Cooking is a fantastic way to express creativity, try out new things and experience other cultures. It’s also something you can do at home and is great for keeping spirits high – after all, there’s nothing like a tasty meal to put a smile on your face.

In recent years, people in the Western world have been turning more and more towards vegetarian and vegan options, with the whole month of January being rebranded as Veganuary in the UK. Some countries, such as India and Sri Lanka already have more plant-based diets than places like Europe and America.

Whether you want to give up animal products entirely or just want to add a little variety to your regular menu, we have found four simple and delicious vegan recipes for you to try.

Banana Bread

Our Instagram feeds have been full of people’s baking efforts for the last few weeks, and you’ll be pleased to hear that there is an excellent vegan recipe for one of the most popular options: banana bread. This one is from the FAB Flour Easy Peasy Baking campaign.

Serving: Makes one 1kg loaf

To prep: 20 mins
To bake: 45 mins

vegan recipes to try at home

• 4 ripe bananas
• 75g vegetable oil
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 225g self-raising flour
• 2 tsp baking powder
• 100g light brown soft sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 160°C
2. Mash three of the bananas into a measuring jug with the vegetable oil and vanilla
3. In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients
4. Add the wet mix to the dry mix and combine. Pour into the lined loaf tin and top with the fourth banana, halved lengthways
5. Bake for 40-45 minutes until golden on top and springy to touch in the centre


This Italian classic is simple to make vegan and the homemade version is a delicious alternative to ordering takeaway. We found this one on Olive Magazine’s website.

Serving: 2-3 people

To prep: 1 hour 20 mins
To cook: 20 mins

Ingredients for the dough
• 250g strong white bread flour
• 1 tsp fast-action dried yeast
• 1 tsp sea salt flakes
• 1 tsp caster sugar
• 2 tbsp olive oil

Pizza topping ingredients:
• 2 cloves garlic, crushed
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• a pinch of dried chilli flakes
• 195g tin sweetcorn, drained
• 50ml vegetable stock
• 400g thickly sliced chestnut mushrooms
• 1 tsp smoked paprika
• 1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced
• a handful of chopped basil leaves

1. Put the flour, yeast and sea salt in a bowl. Measure out 125ml of warm water then stir in the sugar and 2 tbsp of olive oil. Gradually add this liquid to the flour, mixing until it forms a dough (you might not need all of the liquid). Tip onto a lightly oiled counter top and knead for 10 minutes until smooth
2. Put the dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl, cover and leave to prove somewhere warm for 1 hour
3. To make the topping, fry the garlic in the olive oil for a few minutes then add the chilli flakes and cook for 1 minute. Add the sweetcorn and cook, stirring, until heated through. Tip into a high-powered blender and whizz, adding a little stock, until you have a creamy consistency
4. Fry the mushrooms in another pan with a splash of olive oil and lots of seasoning, until the liquid has evaporated and they’re starting to crisp. Sprinkle over the paprika, toss and take off the heat
5. Knock the dough back and divide in half. Roll and gently pull each piece out into a 26cm pizza base on sheets of baking paper
6. Heat the oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Put two heavy baking sheets on shelves near the top of the oven and leave them to heat for at least 10 minutes.
7. To finish the pizzas, spread the sweetcorn cream over the bases, leaving a 2cm border around the edges. Top with the mushrooms and the red onion. Lift each baking paper sheet with the topped pizzas onto the heated baking trays. Cook for 12-15 minutes or until the bases are crisp and tops bubbling. Scatter with basil, drizzle with a little more oil then cut into slices to serve

Vegetable Biryani

Indian dishes are so full of flavour, they work perfectly with plant-based ingredients as it’s all about the spices you add. This recipe is from BBC Goodfood website and is super simple to make.

To prep: 15 mins
To cook: 1 hour

Serving: 6 people

vegan recipes to try at home

• 2 tbsp vegetable oil
• 1 small cauliflower, broken into small florets
• 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
• 1 large onion, sliced
• 1l hot vegetable stock
• 3 tbsp hot curry paste (Madras is good)
• 1 red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
• large pinch of saffron strands
• 2 tsp mustard seed (black or white)
• 500g basmati rice
• 140g trimmed green bean, halved
• 2 lemons juice only
• a handful of fresh coriander leaves
• 50g packet salted roasted cashew nuts

1. Preheat the oven to 220C/gas 7/fan 200C. Pour the oil into a large roasting tin or ovenproof dish and put in the oven for a couple of minutes to heat through. Add all the vegetables to the tin, except the beans, stirring to coat them in the hot oil. Season with salt and pepper and return to the oven for 15 minutes until beginning to brown
2. While the vegetables are roasting, stir together the stock, curry paste, chilli, saffron and mustard seeds
3. Mix the rice and green beans with the vegetables in the tin, then pour over the stock mixture. Lower the oven to 190C/gas 5/fan 190C. Cover the dish tightly with foil and bake for 30 minutes until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Stir in the lemon juice and check the seasoning, then scatter over the coriander and cashew nuts

Mushroom rolls

The perfect vegan alternative to sausage rolls, these make excellent snacks for when you get hungry mid-afternoon – Jamie Oliver’s recipe is delicious and not too complicated.

Serving: 16 rolls

To prep: 20 mins
To cook: 1 hour

• 1 onion
• 2 stalks of celery
• olive oil
• 500 g chestnut mushrooms
• 2 cloves of garlic
• 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
• 100 ml white wine
• sea salt
• freshly ground black pepper
• 80 g fresh white breadcrumbs
• ½ bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley
• 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
• 2 sheets of ready-rolled puff pastry , (640g) (we used Jus Rol)
• almond milk
• 2 teaspoons sesame seeds

1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF/gas 6. Line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper
2. Peel and finely chop the onion, then trim and finely chop the celery. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat, then add the chopped veg. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden. Meanwhile, finely chop the mushrooms
3. Peel and crush in the garlic, then add the chopped mushrooms. Cook for a further 5 minutes, or until the mushrooms start to soften. Add the mustard and wine, season with salt and pepper, then reduce the heat to low. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes, or until all the liquid has boiled and bubbled away. Set aside to cool
4. Add the cooled mushroom mixture and breadcrumbs to a large bowl. Pick, finely chop and add the parsley leaves, then pick in the thyme leaves. Stir well to combine, then season to taste
5. Cut the sheets of puff pastry in half lengthways so you have four equal-sized pieces. Spoon a quarter of the mushroom mixture along the middle of one length of pastry, moulding it into a long sausage shape with the back of a spoon
6. Brush the almond milk along the pastry edges, then carefully fold one of the long sides of the pastry up over the filling. Press the edges to seal, then crimp with a fork. Repeat with the remaining ingredients until you have four long rolls, then cut each length into four pieces
7. Place the rolls on the prepared baking tray, brush with the almond milk and sprinkle over the sesame seeds. Pop on the bottom shelf of the hot oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden, then serve

Enjoy these recipes at home, and remember to keep any leftovers for study snacks the next day!