Vegan Passover Recipes You'll Love

Eric Ginsburg

It's easier than you think to be vegan and enjoy the Jewish holiday of Passover!

There's nothing more frustrating than going to a holiday meal and discovering there isn't anything you can eat. These vegan Passover recipes can help your guests avoid that experience!

Okay, there may be a few things more frustrating, but it's certainly not ideal. As a kid, I spent years as a vegetarian struggling to find something to eat at restaurants or gatherings I'd been dragged to, and while there's broader acceptance, understanding, and accommodation of vegetarians now, people who eat a vegan diet likely run into this issue regularly. 

Vegan Passover Recipes You'll Love Photo

And that may be particularly pronounced at family gatherings. I don't know about you, but it would be sacreligious for me to suggest my grandmother make something differently — especially around a holiday! — or for me to show up with a dish in hand. Doesn't matter the reason!

Holidays are often steeped in tradition. And nostalgia. And sometimes, rigidity. But Passover, or Pesach, is supposed to be a time of celebration and reflection. Many of us symbolically welcome in the stranger by opening our door and leaving out a cup for Elijah. And it's common to recite from the Haggadah: "Let all who are hungry, come and eat."

I'd argue that means everyone at your seder should be able to participate in the experience and enjoy the meal, regardless of their dietary restrictions, preferences, or needs!

If you're an inclusive host who either wants to accommodate a vegan during Passover or if you're hosting an entirely meatless and vegan Pesach seder, these recipes and tips will help you get started. And the good news is you don't need to be vegan to enjoy any of these dishes!

Creating a Vegan Seder Plate

If you want to make the entire holiday experience vegan, you could also replace the shank bone (or zeroa) and the hard-boiled egg (or beitzah) on your seder plate. Both are core parts of what are traditionally featured, but people have also been modifying and adding to the symbolic foods forever.

Some people recommend using a beet and a cooked potato as your vegan seder plate substitutions! Sounds great to us.

The matzo, bitter herbs, and karpas (vegetables) are all vegan already. As noted below, it's pretty easy to make a delicious vegan charoset (also spelled haroset)!

I don't know about your family, but we typically eat a bunch of charoset in addition to displaying it on the seder plate, so that one's particularly important to think about. As a kid, I used to love dipping the parsley in salt water, but obviously that's vegan already.

Passover Appetizers Photo

Additional Passover Ideas

Below are three great options to get you started. But if you want to take things a step further, most of these Passover appetizers are super easy to make vegan!

For example, the charoset — a staple on any seder plate — is vegan if you remove the honey (or substitute maple syrup). And the matzo nachos and matzo granola are written with details on how to make them vegan!

Use vegan cheese and suddenly the matzo flatbread with olives and onions is dairy-free as well.

We also recommend these gluten-free flourless tahini Passover brownies! The recipe calls for butter but you could experiment with a substitute. 

(Note: People spell it matzo, matzoh, matza, and matzah. It's all referrring to the same thing. "Matzo" is most common in the United States, but they're interchangeable.)

3 Vegan Passover Recipes to Try This Year

If you're ready to try some new vegan recipes this Passover, start here:

Courtesy Vegan Matzo Pizza Photo

1. Matzo Pizzas

Our friends at World of Vegan have three different topping ideas for vegan matzah pizzas, so this list is actually longer than it looks! One is for taco pizza, which we know from experience is a hit with readers.

But we suggest starting with the veggie matzo pizza option, because it requires fewer meat or dairy alternatives, and the combo of mushrooms, pepper, olives, red onion, and basil is a sure hit.

Courtesy Vegan Chopped Liver Photo

2. Mock Chopped Liver

Often called "Jewish pâté," chopped liver has long been associated with Ashkenazi and Jewish food traditions. It's a less obvious candidate for veganization, which is part of why we love this recipe from The Vegan Atlas.

It relies mostly on mushrooms and cashews, which sounds delicious enough on its own. Add in the onion, lemon juice, paprika and other minor elements and suddenly you have a masterpiece on your hands!

There is no reason you can't enjoy this year-round; unlike the matzo-based recipes, there's nothing about this that screams "Passover," but we love that it's filling and can work as an appetizer, side, or entree. Plus, we're pretty sure you're going to scoop it up with... you guessed it... matzo.

Courtesy Duke of Cambridge Matzo Cake Photo

3. Duke of Cambridge Matzo Cake

Passover is all about the unleavened ingredients, which can make desserts particularly tricky. This no-bake chocolate matzah inspired by Duke of Cambridge Cake — which creator Family Friends Food describes as a "British teatime classic that's fit for a prince" — is quick, easy, and bound to become an iconic family tradition you pull out for the holiday every year.

Plus, chocolate has a way of making people forget what they're eating is vegan, which is particularly helpful if some of your guests are a little grumpy about accommodating vegan dishes. There will be no kvetching about this one!

Courtesy Easy Charoset Photo

If you're looking for more vegan Jewish recipes, we recommend The Nosher's free Jewish Vegan Cookbook. Plus, we also have a vegan Passover herbed horseradish salad recipe you should try!

And while it wouldn't be appropriate for Passover (since it's considered "chametz") you'll enjoy this vegan challah recipe at other times of the year — like next Shabbat!

While you're at it, explore our collection of vegan recipes.

Eric Ginsburg is the Editor of Food Fanatic. He's served as an editor at three newspapers and written for a wide range of publications, including Bon Appétit, Serious Eats, Wine Enthusiast, Southern Living, and Eater Carolinas. He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina. Follow him on Instagram.

Tags: , , ,
Eric Ginsburg

About Eric

Eric Ginsburg is the Editor of Food Fanatic. He's served as an editor at three newspapers and written for a wide range of publications, including Bon Appétit, Serious Eats, Wine Enthusiast, Southern Living, and Eater Carolinas. He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina. Follow him on Instagram.