Recipes Summer

25 Vegan Vacation Food Recipes

Sad summer is over? Here are some vegan vacation food recipes in case you start missing them!

By Lora O’Brien

Sorry, what? Summer is almost over? Are you serious? It seems we barely had any summer at all! And worse – barely any holidays at all.

Covid made it more difficult – or in some countries, impossible – to take a vacation. Airports weren’t open, or restrictions were so tough, it wasn’t worth leaving home over (14 day quarantine, anyone?)

But the truth is, vacations are necessary. It’s how we unwind. It’s where we meet new people. And it’s also where we try new foods, which become fast new favourites.

Who doesn’t have amazing memories of eating a weird new fruit, picked right off the tree, in an exotic location? Or being served up a new dish of something you’ve never heard of before, but that explodes with incredible flavour and texture in your mouth? And of course, if you’re in a couple, you’ve probably got some pretty romantic memories of meals a deux under the stars.

What’s your favourite vegan vacation food recipes? Is it something sweet, like French crepes, or pain au chocolat? Or is it something spicy, like an Indian curry or Vietnamese Pho? If, like me, you’re missing a dish you tried on holiday and want to re-create at home, read on! I’ve decided to take your tastebuds on a trip around the world with these top vegan vacation food ideas.

Vegan Vacation Food Recipes

1. Cauliflower Colcannon

Nation of origin: Ireland

As I’m half Irish, I had to kick things off with a little dish that throws it back to my holidays in Ireland. And it doesn’t come better than bangers and mash! Colcannon is essentially mashed potato with added greens, such as kale or cabbage. It’s creamy, comforting and SO hearty! It can be a little heavy, so this dish gives it a lighter makeover by switching potatoes for cauliflower

Get the recipe here.

2. Patatas Bravas with Vegan Aioli

Nation of origin: Spain

If you were travelling through Spain, looking for a spot to stop off for some vegan tapas, then patatas bravas is a dish you’d easily find. It typically consists of white potatoes which are fried in oil and served with a warm and spicy sauce. This easy recipe has topped the crispy potatoes with a zest vegan aioli – yum!

Get the recipe here.

3. Vegan Currywurst

Nation of origin: Germany

Strolling through the streets of Germany, currywurst is a popular fast food option than many love to stop and scoff, but like many foods in that nation, it’s not only meat, but it’s usually little piggies. ICK! It normally consists of fried sausage seasoned with curry ketchup and spices. Luckily, it’s easy to veganise if you can get your hands on some commercial vegan sausage, and the result is incredibly satisfying and tasty!

Get the recipe here.

4. American-Style Vegan Burgers

Nation of origin: USA

The cheeseburger is a favourite fast food, and increasingly, you can find vegan versions all over the world. For example? This vegan recipe! It’s topped with an awesome homemade thousand island dressing, plus, it contains 26g of plant-based protein and is HEAPS healthier than a beef burger!

Get the recipe here.

vegan cheeseburger recipe

5. Vegan Katsu Curry

Nation of origin: Japan

The very first time I tried katsu curry, I knew it was going to be a lifelong love affair. The delicate spicy sweetness of the sauce is truly delicious, and it beautifully matches the crunchy, breaded tofu, and smooth rice. Add some leafy greens for a healthy lunch or dinner. Yum!

Get the recipe here.

6. Vegan Moussaka

Nation of origin: Greece

Greek moussaka is one of the most loved holiday foods every, so I just knew I had to include it! It needed a yummy vegan makeover though, and this recipe uses lentils instead of minced meat. It’s flavorful, satisfying, and very tasty!

Get the recipe here.

7. Vegan Pad Thai

Nation of origin: Thailand

Pad Thai is a super popular street food in Thailand. The stir-fried noodle dish is typically made with rice noodles, chicken or shrimp, a scrambled egg and veggies – so not exactly vegan friendly! But, no fear – as is the case with most dishes, there is always a yummy vegan version out there such as this gorgeous dish below – mmm!

Get the recipe here.

8. Vegan Tacos

Nation of origin: Mexico

Mexico is one of my favourite places for vegan vacation food. Though there can be a lot of meat and cheese, it’s also easy to find tasty dishes without those. Tacos, nachos, enchiladas – you name it, I live for it! And with tacos being one of the sixth most popular dishes we have searched for in 2020, I couldn’t not include some yummy vegan-friendly ones! The quinoa is a fabulous meat replacement, too.

Get the recipe here.

9. Peri-Peri Skewers

Nation of origin: Portugal

Here in the UK, we go wild for peri-peri sauce! If you, too, like the spicy stuff, why not make your own meat-free vegan skewers? This recipe uses tofu, but you could keep it simpler and just use lots of veggies for your spicy skewers.

Get the recipe here.

10. New York Loaded Hot Dogs

Nation of origin: Germany, really, but….these are very American now!

The hotdog may have been born in Germany (as the frankfurter), but today, we associate it with the street foods of New York, and of course, baseball games! the best toppings in my opinion, are super simple: fried onions, ketchup and a drizzle of yellow mustard. These veggie hot dogs are made using carrots, and honestly, these are ‘dogs you’ll be happy to feed your body!

Get the recipe here.

11. Easy Spanish Tomato Bread

Nation of origin: Spain

Pan con tomate is one of the most simple yet classic Spanish dishes. It’s commonly served all over Spain, and the recipe contains just 5 basic ingredients. It’s toasted bread topped with grated tomato, garlic and salt. It makes it less authentic to add, but I think a sprinkling of chopped parsley is the perfect garnish.

Get the recipe here.

12. Vegan Paella

Nation of origin: Spain

Paella is yet another popular Spanish rice-based dish. Originating from Valencia, it’s often served with chicken or shrimp, but this one is LOADED with veggies! It’s gorgeous to look at, too: lots of colour, flavour and a combination of textures – perfect!

Get the recipe here.

13. Vegan Canadian Poutine

Nation of origin: Canada

Ok, so Canada may not be really well known for its cuisine, but tourists to the country always rave about its poutine! This is a delicious dish that originated in the province of Quebec in the 50’s. It’s basically french fries and topped with cheese curd and a thick gravy. It’s starchy, comfort-food decadence at its finest – and when given a vegan makeover, it’s a wee bit healthier, too!

Get the recipe here.

vegan poutine recipe

14. Chicago Style Vegan Pizza

Nation of origin: Chicago, of course!

Obviously, the origins of pizza lie in Italy. But there, it’s a flat, crunchy type of flatbread, cooked in a fire oven. But for those who want to remember their holidays in the Windy City, this vegan deep-dish pizza will please! Inspired by the classic Chicago recipe, here, thick dough is topped with vegan cheese, veggies and a tasty sauce. The perfect pizza to throw together for your next chilled pizza evening. FYI: it tastes just as good, if not better, the next day!

Get the recipe here.

15. Classic ‘Fish’ And Chips

Nation of origin: UK

Who would dream of going to the UK on holiday without trying another British classic: fish and chips! Well, minus the, uh, fish! Tofu replaces the fish in this dish here, and the result is delicious! The battered tofu fillet pairs so well with the chunky chips, mushy peas and a generous squeeze of fresh lemon. Sprinkle some rock salt and vinegar over the top and it’ll be like you’re at the seaside!

Get the recipe here.

16. The Ultimate Arepas

Nation of origin: Caribbean region

Arepas are a popular food in Venezuela, Colombia and some of the Caribbean islands, and are a vegan vacation food favourite for anyone visiting there. Though these cornmeal based sandwiches are usually filled with meat, here, the ultimate vegan arepa includes lots of my favourite foods: creamy guacamole, sweet roasted plantains and smoky black beans. Coming together in 30 minutes with just 10 ingredients, it’s quick to make, too!

Get the recipe here.

17. Jamaican Jerk Tofu

Nation of origin: Jamaica

Oh, there’s so much to love about this island nation! Great music, sunny days, and incredible food. One of the most popular dishes is jerk chicken – that is, poultry dry-rubbed or wet marinated with a hot Jamaican jerk spice mix. This vegan recipe uses tofu instead of meat, serving it alongside white rice and fragrant stir-fried veggies. It’s a taste of the island on a plate!

Get the recipe here.

18. Lebanese Falafel

Nation of origin: Mediterranean region

Falafel is such an incredibly ancient food, it’s hard to know where its exact origins lie. But I can tell you – the best ever falafel I have eaten was in Lebanon! It featured crispy falafels inside a homemade bread pocket, topped with parsley, tomato, lettuce, and importantly – pickles! This vegan holiday food cannot be beat!

Get the recipe here.

19. Siu Mai Dumplings

Nation of origin: China

As anyone who has ever visited an Asian country on holiday knows, dumplings are popular! They’re eaten for almost any meal, and each region has its own special recipe. These little babies are garlicky, packed with veggies, and are delicious steamed or fried!

Get the recipe here.

20. Spaghetti + Sauce

Nation of origin: Italy

Sometimes, the best meals are the simplest. And I have many a fond memory of chowing down on a simple spaghetti with tomato sauce (washed down with a glass of good red wine) in Italy. While no one quite does pasta like real Italians, this recipe comes close!

Get the recipe here.

21. Vegan Greek Salad

Nation of origin: Greece, of course!

When it’s hot outside and you’re on holiday, nothing quite beats a Greek salad! Chunks of tomato, cucumber, olives, slices of onion and….feta cheese? Nope, scrap that. VEGAN feta cheese! Or, if you prefer, tofu. In fact, this recipe below also uses avocado to get that ‘cheesy’ creaminess! What I love most, though, is the herby, lemony salad dressing.

Get the recipe here.

22. Parisian Style Crepes

Nation of origin: France

As anyone who has visited Paris knows, street vendor crêpes are a real street-food treat. In fact, they’re vegan vacation food fave! They’re usually topped with bananas and hazelnut spread, or a simple butter, lemon and sugar combination. Make these vegan crepes any time you’re missing the City of Lights, and your tastebuds will be transported back!

Get the recipe here.

13. Georgia Peach Pie

Nation of origin: Southern USA

Georgia is known as the Peach State, and anyone who has visited it has surely tried a gorgeous peach pie! They’re fragrant, candy sweet, and the juicy peaches work with the flaky, buttery pastry. This is what dessert dreams are made of!

Get the recipe here.

 

24. Smoothie Bowl

Nation of origin: Not sure! 

If you’ve ever visited Bali, you’ll know that the island is chock a block with healthy food. Whether it’s the fruit that just plops off the trees, or a delish smoothie bowl you’ll find in almost any of the multitude of cafes and restaurants on the coast or in Ubud, you’ll be feeding yourself some serious nutrients. I’m not sure where the smoothie bowl originated, but I do remember eating a lot of these in Bali!

Get the recipe here.

25. English Sticky Toffee Pudding

Nation of origin: England

Sticky toffee pudding is a popular dessert here in the UK, and one that’s on most tourist’s lists of things to eat when they visit. What’s not to love? Soft sponge cake is topped with a gooey toffee drizzle and it’s all usually served alongside a scoop of vanilla ice cream. IMHO, it’s heaven in each and every spoonful!

Get the recipe here.

Lora O'Brien

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