The vegetarian Irish recipes you’re looking for this winter

By Leora Mansoor / December 13, 2019
vegetarian Irish recipes

Looking for some vegetarian Irish recipes to stuff your guests at your next dinner party? Want something with a touch of class and tradition? Well look no further, all you need is in this list.

You’re not a carnivore, you’re not a vegan but something a little more in the middle, a fence-sitter if you will. I’m just kidding – I’m not judging you, I’ve even made you a little list of Vegetarian Irish recipes to prove it.

1. Colcannon

Colcannon is a relatively easy one and I’m sure you don’t really need a recipe to tell you how not to put bacon inside… But you’re kidding yourself if you think you’re getting deliciously creamy potatoes without my help.

vegetarian Irish recipes, colcannon

CC BY 2.0

Time: 45 mins    Serves: 4

Ingredients: 

  • 1kg potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 250g savoy cabbage, finely sliced
  • 1 bunch of spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 75ml of milk
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • Fresh parsley for garnish 

Method:

  1. Peel and dice your potatoes and then add them to a pot of cold water, cover, place over a high heat and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender.
  2. Slice your cabbage into fine strips and steam cook until tender. If you do not have a steamer you can boil the cabbage for about ten minutes or until tender. 
  3. Drain the potatoes and then mix it with the butter and milk.
  4. Mash the potatoes, butter and milk until smooth and creamy. If the texture is crumbly – add more milk or butter.
  5. Add in the spring onion, cabbage, seasoning and stir.
  6. Stir in cooked bacon if required and parsley for garnish

2. Boxty

This traditional vegetarian Irish recipe is a classic (well, it does have potato in it). All you need to do is fry up last night’s mashed potatoes with some veg. Super simple. Super yum.  

vegetarian Irish recipes, boxty

CC BY 2.0

Serves: 4     Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 250g of raw potatoes, grated 
  • 250g of leftover mash
  • 250g of all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • 1/4 cup of milk 
  • Butter or oil for frying
  • 6 spring onions, finely sliced 
  • 100g cheddar cheese, grated

Method:

  1. Put the mashed potato, raw grated the potato, flour, baking soda and spring onions in a large mixing bowl and mix until evenly combined. 
  2. Slowly stir in the milk until you have a pancake-like batter.
  3. Season to taste with sea salt and ground black pepper.
  4. Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat with the butter or oil. When the butter begins to foam, spoon heaped tablespoons of the mixture into the frying pan and fry for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown. 
  5.  If you fancy, you can melt some grated cheese into them once they’ve been turned for that extra dimension of flavour.
  6. Remove from the pan and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper to absorb the oil before eating.

3. Dublin Coddle 

Although my nan was nuts about boiling the bacon, I’m not so hot on it. In fact, I think that this vegetarian Irish recipe beats any coddle with meat in it.  

Irish vegetarian recipes, Dublin coddle

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Serves: 4   Time: 60 mins

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 of your favourite vegan sausages (potato based ones aren’t ideal as they may disintegrate)
  • 3-4 potatoes, cut into small chunks
  • 2-3 white onions, sliced 
  • 500ml vegetable stock 
  • 100g pearl barley
  • A good handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper
  • A generous helping of butter
  • 1 bay leaf
  • A handful of parsley, chopped

Method:

  1. Place the onions across the base of a casserole dish with the bay leaf, sausages, pearl barley and finish with a layer of potatoes. 
  2. Mix in the stock and pour it over the casserole dish before placing the dish, covered, on a high heat and bring to boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220˚C
  4. Remove the lid and dot the potatoes with butter, season to taste and transfer the casserole dish to the oven and cook for 15 minutes or until the potatoes turn golden brown.
  5. Add parsley for garnish if desired!

4. Pub Style Vegetarian Guinness Stew

Now of all the vegetarian Irish recipes on this list, this is, for me, the most exciting. Why put yourself through the pain and agony of having a disappointing pub lunch of boiled lentils when you could whip up this dream in the comfort of your own kitchen? 

vegetarian Irish recipes, stew

CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Serves: 6   Time: 70 mins  

Ingredients:

  • 14-ounces of seitan, cut into thin strips
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of steak sauce
  • 3 tablespoons of butter 
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 sticks of celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium potatoes, chopped
  • As much garlic as you like, minced
  • 3 cups of Guinness stout (this makes for quite a strong stout flavour so if preferred use 1½ cups of Guinness combined with 1½ cups of vegetable stock)
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, chopped
  • Optional: 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Fry the seitan in olive oil and soy sauce over a medium heat until slightly browned, this should take about 5 minutes.
  2. Reduce heat and add the steak sauce and mix in until the seitan is lightly coated. Remove and aside.
  1. In a large pot, sauté the onions, celery, carrots, potatoes and garlic in butter or margarine for 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the Guinness bit by bit. Then add the flour, thyme, sugar, salt, and pepper and stir well.
  3. Add seitan and leave the stew to simmer for 40 to 50 minutes, until the Guinness reduces and stew thickens. Add more salt and pepper if desired and enjoy!

5. Butternut squash and Goats cheese pie

Now who doesn’t love a good hearty pie? For this recipe you don’t need much, just an eye for perfection and a devout love of stuffed pastry crust.

vegetarian Irish recipes, pie

CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Serves:Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 butternut squash, cut into 1cm chunks
  • 2 red peppers, sliced lengthways
  • 2 red onions, quartered
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 400g of mushrooms, finely chopped
  • As much garlic as you like, crushed
  • 2 tsp mixed herbs
  • 15g of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 200g of baby spinach leaves
  • 200g of goat’s cheese
  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • 4 sheets of ready-rolled all-butter puff pastry
  • 1 egg, whisked

Method:

  1. Preheat an oven to 200˚C 
  2. Place the squash chunks on a tray and drizzle with a little olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and put in the oven to roast, along with the peppers and onions. 
  3. The onions should take roughly 15 minutes whilst the squash and peppers should take 30.
  4. Fry the mushrooms in butter over a medium heat the butter with garlic. Add the mixed herbs, remove from the heat and mix in the chopped parsley. Leave to cool.
  5. Place the spinach leaves in a colander over a sink and pour boiling water over them. Leave to drain and cool. You may need to pat the spinach dry with paper towels to ensure it’s not too wet before using it.
  6. Now it’s time to cut your pastry. Using a small side plate as a template and cut around it to cut four circles of puff pastry. Place these on a heavy baking tray. 
  7. Cut four slightly larger circles to place on top later.
  8. Divide the filling among the pastry bases. Layer the mushroom mix on the base and top with wedges of red onion, spinach leaves, a few tablespoons of goat’s cheese, butternut squash and slices of red pepper.
  9. Then gently place your larger pastry circles on top, sealing it firmly at the edges. Brush the entire pie with egg. 
  10. Gently score the top using a butter knife. Be careful not to cut down through the pastry. 
  11.  Bake for 30-35 minutes, until puffed up and golden. The base should be golden too.

6. Lasagna

This is one of the few vegetarian Irish recipes my dad makes almost every Christmas. I don’t know, I guess that after a lifetime of being Irish he finally just couldn’t be bothered with potatoes anymore, even on Christmas. But lasagna is good. We know this. But have you tried this recipe?

vegetarian Irish recipes, lasagne

CC BY 2.0

Serves:Time: 1 hour

Ingredients: 

  • 1 butternut squash, cut thickly
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • olive oil
  • 50ml of vegetarian stock
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 600g of mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • As much garlic as you like, crushed
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 6 sage leaves, finely shredded
  • 1 packet of lasagne sheets
  • 500g ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • Quarter tsp nutmeg
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 ball of mozzarella cheese
  • 3 tbsp grated Parmesan

Method:

  1. Preheat an oven to 220˚C.
  2. Place the squash and onion wedges on a baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes. 
  3. Leave the tray to cool slightly before blitzing in a food processor with salt, pepper and the stock until smooth and set aside for later. 
  4. Melt the butter in a pan and fry the mushrooms in batches with garlic, thyme and sage leaves in the final batch. Mix them all together to combine. 
  5. Lower the oven to 190˚C Celsius and then use a fork to whisk the egg with the ricotta and nutmeg. Season well. 
  6. Grease an oven-proof dish with butter or margarine and place your first lasagne sheet inside. 
  7. Spread half the your squash purée on top of the lasagne sheet and then add a layer of mushrooms (about half your mix) and half of the ricotta.
  8. Add a second layer of lasagne sheets followed by the remaining squash purée and mushrooms. Add a final layer of lasagne and finish with the ricotta. Dot with slices of mozzarella and sprinkle with vegetarian parmesan.
  9. Bake for 25-30 minutes and cover with foil if it begins to brown too much.

7. Shepherds pie

Shepherd’s pie is a classic here in Ireland. In England too, it has graced dinner tables for many years. There are many ways of making the perfect vegetarian lasagne, but of all the vegetarian Irish recipes out there for lasagna, we think this one is the best.

vegetarian Irish recipes, shepherd's pie

CC BY-ND 2.0

Serves: Time:  

Ingredients:

  • 1 vegan stock cube
  • Olive oil
  • 100g mushrooms, quartered
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • As much garlic as you like, minced
  • 300g of Quorn mince 
  • 200g of spinach 
  • 1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • a handful of chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1 dessertspoon miso paste
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • A splash of red wine (optional)
  • For the mash topping:
  • 1kg of potatoes, peeled and diced
  • As much garlic as you like, minced
  • 250ml of unsweetened milk
  • 1tbsp of olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C.
  2. Dissolve the stock cube in 250ml of just-boiled water and set aside.
  3. Heat some olive oil in a frying pan and add the mushrooms, carrots, onions and garlic and sauté over a medium heat until they begin to soften. Add the Quorn, tinned tomatoes, walnuts (if using) and stock and simmer for 20 minutes. Add a splash of red wine in at this point if you like.
  4. Meanwhile boil the potatoes for about 20 minutes, until soft. 
  5. Drain and place them in a large bowl with the garlic, milk and olive oil (not the mix you’ve just fried). Mash until smooth. 
  6. To finish the filling, stir in the spinach and miso paste. Taste it and see if you’re happy with the flavour and if not, season accordingly.
  7. Pour the filling into a baking dish. Top with the mash and add a drizzle of olive oil.
  8. Place in the oven for 30 minutes

8. Guinness and walnut soda bread 

Have you always thought about turning your hand to bread making but thought the task may be too daunting? Well, it’s a lot easier than it sounds and this is one of the many Irish vegetarian recipes that prove it! It’s simple, delicious and a great place to start.

vegetarian Irish recipes, soda breadServes: 4  Ingredients: 

  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup brown of sugar
  • 12 ounces Guinness 
  • 2/3 cup walnuts (chopped)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • Optional: dash nutmeg

Method:

Four steps? Yes, four steps. I told you this was a simple recipe.

  1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C.
  2. Combine all of the ingredients and mix them well.
  3. Grease a loaf pan with margarine or butter and pour the mix in 
  4. Bake for 50 minutes 

Have you made any of these vegetarian Irish recipes? Let us know in the comments section below and tag your creations on our Instagram @babylonradiodublin!

About the author

Leora Mansoor

Leora is a freelance journalist who is currently working for Babylon Radio, covering all things current and cultural

Leave a comment: