Summer Vegetarian Mains

Meat-free entrées can be wonderfully satisfying

We’ve shared vegetarian summer appetizer recipes for taking advantage of the season’s bountiful produce. Don’t stop there—there’s no reason you need to bring in meat for your entree. We’ve rounded up vegetarian summer main course recipes that are as satisfying as any meat dish.

Summer is cookout season, which means hamburgers. Veggie burgers have a reputation for being bland and dry, but they don’t have to be. Vegetarians and carnivores alike will love our umami-rich portobello burger topped with blue cheese and sautéed red onions; our quinoa burger with carrot, celery, arugula, and beans; and our black bean burger made with cumin, paprika, coriander, and both poblano and chipotle chile and served with salsa fresca and an avocado crema.

At once hearty and refreshing, pasta salad is a perfect summer main. Our Greek pasta salad pairs rotini with crunch cucumber, juicy tomato and briny feta. Slightly bitter rapini gets balanced by tangy goat cheese in an orecchiette salad. Or go for an Asian twist by dressing Chinese egg noodles with peanut butter, sesame paste, and chile-garlic paste. Peanuts, cucumber, and carrots give the creamy dish a great crunch.

Hot pasta dishes can also showcase summer produce. Great heirloom tomatoes deserve the best treatment—make your own fettucine to toss with cherry tomatoes, basil, and olive oil. Baby artichokes become crisp-tender when simmered and grilled, and need little more than lemon juice and olive oil to make a wonderful spaghetti dish.

Find all of these recipes and more in our collection of vegetarian summer mains.

Pickled Stone Fruit and Burrata Flatbread

A light vegetarian lunch, or even savory summer dessert, the sugary pickling brine in this recipe helps the peaches and plums caramelize on the grill.

Tacos de Papa Hwy 99 (Potato Tacos)

Inspired by the potato tacos at Loncheria Otro Rollo in Bakersfield, CA, this versio is stuffed with fluffy mashed potatoes and pan-fried until crisp. The accompanying smoky ranchero sauce also would be great on meat or fish, or spooned over eggs. Get the recipe for Tacos de Papa Hwy 99 (Potato Tacos) »

Puy Lentil Salad (Sallad på Puylinser)

Puy Lentil Salad (Sallad på Puylinser)

Sesame Noodles

A garnish of chopped peanuts and slivered cucumber and carrot add crunch to the silky, savory Chinese-American noodle dish. Get the recipe for Sesame Noodles »

Six-Onion Pizza

Six-Onion Pizza

California Sandwich

A version of a California classic, this sandwich is a mix of vegetables, whole-grain bread, and Jack cheese, topped with ranch dressing.

Greek Pasta Salad

Tangy feta and crunchy veggies get extra body from rotini in this classic Greek-inspired pasta salad. Get the recipe for Greek Pasta Salad »

Sweet Pea Gnocchi

Sweet Pea Gnocchi

Brown Butter, Peas, and Mint Omelette

Brown Butter, Peas, and Mint Omelette

Herbed Tomato Tart

Made with ripe cherry tomatoes, fragrant herbs, and a buttery crust, this gorgeous, rustic tart is a showstopper.

Tagliatelle with Yogurt and Fried Onions (Rishta bi Laban wa Bassal)

Copious amounts of lightly caramelized onions are piled atop pasta and served with yogurt and herbs in this recipe inspired by Claudia Roden’s The New Book of Middle Eastern Food. Get the recipe for Tagliatelle with Yogurt and Fried Onions (Rishta bi Laban wa Bassal) »

Swiss Chard and Chipotle Tacos

Onions, mushrooms, sweet corn, and chiles in adobo add hearty, smoky flavor to this Swiss chard-based taco filling. Get the recipe for Swiss Chard and Chipotle Tacos »

Zucchini, Onion and Ricotta Pie (Torta Salata di Zucchine e Cipolle)

Squash, peppers, or eggplant can be substituted for the zucchini in this simple, savory summer pie. Get the recipe for Zucchini, Onion and Ricotta Pie (Torta Salata di Zucchine e Cipolle) »

Vegetable Ragout with Pesto (Ragout De Legumes Au Pistou)

Vegetable Ragout with Pesto (Ragout De Legumes Au Pistou)

Persian Zucchini Frittata (Kuku Kadoo)

Persian Zucchini Frittata (Kuku Kadoo)

Quinoa Veggie Burger with Roasted Red Pepper Relish

Quinoa Veggie Burger with Roasted Red Pepper Relish
These flavorful stuffed corn-masa cakes are the national dish of El Salvador. Get the recipe for Masa Cakes with Spicy Slaw (Pupusas con Curtido) »

Portobello Burger with Blue Cheese and Sauteed Red Onions

A far cry from the standard grilled-mushroom-cap-as-burger, these ultra-savory portobello patties get a further umami boost from garlic and steak sauce—a perfect match for a flavorful topping of melted blue cheese and tangy caramelized red onions.

Black Bean Burger with Salsa Fresca and Avocado Crema

Cumin, paprika, coriander, and both poblano and chipotle chiles lend their robust flavor to this earthy black bean burger.

Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese

Slightly bitter rapini (also known as broccoli rabe) marries well with tangy goat cheese in a pasta recipe that’s ideal for summer picnics and potlucks. Get the recipe for Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese »

Charred Eggplant with Chile Sauce & Tahini

Charring young eggplant over an open flame lends a smoky flavor to this dish from the Galilee. Get the recipe for Charred Eggplant with Chile Sauce & Tahini »

Pasta with Grilled Artichokes

Pasta with Grilled Artichokes

Walnut Pesto and Zucchini Pizza (Pizza Noci e Zucchini)

Creamy walnut sauce is paired with golden pan-fried zucchini and smoked mozzarella on this Neapolitan-style pizza.

Squash Blossom Pizza

This stunner of a pie features summer squash blossoms, creamy burrata, and a crisp, chewy crust.

Fettuccine with Heirloom Tomatoes

This homemade fettuccine is simply tossed with heirloom tomatoes and basil. Get the recipe for Fettuccine with Heirloom Tomatoes »