Weeknight Cooking

10 of Our Favorite Meatless Menus

November 23, 2014

Let's do some simple math: There are approximately an infinite number of vegetarian mains, approximately an infinite number of vegetarian sides, and approximately an infinite number of vegetarian desserts and cocktails. By our calcuations, that means that there are approximately an infinite number of ways you can put together a meatless weeknight meal.

The paralyzing number of possibilities can leave you lost in the internet like a mouse in a maze. That's why we've dug up some of our favorite meat-free menu ideas so that no matter what mood you're in, you'll be able to get to cooking (and to eating) more quickly. And the results are guaranteed to be satisfying.

Here are 10 of our favorites:

Shop the Story

For when you wish you were Italian: Spaghetti alla Foriana + Swiss Chard Agradolce



For when you want to eat cheese for dinner: Ooey Gooey Toasted Cheese + Rapini with Vin Cotto 



And for when you want to go one step further and eat chocolate for dinner: Roasted Endives + Grilled Chocolate Sandwiches



For when you need some spice: Pad Thai Redux + Sichaunese Dry-Fried Green Beans



For when you need some time alone: Spaghetti with Fried Eggs + Braised Whole Scallions



For when you need a shortcut: White Bean Soup + Southwestern Spiced Sweet Potato Fries



For when you're craving something salty and buttery: Potato Soup with Fried Almonds + Chard Salad



For when you need the human equivalent of a belly rub: Linguine with Lemon, Garlic, and Mushrooms + Chocolate Cake



For when you have kitchen helpers to put to work: Curried Cauliflower Soup + Root Ribbons with Sage



For when you're tired of the ordinary: Grilled Peanut Tofu + Ginger Miso Salad


What are your go-to recipes for vegetarian weeknight meals? Share with us in the comments below!

Order now

A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).

Order now

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Kelley Bodwell
    Kelley Bodwell
  • nevaeh33
  • almacucina
  • katharinec
I used to work at Food52. I'm probably the person who picked all of the cookie dough out of the cookie dough ice cream.


Kelley B. November 24, 2014
my easy go-to meatless meal: a fried egg and some sauteed greens. best fast food.
nevaeh33 November 24, 2014
The potato soup recipe calls for ham. Sure, I could just leave it out, but if there are an "infinite number of vegetarian mains," as the introductory paragraph states, I would think you could have found a truly vegetarian soup. Also, five of the ten recipes have pasta or noodles as a main part of the dish; there's so much more to vegetarian cooking than tossing some vegetables with some pasta. This list is disappointing.
katharinec April 7, 2015
almacucina November 23, 2014
Big fan of meatless meals, so thanks for all the ideas! Here's one for you. This Hot Mess Quinoa Salad combines some of my favorite foods: sweet potatoes, quinoa and avocado. It's easy to throw together, it's delicious, nutritious and very filling. http://www.almacucina.com/2014/06/hot-mess-quinoa-salad.html