Tasty Vegan Appetizers

Green Bean Fries

Green bean fries with ranch dressing

Green bean fries are a less starchy but equally fun and tasty alternative to potato fries. Using fresh slender green beans in season is the way to go, even though trimming them is a bit of work. Off season, use partially thawed whole baby green beans. These are tasty with our dairy-free ranch dressing, but they’re good on their own, too. Use as a snack, appetizer, or side dish. Photos by Evan Atlas.
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Fully Loaded Vegan Nachos

Fully Loaded Vegan Nachos

Here are some super-tasty nachos that can be made with pantry and refrigerator staples in a matter of minutes. Nachos are fun fare no matter what, whether as a snack for a small party, or even as an emergency dinner. Recipe from Plant Power: Transform Your Kitchen, Plate, and Life with More Than 150 Fresh and Flavorful Vegan Recipes by Nava Atlas. © 2014, published by HarperOne, reprinted by permission. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.

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Potato & Pea Samosa Cakes with Tamarind Sauce

Pototo & Pea Samosa Cakes with Tamarind Sauce from But I Could Never Go Vegan.

Samosas are a traditional savory Indian pastry, usually stuffed with spiced potatoes and other vegetables. These cakes are basically samosa filling without the pastry. The tart and sassy tamarind sauce makes the perfect accompaniment. The patties would be well received as finger food or as a side, but you could also pile four or five (or nine) on your plate for an unforgettable main course. Recipe from But I Could Never Go Vegan!: 125 Recipes That Prove You Can Live Without Cheese, It’s Not All Rabbit Food, and Your Friends Will Still Come Over Dinner,* copyright © Kristy Turner, 2014. Reprinted by permission of the publisher, The Experiment. 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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