20 Vegan Recipes

20 Vegan Recipes That Will Wow Non-Vegans!

20 Vegan Recipes That Will Wow Non-Vegans!

20 Vegan Recipes That Will Wow Non-Vegans!

20 Vegan Recipes That Will Wow Non-Vegans!

I receive a lot of messages and questions and I think, by far, one of the most popular requests I receive is this, Give me your best recipe to wow some non-vegan guests! I hear it all the time. People have family members, friends or guests that they want to wow and prove how delicious vegan food truly is and thats its not some weird alien food, haha! OR, they want something they can fix that nobody will KNOW its vegan, hahaha. You guys are sneaky. Well, that inspired me to compile a list so that instead of answering that question with multiple links each time, I will now have this handy post ready!

Each of these recipes I share today are ones that have repeatedly gotten rave reviews from readers saying…nobody could believe this was vegan! or my meat-eating husband devoured this! While I have many, many more recipes that are hits, I have chosen 20 that I feel anybody and everybody loves.

Nobody has to eat salads or live on lettuce to be vegan and this list will prove that. Honestly, I rarely ever eat salads. I like them, but Im just more of a hearty eater. Stews, chilis, pasta, tacos, etc. FEED ME. Im a Texas girl, I like food, haha.

So, here you have it. Mytop 20 vegan recipesthat all of my non-vegan family, friends and guests happily stuff down their faces and as well, many readers report these same results! Bonus that they are alloil-free and gluten-free. Not to mention, 8 ingredients or less. The Mexican Chili is my oldest recipe in the list, 5 years old, so it is from my old blog and is not 8 ingredients. However, since all my meat-eating family and relatives LOVE IT, it deserved a spot.

1 No surprise.VEGAN GARLIC ALFREDO. Most people have tried this so far that have visited my blog, its the most made recipeevery single weekand the highest rated recipe. It is one of my oldest recipes and sadly, one of the most copied. However, the original comes from my blog. I originally posted it in 2013. It was the one featured in the movie Eating You Alive that I cook and after seeing that movie, it got a high praise from actress Mayim Malik. She talked about how amazing it was to her and her kids on her IG page and it pretty much made my whole year, lol.

1.VEGAN GARLIC ALFREDO….or the time-saver version that I equally love,20 Minute Alfredo. Both consistently get rave reviews.

2.CHEESY MEXICAN TORTILLA BAKE….only posted 2 months ago and is already had an enormous amount of remakes and stellar reviews. Its sooo cheesy, hearty and comforting. Meat-eaters, hubbies, kids, teenagers are all loving it. Also, super fast to make.

3.VEGAN LAZY DAY TOMATO BISQUE…when readers and dairy-eaters are all telling me its the best tomato bisque theyve ever had and way better than La Madeleines signature soup, then I know that they feel the same way I did the day I created it. It seriously is the creamiest most delicious tomato soup. Itfeelsguilty, yet its so good for  you.

4.SWEET POTATO, CHICKPEA AND SPINACH COCONUT CURRY…now this is the only recipe Im sharing in this list that is not mine. I shared this recipe last year forOh She Glows2nd cookbook tour. Well, I had no idea this would happen, but my pin freaking exploded and it has over 100k pins now! So many people have made this recipe and loved it and Im just so grateful to Angela for allowing me to share it here on my blog! It is truly delicious, so give it a try!

5.SMOKY WHITE BEAN POTATO STEW WITH BROILED POBLANO PEPPERS…this isnt as known as some of my other recipes, but it is one of MY favorite recipes. It is one of the most delicious recipes Ive ever created and it is FULL of flavor. Many reviews from readers who have made it and say it is reminiscent of abean & bacontype of soup. It does require to soak the beans overnight, but it is WORTH it. These reader reviews should convince you to make it. There are many more at the link.

My parents who are meateaters couldnt stop eating it.

That was the best soup I have ever ever made. Ever. My husband just caught me licking the ladle while I was doing the dishes!

6.1 POT MEXICAN CHILI…I make this every single year for the holidays and it is a tradition in my family. None of my relatives are vegan and yet everybody absolutely loves it. Its super easy and fast to make and is full of flavor. All rave reviews from readers as well.

7.ROSEMARY SMOKY WHITE BEANS…this is my creation after the popular Zoes Kitchen Braised White Beans. Not only does my version contain zero oil, it tastes even better in my humble opinion, lol. These are so creamy, nobody will believe they are dairy-free.

8.EASY SKILLET BBQ BAKED BEANS….full of flavor and so much better than the canned version we grew up on!

9.HEARTY VEGGIE POTATO STEW….rated by many readers as the best stew theyve ever had! Promise you wont miss the meat on this one.

10.RICE, BLACK BEAN AND AVOCADO RICE BOWLS WITH FAT-FREE CHILI MUSTARD SAUCE…..one of my most popular recipes for the past 2 years. This recipe is ridiculously simple to make and that sauce…well, you might just want to drink it!

11.MEXICAN BLACK BEAN BURGERS….my all-time favorite plant-based burger. This baby is loaded with flavor and topped with my Mexican Tahini Sauce. Its a flavor explosion and has countless rave reviews. I am particularly fond of this one I just recently received.

These turned out amazing! I have eaten many veggie burgers at expensive restaurants..and this is truly the BEST!!! On the bottom of the burger I put a slice of tomato and a leaf of lettuce; on the top I put tahini sauce, sliced leek, feta, and some bruschetta. So SO good!


14.CLASSIC VEGAN NOODLE SOUP…many readers have told me this is their favorite soup and they love it more than the traditional chicken noodle soup. It has so much flavor and sure makes you feel good.

15.BUFFALO HUMMUS…I really cant say much more than you need to make this now.

Now, for a few desserts to wow your friends.

16.DOUBLE CHOCOLATE SUNFLOWER BROWNIES….my all-time favorite brownie. These have a super rich chocolate taste, really fudgy and dense and a delicious crust on top! So many awesome reviews.

17.4 INGREDIENT CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM…amazing, that is all I can say. I cant even tell you how many reviews have said this is the best ice cream theyve ever had, vegan or not! The fact its so easy and requires NO ice cream maker just makes it that much better.

18.BEST VEGAN CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES….gluten-free, oil-free and yet, incredible.

19.VEGAN GLUTEN-FREE FUNFETTI BIRTHDAY CAKE…I have many cake recipes on my blog that are huge hits, but this one really takes the cake…hahaha. This one has become my most popular with reviews coming in weekly on social media! Kids, adults, everybody loves it.


Grain-Free Chocolate Coconut Cookies


Hey, Brandi! Ive been meaning to ask you this forever! Would you consider figuring out how to add a link at the top of all your recipes to JUMP TO THE RECIPE? My Internet can be slow here, and scrolling down and down and down past a bazillion pictures drives me nuts when Im in the kitchen and trying to quickly get to the recipe. A link at the top would be SO awesome. I cant be the only one who would love this! Thanks and you rock!!

Hi Laurie! You are the first person to ever ask that, lol! But I will see how to look into getting that added, because I have no idea currently, but will find out. Sometimes I do mention important things in the post regarding info on the recipe, so I do hope that people will actually read my post as well 😉

I DO read your posts … but I go back to the recipes over and over, and scrolling down to the recipe is seriously making me crazy. Sometimes I search the page for the word ingredients, but you had that word about 5 times above the recipe in the one I just tried to look at. Also, I do wonder if others feel similarly about another issue – I would DEARLY love it if your photos were smaller, so that a full photo could be viewed at once on a standard 13-14-1-17-inch laptop screen. Its actually disorienting and hard to look at the photos so large … you may not believe this, but I have actually copy/pasted several of your recipes into email and resized each and every picture before sending them to my friends. Definitely not expecting you to do extra work for me! Just letting you know these two things that bum me out every time I visit your site, which is often!!

And of course this particular post there is no recipe, just links to each recipe on the pics since this is a roundup 🙂 But for the regular posts, I will find out!

Yes, of course! I just finally took the time to mention this – hug!

Thank you so much! I figured it out and am adding it to the recipes now 🙂

Am so happy to see this list and will be making one or two of these every week to test and then make for non-vegan guests and family. You are totally unbelievable and so are your recipes! I just made a different baked beans recipe last week and had to throw it all away as neither my husband or myself would eat it! Now this picky person is going to do YOURS! Big thank you for all that you do and please KNOW that you are so0ooo appreciated! I am putting you on my prayer list so that I pray for you and your family daily. God bless you in abundance Mary Jean

MARY JEAN . . . Im just wondering if you are the same Mary Jean from the vegan coach on-line cooking classes?? If so, HI THERE!!!…..Nice to see you again! (And if not, well, how do you do, Mary Jean 2?!!…haha!)……..Daryl

Thank you so much Mary Jean! I cant wait to hear what you think after you make the baked beans! If you are on Instagram, be sure to tag me thevegan8, I would love to see the pic! Thank you very much for your kind words, they are very appreciated! Cant wait to hear about the brownies as well…saw your comment on those earlier 🙂

Hi Brandy . . . (and Laurie) . . . just a word of support, Brandy, for your LARGE photos…..I ABSOLUTELY ADORE THEM THAT LARGE…..I use a laptop for all my computer needs, and yeah, it takes time to scroll down, but looking at your GORGEOUS photos is, for me, a LARGE part of the joy of your site. So, I just wanted to put in my 2 cents. I hope you wont change a THING…..your site, in my opinion, is absolutely BRILLIANT, and those great big, beautiful photos are, at least for me, so special, unique and, well, simply WONDERFULLY BEAUTIFUL and SOOOOOO artistically executed!….(I do understand your point too, Laurie, but, well, everybodys opinion is different, and mine is that I ADORE those large photos, and I dont give a poopie-doopie HOW long it takes for me to navigate the pages, because Im just DROOOOOLING through every spectacularly magnificent photo…..And personally, I think we, as a human race, have become WAAAY too hurry, hurry, hurry-it-up, and dont spend ENOUGH time, time, TIME, just LINGERING and RELISHING the beauty…..but thats just my personal opinion, as I said!)…..Thanks again Brandy, for all your incredible artistry, both in the recipes AND in your site and those fantastic GIGOOONDA photos!!..hahaha!…..Love to you and Laurie, and EVERYBODY!!……Daryl Grant Lindsay

You are always so kind Daryl, thank you! I appreciate your sweet words and appreciate both you and Lauries comments. Im so grateful to each and every one of you readers who follow and support my blog, so thank you!

OOOOPS!!!!…..Sorry Brandi, that I misspelled your name in my comment up above….I mustve been thirsty or something…hahaha. (Not really….I dont even drink….but I DO love using brandy in cooking sometimes! ) By the way, I fully intended to congratulate you on your cookbook LONG before now (you know what they say about the road to . . .!), but, well, better late than never, so CONGRATULATIONS!!!! I know how conscientious you are about your recipes, and how much work and diligence that entails, above and beyond the call of duty. And I also know how much GENUINE LOVE you put into each of your babies, and in this site, so, in my opinion, nobody deserves this publishing deal more than you! I feel confident that I can speak for everybody here when I say that we are all sooooo proud of you and excited!!! I KNOW this success will mean even MORE people than ever will be touched, positively and healthfully, by your revolutionary and healthy recipes, and I have a very strong feeling that you are probably more excited about THAT than anything else. I dont, necessarily, believe in REAL angels, but I DO believe this dark, sad world is full of HUMAN angels, and YOU, dear Brandi, are ABSOLUTELY one of the brightest shining among them! Keep up the good work (I know you will!) . . . and I hope you know, and believe (speaking of believing!) that we are ALL better off because of your life! THANK YOU HONEY LAMB!!!!! You continue to amaze and inspire us and make the world a healthier place!! Love, Daryl

What is your recipe for the Feta that you put on the Mexican burger?

Hi Robin! I dont have a recipe for that, it is just what the reader noted she added to her burger so Im not sure if it was a vegan feta or regular 🙂

These recipes sound amazingly delicious; I cant wait to try them!! Thank you Brandy!!!

Dear Brandi, My family went full vegan about two months ago and cant believe the difference in our health, between the weight weve all lost and the way we feel its simply amazing. With that said, I was hoping you could come up with a hard italian bread for my husband who loves his bread and peppers. Thanks Maryann P.s. all of your recipes are amazing!

Hello there MARYANN: I just happened to read your post up above regarding the an Italian bread recipe . . . I dont know for sure whether or not Brandi has a recipe (I havent searched her recipes for it yet), but I did a quick Google Search for Vegan Italian Bread Recipe, and came up with the following recipe. I have not tested the recipe, but it surely does LOOK delicious from the photos, and sounds like its pretty healthy, and definitely VEGAN!!! It looks fairly easy as well. Im not sure what you meant by hard Italian bread, but this recipe says that it is crusty, and thats the kind of Italian bread I love, and the only type Ive had in the past. This recipe doesnt use 100% whole grain flour, it uses a ratio of about 1 to 5 (1 cup whole wheat flour, 5 cups all-purpose flour), which is a little healthier than most Italian bread recipes Ive seen in the past…..and theres only minimum amount of oil (extra virgin olive) in the recipe (1T.) and the recipe makes 2 loaves, so Id say thats pretty good. Ive made pizza dough in the past without using ANY oil, and it turned out pretty well, but with bread, especially Italian bread, I think it may help a lot with the authentic texture and flavor, especially since MOST Italian bread does not use ANY whole wheat flour). Anyway, maybe this recipe will help you and your family, especially your husbands love of REAL Italian bread and peppers, etc. (I TOTALLY understand that, by the way, as I love that too….but we vegans TRY to be openminded about making substitutions which are almost as good as the real thing, but are also MUCH HEALTHIER than the real thing!) Anyway Maryann, I hope this helps, just in case Brandi doesnt have this recipe in her wonderful arsenal of healthier vegan recipes! Heres the link to the site, and to that specific recipe: (You MAY need to copy & paste the above link into your browser in order to get to that recipe . . . Ive never included a link on Brandis blog, so Im not sure…..but anyway, I hope it helps you and your family, especially your husband who is CRAVING his good ol Italian bread and peppers, as you mentioned!…by the way, let me know if youre interested, as I have a GREAT link to a 100% vegan Spicy Italian Sausage recipe which I make frequently, and LOVE it (makes GREAT vegan Sausage & Peppers!!!…..if you need to be gluten-free, it wouldnt work for you, as its made from primarily Vital Wheat Gluten flour (which is pure gluten!)…..I dont have the problem and I LOVE that recipe, so let me know if you want it!) Good luck!!!………..Sincerely, Daryl PS: By the way, TREMENDOUS CONGRATULATIONS on you and your family going FULL vegan. I did the same thing and this Jan. 1st it will be 9 years, and the health benefits, the weight loss, and just the sense of well-being are ALL worth it. I am FAR healthier than Ive EVER been in my entire life (Im 67!!), and it is ALL due to going 100% vegan and STICKING TO IT!!!!…..yeah, I will ALWAYS miss some of the good ol Standard American Diet foods with animal products, but thats why, for me, Brandis recipes and my own recipes have been SOOOO INCREDIBLY HELPFUL on this vegan journey! (By the way, Im writing a cookbook of vegan comfort foods which are ALMOST like the real thing…..Im hoping to have it finished and out there by October, the meantime, just keep sticking to this way of eating. YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!…..whatever the sacrifices, the benefits FAR outweigh them ALL, as you and your family have been discovering!! And Brandis wonderful blog, her SPECTACULAR recipes are ALWAYS gonna help you, not only with being healthier, but with the sheer DELICIOUSNESS of her recipes!!! (And dont forget shes got an UP-COMING COOKBOOK also coming out VERY SOON!!!)

Daryl, you go down in history as my longest commenter ever, hahaha! Thank you for your kind words!!

Oh, Brandi, I KNOW!!!….Im just TOOOO MUCH!!! (Literally!!) I apologize for always being so long-winded. I cant seem to stop myself. Well, Im a SINGER, so I always tell people THAT is the reason I have such long comments—because Im just so full of HOT AIR!!!….hahaha! I never set out INTENDING to write so much, but I just get going (and Im an EXTREMELY fast typist too, so I type nearly as fast as I think…..my brain gets going and my fingers just type away, and before I know it, BOOM!! I have a 5,000-word dissertation!…..anyway, I PROMISE Ill try harder to keep em shorter!!…..(Its really YOUR fault, though, because your unbelievably AMAZING recipes excite and inspire me SOOOO much……then my motormouth goes on AUTOPILOT!!!) . . . . Daryl

Dont apologize, I appreciate you so much Daryl, thank you!! Haha!

Well, OK honey lamb, I withdraw my apology (well, sort of…..not really…hee-hee), but I DO recognize that you have FAR MORE IMPORTANT and EXCITING things to do than sit around reading my LOOOOOONG, mildly entertaining comments! (Entertaining??…hmm…THATS debatable!….however, I AM an entertainer, by profession!) . . . . And, actually, truth-be-told, I, TOO, have other things I NEED and WANT to do than to put so much time into my comments. (Yeah, such as getting my cookbook—which Ive been working on since 1990!!!…not kidding!—FINALLY finished & published, as well as REHEARSING & SONGWRITING, as Im a prof. singer-songwriter-pianist and still ACTIVELY performing, EVEN at MY advanced old-fartdom!)….therefore, my dear, adorable, talented, generous, thoughtful and kindhearted Brandi, esteemed Vegan-Comfort-Food-Guru-to-the-STARS (yeah, stars, thats ME…haha..yeah, right!), I PROMISE Ill try to keep my comment-length at least a LITTLE BIT more in control…..hahaha! (Dont quote me on that though…heh-heh-heh!) . . . speaking of stars…….YOU are the REAL star, darlin (Im SERIOUS!!!!!), and we ALL absolutely ADORE you!!!!!!! Motor-Mouth Grant Lindsay PS: Notice this comment is a TEEENSY-WEEEENSY little TINY bit shorter??? (Perhaps ALL of our prayers are being answered after all!!…hahahahahaaaaaaa!)

Thank you so much for your kind words Maryann! So very happy to hear you are enjoying my recipes and your family are having such success, that is amazing news! I will add the bread to my list! Thank you!

Even though I have made every single one of these recipes I realize its been a while and I love having them all in one post like this. Ive already decided on several oldie but goodies to make. Thanks so much!!!

Youre the best, thank you Estee! I always love seeing your remakes on IG and Facebook!

Somehow before even reading this post I just knew there was not going to be a single salad on the list lol! Not just because they are way too expected when people hear the word vegan, but also because I know thats just not your style. Healthy but totally hearty and totally crave-worthy too is pretty much your specialty. I have a feeling many of these could even give their non-vegan counterparts a run for their money! And I see alfredo is still holding its top spot here haha, but I must say the end of the list is my favorite 🙂 I can vividly imagine the delicious vegan feast(s) that could come from this post already, and it would be epic!

Haha! Yes, salads are yummy but they arent really all that exciting….especially to somebody who needs convincing to non-vegans that we eat MORE than just salads, lol! Yes, you know me well, the end of the list is my favorite too….hey, chocolate and dessert…that is the most exciting to me, haha!

Wow Not only are your Recipes awesome but your Photography is as well . Keep them coming, please

So very sweet of you to say that Kandy, thank you so much!

Its interesting to read the comments re large vs small photos:) I love them as they are, but if someone has a slow internet speed I can understand the frustration of wanting to get to the recipes! I guess a good compromise might be smaller, tempting, photos at the top of the blog, then the recipe, then bigger photos below. Im sure youll do whatever is right for you:) Thank you for your wonderful recipes and imaginative answers to vegan food conversions

Thank you Christine! Yes, its not a super easy fix. I have a blog theme and if I simply change the size of the photo, then it will alter the way it appears along with the text. I have tried this before and it was more complicated than just easily fixing. Themes require more advanced changing and coding, I wish it was easier!

No comment…just hoping you are okay where you are

Thank you so much Diane for checking in. It has been a very tough week over here in Houston. I will give an update on my next post. Thank you so much for your thoughts.

I am looking to make the switch and this site looks perfect. Would you ever consider doing a blog post on how you stock your pantry? Right now, Ill just shop for the exact ingredients for a few recipes but it would be so helpful to know what are the things you just always keep stocked and come up over and over again. The recipes here are such a head start and Im very excited to get started.

Oops, could you tell me what are you using as the bread with the burgers?

For the bread, this was awhile back, but I think I just bought ciabatta rolls and cut them in half but you can use any buns you like! Whole Foods has some whole wheat ones that arent full of junk that I like 🙂

Thank you so much Allie! So glad its helpful. I will try to in the future to add a pantry tab to my menu or something like that to be helpful. I do have this page here where at least lists the flours I use, but other basics I can think of off the top of my head that I use consistently are cashews, low-sodium broth, onions, garlic, bell peppers, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian dried herbs such as thyme, oregano, rosemary, etc. I also use tomato sauce in some recipes. Cans of all types of beans, jasmine white rice, jasmine brown rice, red potatoes, yukon gold potatoes. Canned lite coconut milk. Those are ones I use often. Here is the list of flours I use. Hope this is somewhat helpful. My recipes are very easy and minimal ingredients, so youve come to the right place! 🙂

Thank you, Brandi. Thats so helpful. I know I will get more familiar with this as I go along too. 😀

So many amazing recipes and Ive only made 4 or 5 so far. Thanks for helping me plan this weeks menu!!

That is so wonderful to hear Sue, thank you so much for making so many already and Im so happy to hear theyve all been amazing! Thank you for letting me know!

Amazing assortment of recipes! Thanks for sharing them! I think Im going to try a few of them this week.

Thank you so much Debrah, I really hope you enjoy them!

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Hi! Im Brandi, a wife and mom behind this blog who healed my husbands gout and my digestion issues through a plant-based diet. Im not complicated, I keep things simple. All my recipes are 8 ingredients or less, not including salt, pepper or water. They are allergy-friendly, as they are all vegan, oil-free and nearly all are gluten-free. Youll find lots of baked goods here, as Ive been a baker all my life, its my passion!

Grain-Free Chocolate Coconut Cookies


Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

The Vegan 8© 2018 Privacy Policy

Grain-Free Chocolate Coconut Cookies


Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Wrapped-Up Chile Rellenos from Vegan Burgers and Burritos Cookbook!