23 Vegan Appetizer Recipes That Reduce Your Environmental Impact
From veggie dumplings to sheet pan nachos, these vegan appetizers will make your party platter tastier—and more planet-friendly—than ever before.
Hosting a gathering is all about people pleasing. From the music to the cocktails (or mocktails) to the snacks, curating the optimum atmosphere requires thought for all invited... dietary restrictions and all. Which is why vegan appetizers are the blanket answer to all of your nosh needs.
Plant-based, delicious, and culturally diverse, a thoughtful menu of vegan appetizers is sure to please any palate—even those who insist that they are all-out carnivores.
Why Try Vegan Appetizers?
Vegan snacks are delicious, versatile, and nutritionally sound. Adopting a plant-based diet has been found to lower the risks of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, all while aiding in weight loss.
And if you're looking for a simple way to reduce your environmental impact, incorporating even a few vegan dishes into your diet can go a long way. Animal products are responsible for about 75% of total greenhouse gas emissions, according to a report in The Lancet. Add to that the industry's water footprint (it takes 1,800 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef), and making more plant-based choices starts to make a lot of sense.
In the spirit of starting small, this selection of vegan appetizers spans culture and taste, the bite-sized goodies guiding you (and your guests) in the direction of a more sustainable diet.
23 Vegan Appetizers to Try Anytime
Photo: Bianka Zapatka
Punjabi samosas are a classic Indian snack, savory pastries filled with seasoned vegetables like potatoes, peas, and more. Bake or fry depending on your preference, and serve with vegan raita for a timeless take.
2. Baba Ganoush
Photo: The Mediterranean Dish
The first dip on the list, baba ganoush is a Mediterranean favorite featuring eggplant, tahini, garlic, lemon, juice, and olive oil. While some recipes call for Green yogurt, you can easily omit the ingredient for a vegan iteration.
Photo: The Edgy Veg
A solid sheet pan recipe offers a low-effort means of pleasing the whole party, and this deconstructed bruschetta proves the point. Roast olives, onion, grape tomatoes, and squash and serve alongside slices of toasted baguette.
Photo: My Quiet Kitchen
Stuffed mushroom caps are a classic finger food, and this version gets its richness by way of the vegan cheese of your choice.
Photo: The Belly Rules the Mind
Making your own maki isn't as difficult as it seems, particularly once you take the sushi-grade fish out of the equation. Roll up your favorite fresh veggies (and even some fried tofu) for a vegan appetizer that's sure to impress.
Photo: Archana's Kitchen
Spice up your veggie intake with these bite-sized pops furthered by classic Indian spices like turmeric, coriander, garam masala, and red chili powder.
7. Tater Tots
Photo: Damn Delicious
Tater tots are a family favorite, and making them at home is as simple as boiling, grating, and frying until golden.
Photo: Healthy Little Foodies
Something of an older sibling to the classic tater tot, these bites feature broccoli and almond meal. Switch the suggested eggs for an alternative to keep things in vegan territory.
Photo: Well Plated
French fries. Need we say more? Bake a batch of this single-ingredient snack for a surefire crowd-pleaser.
10. Avocado Tartar
Photo: The First Mess
This plant-based bite relies on avocado, onions, and capers to mimic the taste and texture of meat-based tartars. Serve with sliced roasted beets and dukkah on crostini.
Photo: The Wandering Chickpea
Fried chickpeas tossed with honey, soy sauce, lime juice, and sesame seeds make the perfect filling for a snackable (and healthy) lettuce cup.
Photo: This Savory Vegan
Cauliflower rice rolled up in eggplant and served with marinara is a rich, yet nutritious, appetizer.
Photo: The Kitchen Girl
Hummus! The ultimate Med staple blends chickpeas, tahini, and more into an additive dip that would pair well with most of the items on this list. Serve with pita, veggies, falafel, and more.
Photo: Minimalist Baker
These zucchini, quinoa, and chickpea patties can serve as a vehicle for vegetarian toppings, or a standalone, dip-ready snack.
Photo: Shane & Simple
Who needs chicken when you have cauliflower? Air-fried or baked florets smothered in buffalo sauce provide the ideal combination of tender, crispy, and spicy.
Photo: Cilantro & Citronella
Fluffy and fried, falafel is a must for your vegan appetizer menu. Serve with sliced veggies and olives alongside the aforementioned baba ganoush and hummus.
17. Sheet Pan Nachos
Photo: Karissa's Vegan Kitchen
Another seamless sheet pan approach, these nachos trade meat and traditional cheese for vegan variations—or just extras of everything else. Get creative! The topping possibilities are endless.
Photo: Short Girl Tall Order
Spring rolls are among the prettiest of vegan appetizers. Bundle tofu, veggies, herbs, and rice noodles into translucent rice paper for a lovely and dunkable bite.
19. Vegan Dumplings
Photo: The Foodie Takes Flight
Potstickers and other dumplings are easily made vegan—and their comforting and delicious taste and texture means that absolutely no one will notice.
20. Socca Farinata
Photo: The Simple Veganista
Delicate and savory, socca flatbread is a great addition to any party plate. Serve with vegetables and your preferred dip (like the one below, which echoes socca's Italian origins).
Photo: Rainbow Plant Life
A creamy, Italian take on hummus, this garlicky white bean dip will find many, many fans.
22. Flatbread Pizza
Photo: I Heart Vegetables
Ditch the cheese for a veggie-centric flatbread dressed with a drizzle of balsamic or pesto for depth of flavor.
Photo: Well Plated
Last but not least, the humble Brussels. When grilled, the sprouts become a study in texture, and a perfectly poppable finish to your platter of vegan appetizers
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