Vegan sandwich fillings: Plant-based delights to put between your bread

When the new term started last month, I had a plan to dream up loads of vegan, student-friendly recipes, for any vegans going to university for the first time, or anyone that's turned vegan since starting their degree. (FWIW, there are at least two other vegans in my year on my course, which pleases me no end.)

Only, that didn't happen. Instead of spending time in my kitchen creating simple recipes, I was in the library, or the lab, trying to shove facts into my uncooperative brain. The best food I could manage to make in those first few weeks was sandwiches. 

Given that lunch is the highlight of most of my days, I wanted to make sure I had a decent sandwich to look forward to when I ran out of the lecture hall. But after too many years of hummus and roasted vegetables, or avocado and salad, I couldn't say I was exactly looking forward to weeks of sandwiches. 

After a while, I found myself googling 'vegan sandwich fillings'. Then I thought, if I'm googling this,  there may be other vegans with bread-based dilemmas? So, fellow vegan and vegetarian travellers, may I present a quick rundown of the sandwiches that have got me through the first few weeks of my new school year. 

Nut cheese and beetroot

Doesn't the colour of that golden beetroot look gorgeous? Open up your lunchbox, and there's a little bit of sunshine in there for you. And some nut cheese. Because everything is better with nut cheese, even a half-hour lunch break before a two-hour lecture on diarrhoea. Yep, really.

Corn fritters and salsa

Kari at Bite-sized Thoughts, among others, has awakened me to the growing numbers of readymade vegan sandwiches available of late, and their weird tendency to have some sort of fritter as a filling. I didn't want to be left out of this strange trend, so I made myself some corn fritters. If you make them in a toasted sandwich maker, they're the perfect size for your sanger. Also, add a bit of rice flour to the batter for extra crispness. 

Beetroot, apple, celery

Beetroot can do no wrong in my eyes when it comes to sitting in bread. Beetroot, celery, apple, bit of yoghurt, and enough walnuts to keep a scurry of squirrels sated all winter (I did have to Google the collective noun for squirrels there. Every day really is a school day, thanks to vegan sandwich fillings.) Apart from the fact this sarnie filling gave me a chance to learn about squirrels, it's also purple, and who doesn't relish the opportunity to eat more purple?

Coronation tofu

I say coronation tofu, but it could be the 'nada egg' filling recipe from Crazy, Sexy Kitchen, which has been a staple in my sandwich rotation for many years, and I still love it. If you haven't made it yet yourself, go down the library, get yourself a copy, then be prepare to find a sandwich filling you like more than some of your relatives.

Sausage and onion chutney

I reckon each and every vegan has their favourite brand of sausages, and mine's Linda McCartney: not only are they rich and juicy to the taste, there's no unnecessary plastic packaging - hooray! I grant you, they look weirdly anaemic, but don't blame Linda for the sins of your humble cook. The onion chutney here is provided by Mr Flicking the Vs' mum. Not sure if she's got a supermarket distribution deal yet, so you'll find an alternative chutney til her plans for world pickle domination come to fruition.

Tofu salad

I've mentioned my burgeoning love of Tofoo before, and it's given me no reason to doubt my affections since then. Get your bit of oh-so-thinly sliced smoked Tofoo, dab it in a bit of potato starch, and fry into wonderous crispiness. Serve with your salad of choice, if you manage to stop yourself eating it all out of the pan.

Tofu slaw

And if you've managed not to eat all that crispy tofu, then you might as well go buy a lottery ticket because you're already a winner. I swapped out the salad for homemade coleslaw, which I've previously filed away in my head as 'things that never turn out as good as the shop-bought versions'. Having upped my coleslaw game by making a shedload of it repeatedly, I've now refiled it under 'things that should be given away for free on the NHS, because they're that good for your mental health'.

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  1. I love these ideas! I need to up my sandwich game!

  2. Sausage and chutney is an old favourite of mine! I also like to make thin n' crispy tofu, with smoked paprika, and have a TLT :)

  3. Great sandwich filling ideas, and not just for students but really anyone who's short on time at lunchtime. I especially like the triangle shaped corn fritters. :-)

  4. All very very good and very tempting, but Joey - You can't just share the visuals with us and not the recipes, please pretty please, can you please share the Sweetcorn fritters at least.

  5. Thanks for the mention Joey! Your fritters look a million times better than the commercial ones, as indeed do all your sandwiches :-) What a great round up of delicious ideas - thank you.

  6. You do know your way around a sandwich, and anyone would be blessed to open a lunchbox and find one of these. I would have to give myself a little pep talk before biting into one of the beetroot beauties, though I would bite in. I don't know why I have a thing against beets. When we were in Australia, and everything had grated beetroot on top, I liked it fine, but I've reverted to my old cautious ways. Tsk.

  7. Those sweetcorn fritters look great! I'm really intrigued by the idea of making them in a toasted sandwich maker!


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