There is no denying that Italian cuisine is some of the best in the world. Italy is well known all around the world for producing delicious food, and some of their dishes have become staples in countries outside of Italy too. 

When a lot of people think of Italy, they think of pasta and pizza, but this isn’t the case. But there are many delicious dishes that Italy offers that do not consist of either of these things. In particular, Italy has an outstanding reputation for producing delicious vegetarian dishes. 

In this guide, we’ll be taking a look at 15 awesome vegetarian Italian dishes that you simply have to try. Keep in mind that some of these aren’t necessarily “traditional” dishes, but are adapted versions that conform to a vegetarian diet.

Margherita Pizza

First up, we have the Italian staple that is the margherita pizza. This cheese and tomato pizza is popular all over the world, and in all honesty, it is a pizza that simply cannot be beaten. Prefect in its simplicity.

Store-bought pizza is great, but there is truly something special about pizza that you have made yourself. Plus, making pizza is actually pretty good fun.

So, if you want to try to make a homemade version of perhaps the best Italian dish ever created, check out this margherita pizza recipe. 

Tomato And Burrata Tagliatelle

Next up, we would recommend giving this Tomato and Burrata Tagliatelle recipe a whirl. Tagliatelle is easily one of the best styles of pasta to exist, and this recipe is absolutely delectable. 

The creaminess of the burrata mixed with the tang of the tomatoes creates a totally unique flavor and taste experience.

This recipe suggests that you use store-bought tagliatelle, and this is great for a quick evening meal. But if you really want to go out, you could even try making your own tagliatelle to add to the dish. 

Penne All’Arrabbiata

Cooking from scratch doesn’t have to take as long as you might think, and this penne all’arrabbiata is a testament to that. To make this recipe, all you need is a handful of ingredients and 25 minutes of your time.

That is why it is the perfect option to make after a busy day. 

Penne is a great type of pasta, and it is one of the most widely used outside of Italy. The simplicity of this pasta is what makes it so delicious, and this all’arrabbiata recipe will keep you coming back for more.

Simple doesn’t need to mean boring, and this recipe enforces that. 

Italian Wedding Soup

Although its name suggests it, Italian wedding soup isn’t actually served at Italian weddings. But, it does have the delicious taste experience that you would expect of a soup that is served at weddings. 

Traditionally, Italian wedding soup contains meat, so it isn’t suitable for vegetarians. However, this vegan recipe is just as delicious as the traditional dish, without having to include meat in its recipe.

So, if you love Italian wedding soup, but want a vegetarian version, this is the recipe for you.

Four Cheese Stuffed Shell

Italian cuisine and cheese often go hand in hand with one another. Many people all over the world love cheese, and this is a big part of what has made Italian food so popular.

If you love Italian food and cheese, this is the recipe for you!

To create this dish, giant pasta shells are stuffed with four different cheeses. These cheeses include Parmesan, Mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano and Pecorino Romano (you can often purchase the last 3 cheeses together in an Italian cheese blend).

The combination of pasta, cheese, and the other ingredients create a unique taste experience, and the perfect Italian dish for any cheese lover. 

Roast Mushroom Ragù With Pappardelle

This recipe might come from an Australian recipe, but the flavor behind it could never be anything other than Italian. This recipe has a long list of ingredients, and it is rather time consuming to make, but it is totally worth it.

Mushrooms rarely get the credit that they deserve, but in this recipe, they are front and center. That is what makes it such a delicious dish. The ragù in this recipe is so flavorful, and the mushrooms taste so good.

Like we say, it is a time consuming recipe, but it is one that you have to try to truly appreciate it. 



If you want a vegetarian Italian recipe that is suitable as a snack, rather than a full blown meal, then look no further than crostini. 

Crostini is an Italian appetizer of crusty bread that is topped with a variety of different tasty toppings. This Betty Crocker crostini recipe focuses on celebrating 3 of the most popular ingredients in Italian cuisine: tomatoes, mozzarella and basil.

These 3 ingredients are often used together in Italian cuisine, and because of that there is something comforting about this flavor combination. Plus it is vegetarian-friendly too. 

Eggplant Rollatini

We’ve already looked at one recipe that focuses on eggplant as its main ingredient, and here’s another delicious recipe that does the exact same thing. 

Eggplant rollatini is a healthy eggplant option, but this healthiness doesn’t make the dish boring.

This baked eggplant recipe is full of flavor with a number of different cheeses combined with a variety of seasonings to create this taste experience.

It is authentically Italian, and a great option for any vegetarians looking for something different. 

Roasted Puttanesca Sauce With Polenta

This Italian dish is simply divine, and it is so easy to see why. This recipe does include anchovies in the recipe, but all you need to do is leave this out to make it vegetarian friendly. 

It is fairly straightforward to make, and a great option to cook for your family or for a dinner party. It does serve quite a few people, but you can easily halve the ingredients if you only want to serve one or two people. 

Garlic Rosemary Herb Focaccia

Next up, we have this garlic rosemary herb focaccia. This dish can be served as a side to a pasta or pizza dish. Likewise, it would make a delicious snack, if you just fancy something quick and easy. 

The flavors of the garlic and rosemary combine perfectly together, and you can taste them all the way through the focaccia that this recipe makes.

It is a showcase of some of the best ingredients used in Italian cuisine, and definitely one to try if you are vegetarian.

Pepper Ricotta Primavera

Alternatively, you could try making this pepper ricotta primavera. With a total prep time of just 20 minutes, it is easy to see why this Italian dish is so popular. Not only is it quick to make, but it is easy to prepare too. 

The list of ingredients in this recipe is fairly long, but your meal will be ready to eat in just a few steps. It is the perfect option for a quick evening meal, and easy to throw together when you are in a rush. 

Pickled Eggplant

Our final eggplant recipe on this list is Pickled Eggplant. For many, this dish might seem a little weird, but it is well loved across Italy, and once you taste it, you will understand why.

Pickled eggplant isn’t something that you can prepare and enjoy immediately, so you will need to plan a little in advance. However, it will be ready in just a day, so you don’t need to wait too long to taste this Italian treat. 

Broccoli And Ricotta Conchiglioni

If you want an entire Italian meal that is vegetarian-friendly, and easy to make, then this broccoli and ricotta conchiglioni is perfect. There are 12 ingredients required for this dish, and the steps are straightforward to follow. 

This recipe is designed to serve 4, but the ingredients can easily be halved or doubled to suit a smaller or larger group of people.

Whether you want to prepare this for yourself, or cook it for a dinner party with friends, it will go down a treat.

Potato Gnocchi

Finally, we couldn’t make this list without including gnocchi. Potato gnocchi is an Italian dish that has become popular all over the world, but it is one that very few make themselves as it is perceived to be difficult. 

However, this recipe is anything but. The process required to prepare this recipe is simple, and the end result is out of this world. It is definitely one to try if you are a vegetarian who loves gnocchi. 

Summary of Vegetarian Italian Recipes

So, there you have it, 15 awesome vegetarian Italian recipes that you have to try! Why not save this article so that you can check back in the future and try out a new recipe? 

Rick Zullo

Former doctor, current science teacher, and life-long food lover, Rick's passion for Mediterranean cuisine was ignited while living as an expat in Rome, Italy. 


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