to the original, no one will know the difference.
6. Spanish Potato and Chorizo Omelet-Style Quiche
This dish is a combination of a quiche with the flavors of a Spanish potato omelet (called a tortilla) with chorizo. You can eat this Spanish Potato and Chorizo Omelet-Style Quiche while still warm from the oven which is important because you won’t want to wait. The filling is smooth and creamy, with just enough spicy contrast from the sausage.
7. Turkish Tofu and Spinach Börek
This Tofu and Spinach Börek is a Turkish feast from vegan heaven or any heaven for that matter. Typically made with cheese and spinach between layers of buttery filo pastry, börek is surprisingly easy to veganize. In place of cheese, crumbled tofu, with a dose of nutritional yeast to give it a cheesy hint, does a very fine job for the filling.
8. Portuguese Custard Tarts
These Portuguese Custard Tarts have crispy and flaky shells filled with creamy, bright yellow custard. They’re laced with a bit of vanilla, cinnamon, and a distinctive flavor. You won’t believe these healthy custard tarts contain no eggs at all.
9. Amaretto Cherry Strudel With Homemade Vegan Puff Pastry
Strudel is a traditional German dessert and this Amaretto Cherry Strudel recipe is quite amazing. if I do say so myself. Don’t be intimidated by the “homemade vegan puff pastry” part; it’s really pretty simple. This recipe is flakey, easy and most importantly, delicious! It looks fancy and would be the perfect addition to any breakfast, brunch or dessert!
10. Vegan Bangers
These Vegan Bangers, with their herbs and seasonings, are reminiscent of Lincolnshire sausages These are ideal for sausage sandwiches, added to a vegan fry-up or as classic bangers and mash with a rich onion gravy. You’ll want to double the recipe and freeze a bunch so you can always have some on hand.
11. Lemon and Ginger Spiced Soda Bread
These Lemon and Ginger Irish Soda Bread rolls make the perfect little side accompaniment to soups and stews. They are hearty and filling and best of all so quick to make as they don’t need to be kneaded or left to rise … that’s the beauty of soda bread!
12. Chickpea Blinis With Grilled Vegetables and Lemon Cream
The beauty of these Chickpea Blinis is that you can fill them with whatever you like even leftovers from last night’s dinner. These are filled with grilled vegetables and topped with a tangy lemon cream. Serve with a salad for the perfect light meal.
Europe has given us hundreds of classic dishes. Think how much fun it would be to make plant-based versions of all of them. That’s a trip that should be on all our bucket lists.
Lead image source: Turkish Tofu and Spinach Börek