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21 Easy One Pot Vegan Meals Under 30 Minutes
Author: Kelly / Published: December 7, 2023 / Updated: December 8, 2023 / This post may contain affiliate links / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases / Leave a Comment
Maybe your goal this year is to cook more vegan meals at home. But between work, school, and everything else in your life… it’s hard to find the time. And don’t get me started on doing the dishes. But it’s all good, because these quick and easy one-pot vegan meals make cooking and clean-up a breeze. Ready to eat in 30 minutes or less.
I’ve tested all of the recipes by setting a timer while I cook, to ensure they take less than 30 minutes. I can personally confirm I managed to cook each of these vegan one pot meals in under half an hour, from start to finish!
With one-pot pasta recipes, the tricky part is knowing how much water to add. Not enough water, and the pasta burns before it cooks. Too much water, and you end up with soggy slop. But these one-pot vegan recipes have figured it all out for you. So just follow the recipe and measure out your ingredients carefully. You’ll end up with a tasty pasta dish, and only one pot to wash!
One Pot Vegan Pesto Pasta
Only 3 ingredients are needed for this one-pot pesto pasta. It doubles and triples easily so you can easily make it for yourself or the whole family. Plus, you can bulk it up with healthy veggies (I like broccoli or spinach). Perfect for a weeknight meal or quick meal prep.
Manestra is a kind of Greek pasta similar to orzo. It's most commonly paired with tomato sauce in a soupy pasta dish. Packed with flavour, yet easy to make. It's a simple family-friendly meal that makes for a nice change from the humdrum tomato spaghetti dinners.
This dairy-free, vegan hamburger helper recipe uses mushrooms to give it a meaty and satisfying texture. It’s just like the stroganoff hamburger helper of your childhood, but plant-based! I personally love creamy pasta dishes so this one hits the spot for me every time. (Tip: I like to substitute soy milk in place of the coconut milk for a more neutral taste.)
Isn't it cool how every country and culture has their own unique pasta and noodle dishes? Rasta pasta is from Jamaica and features jerk spices and bell peppers. It's mouthwateringly delicious and I love being able to spice up my meal with flavours that I don't use as often.
This is my go-to guilty pleasure meal. It’s so easy and fast, perfect for weeknights when I’m stressed out from work and don’t want to spend time cooking. All you need is dried pasta, vegan cheese, salt, and plant-based milk. Oh, and you can even use water in a pinch if you don’t have milk.
Miso in pasta, really? Yep, really. Miso paste is good for so many things besides miso soup! This Japanese-inspired miso mushroom pasta is creamy, cozy and packed with umami flavor. The recipe uses gluten-free pasta, but I usually just use regular pasta since I don't have any gluten sensitivities. It's delicious either way.
Sick of pasta? Maybe these one pot vegan rice recipes are more your speed.
Kimchi-Bokkeumbap (Kimchi Fried Rice)
If you’ve been scared of cooking fried rice at home because of how hot and intense it is, don’t worry. Korean Kimchi-Bokkeumbap is for you. It’s cooked on medium heat and you can even use a nonstick pan. For best results, use cold, day-old leftover rice and make sure to get a vegan kimchi.
Peas Pulao seems simple enough. It's just basmati rice, peas, onions, ginger, garlic, vegetable stock, and various spices. But wow, the flavour of this rice is just phenomenal with all the aromatics that are mixed in. And the fact that it all comes together in just one pot? Chef's kiss.
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If you’ve got some canned beans kicking around, then these 30-minute vegan bean recipes are perfect. (Pro-tip for saving money: Cook dried beans in big batches and keep them in the freezer. Freeze them flat in little sandwich bags and run them under water to quickly defrost. Much cheaper than buying canned beans! You can use this handy-dandy beans calculator to convert canned beans to cooked beans.)
One Pot Brothy Butter Beans
These butter beans have a light, lemony broth and are easily customized to use whatever veggies you have on hand. An effortlessly elegant weeknight meal. Bonus: soak up the leftover broth with some crusty soda bread.
Apples in a curry recipe? Don’t knock it ’til you try it. This is a mild curry made with creamy coconut milk, soft stewed apples, and some chickpeas for fibre and protein. I normally don’t like beans in my curry, but this one pot recipe is an exception.
I find myself making more chili recently as the weather gets cooler. This killer 3 Bean Vegan Chili is made entirely in the Instant Pot, and it's so delicious. The secret? A little bit of cocoa powder in the sauce, like all the best chili recipes do.
These heartwarming one pot vegan soups are quick and easy, but big on flavour.
Bok Choy Miso Soup
This savoury soup is great as a side, although I sometimes make a big batch of it to eat all by myself for a light yet filling dinner. Warm miso soup is just so nourishing, you’ll keep going back for more sips.
This vegan milk peanut soup is spiced with curry powder, full of vegetables, and made with coconut milk and whole peanuts. It’s crazy how flavourful and rich it is, and the peanuts add a fun crunchy texture. Definitely a winter staple for me.
A savoury plant-based take on Asian fish ball noodle soup. Quick and easy with five ingredients and ready in 30 minutes. By the way, if you don't have vegan fish balls, fried tofu puffs or even IKEA plant balls work great too.
You didn’t think I’d finish this recipe collection without some vegan tofu recipes, did you? After all, I’m basically a tofu evangelist at this point…
Vegetarian Kimchi Jjigae (Spicy Korean Tofu Stew)
Kimchi Jjigae is similar to Soondubu Jjigae. They are both Korean tofu stew recipes. Kimchi jjigae usually uses firm tofu while soondubu jjigae uses soft tofu. And this kimchi jjigae recipe happens to be quicker to make as well. It takes just half an hour all in one pot!
Do you want to make your own Thai red curry in less time than it takes to deliver from your favourite restaurant? You’re in the right place. This 30-minute Thai tofu curry is lip-smacking good. Use storebought curry paste (I like Aroy-D) and frozen vegetables to make the prep a breeze.
This is a copycat recipe of Panda Express' famous Eggplant Tofu takeout. It combines crispy tofu, fried eggplants, and red peppers with a sweet and spicy sauce. Typically it's served with rice on the side, but it's so good, I could eat it without the rice!
Here’s just a few more miscellaneous one pot vegan meals to round it out:
Romanian Mămăligă (Cornmeal Porridge)
Mămăligă is a staple Romanian meal made from cornmeal. It’s basically the Romanian version of polenta. It takes about 20 minutes to make this versatile dish. My favourite way to eat it is with steamed sauerkraut, but it’s also delicious topped with tofu feta (”mămăligă cu brânză”).
Need a new couscous recipe? Try this Mediterranean couscous bowl, which comes together in one pan and gets topped with luscious yogurt dressing (I use homemade soy cashew yogurt). The perfect meal for any time of day!