10 Hearty Vegan Slow Cooker Recipes

updated Jan 21, 2020
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

Slow cookers are the ultimate tool for making quick, hearty dinners without putting in a ton of effort. You just throw everything into the slow cooker, let it cook during the day, and come home to a comforting dinner ready to be enjoyed. But finding quality slow cooker recipes that don’t call for meat or dairy can be challenging.

From gingery tofu soup to hearty slow cooker ratatouille, here are 10 of our favorite slow cooker recipes are also vegan.

1. Slow Cooker Vegetarian Black Bean Soup

This recipe ditches the typical canned black beans and uses dried ones instead. This gives the soup a better texture and flavor — and the long cooking time means that you don’t have to soak them. You just add them straight to the slow cooker along with all of the other ingredients, let them cook all day long, and they turn out perfectly tender. Top this soup with your favorite garnishes such as cilantro, red onions, and avocado and dinner is done.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

2. Curried Vegetable and Chickpea Stew

This flavorful stew is great on its own and even better when served over cooked rice or quinoa. It’s made with a slew of hearty vegetables, including cauliflower, potatoes, and bell peppers, and gets a bright hit of flavor from coconut milk and curry powder. The recipe makes a fairly large batch, so store any leftovers in zip-top bags in the freezer.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

3. Gingery Tofu Slow Cooker Soup

This recipe starts by building a flavorful broth made from dried mushrooms, ginger, and turmeric. Moments before serving, bok choy, soba noodles, and tofu are added to bulk it up and transform the broth into a warming meal. Serve with fresh lemon wedges for the ultimate comforting soup.

Credit: Diana Yen

4. Slow Cooker Ratatouille

Ratatouille is a classic French vegetable stew typically made with eggplant, onion, zucchini, potatoes, and tomatoes. This slow cooker version is everything you love about the classic, only simplified into a quick weeknight version made in the slow cooker. Serve it alongside bread, cooked grains, or a fresh salad.

Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Ratatouille

Credit: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Pearl Jones

5. Slow Cooker Vegan Chili with Sweet Potatoes, Lentils, and Kale

Sweet potatoes, kale, and lentils make this chili super-hearty. It’s substantial enough to serve all by itself, but is excellent topped with fresh cilantro, sliced onions, and a dollop of coconut milk. It’s a great recipe to prep on Sunday and enjoy throughout the week.

Credit: Guy Ambrosino

6. Vegan Slow Cooker Chickpea Tikka Masala

This vegan version of a take-out classic is everything you love about chicken tikka masala — but it’s meat- and dairy-free. Cream and yogurt get replaced with coconut milk, and chickpeas stand in for chicken. It’s just as delicious as the original and perfect for serving alongside cooked rice or flatbread.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

7. Peanut Tofu

Extra-firm tofu and a jar of store-bought peanut sauce (such as Whole Foods 365 brand or San-J) is all it takes to make this protein-packed dinner. Just throw tofu into the slow cooker, cover with peanut sauce, and let it cook while you’re at work. It’s delicious served on top of cooked rice noodles or rice.

Get the recipe: Peanut Tofu

Credit: Joe Lingeman

8. Slow Cooker Vegetarian Chili

Poblano peppers, oregano, coriander, and a splash of apple cider vinegar give this slow cooker chili a ton of flavor. A bag of frozen corn kernels gets added right at the last minute to preserve their freshness and give the chili a pop of sweetness that perfectly balances the subtle heat of the rich tomato broth.

9. Slow Cooker Coconut Lentil Curry

If you’re unfamiliar with cooking with lentils, this recipe is the perfect place to start. It pairs the underrated legume with creamy coconut milk and warming garam masala (a bold spice blend that can be found in the international section of most grocery stores). The result? A simple weeknight dinner that’s bursting with flavor.

Credit: Joe Lingeman

10. Slow Cooker Veggie Burrito Bowls

Who doesn’t love build-your-own-burrito night? Serve this hearty veggie burrito filling with warm tortillas, sliced avocado, and fresh salsa for a hands-on dinner that’s sure to please everyone.