Plant based recipes are just as good—or better! Here are the best vegan comfort food recipes, from pizza to fries to nachos.
Who says you need meat or dairy for comfort food? Vegan comfort food recipes can be some of the tastiest out there. Alex and I have been creating plant based recipes for years. Along the way, we’ve found that eating a vegan cookie, cake, fries, or taco can be just as satisfying (or more). If you eat vegan regularly or just are trying to eat more plants: there’s no need to give up comfort food!
Here we’ve put together a list of all our favorite vegan comfort food recipes! From french fries that taste just as good as your favorite restaurant to the best plant based chocolate cake you’ve ever had, we’re thrilled to share all our best secrets. Ready for the recipes?
And now…our top vegan comfort food recipes!
First up in our vegan comfort food recipes: vegan carnitas tacos! These tacos taste just like pulled pork...except they're jackfruit. It's pretty magical how a fruit can oddly taste just like meat by adding onion, garlic, cumin, tomato paste, cocoa powder and adobo sauce. Serve with refried beans for a filling comfort food meal!
What's more of a comfort food than pizza? Our best vegan pizza tastes incredible with no need for cheese. It's covered in our tangy best pizza sauce, then topped with all the veggies. Mushrooms, artichokes, bell peppers, and even chickpeas bring big flavor. Top with fresh basil and it's a pizza pie that pleases everyone!
Here's a vegan comfort food that's naturally plant based: french fries! These fries are baked in a hot oven, but they taste just as good as your favorite restaurant fry. Hand-cut your fries (with our simple method), then mix them with olive oil, mustard powder, and black pepper. It's the perfect seasoning mix for seriously good, crispy baked fries.
Here's vegan comfort food at its finest: a gooey, tangy vegan BBQ sandwich! Here's another place where we've used jackfruit to stand in as pulled pork, and it's so good you might even fool some meat eaters! You'll make a homemade BBQ sauce with a splash of bourbon, then add the jackfruit and simmer until it's tender and looks just like pulled pork.
What about vegan comfort food for breakfast? Start with vegan biscuits that are impossibly flaky. Then add a thick, creamy mushroom country gravy that covers the entire dish in savory goodness. It's got just the right cozy, comforting vibe that pleases plant-based eaters and carnivores alike.
What's more vegan comfort food than a good old chocolate cake? This one is truly the best vegan chocolate cake out there. You've got two layers of moist, chocolate-y cake, separated by a fluffy vegan buttercream frosting. To top it off, a glossy glaze of vegan chocolate ganache. It's absolutely stunning and one of the best plant based desserts out there.
Back to savory vegan comfort food with this vegan pot pie! This one is a true winner: it's been made by many of our readers, and they all rave about it! Maybe it's the flaky, sage-flecked pastry crust, or the gooey interior of tender veggies in a thick gravy. Whatever the case, this one's been a hit for years! It's a stunner.
Who says chili needs meat? This tasty vegan chili is bursting with flavor! It's got a trio of beans, corn and bell pepper, and fluffy quinoa to simulate the texture of meat. The spiced broth is extremely savory and hits the spot on a chilly day! Instead of sour cream, add a dollop of cashew cream.
Last but not least in our vegan comfort food recipes: chocolate chip cookies! There's nothing better than biting into a warm cookie with gooey chocolate. These are seriously good, made with almond flour so they've got a chewy texture (and are naturally gluten-free, too). They're seriously cozy and comforting!
Here’s the very best in vegan comfort food: these vegan carnitas tacos! You won’t believe the flavor that that’s possible in this pulled pork filling.
For the jackfruit
- 2 15-ounce cans green jackfruit in water or brine
- 1/2 cup minced yellow onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons adobo sauce (from 1 can chipotle peppers in adobo)
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup water
For the tacos
- Rinse and drain the jackfruit in a colander, pressing down to extract as much water as possible. Run your hands through the pieces, pulling and separating them into shreds with your fingers.
- Mince the onion. Mince the garlic.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute for 3 to 4 minutes until tender and fragrant, but before the garlic browns. Add the jackfruit and remaining ingredients (add 1 tablespoon of adobo sauce for a mild recipe, up to 1 1/2 or 2 tablespoons for a spicier recipe). Cook for about 5 minutes on medium low heat until saucy.
- If desired, char the tortillas by placing them on an open gas flame on medium for a few seconds per side, flipping with tongs, until they are slightly blackened and warm. (See How to Warm Tortillas.)
- To serve, place the jackfruit, romaine, salsa fresca, and torn cilantro leaves in a warmed tortilla. Serve immediately with refried beans.
*To keep the meal filling enough (since jackfruit doesn’t have much protein), make sure to serve with refried beans! We tested serving them in the tacos, but found that the jackfruit flavor didn’t come through as well.
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Comfort Food
Keywords: Vegan Comfort Food, Vegan Carnitas Tacos
More plant based resources
If you’re looking to eat a whole food plant based diet (WFPB) or just more vegetable-centered recipes, here are some of our best resources on eating vegan and plant based recipes:
- Whole Food Plant Based Diet: Guide & Recipes
- Plant Based Diet for Beginners
- 28 Day Plant Based Diet Meal Plan
- 15 Plant Based & Vegan Breakfast Ideas
- Guide to Plant Based Protein
About the Authors
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.