Meatless Monday: 7 Vegetarian Recipes for Early Fall

Perk up your week with delicious dishes from Washington chefs.

Tico's roasted beets with harissa-spiked yogurt is one of our favorite dishes for fall. Photograph by Jeff Elkins

While peak tomatoes have moved on from markets, none of these recipes will make you rue their passing. Early autumn is one of the best times for meatless cooking, with an abundance of eggplant, cauliflower, young beets, and more—and mac and cheese is always in season.

Roasted beets with spicy yogurt and pistachios from Tico

One of our favorite new dishes comes courtesy of chef Michael Schlow, and is perfect for fall: roasted beets tossed with sherry and a touch of honey, finished with harissa-spiked yogurt and tangy caper vinaigrette. Make it an appetizer, a side, or a light main.

Kimchee-style slaw from Takorean

The tofu tacos at Takorean are some of the best street eats in Washington. Replicate the dish at home with a tofu filling of your choosing and this spicy, quick-pickled cabbage slaw. If “takos” aren’t your thing, try the tofu atop an Asian vegetarian rice bowl.

Curried lentil stew with eggs and spinach from Againn

This Irish-inspired restaurant may have closed, but we’re still fond of its hearty, meatless main: slow-cooked lentil stew topped with spinach and soft-cooked eggs.

Pimiento cheese from Gypsy Soul

Not all veggie dishes have to be holier-than-thou-healthy. Take this crowd-pleasing dip from chef RJ Cooper, which makes a decadent (but easy to make) starter or spread.

Crispy cauliflower with lemony tahini from Proof

Chef Haidar Karoum drew from his Lebanese father’s recipe for this dish. The cauliflower can be oven-roasted instead of fried for a healthier take.

Eggplant caponata from Cava Mezze

This is the kind of dish you can make on Monday and use over the next couple of days to toss into pasta, perk up sandwiches, and take to work for a healthy lunch.

Macaroni and cheese from Vidalia

We’ve encountered many mac and cheese varieties since procuring this classic Vidalia recipe, but it’s still one of best we’ve found (not to mention decadently rich). Substitute sharp white cheddar and fresh goat cheese for a more easily sourced formula.

Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.