Savor and Flavor

8 Easy, Amazing Vegan Appetizers -VegKitchen’s Favorites

Smoky vegan cheddar cheez recipe

For winter gatherings, my favorite food theme for entertaining is a delicious vegan appetizer buffet with wine, cocktails, and/or mocktails. After that, who needs dinner? You can then skip to coffee/tea and light desserts. Here are 8 tasty dips and finger foods, our absolute favorites from VegKitchen’s vast array of Vegan Appetizer Recipes. Choose 5 or 6 of these and serve with your favorite beverages. Above, Smoky Vegan Cheddar Cheez. You’ll find the way to the recipe with the 4th link below, along with its spreadable version. Photo above by Hannah Kaminsky. more→

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Steel-Cut Oat Sausage Crumbles

Vegan sausage crumbles

This is one of my favorite staples and I keep some in the freezer all the time for last minute pizzas.  The spices give these vegan crumbles a traditional Italian sausage flavor. The oats give it a chewy texture and the spices even turn the oats the color of sausage. Its at home on a pizza or sprinkled over biscuits and gravy. This is gluten-free, soy-free, oil-free. From OATrageous Oatmeals by Kathy Hester; photos by Kate Lewis. Reprinted with permission of Page Street Publishing, ©2014. more→

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Farinata with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Olives

Farinata with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Olives

Made with chickpea flour, farinata is actually more of a savory pancake than a bread. It’s easy to make this Ligurian specialty that can be served as an appetizer or as part of the main meal. Farinata is often prepared without embellishment, but I sometimes add a fresh herb such as rosemary or sage, or chopped olives and sun-dried tomatoes, as in this recipe. Recipe from Vegan Without Borders* by Robin Robertson/Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC ©2014, reprinted by permission. Photos by Sara Remington.

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Forbidden Rice Spring Rolls

Forbidden Rice Spring Rolls from Leslie Cerier

Colorful carrots, black ramen noodles, sliced avocado and garden fresh herbs makes for a beautiful and satisfying appetizer. Serve with peanut sauce for a special gluten-free, vegan lunch for two. Recipe contributed by Leslie Cerier; photo by Tracy Eller. more→

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Spicy Olives

Olive varieties

You can use a combination of black and green olives, if you like. Just make sure the olives are good-quality imported olives, as they have the best flavor. From Hot Vegan: 200 sultry & full-flavored recipes from around the world by Robin Robertson/Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC © 2014, reprinted by permission.

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Skillet Spiced Chickpeas

Skillet roasted spiced chickpeas

Roasted chickpeas are all the rage as a snack, but I’m reluctant to heat up an oven for 1 1/2 cups of chickpeas, if nothing else being baked! I also find that oven roasting chickpeas can dry them out, and occasionally even make them explode. I’ve had better luck with skillet roasting, which gives me good flavor and texture every time. These are good eaten out of hand as a snack, in place of far more caloric nuts, make a tasty salad topping, as well. more→

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Eggplant and Tomato Spread

Bruschetta with Eggplant and tomtato spread

This spread featuring eggplant with a hint of tahini is reminiscent of baba ghanouj, but gives tomatoes a starring role as well. It makes a lovely late-summer appetizer. Serve with Bruschetta, wedges of whole grain pita bread, or pita chips.

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Garlicky Asparagus with Mushrooms

Garlicky asparagus with mushrooms

This tasty veggie appetizer is inspired by the garlicky Spanish tapas dish, champiñones al ajillo, which relies on mushrooms alone. Asparagus makes it a more substantial dish, and benefits nicely from the dry red wine and other seasonings. This is traditionally served with slices of warm, fresh bread. And since you’ve already opened a bottle of red wine, serve it with this appetizer as well. Recipe adapted from Vegan Holiday Kitchen. Photos by Susan Voisin.

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