Kid Tested, Mother Approved
Vegan Kid Recipes

I know some people have a hard time finding good vegan kid recipes because sometimes they are too fancy or time-consuming, both of which are unrealistic for busy parents. These vegan recipes for kids are quick, tasty, and healthy for your entire family.

If you're transitioning your children to a vegan diet, any of these recipes would be perfect substitutions for what you normally serve.

I recommend not even mentioning that they're vegan, or if you do tell the family, tell them well after they have already said they like what they're eating. 


Chickpea Bean Burgers

My nephews are picky eaters, but they love burgers. Here's a great way to get kids to eat healthy burgers, without having to buy the processed ones at the supermarket. This vegan kid recipe is adapted from Food for Life by Dr. Neal Barnard.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas, slightly mashed
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced

Directions:

Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl and form into 6 patties. Cook the burgers on a lightly oiled sauce pan until brown on both sides.

I find that these burgers have a tendency to break apart, so once you get them onto the pan, leave them until one side is browned, then flip. Serve with whole wheat buns.

Serves 6.


No Tuna Salad

In my fish-eating days, I was always a big fan of tuna fish, and would add it into many dishes. The first time I made this recipe, my boyfriend and I just smiled at each other because it tasted so much like tuna. The trick is the kelp powder, which you can find at Whole Foods, other health food stores, and online.

This vegan kid recipe is adapted from a few of my great cookbook recipes and it's one of my best vegan kid recipes because it's so healthy.

Ingredients:

  • 1 15 ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 stalk celery, minced
  • 1 green onion, minced
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1 medium carrot, grated
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. kelp powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dijon mustard
  • 3 Tbsp. vegan mayonnaise (optional, I often just use more dijon)
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Put the chickpeas and almonds in a food processor and chop coarsely (can also be done by hand). Add the lemon juice and kelp powder and blend until combined. Add to a bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mix well.

Makes about 1-2 cups.

Variations:

I personally can't stand the taste of mayonnaise, so you can substitute more mustard for the mayonnaise, and adjust it to your tastes. You can also leave out the carrots, or add other spices you like in "real" tuna fishsalad.


Veggie Bolognese, "Meat" Sauce

I made this vegan kid recipe up one day with my nephews in mind. They aren't huge fans of vegetables, but if you can sneak a few into something they do like, you can get them to eat them. You can add other vegetables as well.

I use my VitaMix blender once everything is cooked because it makes the whole dish look like a meat sauce. There are so many great pastas out there today that are whole grains: whole wheat, quinoa, brown rice, etc.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 32oz. can of tomatoes
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 cup frozen edamame, shelled
  • 1/2 tsp. oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. basil
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes, or to taste
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Heat the olive oil in a pan and saute the onions with a pinch of salt for a few minutes, until soft. Then add the garlic and saute for another minute.

Add the carrots and cook until they are slightly tender, about 3-5 minutes.

Add edamame and heat through. Then add remaining spices and tomatoes.

Cook for about 5 minutes until warm and fragrant.

Pour the sauce into a blender (or use an immersion blender) and pulse until it reaches desired texture.

Spoon over a whole grain pasta.

Serves 6-8.


Blueberry Buckwheat Pancakes

One of the greatest vegan kid recipes is blueberry pancakes. Here we use buckwheat flour to give added protein and nutrition. I usually just grind my own from buckwheat groats, which give the pancakes a rich, hearty flavor. 

These are delicious, and some of the first whole wheat pancakes I've found that don't fall apart.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup whole grain buckwheat flour
  • 1/2 cup enriched all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup nondairy milk
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. Ener-G Egg Replacer
  • 1 Tbsp. melted vegan butter
  • 1 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Directions:

Put the soy milk in a small bowl and stir in the lemon juice. This will need to sit for a few minutes to thicken up and will take the place of buttermilk commonly found in pancake recipes. 

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl, wisk to combine, and set aside.

When the soy milk looks a little curdled and thicker, stir it and take a tablespoon or so out to add to the egg replacer. The egg replacer needs some liquid to develop, so stir this mixture until the lumps are out. Then, put the egg mixture, the maple syrup, and the melted butter into the soy milk mixture.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix just until combined. Don't overmix as this will make the pancakes tough. If you are using frozen blueberries, you can fold them in at this point. For fresh blueberries, add them to the tops of the pancakes once they are in the pan.

Cook over medium heat in a lightly oiled skillet, flipping to the other side once tiny bubbles appear on the top.

Serves 2-4.


Kid-Friendly Mac-n-Cheese

Another amazing vegan kid recipe is the classic Mac-N-Cheese. I love nutritional yeast sauces because they're flavorful, healthy, and really mimic the cheesy flavor of "real" cheese. It's creamy, bubbles and hardens on top. It's also incredibly simple as all I do is put everything in a blender and then pour over my cooked pasta and bake.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups plain, unsweetened nondairy milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 c. tamari
  • 1 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 Tbsp. paprika
  • 1 Tbsp. garlic powder or 3 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1 tsp. vegesal or salt
  • 1/2 block firm tofu
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 tsp. mustard
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 1/2 lbs macaroni

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and set aside a large baking pan.

Boil water in a big pot for the pasta, cook until el dente.

Blend all ingredients (except macaroni) until smooth. Salt and pepper to taste.

Pour macaroni into pan, and then cover with cheese sauce.

Bake about 15 minutes, until the top of the pasta looks slightly browned and crispy.

Serves 8-10.


Tofu Chick'n Nuggets

Have you been searching for a realistic chicken nugget recipe to feed to your little ones? This is a simple, tasty treat that goes well with a side of greens. I love this vegan kid recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 1 14 oz. block firm or extra-firm tofu, frozen, thawed, and pressed of excess water
  • 1/2 cup nondairy milk
  • 2 Tbsp. prepared mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 c. bread crumbs
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil

Directions:

Stir soy milk, mustard, nutritional yeast in a medium bowl.

Stir spices into bread crumbs in another bowl.

Slice tofu into 1-inch cubes and dip in wet mix first, then coat with breadcrumbs.

Lightly oil a baking pan and bake tofu cubes for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown and crisp.

Serves 2-4.


The TLT Sandwich: Tofu, Lettuce, and Tomato

This is a great spin-off on the classic BLT, an excellent vegan kid recipe. If you are really hungry, you can add this to a veggie burger for a big meal. I like to make it larger just by adding more tofu or tempeh.

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz. tofu or tempeh
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil, for frying
  • 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • a few pieces of lettuce
  • 2-3 tomato slices
  • dijon mustard, to taste
  • whole grain hamburger bun

Directions:

Cut your tofu or tempeh in thin strips, about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick.

If you have time, marinate the strips in the soy sauce, otherwise you can put them in the hot pan with olive oil and then pour the soy sauce on top.

Cook until the tofu or tempeh turns light brown and gets crispy.

Adorn your sandwich with your strips and add condiments to taste.

Makes 1 sandwich.


These vegan kid recipes are easy to make and fun to eat. Enjoy!


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