This is the ultimate list of our best vegan Italian recipes, tried and tested, even by our Italian neighbors! Many people would agree that Italian cuisine is one of the best in the world. From pasta, pizza, and focaccia, to rich sauces, hearty soups, and divine cheeses, Italy's food heritage is rich!
But can you be plant-based and still eat tasty Italian food? YES, you can. Scroll through this list, you'll see 65 amazing ideas and a great variety of vegan Italian recipes.
Starters, and side dishes
Tomato bruschetta is crunchy, juicy, garlicky, and perfect as an appetizer, dinner, or even for brunch. The recipe is simple, and you can make it in 10 minutes with a few ingredients.
Roasted bell peppers
Roasted bell peppers are a delicious recipe that can be served as an antipasto, a side dish, or can be used as a base for many other recipes like salads and pasta.
Braised artichokes, also known as "Roman-style artichokes", are an easy Italian artichoke recipe that you can make with simple ingredients in just 30 minutes.
Caponata or eggplant salad has the perfect balance of sweet and sour. It's rich and made with simple, fresh ingredients. Eat it as a starter, side dish, or as a light easy dinner on some toasted bread.
Roasted zucchini with Italian herbs
Roasted zucchini is a classic Italian starter or side dish. Italian herbs and breadcrumbs give the zucchini bold flavor and juicy texture.
A traditional Italian summer dish made with simple seasonal vegetables and leftover stale bread is one of the most underrated salad recipes. Despite being an ancient recipe, it takes just 10 mins to prep!
Tomato cucumber onion salad
A crunchy, refreshing, simple dish that you can enjoy as a starter or as a side dish. It's best with ripe tomatoes, crunchy cucumber, and sweet red onion.
Fennel orange salad
Fennel and orange salad is a crunchy, fresh, and light salad to be served as a side dish or as a starter. It's perfect in winter when the fennel, orange, and pomegranate are in season.
Tomato confit is the easiest, meltiest, most delicious tomato recipe. Soft, juicy, packed with oregano and garlic aroma. They're perfect as a juicy side dish, a starter served with toasted bread, or as a topping to a bowl of pasta.
Caramelized onions have a rich and deep flavor with sweet and sour notes. They are soft and literally melt in your mouth.
Focaccia bread is so easy! All you need is flour, water, salt, and yeast for the dough, and rosemary and olive oil as toppings. You can make it on the day or get ahead and let it proof slowly in the fridge.
This crispy and thin focaccia is packed with melted vegan cheese and spinach. It's a dairy-free version of "focaccia di Recco" which is originally stuffed with stracchino cheese and eaten as street food in Liguria of Italy.
Mini pizzas are one of the most popular finger foods in Italy. They are usually served as a fun, crunchy starter, or during birthdays, buffets, and gatherings. Making these is very simple, you can add your favorite toppings for a fun evening with your family.
Farinata or socca is an easy recipe, made by mixing together chickpea flour and extra virgin olive oil, then baking it in the oven for about 20 minutes. Delicious as a starter, side dish, or as the main dish when used as a pizza.
Our vegan carbonara is a simple recipe that can be made in 15 minutes. The taste of our carbonara sauce is similar to the taste of an authentic Italian carbonara recipe.
Pasta alla Norma (eggplant pasta)
A classic Sicilian dish that you can make in about 30 minutes with simple pantry ingredients and fresh eggplants
Our lentil bolognese is an Italian classic with an ultra-rich and hearty sauce, perfect with pasta, lasagna, or zucchini noodles.
Aglio e olio
This is the original recipe for garlic and oil pasta, a delicious Italian meal also known as spaghetti aglio e olio. We'll show you how to make it to perfection in under 15 minutes, with simple ingredients.
This easy tempeh recipe is perfect with spaghetti, gnocchi, lasagna, and polenta. It's my personal favorite vegan bolognese sauce of all time, and we're sure you'll love it too.
Vegan Cacio e Pepe
Here's irresistible vegan cacio e pepe, ready in 10 mins! Is that even possible? Yes. And the result is a creamy, peppery, and cheesy pasta dish that you can cook in no time.
This is an easy recipe to make at home, you'll need just three ingredients and a fork. Once shaped, your gnocchi can be paired with your favorite pasta sauce - from rich tomato to a creamy mushroom sauce.
One of the most versatile Italian sauces, perfect with pasta, pizza, and (vegan) meatballs. Incredibly easy to make, and super satisfying to eat!
Creamy Pasta boscaiola
This vegan creamy pasta is inspired by the Italian Boscaiola recipe. Mushrooms, peas, and vegan bacon make the base of this luxurious restaurant-y sauce.
Also called "spaghetti al limone" in Italian, is a simple creamy pasta recipe that is perfect for a quick and tasty lunch or dinner. It takes just 10 mins to make this scrumptious pasta dish.
This aromatic and scrumptious mushroom pasta is great for weeknight dinners and for guests due to its restaurant-worthy looks and flavor. Pick your favorite button, portobello, or cremini mushrooms, and make this 30-minute pasta while sipping on a glass of red wine.
Trofie with basil pesto
Homemade trofie with vegan basil pesto is our take on a traditional Italian dish made for centuries on the Ligurian Riviera in Genova. We show you how to make trofie at home like in Italy with just two ingredients.
Chestnut pesto pasta
Cozy, creamy, cheesy, and made with a few simple ingredients, including chestnuts, hazelnuts, and mushrooms. This pasta is the ultimate romantic dinner for the fall and winter seasons.
Artichoke pasta bake
Perfect for those early spring days, when the sun is shining but the air is still cold outside. We make this recipe plant-based by adding peas to the artichokes and mixing the pasta with vegan mozzarella, parmesan and ricotta.
A creamy and tasty risotto with a delightful saffron flavor. We use vegan butter and dairy-free parmesan for an Italian flavor and satiating meal.
This creamy tomato risotto is a simple staple of Italian home cooking. The rice is slowly cooked into a rich tomato sauce which we add dairy-free butter and cheese. It's a rich, creamy risotto that tastes 100% authentic and Italian.
Easy to make, springy, and refreshingly green. This zucchini risotto with grated zucchini is a crowd-pleaser. Make it with vegan cheese and taste the creaminess yourself!
Fried stuffed rice balls are the perfect recreation of a traditional regional Italian recipe. Our vegan supplì are as tasty, crispy, messy, melty, scruffy, and as Italian, as it gets. They can be enjoyed as an appetizer, snack, or even as a main dish.
Italian rice pancake "Riso al salto"
A tasty and crunchy rice pancake made from the leftovers of risotto. A perfect meal to reduce food waste, share with family, and impress guests.
This Italian rice salad is a colorful and summer-friendly grain bowl with fresh vegetables, Italian herbs, and a creamy mustard dressing. It's great for meal prep, as a putlock salad, and as a lunchbox idea.
Vegan ricotta cheese is so easy, light, creamy, and versatile. You can make it with 3 simple ingredients in less than one hour, and you can use it exactly like regular ricotta.
Vegan melted cheese (stracchino)
You can make it in 5 minutes, and use it on pizza, toast, and oven-baked pasta. It's perfect on food that goes in the oven, as it melts like mozzarella cheese.
You can sprinkle this fake vegan parmesan cheese on top of your favorite pasta, in pasta bakes, polenta, risotto, and in any other place, you would normally add parmesan cheese.
This recipe is inspired by an Italian recipe for lemon chicken. We replaced the chicken fillet with tofu slices and the result is a delicious meal that can be prepared in no time.
Tofu with pizzaiola sauce is a simple yet delicious tofu recipe ready in just 10 mins. We fry thinly sliced tofu and cook it in a rich tomato and oregano sauce - a perfect last-minute dinner for the whole family.
Pan-fried tofu with mushrooms
A quick and delicious recipe that is perfect for everyday, last-minute dinners. This recipe is inspired by scaloppini with mushrooms, a popular Italian recipe, but our version is 100% plant-based.
Baked juicy "fish"
It's really a simple dish, that you can make in half an hour in the oven, as an everyday dinner. We serve this one as a fish replacement, and we cook it exactly like white fish is cooked in Italy.
We might use tofu instead of chicken, but this meal is rich, earthy, meaty, and packed with the cacciatore flavor we all love so much. You've never had tofu like this!
Seitan steaks (Italian scaloppine)
These seitan steaks are one of our favorite plant-based meat replacements. They are easy to make at home, tender, but with a good meaty texture. Also, they are super versatile and can be paired with your preferred sauce.
This eggplant parmigiana is a creamy and indulgent dish that is easily made vegan. It is super tasty, rich, creamy, and healthy since the eggplant is baked and not fried. As a cheese substitute, we use fake homemade parmesan. Simple and affordable, yet incredibly satiating.
Here we show you how to make the best vegan tiramisù that we have ever had, with simple plant-based ingredients. The ladyfingers are homemade and without eggs, yet this dessert is an incredible treat.
Our tart is made with a crunchy pie crust, filled with smooth and creamy vanilla custard, and topped with sweet fresh strawberries. This recipe is so easy and delicious that you'll want to make it every day.
This beautiful and delicious fruit tart is a classic Italian pastry recipe that everyone loves. We make a light, crunchy, and easy pie crust that we then fill with our dairy-free homemade custard.
This vegan lemon tart is a popular recipe that everyone will love. It's sweet, refreshing, and made with really simple ingredients that you already have in your pantry. You can make it with a soft crust or crunchy crust. We'll show you both.
Ricotta Chocolate Chip Pie
Vegan ricotta pie is an easy recipe made with a few simple ingredients. We make a sweet vegan shortcrust pastry as the base for the pie. We then fill it with a creamy, sweet, aromatic ricotta cream, mixed with dark chocolate chips and orange zest.
Hungry for more Italian desserts? Try these authentic Italian sweet treats:
- Chiacchiere: the traditional Carnevale biscuit made vegan.
- Almond biscotti with nuts, almonds, or chocolate chips.
- Apple fritters: deep-fried and dough-covered apple slices.
- Castagnole: donut holes fried or oven-baked.
- Wine cookies: a traditional biscuit from the Umbrian countryside.
- Castagnaccio - chestnut flour cake with raisins and walnuts.
- Orange almond cookies "Ricciarelli" with aquafaba.
- Vegan Amaretti with aquafaba and blended almonds.
- Coffee mousse with just 3 ingredients, and 5 minutes of preparation time.
What to serve with Italian food
These vegan Italian meals generally go well with grains, bread, and vegetable side dishes. Take your pick here for some additional inspiration:
- 40 easy vegetable side dishes
- 12 delicious artichoke recipes
- 20 ways to cook zucchini
- 24 easy eggplant recipes
For many more delicious vegan meals make sure to check out our 30-minute Meal Page!
65 Vegan Italian Recipes
- 11 ounces pasta spaghetti, bucatini, penne
- 15 ounces whole peeled canned tomatoes
- 7 ounces plum tomatoes
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic
- ⅓ teaspoons red pepper flakes
- 15 fresh basil leaves
- ½ teaspoon salt or more to taste
- ¾ gallons water to cook the pasta
- 2 tablespoons coarse sea salt to salt the pasta water
- Start by putting the water to boil. Then cut the plum tomatoes in half and set aside. In a large pan on low heat, add 3 tablespoon of olive oil, crushed garlic, and the chili flakes. Let fry gently for 1 minute. Don't let the garlic burn.Add the plum tomatoes and let cook on medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes, until they become soft. Add a little water if they stick to the pan.
- Add the pelati in the pan and crush them with a fork. Let the tomatoes simmer on low heat while the pasta cooks, stirring occasionally. Season with two pinches of salt and add around 10 basil leaves in it. Add some pasta water when the sauce gets too thick.
- When the water boils, salt it, then cook the pasta in it for 4 minutes less than indicated on the cooking package. If the package says 12 minutes, then cook it for 8 minutes only. While the pasta cooks, take care of the tomato sauce, stirring and adding water as it dries up.
- When the pasta is ready, take it out of the water and put it into the pan with the sauce. Do not throw away the pasta water, we need it to finish cooking the pasta.Finish cooking the pasta in the pan with the tomato sauce, adding one or two ladles of pasta water as the pasta cooks. Stir gently, and cook until the pasta is al dente.
- Turn off the heat, and if you like, add a couple of extra spoons of extra virgin olive oil. Give it a final stir and serve with some fresh basil leaves on top.
Get more Italian recipe inspiration from these new and fresh ideas: