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?
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!
This vegan shepherd’s pie is cozy comfort food to the max! Imagine: a creamy gravy filled with tender vegetables, lentils and scented with fennel and sage. Then a fluffy layer of mashed potatoes, topped with fresh rosemary. It’s layered together in a baking dish and then baked until golden. This one’s a whole food plant based (WFPB) stunner!
Just WOW! This vegan lasagna is majorly good. In fact, Alex and I eat dairy, but we agree: this is our favorite lasagna, period. No matter how you eat, this vegan lasagna will be a hit. Promise. We had a few friends over to try it, and here’s what we heard: “This is so good. I can’t stop eating it. I need another piece!” It's smothered in a zesty marinara sauce, layered with spinach, mushrooms, and our secret ingredient: hummus! Top with a sprinkling of "Parmesan" and it's a favorite that pleases everyone at the table. We guarantee it!
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!
WOW is all we can say about this vegan enchiladas recipe! It tops the charts as one of our most crowd-pleasing plant based recipes…ever. Tortillas are wrapped around a veggie filling oozing with flavor, and it’s all doused in a zesty homemade enchilada sauce. With the crunchy veggie topping, this dish looks simply incredible. It tastes even better than it looks!
These vegan Sloppy Joes have a zingy lentil filling that tastes just as good as the meaty version. Put it on a toasted bun with some bread and butter pickles, and WOW! You’re going to love this one (promise). A fantastic plant-based meal for people who are on the fence about veggies, they're crowd pleasing and have a cozy, comforting vibe!
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 a creamy vegan broccoli soup that will blow your mind. It’s impossibly creamy, whole food plant based (WFPB), and it tastes like the coziest bowl of comfort. This easy and healthy soup is vegan and gluten-free, so it works for a variety of diets. It tastes like that cozy and comforting broccoli cheese soup from a can...but 1000 times better!
Your noodles are destined for greatness with this vegan fettuccine alfredo! It’s creamy and luscious, but full of nutrient-rich cauliflower and protein-packed cashews. Another advantage to this vegan alfredo sauce is that it’s gluten-free as well! Many alfredo sauce recipes have flour because it’s used to make the “roux” that thickens the sauce. So it works for many diets.
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.
Who says chili needs meat? Here's the ultimate vegan chili recipe! It’s full of savory flavor starring beans, quinoa, and a hint of adobo sauce for complexity. Top it with our vegan sour cream and some pickled jalapenos and well: it’s out of this world good.
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.
Nachos are total comfort food, and these vegan nachos are 100% delicious! Start with a layer of organic corn chips, then add our smoky lentils and rice, which taste meaty and savory. Top with fresh vegetables, cilantro and our best gooey vegan nacho cheese!
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!
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.
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.