70+ Lip-Smacking Vegan Low-Calorie Recipes for 2023

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Do you know the worst part of a vegan low-calorie meal? How soul-crushingly disappointing it tastes.

70+ Lip-Smacking Vegan Low-Calorie Recipes for 2023 | Hurry The Food Up

No, no, hear me out. I am as interested in a low-cal meal as the next guy (well, slightly more so, cos hello, it is my day job after all!) but some of the offerings out there are practically after-thoughts.

Like, appearance prizes. Just ticking the boxes, not really committing, you know what I mean?

I want vegan low-calorie recipes that commit. Vegan meals that are all about nourishment, taste, flavor… Tucking into one should make you break into the Hallelujah Chorus, almost!

I want healthy vegan recipes that truly lean into being vegan and low-calorie, not just substitutions because that’s how they end up tasting – like a substitute!

So, I set out on a search for authentic vegan recipes, healthy recipes that do not break the calorie bank but still deliver on taste.

The nutrition

Though I say “low-calorie”, I want to get one thing clear right at the outset – HTFU does not subscribe to starvation diets, in the name of “low-calorie”. We are in this for the long game, not quick gains.

You will find no “diet recipes” here!

This means none of the recipes will leave you unfulfilled. They will all have good amounts of fiber, fats, protein, and whole grains so you will feel satiated after tucking into them.

No sudden blood sugar dips and digging into the kids’ sweet stash on my watch!

By low calorie meal, I mean none of these recipes will top the upper limit of 450 calories. Any higher and you could bump up against your day’s calorie deficit, knocking it off and spoiling your weight loss efforts.

But too low and it is just as bad, as starving yourself thin never works.

Sustainable, achievable, and practical. That’s the motto!

Now that you are all hanging on to my every word, let’s get this party started.

Bring on the vegan low-calorie recipes!

(I hope you read that with a proper Anton Du Beke flourish!)

Breakfasts

Bonus: the perfect animal-friendly alternative to traditional oatmeal. It’s gluten-free, too!

Noatmeal is a high-protein oatmeal recipe alternative, made without oats. This noatmeal recipe has a base of quinoa, hemp seeds, and chia seeds.

The Best Vegan Tofu Scramble Recipe for Breakfast

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 21g

Calories: 369kcal

Ready in:10 minutes

Bonus: tasty, protein-packed meal

Firm tofu meets flavourful spices and luscious veggies to make the ultimate vegan breakfast, a tofu scramble. If you’re searching for an egg-free alternative to the classic, you’ve just hit the jackpot!

Bonus: try with different fruits for different flavors and tastes!

If you’re in a rush and don’t have time for a proper sit-down breakfast, then this super quick and delicious vegan blackberry smoothie is just what you need to start the day!

Bonus: a sweet, tart, and fruity breakfast

Looking for a tasty new porridge recipe? Try bulgur porridge! No oats, just bulgur wheat, drizzled with sweet rhubarb!

Bonus: pretty darn healthy!

This avocado spinach smoothie is a high protein vegan breakfast inspired by Ben Greenfield – a nutrition and fitness expert, triathlon and Spartan Race competitor, as well as New York Times Bestseller.

Bonus: fuss-free, lush breakfast

This vegan French toast should be on every food radar. Our simple guide with the dos and don’ts of French toast means breakfast has never been easier!

Bonus: for an added oomph, try them with tangy tamarind relish

A savory pancake begging to be eaten with pickles and chutneys or yogurts and cream. East meets West with this beautifully, wonderfully healthy dish.

Bonus: the easiest way to use up overripe bananas

Chia breakfast pudding packs a lot of healthy goodness into a small package! Meet tomorrow’s breakfast!

Bonus: an awesome pancake that is as fluffy and pancakey as the eggy versions

Easy breakfast that is ready in 20 minutes. Complete with easy-to-follow cooking instructions compiled by the best vegan pancake makers around!

Bonus: full of nutrients

Bulgur porridge completely revitalizes the morning rush – with a naturally sweet (and incredibly tasty) whole-grain breakfast – it’s vegan, too!

Bonus: crispy and delicious

These tangy chickpea pancakes are vegan and incredibly tasty. Getting them right is easy – just follow our simple cooking steps!

Protein: 8g
Calories: 150 kcals
Ready in: 35 minutes
Recipe by: ChelseaPeachTree
Bonus: grab and go

Enjoy an easy-to-make, moist chocolate banana protein muffin within 35 minutes. This simple-to-make vegan recipe is gluten-free and refined sugar-free, making it the perfect protein-packed snack.

Protein: 5g
Calories: 324 kcals
Ready in: 5 minutes
Recipe by: TheMatbakh
Bonus: fresh and fruity

Get your fruit and vegetable servings with this blueberry kale smoothie with banana, strawberries, and a Honeycrisp apple. This vegan 5-minute breakfast or snack is toddler-approved and easy to whip up in your blender.

Protein: 6g
Calories: 179 kcals
Ready in: 12 minutes
Recipe by: YumVeganBlog
Bonus: sweet and easy

These sweet potato waffles (vegan) are so crispy and delicious while also being sneakily healthy vegan waffles. Packed with delicious fall flavors, these easy waffles are filling and pretty light on calories and will fill any waffle cravings with flair!

Mains

Bonus: the perfect blend of protein, veggies, and spices

This mouthwatering vegan chili sin carne is great vegan comfort food for the whole family to enjoy. It’s that delicious you won’t even miss the meat, promise!

Bonus: a light meal that’s full of crunchy, veggie goodness

Fresh ingredients sing in our vegan lettuce wraps, inspired by Korean ssam & filled with crispy tofu! These wraps are a great low-carb meal, that are wonderful dinner party appetizers too.

Bonus: plenty of fiber in this, to keep you chugging along smoothly

This vegetarian Mexican casserole is super healthy and is one of my favorite vegan weight loss recipes if that’s something that interests you!

Bonus: quicker than popping off to the local Chinese takeaway

Looking for a speedy noodle dish, packed with vegetables and flavour? The search is over with this easy vegetable lo mein!

Dal Khichdi and Kachumber Salad

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 21g

Calories: 459kcal

Ready in:1 hour

Recipe by: Gabriella English

Bonus: creamy khichdi and crunchy salad make the perfect combo

The ultimate Indian comfort dish, dal khichdi is full of fiber and so will keep you going for a while. It’s healthy, light but still filling, and a source of complete protein. Try it now!

Bonus: the combination of flavourful rice and smoky tofu is pretty hard to beat

Indulge in this smoky and savory Buddha Bowl. The combination of smoked tofu, hummus, and turmeric rice makes for a perfect vegan lunch (or dinner!)

Bonus: creamy without cream or cheese!

Risotto should be fluffy, creamy, and obviously, tasty. But how to make it creamy without the cream? That’s where the cooking technique comes in.

Bonus: perfect packed meal option

The new vegan burrito is here, paving the way and setting the standard. Mega quick and perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner!

Bonus: with a little bit of pesto history thrown in!

Red Pesto Pasta – The natural evolution of a classic dish. The pesto is all vegan and has received so much praise already you won’t believe it!

 

  • 1 handful sunflower seeds (or use whatever seeds you have around)
  • 7 oz pasta (wholegrain would be best)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 tbsp red pesto (See notes below to make your own!)
  • 1 handful spinach (1 handful = 50g, arugula also works)
  • 1 handful cherry tomatoes

  • Boil that pasta o’yours.
  • Dice the onion and fry it with olive oil in a pan on medium heat.
  • While that’s cooking put the seeds in a frying pan and fry without oil. They’ll only take a minute or two so don’t let them burn!
  • Drain the cooked pasta then add it into the pan, mix in red pesto, spinach/arugula and a good handful of diced cherry tomatoes.
  • Add a few splashes of water if you want it a bit creamier.
  • Depending on what you want add rennet-free cheddar cheese for taste, or leave it out for a vegan version.
  • For serving add a couple more cherry tomatoes as a garnish, and sprinkle over the sunflower seeds.
  • Enjoy 🙂
Our nutritional information table does not include the red pesto as the data depends massively on the type of pesto used. Click here for a healthy, nutritious homemade version.
IF YOU LIKED THIS RECIPE: then check out this lovely green pesto, or try this creamy avocado pasta for an amazing pesto alternative!

Nutrition Facts

70+ Lip-Smacking Vegan Low-Calorie Recipes for 2023

Amount per Serving

% Daily Value*

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Bonus: healthy ingredients sing in this traditional Vietnamese spring roll

Gỏi cuốn – these summer rolls are easy, authentic, and require absolutely no cooking. We’ve even included two simple but to-die-for sauces!

Pineapple Fried Rice

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 6.2g

Calories: 383kcal

Ready in:30 minutes

Recipe by: Timo & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: the perfect combo

Pineapple Fried Rice. Some food pairings were just meant to be together, and this is one of them. Get your sweet, crunchy and tropical hit right now!

Protein: 12g
Calories: 333 kcals
Ready in: 45 minutes
Recipe by: TraditionalPlantBasedCooking
Bonus: smokey and flavourful

Enjoy a plate of traditional smoked tofu kedgeree prepared with curried rice, smoked tofu, and green peas. Finish off with a topping of juicy, warm tomatoes wedges and delicious parsley or coriander.

Protein: 8g
Calories: 233 kcals
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: VeggieChick
Bonus: spicy and filling

This easy peasy Potato Curry is totally loaded with Indian flavors, sweet peas, chickpeas, and golden potatoes in a creamy coconut milk base. It’s also super healthy and easy to make using just 1 pot and your blender.

Protein: 17g
Calories: 326 kcals
Ready in: 45 minutes
Recipe by: MyPlantifulCooking
Bonus: a new and exciting noodle bowl

This saucy and rich Korean/Chinese-inspired vegan jajangmyeon, or black bean noodles, is better than any takeaway meal! This noodle dish is super easy & quick to fix.

Protein: 4g
Calories: 144 kcals
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: ChelseaPeachTree
Bonus: colorful and fun

Vegan Black Bean Sheet Pan Tacos are an easy, healthy recipe to add to your weekly night meals. Sheet pan peppers, Portobello mushrooms, onions, and so much more, all baked together in one pan for a simple-to-make meal.

Protein: 4g
Calories: 178 kcals
Ready in: 30 minutes
Recipe by: OrganicallyAddison
Bonus: quick and tasty

This Pad Pak Thai is bursting with bold flavors! These easy stir-fried vegetables are easy, healthy, and delicious. This recipe is great for a light lunch or dinner, or healthy meal prep.

Protein: 6.5g
Calories: 249 kcals
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: IndianAmbrosia
Bonus: exciting and spicy

Bharwan shimla mirch is a healthy vegan Indian recipe that’s very popular in the northern parts of the country. Small green bell peppers are filled with a spicy potato filling and baked in the oven.

Serve with flat Indian breads like roti or paratha.

Protein: 24g
Calories: 348 kcals
Ready in: 45 minutes
Recipe by: VeganCocotte
Bonus: warm and wintery

Cozy and filling, this vegan white bean chili is loaded with veggies and packed with flavor. It’s also super easy to make, and it only takes 45 minutes to have a steaming bowl of chili goodness in your hands. The perfect meal for a cold day!

Protein: 24g
Calories: 274 kcals
Ready in: 50 minutes
Recipe by: ChampagneTastes
Bonus: comfort food

This vegan spaghetti squash marinara is served with homemade marinara from canned, frozen, or fresh tomatoes. This easy meal is a perfect dinner for fall or winter!

Protein: 4g
Calories: 219 kcals
Ready in: 30 minutes
Recipe by: Mamazilla
Bonus: nutrient-packed

Spinach & Rice Stew is a traditional greek dish called ‘spanakoruzo’ which literally means spinach and rice. It’s a vegan dish that mainly contains spinach, rice, onion, olive oil, and lemon juice.

This combination of rice and vegetables is not only delicious but also full of vitamins and nutrients.

Protein: 12g
Calories: 282 kcals
Ready in: 55 minutes
Recipe by: ThisHealthyKitchen
Bonus: low carb and still tasty

Hearty, rich and incredibly delicious veggie Bolognese sauce topped over a bed of spiralized vegan zucchini noodles for the ultimate, guilt-free comfort dish!

Protein: 4g
Calories: 150 kcals
Ready in: 20 minutes
Recipe by: TheVegConnection
Bonus: quick and tasty

This Vegetarian Yaki Udon recipe is a meatless version of a Japanese legend. Quick and easy to make yet full of nutritious ingredients, it’ll become your new favorite!

Protein: 12g
Calories: 346 kcals
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: MyPlantifulCooking
Bonus: bright, exciting and easy vegan curry recipe

This creamy and rich vegan Thai red curry with tofu is a great hearty dinner to have! Easy to make and ready in 45 minutes.

Protein: 8g
Calories: 287 kcals
Ready in: 25 minutes
Recipe by: FoolProofLiving
Bonus: perfect for weeknights

Recipe for Quinoa Black Bean Tacos with Avocado dressing. A quick, easy, and healthy vegan and gluten-free plant-based tacos made with quinoa filling.

Ready in 20 minutes, this simple taco recipe is guaranteed to be your favorite taco-Tuesday dinner.

Calories: 307 kcals
Ready in: 1 hour and 10 minutes
Recipe by: MelissaTraub
Bonus: cheesy but still vegan

Creamy and filled with flavor: you won’t miss the cheese! Perfect for guests, holidays, and meal prep. Serve with a delicious salad for a lovely meal.

Protein: 8g
Calories: 202 kcals
Ready in: 50 minutes
Recipe by: ItsNotComplicated
Bonus: savory and full of nutrients

Enjoy the vibrant flavors of Mushroom San Choy Bow. This is a great vegetarian version of a Chinese classic dish. The good news is, it will be enjoyable to both vegetarians and carnivores alike.

Salads

Bonus: bright and summery

This easy green bean salad is ready in a staggering three minutes. Not many lunches can beat that!

Bonus: dairy-free, egg-free, gluten-free

A beautifully crunchy salad with a mix of rocket leaves, dried fruits, pear, and walnuts set this salad above the competition. And it’s vegan too!

Bonus: highly nutritious and filling

This Moroccan salad contains a whopping SIX fruits and vegetables – eat this and you’re well on your way to ten a day!

Vegan Chickpea Winter Salad – Ready in 15 mins

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 17g

Calories: 398kcal

Ready in:15 minutes

Recipe by: Jansen & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: the salad the winter has been waiting for

An animal-friendly, fresh, and tangy winter salad with some serious health benefits. It’s fresh and new, but still prepped within 15 minutes – awesome!

Bonus: a dish that is super easy to prepare

Low Carb High Taste Zoodles. Italian-style spiralized zucchini noodles are ready in just 15 minutes, excellent for a quick lunch or dinner.

Bonus: extremely tasty – and quick too!

Colorful Tabbouleh Salad – bring Mediterranean flair to the table or into your lunch box! Ready in just 15 minutes, vegan, and super tasty!

Bonus: reinvigorate your barbecues with some proper potato salad!

Damn Delicious Vegan Potato Salad – take your BBQ to the next level without oil or mayo in this delicious animal-friendly classic.

Bonus: tangy and interesting

This tangy tempeh salad is just the best – quick, tasty, and packed with protein. And better yet – use whatever you have in the fridge!

Protein: 15g
Calories: 360 kcals
Ready in: 20 minutes
Recipe by: MyQuietKitchen
Bonus: oil-free, and gluten-free

The easy, healthy dinner you need at the end of a long day, this rice noodle salad comes together in just 20 minutes, with 1 pot and minimal chopping.

Rice noodles, carrots, edamame, and corn are tossed with a flavorful ginger-miso dressing.

Protein: 11g
Calories: 337 kcals
Ready in: 25 minutes
Recipe by: ChelseaDishes
Bonus: fresh and summery

This light but satisfying plant-based salad is brimming with fresh veggie flavor. It’s the perfect summer entree or side dish.

Protein: 16g
Calories: 282 kcals
Ready in: 26 minutes
Recipe by: ThisHealthyKitchen
Bonus: low cal and oil-free

This vegan Cobb salad features smoky “bacon” flavored mushrooms, sweet corn, rich avocado, juicy tomato, zesty onion, and a creamy dressing that’s to die for!

Protein: 23g
Calories: 293 kcals
Ready in: 15 minutes
Recipe by: PlantifulCooking
Bonus: low cal and oil-free

This hearty protein pasta salad with kidney beans and lettuce is low in calories, healthy and vegan! Paired with a creamy Italian dressing, this recipe only requires a handful of simple ingredients and is ready in 15 minutes.

Protein: 11g
Calories: 305 kcals
Ready in: 40 minutes
Recipe by: TheDevilWearsSalad
Bonus: something you’ve never tried before

Imagine infusing a vegan cauliflower steak with some of the most aromatic spices found in curry powder. Then imagine the smells in the kitchen as they roast themselves into delectable pieces of joy. What a salad!

Soups

Bonus: bright and summery

Irresistible Pea and Mint Soup, the classic British dish that’s fresh, light, and with the promise of summer yet to come!

Bonus: totally different

The original white gazpacho soup hits all the right boxes – it’s cold and fresh with the perfect balance of sweet vs sour. It’s vegan-friendly too.

Bonus: all the protein you need

Follow our fool-proof simple cooking steps for the perfect coconut curry lentil soup. Packed with protein, fiber, and a high-summer taste!

Bonus: high protein soup, right here!

If you’re looking for a filling and healthy lunch that is also bringing the taste of Marrakech, then look no further than our Moroccan-spiced vegan cauliflower soup.

Bonus: ready in 20 mins!

This speedy and roasted creamy corn soup is here to show the world just how much vegan food rocks. Why should vegans have all the fun?!

Melon and Coconut Soup

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 1.2g

Calories: 191kcal

Ready in:10 minutes

Recipe by: Cris & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: super easy and super delicious

It’s sweet, it’s cold, and it’s the ultimate fusion of melon and coconut. Ready in just ten minutes, this is the winning summer vegan appetizer.

Pimped Vegan Tomato Soup

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 14g

Calories: 407kcal

Ready in:45 minutes

Recipe by: Timo & HurryTheFoodUp

Bonus: say bye to your boring old tomato soup recipes!

Show the competition why there’s only one winner with this creamy vegan and vegetarian tomato soup. No dairy, just awesome.

Bonus: full-on flavor!

This is not some bland version of a traditional potato soup, but a full-blown delicious recreation built from scratch – all vegan of course!

Bonus: one of the best things to eat in the summer months

Easy Curried Butternut Squash and Coconut Soup. A delicious blend of coconut sweetness and curried squash make this an absolute fall treat.

Protein: 6 g
Calories: 188 kcals
Ready in: 55 minutes
Recipe by: HomeCookedRoots
Bonus: cozy and comforting

This vegan tomato soup is perfect for fall! It’s creamy from the coconut milk and cauliflower, slightly cheesy, and the perfect comforting soup on cooler nights. Pairing with crispy garlic herb bread is a must. Have this on the table in less than an hour.

Protein: 4g
Calories: 153 kcals
Ready in: 30 minutes
Recipe by: NoSweatVegan
Bonus: smooth and creamy

This Vegan Leek & Potato Soup is velvety, smooth, and satisfying. It’s made with simple ingredients and gets its vibrant green color from the secret ingredient: leek greens!

Perfect for an entrée soup, side, or starter. In warm months, serve it cold for a refreshing Vegan Vichyssoise.

Calories: 96 kcals
Ready in: 45 minutes
Recipe by: JarOfLemons
Bonus: warm and packed with veggies

Ramen is a super easy go-to dinner that also happens to be conveniently low in price. Today, we’re going with a healthier version: Vegan Ramen Soup w/ Zucchini Noodles!

Snacks

Smashed Cucumber and Edamame (vegan protein snack)

Check out the recipe here

 

Protein: 11g

Calories: 146kcal

Ready in:10 minutes

Bonus: top of the healthy snack list

This nutritious smashed cucumber and edamame vegan protein snack is a great recipe to have in your repertoire. Make it in super quick time to eat at home or grab it on the go!

Bonus: the best way to use up overripe bananas

Love banana bread, but want to make it vegan? Our vegan banana bread recipe is simply made with store-cupboard staples.

Bonus: super speedy bakes

These irresistible vegan banana muffins with sweet apple chunks are the real deal – they taste awesome and are on the totally well-behaved end of the healthy spectrum.

Desserts

Bonus: gluten-free, dairy-free, and totally vegan-friendly

Looking for a pudding with tropical vibes? Try this creamy coconut rice pudding with pineapple chunks. It’s vegan too!

Bonus: only has 4 natural ingredients

You just can’t beat this soft, sweet fruit, topped with delicious cinnamon and crunchy walnuts. Drop a dollop of creamy yogurt on top, drizzle on some syrup and you’ve got the perfect dessert.

Bonus: decadent dessert FTW!

Smooth and Creamy Chocolate Avocado Mousse – the truly healthy dessert that ticks all the right boxes. It’s vegan too, but you wouldn’t know it!

Low-Cal Questions

Does low-calorie mean healthy?

In a word, no. “Healthy”, “low calorie” etc are words that are loaded with intent but their meaning gets lost in the noise.

It is possible to eat healthy without eating low-calorie meals and it is entirely possible to eat low-calorie meals that are far from healthy.

Is vegan food healthy?

Again, no. There are processed and junk foods that tick the vegan box. So, we cannot automatically conclude that vegan food is healthy. But there are plenty of healthy vegan foods out there.

If you are looking for a vegan meal plan to help support your weight loss efforts, get in touch with us and we will show you how.

Can I hit my macro goals on a vegan, low-calorie diet?

Most definitely. It may not be as straightforward as a meat-forward diet, but it is entirely possible to hit your macronutrient goals on a low-calorie vegan diet. Yes, you need to be creative about it but hey, that’s what we are here for!

At hurrythefoodup.com, we have plenty of recipes in our low-calorie breakfast and dinner compilations available to give you loads of inspiration.

I hope I have put your mind at ease and given you plenty of food for thought (heh!) regarding vegan low-calorie meals. Take these recipes for a test drive and tell me how you fared!

 

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