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Easy aubergine salad with pomegranate molasses

Best vegan starter ideas

Published: December 14, 2020 at 3:40 pm

Kick off a plant-based meal in style with one of our vegan starter ideas, from nutty stuffed mushrooms to spiced potato cakes and smoked aubergine salad

Looking for vegan starter ideas? Want to kick off a vegan meal with a plant-based starter? Try our ideas below and then check out our vegan dinner party ideas, then check out our healthy easy vegan meals, vegan soup recipes and vegan snacks.


For more recipe inspiration, check out our low-calorie vegetarian recipes, low-carb vegetarian recipes and healthy vegetarian recipes.

Vegan starters

Smoky vegan mushroom and walnut-stuffed portobellos

These mushrooms filled with walnut and crispy, herby breadcrumbs make a great vegan starter. They double up as quick and easy burgers too, when sandwiched in a bun with hummus, salad leaves and roasted peppers.

Sweet potato tikki

Traditionally cooked in Indian households as a snack, this version of these potato cakes by Maunika Gowardhan is made with sweet potato to keep light – perfect for a starter, then. They're packed with warming spice and served with a fresh, crunchy kachumber salad.

Aloo Tikki Recipe

Roasted harissa cauliflower with warm coriander hummus and dukkah

Chunky wedges of roasted rose harissa cauliflower served with warm hummus and a super-simple homemade dukkah makes for a great starter, served up in smaller portions.

Roasted harissa cauliflower with warm coriander hummus and dukkah

Vegan carrot and coriander soup with spicy flatbread croutons

Soup is a classic starter. Jazz yours up with this recipe for a carrot and coriander version, complete with ras el hanout croutons for a heady kick of spice.

Carrot and coriander soup with spicy flatbread croutons

Grilled vegetable antipasti

Kick off an Italian-inspired dinner with our grilled vegetables. Serve with fresh focaccia and olives for a mezze-style starter that everyone can tuck into.

Grilled Vegetable Antipasti Recipe

Warm hummus with pine nuts, raisins and olives

Jazz up hummus with pine nuts, juicy raisins and olives for a pretty starter. You can make the hummus ahead of time and top with the extras before serving.

Easy Hummus Recipe Topped with Pine Nuts, Raisins and Olives

Vegan summer rolls

These Vietnamese-style vegan rolls packed with carrot, courgette and cucumber make for a light start to a plant-based dinner.

Summer Rolls Recipe With Courgetti

Beer batter pakoras

Although these crispy beer batter pakoras require a little bit of work straight before serving, they're worth it and serve six people.

Crispy Pakora Recipe with Beer

Smoked aubergine, pepper and walnut salad with pomegranate

Smoked aubergine combined with sweet red peppers and walnuts makes for an easy sharing starter that you can make ahead of time. Serve with flatbreads if you want it to be more filling.

Smoked Aubergine Salad Recipe with Pomegranates

Thai ginger salad

A shredded cabbage, carrot, cucumber and edamame salad, made deliciously nutty with a peanut butter and lime juice dressing. With all those textures and sweet-savoury flavours, this will definitely whet your appetite for the main event.

Thai ginger salad

Broad bean, peach and fennel salad

Try this brilliant medley of broad beans, thinly sliced peaches, fennel, fresh basil and courgette, dressed in a lemony red chilli dressing as a light and summery starter.

Broad bean, peach and fennel salad

Fattoush with crisp spiced chickpeas

A vibrant Lebanese-style salad that mixes chickpeas with crisp and herby pitta croutons, radishes, tomatoes, sumac and a pomegranate molasses dressing.

Fattoush with crisp spiced chickpeas

Smoked aubergine with pepper and pomegranate molasses

Sabrina Ghayour's recipe for sweet and smokey vegan aubergine salad would make the perfect starter for a sharing spread or Middle Eastern-style meal. Infused with the flavours of Persia, it'll sure get those juices going.

Easy aubergine salad with pomegranate molasses

Spanish aubergine stuffed with pisto

The slow-cooked vegetable stuffing in this recipe together with the crunchy, garlic migas topping is like a hug on a plate. This makes a top starter, but could also be a side dish or main.

Aubergine stuffed with pisto

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