Plant It: 6 Filling Vegan Main Courses

No longer a lifestyle enjoyed by a select few, veganism has exploded in popularity over the last few years. People around the country are clinging to veganism because of its ethical, health, and environmental aspects, so the market for fantastic vegan food is in high demand. An excellent main course is an important showcase piece for any restaurant with vegan leanings. After all, just because you’re vegan doesn’t mean you have to go hungry.

Cauliflower Steaks

Immediate proof that vegan dishes can be both aesthetically pleasing and filling, cauliflower steaks take the trendy vegetable and implement a variety of seasonings and ingredients to create a stellar main course. There are a ton of different variants to cauliflower steaks, but they all incorporate a baked, halved cauliflower head and a variety of toppings like tomatoes, onion, and garlic. For an extra level of crunch, try coating in panko breadcrumbs!

Red Leaf and Cactus Pear Autumn Salad

One of our favorite salads here at Colorful Plates, the red leaf and cactus pear autumn salad utilizes classy, unique produce like figs, cactus pears, and shallots to great effect. This mixture of seasonal produce delicately balances savory and sweet flavors, resulting in a one of a kind salad that remains purely vegan. 

Black Bean and Quinoa Burgers

With the recent rise of the “impossible” burger in places like Burger King and White Castle, even fast food places have been dipping their toes into the world of veganism! Bring things up a notch and create your own “patties” in house with a black bean and quinoa base! Afterwards, be sure to incorporate vegan cheeses and toppings like avocado slices, grilled onions, and tomato!

Golden Rice Pilaf With Sweet Shredded Carrots

A gorgeous amalgamation of colors and textures, this dish from our friends at Grimmway Farms is one of our favorite vegan mains. With an ingredient list ranging from rainbow carrots to mint leaves, this dish practically begs for a social media shoutout. It’s important to note that the dish calls for butter, but simply substitute it for vegan butter or coconut oil to keep it 100% vegan. 

Chickpea Curry

Simultaneously simple, flavorful, and dependable, chickpea curry rocked our world when we first discovered it. The dish works within the rich history of Indian spices while updating it for the 21st century; expect coconut milk, chickpeas, and sweet potatoes to come together for a savory salute. Be sure to nod towards traditional curry recipes by generously seasoning with tikka masala!

White Bean and Kale Soup

Soups get an unfair reputation as being a side dish but with a little TLC, they can easily be the centerpiece of any menu. White bean and kale soup is easily one of the best vegan soup options, because most recipes are vegan to start with! Better yet, the soup makes excellent use of the hippest green of them all. Stick with the dinosaur kale variety in this soup though; its tender leaves cut down on the cooking process.