A Very Vegetarian Passover

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Tamar Genger MA, RD
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beet salad

It’s not easy being green.  Vegetarians on Passover have it pretty rough, especially Ashkenazim who can’t eat beans or tofu.   I can’t even imagine menu planning for vegans who don’t eat eggs!  I’m not sure how they make it through eight days.  I have quite a few vegetarian friends, including my sister in law who will be with me for a couple of meals.  Passover tends to be a very meaty holiday, but there are some great Passover vegetarian and vegan friendly dish ideas that even carnivores will enjoy.

Roasted Vegetables

Tali Simon, food blogger at MoreQuichePlease.com, is a vegetarian living in Israel and also abstaining from kitniyot, swears by roasted vegetables, “You can serve them in different combinations at every Yom Tov seudah, and no one will be the wiser! Try sliced roasted carrots with minced garlic, roasted zucchini and pepper strips in quinoa, roasted eggplant in a salad or dip, and of course, roasted potatoes.”

I love roasted vegetables of all kinds and they make a hardy and filling dish.  There are so many vegetables to choose from, I promise it will never get boring.  Consider adding peeled chestnuts. For a fun change, use beets or kohlrabi.  Roasted vegetables make great leftovers, too.  Here are a few recipes to try:

Beets and Sweets

Maple Roasted Vegetables

Roasted Broccoli with Tomatoes

Portobello Mushrooms

One of my favorite vegetarian foods is the Portobello mushroom.  All mushrooms have an earthy meatiness to them, but the texture of these meaty mushrooms and their large size allow them to truly become the meal.  Roast them, stuff them with pesto, fry them, sauté them, mix with matzo farfel or quinoa or eat as they are.  They may seem expensive, but they are light weight and eating them in place of meat is still a bargain.

Baby Spinach and Portobello Mushroom Salad

Portabella Quinoa

Eggplant

Grilled, stuffed, dusted with matzo meal and fried, eggplant can be a hearty main that is perfect with marinara sauce and can easily become the centerpiece of a Yom Tov meal.  Remember to use kosher salt to remove excess moisture and bitterness then rinse and dry before preparing to cook or roast, read our Guide to Eggplants for more tips.

Savory Eggplant

Pomegranate Eggplant Relish

Spaghetti Squash  

Easy Spaghetti Squash (Squashetti)

In my recent interview with Aviva Kanoff, author of the No Potato Passover Cookbook, I was reminded of this amazing pasta like squash.  Just scrape out the thin strands, sauté with herbs, cover in tomato sauce or mix with pesto for an easy entrée or side.

Easy Spaghetti Squash

Mushroom Primavera with Spagehtti Squash (leave out the cheese for vegan)

Nuts

These little guys are most everywhere on Passover.  They are used to replace flour in cakes, ground up in charoset and then forgotten.  Nuts are a fabulous source of protein and many other valuable nutrients.  Add some on top of salads, spread almond butter on your matzo, carry a trail mix of nuts, raisins and dried fruits as a healthy snack or mixed with matzo farfel for granola.

Gluten Free Walnut Stuffing

Hazelnut Chocolate Spread

What are some of your favorite Passover vegetarian and/or vegan recipes?

Featured Image: Beet Salad with Almonds and Chives