Tasty Vegan Appetizers

Green Pea, Parsley, and Pistachio Dip

Green pea, parsley, and pistachio dip

This bright green dip of sweet peas, parsley, and luscious pistachios is great served with brightly colored vegetables—baby carrots, sliced red bell peppers, rounds of yellow squash, and thin wedges of raw sweet potato. You can also add fresh or crisp breads or stone-ground tortilla chips to the mix. This might well become your go-to as a tasty snack or appetizer. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky of Bittersweet. more→

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Tamari Chickpeas

Tamari chickpeas2

You’ve likely come across tamari almonds; they’re deliciously addictive, but also loaded with fat and calories. Tamari chickpeas sounds almost like a mixed metaphor—combining Mediterranean and Asian flavors, but it works! Consider this — half a cup of almonds has  about 415 calories and 35 grams of fat. Chickpeas, on the other hand, have only 143 calories in a half cup, and 1.37 grams of fat (this isn’t to say to avoid almonds; quite the contrary; you just need to eat very judicious portions). Tamari chickpeas make a great snack, a nice protein boost for the dinner plate, and a delicious topping for salads and grain dishes.

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Black Bean Nachos Grandes

Vegan black bean nachos

Nachos are great as an appetizer, snack, or a simple accompaniment to salads and grain dishes. Use natural stone-ground tortilla chips. Adapted from The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet. Photos by Rachael Braun. 

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Baba Ghanouj (Middle Eastern Roasted Eggplant and Tahini Dip)

Baba ghanouj

An eggplant lover’s delight, baba ghanouj is a classic Middle Eastern spread meant to be scooped up on wedges of pita bread. It’s also good as a dip for raw veggies.
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Black Olive and Sun-Dried Tomato Tapenade

olive tapenade by allyson kramer

A delicious starter to any meal when served with crisp vegetables
or small bites of bread, this tapenade features some of the finest flavors in European cuisine. Use as a mix-in to stews and pasta dishes for a ton of added flavor with very little effort. Recipe and photo contributed by Allyson Kramer, from Great Gluten-Free Vegan Eats Around the World* © 2013 Fair Winds Press, reprinted by permission. more→

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Little Macs with Very, Very Special Sauce

Little Mac by Brian Patton from Sexy Vegan's Happy HourWhen author Brian Patton (aka The Sexy Vegan) began dating his soon-to-be wife, he offered to entertain her with Friday night happy hours at her apartment or his. After a long workweek, she was ready to kick back and enjoy a cocktail or glass of wine, and it was the perfect way to enjoy summer evenings. After a couple weeks, these evenings weren’t just for two because her friends begged for invitations after hearing rave reviews of Brian’s delicious tapas and appetizers.

This Little Macs recipe is from the book’s The Happiest Meal Happy Hour Menu that also includes a recipe for Baked Sweet Potato “Fries” with Adobo Dipping Sauce. Excerpted with permission from The Sexy Vegan’s Happy Hour at Home* ©2013 by Brian Patton. Published with permission of New World Library.  more→

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Baked Sweet Potato “Fries”with Adobo Dipping Sauce

sweet potato fries by brian patton from sexy vegan's happy hourThis Baked Sweet Potato “Fries” recipe is from the The Happiest Meal Happy Hour Menu in The Sexy Vegan’s Happy Hour at Homeby Brian Patton, which also includes a recipe for Little Macs with Very, Very Special Sauce. Excerpted with permission from The Sexy Vegan’s Happy Hour at Home©2013 by Brian Patton. Published with permission of New World Library. more→

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Barbecue-Flavored Tofu Nuggets

bbqtofuThis is so simple that it barely qualifies as a recipe! But it is invariably a huge hit, and makes believers out of tofu skeptics. It can be served as a simple protein dish on the dinner plate, or as a hot appetizer with cocktail toothpicks. Of course, if you use VegKitchen’s recipe for Quick Vegan Barbecue Sauce, this becomes more than a 3-ingredient recipe, but since I’ve never found a prepared BBQ sauce I’ve been too impressed with, I like to take the few extra moments to make my own. more→

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