8 Easy Vegetarian Recipes You Can Make Entirely in Your Dutch Oven (2024)

As cookware goes, little compares to the the humble Dutch oven. They can be a little pricey upfront (the unmistakable Le Creuset Dutch oven ranges from $155 to $560), but they're built to last a lifetime. And the Dutch oven is a chef favorite because it's incredibly versatile. "You can do anything from slow cooking to baking bread, searing, braising, and frying," says Barry Tonkinson, director of culinary research and development at the Institute of Culinary Education.

The Dutch oven makes cooking super easy. There are so many one-pot meals you can make that come together quickly. And, because of its enamel coating, cleaning up afterward is a breeze, too. The food basically slides off the second you add water, no scrubbing required. To test it out for yourself, make one of the vegetarian Dutch oven recipes below. They're healthy, protein-packed, flavorful, and fun to make.

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8 vegetarian Dutch oven recipes to try

1. Vegan beef bourguignon

You don't need meat for this beef bourguignon recipe. Instead, you can get all the same flavors the vegetarian way thanks to mushrooms, beets, and other veggies.

1/4 ounce dried porcini mushrooms (8 grams)
2 medium beets (8 ounces), peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
8 ounces button or cremini mushrooms, quartered, or another variety—cut or torn into bite-sized pieces
2 celery stalks, finely diced
1 medium carrot, peeled and finely diced
1/2 medium onion, finely diced
2 bay leaves
1/4 tsp kosher salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp flour
1 cup dry red wine (ideally one from the Burgundy region)
1/2 tsp vegetable bouillon (such as Better than Bouillon) or 1/2 vegetable bouillon cube, dissolved in a few teaspoons of hot water
1/4 cup black or dark green lentils, rinsed
Freshly ground black pepper
Minced parsley for garnish

1. In a tall measuring cup, cover the porcini mushrooms with about 2 cups boiling water. Let stand until tender, about 10 minutes. Pick out the mushrooms and coarsely chop them. Reserve the soaking liquid.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine the beets, 3/4 cups water, and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then cover the pan and cook for about 15 minutes, until tender.
3. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the fresh mushrooms, spreading them out in a single layer, and cook, stirring the pan just once or twice, until the mushrooms are tender and seared a bit. Remove from the heat.
4. In a Dutch oven, heat the remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat, then add the celery, carrot, onion, bay leaves, and 1/4 tsp salt. Note: You can pulse the celery, carrots, and onion together in a food processor until uniformly ground—this saves a bit of prep time, and the finer texture of the vegetables helps thicken the sauce a bit.
5. Cook for about 5 minutes, until beginning to soften. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste and fry for about a minute. Then add the flour, stirring to coat, followed by the lentils, porcini mushrooms, wine, bouillon, and 1.5 cups of the reserved porcini liquid. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 18 minutes, until the lentils are tender.
6. Fold in the seared mushrooms and beets (along with any liquid at the bottom of the saucepan). Taste for salt. Simmer for a few minutes to heat thoroughly, then serve hot over rice, polenta, and mashed potatoes. Garnish with chopped parsley.

2. Veggie-packed Bolognese

You can make Bolognese sans meat in less than 30 minutes in your Dutch oven. Just grab your ingredients—like mushrooms, tomato paste, and whole wheat pasta—and get to cooking.

12 oz shiitake or cremini mushrooms (stem removed)
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 cup dry red wine
3 cups riced cauliflower
2 Tbsp tomato paste
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup almond milk
1 lb whole wheat pasta (rigatoni, ziti)
2 oz. grated Parmesan plus more for garnish
Fresh basil to garnish

1. Pulse mushrooms in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a small bowl.
2. Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat.
3. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally until golden brown. Add onion, celery, and carrots, and cook until onions are golden brown. Add garlic stirring occasionally until softened.
4. Add red wine and cook until all the alcohol has evaporated.
5. Add cauliflower and cook until softened (approximately 5 minutes).
6. Add tomato paste and cook a until slightly darkened.
7. Add crushed tomato, oregano, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover, lower heat to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.
8. Uncover sauce, add almond milk, and stir to combine.
9. Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water stirring occasionally until al dente.
10. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pasta to a pot with sauce and stir to combine.
11. Add Parmesan cheese to pot and stir.
12. Divide pasta among six bowls and top with more parmesan cheese and basil. Serve.

3. Orange citrus chutney

You can make a mouth-watering chutney in your Dutch oven that can be used on your favorite vegetarian proteins, like tofu and tempeh.

2 Tbsp sunflower seed oil
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic minced
2 Tbsp canned hot peppers
8 clementines washed and cut into eight pieces with the rind remaining
2 preserved lemons cut into quarters
3/4 cup white vinegar
1 inch of fresh ginger, minced
1 cup palm/date sugar

1. Heat a Dutch oven or heavy bottomed pan over medium heat. Add oil, onion, and garlic and cook for 3 to 5 minutes until translucent.
2. Add peppers, clementines, and lemons. Cook for for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Add vinegar, ginger, and sugar. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook covered for 45 minutes.

4. One-pot chili mac

8 Easy Vegetarian Recipes You Can Make Entirely in Your Dutch Oven (2)

Mac and cheese, but make it protein-packed. This chili version adds in tempeh and canned beans for a boost. It's also completely dairy-free.

Get the recipe: One-pot chili mac

5. Garlic and herb whole-roasted cauliflower

Making a whole-roasted cauliflower in your Dutch oven is easy. Simply brush on a garlic and herb sauce and pop it in the oven.

Get the recipe: Garlic and herb whole-roasted cauliflower

6. Vegetable stir-fry

8 Easy Vegetarian Recipes You Can Make Entirely in Your Dutch Oven (3)

You can make a great stir-fry in a Dutch oven, too. Another bonus: This recipe lets you use whichever veggies you already have in your fridge, allowing you to whip up a great meal and cut down on food waste.

Get the recipe: Vegetable stir-fry

7. One-pot Mexican rice

After adding all your ingredients into your Dutch oven—including rice, black beans, veggie stock, and lots of seasonings—you let it simmer. Soon enough, it'll be ready to enjoy.

Get the recipe: One-pot Mexican rice

8. Vegan Irish stew

Traditional Irish stews are made with beef and beer, but this version uses hearty veggies instead. It's hearty, rich, filling, and—most importantly—delicious.

Get the recipe: Vegan Irish stew

For more healthy recipes and cooking ideas from our community, join Well+Good’s Cook With Us Facebook group.

Tags: Eating Vegetarian, Healthy Cooking, Healthy Recipes for Dinner

8 Easy Vegetarian Recipes You Can Make Entirely in Your Dutch Oven (2024)


Is a Dutch oven good for vegetarians? ›

The same features that make Dutch ovens so dependable for meat dishes also make them ideal for meatless meals.

Can you make everything in a Dutch oven? ›

No matter the style or size, any Dutch oven will open up endless recipe opportunities. Create beautifully braised meat, pot roasts, hearty beef stew, healing chicken soup, or the creamiest mac and cheese. Use it like a slow cooker, a bread cloche, or a pot for frying.

Can you bake anything in a Dutch oven? ›

Try Dutch oven baking, from baking breads to making cheesy pasta casseroles. Dutch ovens are great for frying, braising, simmering and stewing, but did you know you can use them for baking? These heavy-duty pans have tight-fitting lids that trap steam inside, resulting in tender bread and juicy chicken.

What are 8 reasons to use a Dutch oven? ›

What Is a Dutch Oven Used For?
  • Bread. One of the easiest (and more surprising) ways to use a Dutch oven is actually for breaking bread. ...
  • Casseroles and Lasagnas. ...
  • Skillet Cookies. ...
  • Chicken Stock. ...
  • Frying. ...
  • Braised Meats. ...
  • Roasting. ...
  • Poaching Chicken.
Oct 27, 2022

Can you boil potatoes in Dutch oven? ›

In a 4- to 5-quart Dutch oven, cook potatoes, covered, in enough lightly salted boiling water to cover for 20 to 25 minutes or until tender; drain. Return the hot, drained potatoes to the hot Dutch oven. Add the 1/4 cup butter. Let stand, uncovered, for 2 to 3 minutes.

Why are some Dutch ovens so expensive? ›

High-quality enamel coatings are expensive, which is why enameled Dutch ovens cost more than their standard cast iron counterparts. And while traditional cast iron can get more nonstick with time and use, enameled cast iron can't.

Can you make pasta in a Dutch oven? ›

The French or Dutch Oven is ideal for making one-pot spaghetti due to its superior heat retention and large surface area, allowing the arugula pesto, mozzarella, and grated Parmesan to immerse itself in the spaghetti as it cooks slowly.

Can you cook rice in a Dutch oven? ›

A Dutch oven is a good choice for cooking rice since it has a nice sturdy base that conducts heat well and a tight-fitting lid. You can also use a shallow baking dish or pan with a lid, as long as both pot and lid are safe for both stovetop and oven.

Why are Le Creuset so expensive? ›

When you buy from Le Creuset, you're paying for high-quality pots and pans that are designed to stand the test of time. Rather than aluminum or stainless steel, Le Creuset craft their pieces from cast iron, which has a much higher heat capacity.

Can I boil water in a Dutch oven? ›

Simmer, boil, steam: On a basic level, a Dutch oven is just a heavy-duty pot with a lid. So any cooking method that can be performed in a typical pot, can be done in a Dutch oven as well. Think simmering soups, steaming rice, boiling water for pasta, etc.

Can I bake a cake in my Dutch oven? ›

Dutch Oven Cake Recipes

If you've got a special recipe from Grandma, that should work great too. Most guides will mix the batter in a separate bowl, then add it to a greased dutch oven. No need to pre-heat, and we recommend not filling the dutch oven more than about 60%.

What does baking bread in a Dutch oven do? ›

The high heat inside the Dutch oven brings the water inside the dough to evaporate. Because you have the lid on top, the steam is trapped inside and creates a hot and steamy environment. This helps your bread to stay moist and flexible so it can rise and expand easily.

Can I brown meat in a Dutch oven? ›

From the start, a Dutch oven can facilitate a perfect golden-brown sear on meats or vegetables before you need to add any broth or other liquid for braising.

Is Dutch oven good for Indian cooking? ›

This very same ability to retain heat well allows you to cook curries and stews in a Dutch oven low and slow with maximum impact in flavours, and even extra flavoursome dosas and parathas on the flat surface of a cast iron griddle which can serve as a makeshift dosa tawa (traditional Indian specialty pan).

Are Dutch people vegetarian? ›

A total of 5 percent of Dutch people eat no meat at all: 2 percent eat no meat but do eat fish (also known as 'pescetarians'), 2 percent eat neither meat nor fish (vegetarians) and 0.5 percent eat plant-based foods only (vegans).

Should everyone have a Dutch oven? ›

"A good quality Dutch oven is perfect for everything from slow-cooking dishes like beans or coq au vin, baking desserts like fruit crisps or artisan-style bread, braising meats like short ribs and lamb shanks, roasting and browning whole chickens or turkey leg, and making hearty stews and soups," says Shiza Shahid, co- ...

Why does food taste better in a Dutch oven? ›

So what is a Dutch Oven and why does food taste so delicious in them? A Dutch Oven is a a cast iron, aluminum or ceramic cooking pot with a thick bottom, thick sides, and a heavy and tightly fitted lid that locks in moisture and flavor.

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