Are you looking for vegan Passover recipe ideas? Check out these 36 delicious main dishes, appetizers, side dishes, and desserts. Passover is a special holiday for Jewish people and begins the evening of April 5th in 2023.
Passover is a great time to enjoy many healthy and fresh foods. However, some commonly eaten foods are not eaten during Passover, including leavened bread, pasta, muffins, and cake.
Planning for Passover Meals
Start checking out recipes and choosing foods for your menu ahead of time. Supermarkets in neighborhoods with a large Jewish population usually have the best selection of prepared Passover foods, if there are any you need. Check food labels for flour, baking soda, baking powder, and yeast. Look for Kosher for Passover symbols on food labels.
Once you have found recipes you can get organized with a shopping list and buy the food you’ll need. Consider what you would like for the seders (services and meals usually held the first two nights of Passover), as well as foods for breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks for all 8 days of the holiday.
If you are following a plant-based diet, that can be a challenge every day. Keeping Passover can make things a little trickier. But here are some recipe ideas to help you figure out what to make.
Which Foods are Kosher for Passover?
During Passover, we eat matzo to remind us of the exodus of Jewish people from slavery in Egypt to freedom. As there was no time for their bread to rise to take on the journey, matzo is not leavened and must be made very quickly.
Other typical Passover foods include matzo ball soup, matzo kugel, potato dishes, meats, poultry and fish, eggs, dairy products (separately from meats) fruits, nuts, and vegetables. Jewish people hold a seder for the first one or two nights of Passover, which tells the story of the exodus along with symbolic foods, prayers, and songs (Telushkin, 1991).
There are many everyday Kosher requirements, such as avoiding pork and shellfish, not having meat with dairy products, and choosing processed foods with a Kosher certification. For Passover, Jewish people avoid eating chametz. Chametz is leavened or fermented grains. You can and should eat Matzo (plus there is matzo meal – hello Passover brownies!). Please read more from this handy visual Washington Post article.
What Do Vegans Eat for Passover?
I enjoy tsimmes for Passover – a stew of sweet potatoes and dried fruit. This is traditional for Rosh Hashanah for a sweet new year, but I like to make it for Passover too.
And charoset is one of my favorite dishes too. The Ashkenazic version is a mix of apples, walnuts, cinnamon, and Kosher wine (or grape juice) that symbolizes the mortar used to build the pyramids. Sephardic charoset recipes may include dried fruits, ginger, and other nuts or even be cooked.
With all of these choices, there are plenty of plant-based choices for Passover seders. Here, I have gathered together some recipes to help you decide what to eat for the rest of the holiday.
What is Kitniyot?
Ashkenazi Jewish people (from Central and Eastern Europe) had also been avoiding kitniyot (legumes plus rice, corn, and beans) for Passover since the 1300s. I love soy milk, rice, beans, etc., and eat them at most meals. Unbeknownst to me until researching this post, in 2015 the Conservative Rabbinical Assembly changed this rule to permit kitniyot (such as corn, rice, and legumes). However, Orthodox and other Jewish people still avoid kitniyot. Please note that some recipes in this round-up do contain kitniyot.
While I have looked at each recipe, be sure to review and adjust them as needed based on your level of observance. For instance, most of these dessert recipes contain sugar. Choose organic sugar, a brand you know is vegan, or try changing the sweetener to agave nectar, maple syrup, or organic sugar instead (sugar may have been processed with animal products).
One soup recipe calls for a vegetable bouillon cube. If it’s not Kosher for Passover, you can use homemade vegetable broth instead.
Appetizers and Soups
Here are some vegan Passover starters, including charoset, tasty appetizer bites, and soup.
How about a roasted red pepper and sweet potato soup to start off your seder? I think this recipe from Hintofhealthy.com with coconut milk and garam masala will be a great flavorful first course.
Vegan broccoli and parmesan soup (I know: vegan parmesan cheese: who knew?) from ThisWifeCooks gets its’ creamy texture from potatoes and cashews.
Salads with lettuce, vegetables, fruits, and nuts with fresh homemade dressings (or storebought Kosher for Passover dressing) make for an easy Passover meal or side dish.
Moroccan carrot salad with oranges by VeggiesSavetheDay features orange juice, olive oil, maple syrup, and spices for a delicious dressing.
Check out Easy Vegan Chickpea Salad with tomatoes and avocados by YumVeganLunchIdeas for an easy meal.
Vegan Passover Main Dishes
Here are some delicious vegan Passover entrees. Some contain kitniyot such as beans and corn. Quinoa is not chametz but may or may not be accepted in some religious communities for Passover: read more in this article from Chabad: Is Quinoa Kosher for Passover?
Craving some spicy flavor? Then you will enjoy Mexican black bean lasagna: make it in a larger pan for a crowd.
Stuffed peppers with butternut squash and quinoa is a tasty and impressive-looking meal. Change it up with different veggies, like mushrooms, cooked sweet potatoes, adding beans, or using rice instead of quinoa.
Slow Cooker Vegan Chili is an easy meal solution that lasts a few days – or make a double batch for a larger family.
While this is technically a salad, I would have it for lunch. Amy Gorin RD’s Italian Lupini Bean Salad is a quick recipe with plenty of fiber, carbohydrates, and protein to help feel satisfied all afternoon.
Vegan taco salad from YumVeganLunchIdeas would be great with pieces of matzah!
Potatoes are always popular for Passover. Try these recipes including sweet potatoes, quinoa, root vegetables, and asparagus for variety:
Rainbow roasted vegetables from DinnerThenDessert is a simple and lovely side dish.
Vegan Passover Desserts
Impress your guests with this pomegranate sharbat (Faloodeh-ye anar) from PandemoniumNoshery.
This vegan Passover chocolate nougat candy with only 4 ingredients from Condelight.Blogspot.com looks like an easy sweet treat.
Fruit desserts also are a favorite for Passover. Try this easy Passover Apple Crumble from Renanas Kitchen for another tasty treat!
Fruits and vegetables are an easy choice for vegan Passover snacks. There are matzo crackers, but pieces of toasted matzo are just as easy to snack on. Try it with berry preserves or nut butter for a more filling snack.
Passover Breakfast Ideas
These are a few things I like for breakfast during Passover:
- Matzo with almond butter
- Fresh fruit
- Leftover potatoes
- Potato pancakes (made with matzah meal instead of flour), served with applesauce
- Soy, coconut, or cashew yogurt
- A smoothie with banana, pineapple, mango, blueberries, nut butter, ground flaxseed, juice, or soy milk
- Scrambled tofu with peppers and onions
- Apple slices with peanut butter
I hope these ideas help you to plan a delicious and healthy vegan Passover for an eight-day celebration of freedom!
Telushkin, J. (1991). Jewish literacy: The most important things to know about the Jewish religion, its people, and its history. William Morrow and Co., pp. 581-586.
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Originally published: 3/7/2020. Updated: 3/18/2023
Have you tried any of these vegan Passover recipes? Please let me know in the comments: