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Dec 2, 2008 10:36 AM

Vegan dinner for 6

Need a meat-eater friendly menu for six adults! The guest of honor is the only vegan but everyone else is an open minded eater. More veggie centric than tofu or the like, any ideas?

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  1. Ratatouille or Caponata Stuffed Grilled Portobellos are a favorite of many of my vegetarian clients. Grill the mushrooms (after taking out the black gills) with a little butter and Worchestershire Sauce or Balsamic vinegar. You can "super size" the entree by putting the first grilled mushroom gill side up; adding the stuffing, then putting another grilled mushroom gill side down on top. I call that my Inside Out Mushroom Burger.

    8 Replies
    1. re: KiltedCook

      OP, while KC's mushrooms sound delicious, be advised that many veggies dislike mushrooms in general, due to them having such a similar texture to meat.

      1. re: invinotheresverde

        @ invinotheresverde: I sure haven't met any vegans who dislike mushrooms, at least not cos they remind them of meat. There are tons of 'meat substitutes made especially for vegans, and they sell like...hotcakes!! Like, tofurky, like veggie hot dogs, veggie sausage, etc. etc. Personally, I don't eat those things, but I DO love mushrooms. I don't want fake meat, but mushrooms aren't.

        1. re: FibroLady


          Myself, my mother, sister, husband, uncle, three cousins and countless friends have been hardcore veg for years. Strangely, none of us likes mushrooms, especially portobellas, because of the steak-like texture.

          I didn't say ALL vegans/vegetarians don't like mushrooms, I said many.

      2. re: KiltedCook

        Just one note: I'm pretty sure butter is not considered vegan, as it's a dairy product. I'm sure olive oil would be a fine substitute. :-)

        1. re: kpzoo

          Another note: Worcestershire sauce has anchovies and so isn't even vegetarian! (KC likely knows this but many carnivores cooking for vegetarians might not)

          1. re: Mr. Eaty

            just fyi, there are several brands of vegetarian Worcestershire sauce (no anchovies).

          2. re: kpzoo

            There is also vegan 'butter', well, margarine. And yes, for vegans, or vegetarians of any kind, one would have to use the balsamic vinegar instead of the Worcestershire sauce. That being said, I far prefer good olive oil to butter substitutes, and I LOVE balsamic vinegar. This dish is definitely on my menu soon. It's not even breakfast time and I'm sitting here drooling away.

          3. re: KiltedCook

            WOW!! That sounds SO very good! I just might try that this weekend. I love eggplant and I love mushrooms, so this HAS to be a winning combo. Thanks for the suggestion...even though I'm not the original poster.

          4. Depending on how your friend is with cheese, you have a great deal of options. Wholefoods and Trader Joes even have a nice selection of renetless, soy and riced based cheeses.

            Enchiladas with Soyrizo and soy cheese or Chile Relenos. GArnish with Avocados and fresh salsa.
            For everyone you could offer:

            You could do a Risotto with wild mushrooms and asparagus. Use vegi stock instead of chicken or fish stock.

            Lasagna on the natural can be vegan. I recently made a meatless marinara using MORNINGSTAR Crumbles. My kids could not tell the difference.

            You can even do a pesto.

            Good Luck, let us know what you choose.

            1 Reply
            1. re: normalheightsfoodie

              Most fake cheese is NOT casein-free and therefore not vegan.

            2. I saw a declicios looking vegan asparagus tart on You can make that and serve it with a fancy salad, roasted vegetables, and a nut or lentil based dish.

              Some of the other posters mentioned soy 'meat' products- a lot of vegans don't love these products because they're kind of a copout. Some faux cheeses are based on other ingredients but actually contain dairy, so if you're using those make sure to read the labels.

              I would look at some menus from vegan restaurants to see what they serve, and maybe base your menu off of that. I can think of two upscale ones- Blossom and Candle 79. (both in NYC)

              1. I love Moroccan eggplant and chickpea stew. This is a general recipe but you can be creative on the vegetables you use (and what's in season). I like it with sweet potatoes.


                Serve with good crusty bread. Even my husband who loves meat likes this as a meal. It's so hearty and healthy. My husband doesn't like any of the fake soy products.

                1. I'd also think about other indian dishes. I've done eggplant curry and channa masala for crowds from the candle cafe cookbook. Everyone has raved about them.

                  Moosewood also has some great recipes. Their vegan chocolate cake is delicious.