Celebrate World Vegetarian Day with these simple veggie recipes

For the carnivores amongst us, cooking without meat can be daunting. But your worries about meals not tasting like anything or being starving 10 seconds after you put down your fork are unfounded.

With these quick and easy vegetarian recipes, you won’t even notice its meat free. They both use simple ingredients you are familiar with so no trips to the health food shop needed.


Falafel are the perfect way to get your meat-free burger fix, with plenty of flavour! They take no time at all to make, and can make a great starter or main course.


  • 2 tbsp sunflower or vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 400g can chickpeas
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • Handful of parsley, chopped, or 1 tsp dried mixed herbs
  • 1 egg


Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large pan, then fry the chopped onion and garlic over a low heat for 5 mins.

Tip into a large mixing bowl with the chickpeas and spices, then mash together until the chickpeas are totally broken down.

Stir in the parsley or dried herbs, add the beaten egg, then mix it all together with your hands. Form the mixture into burger-like patties.

Heat the remaining oil in the pan, then fry the falafel on a medium heat for 3 mins on each side, until golden brown. Serve with couscous, pitta bread, salad or whatever else you fancy.

Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie

Another way to get over your fear of veggies is by turning them into a hearty meal. You’ll never worry that a veggie meal will be unsatisfying after this!


  • 1 onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 100g mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme
  • 250g dried lentils
  • 850ml vegetable stock
  • 1.5 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1kg potatoes


Fry the onions, carrots and garlic for 15 mins on a low heat until soft and golden. Turn up the heat, add the mushrooms, then cook for 4 mins more. Stir in the herbs, then add the lentils and the stock.

Simmer for 40-50 mins until the lentils are very soft. Take off the heat, then season and add the tomato puree.

While the lentils are cooking, boil the potatoes for about 15 mins. Drain and mash – adding butter and milk if you don’t need the dish to be vegan.

Put the lentil mix in a dish and cover with the mash, then bake for 30mins at 190c/fan 170c