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VEGAN PAELLA

You definitely don’t need chicken or seafood to enjoy paella. This vegan paella with red bell pepper, artichokes, smoked tofu, zucchini, and olives is so delicious and super easy to make! It’s the perfect summer dinner.

It’s actually even healthier and lighter than traditional paella. And it’s packed with flavor and tastes so much like a vacation to Spain!

WHAT YOU NEED FOR THE VEGAN PAELLA: 

The ingredient list for the vegan paella might seem a bit long at first sight. However, you should be able to find most of the ingredients in a well-stored grocery store.

You need: 

  • bomba rice (alternatively you could also use arborio rice) 
  • smoked tofu
  • an onion
  • garlic
  • a red bell pepper
  • a zucchini 
  • white wine
  • paprika powder
  • saffron threads 
  • peas
  • black olives
  • sun-dried tomatoes in oil
  • artichoke hearts in oil
  • vegetable broth
  • fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper
  • red pepper flakes
  • fresh lemon juice
  • lemon wedges for serving 

As always, you can find the full ingredient list and the recipe instructions in a separate, printable recipe box at the end of this post. 

a red bell pepper, a zucchini, two lemons, artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and smoked tofu on a marble countertop

HOW TO MAKE VEGAN PAELLA 

As I said, the vegan paella recipe is pretty easy and straightforward. And while the rice is cooking, you don’t have to do much! 

a collage of four photos that show the preparation of vegan paella

STEP 1: Heat some oil in a large pan and fry the smoked tofu cubes over medium heat until brown and crispy on all sides. Put aside.

STEP 2: Heat some more oil in the same pan and sauté the onion and the garlic for about 2-3 minutes. Then add the red bell pepper and the zucchini and cook for another 3 minutes. Stir in the rice and cook about 2-3 more minutes.

STEP 3: Deglaze with white wine. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika powder. Dissolve the saffron in 2 tablespoons of warm water and add to the pealla.

a collage of four photos that show the preparation of vegan paella

STEP 4: Add the vegetable broth (I recommend starting with 3 cups) and cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender and has absorbed all the liquid. If necessary add more vegetable broth.

Vegan Paella in a black pan with a wooden spoon on a marble countertop

STEP 5: Once the rice is tender, stir in the cooked peas, the sun-dried tomatoes, the olives, the smoked tofu, and the artichokes. Cook for about 2 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and serve with lemon slices.

RECIPE NOTES: 

  • I used white wine in this recipe. So if you’re not consuming alcohol or if you’re making this vegan paella for kids, just sub the wine with some more vegetable broth. Also adjust the amount of red pepper flakes.
  • Make sure to pan-fry the smoked tofu cubes until they’re nicely browned and crispy. I love crispy tofu! 
  • The amount of vegetable broth can vary depending on the kind of rice and the heat you’re using. I therefore recommend starting with 3 cups and then adding more vegetable broth later if necessary. 
  • The vegan paella also tastes great on the next day. Its flavor even gets more intense. So if you’ve got leftovers, just bring them to lunch the next day. You could either heat up the paella on the stovetop again or just eat it cold. 
Vegan Paella in a black pan with a wooden spoon on a white and blue wooden countertop

WHAT IS THE BEST RICE FOR PAELLA? 

There are three kinds of rice that are commonly used for paella: senia, bahía, and bomba rice

The most popular kind of rice for paella is bomba rice because it’s very easy to prepare. So most hobby cooks decide to use bomba rice for their paella. 

Bomba rice absorbs the flavors really well and it does not stick together. Even with a longer cooking time, it doesn’t become mushy. So this means you can be a bit flexible when it comes to the cooking time. 

Real paella experts, however, mostly use senia or bahía rice for their paella. It absorbs the flavors of the broth and the other ingredients even better than bomba rice.

But you have to pay close attention to the cooking time of the rice and the liquid needed. 

In the U.S., Italian arborio rice is often used as a substitute for bomba because it’s easier to find. Arborio and bomba rice are quite different though. Arborio rice is often used for risotto.

But the paella recipe still works with arborio. Start by adding less vegetable broth and try to avoid stirring it as much as possible, so it doesn’t become too creamy. 

Vegan Paella with lemon wedges on a white plate with a black pan with more paella and two forks in the background

VEGAN PAELLA

Recipe by TGP TeamCourse: Recipes
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

27

minutes
Calories

507

kcal

This vegan paella with artichokes, smoked tofu, and sun-dried tomatoes feels like a vacation to spain! It’s packed with flavor and it’s perfect for summer!

Ingredients

  • 7 oz smoked tofu, cut into cubes

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped

  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into medium-sized chunks

  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into medium pieces

  • 1/2 cup white wine

  • 1 teaspoon paprika powder

  • salt, to taste

  • black pepper, to taste

  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads

  • 1 1/2 cups cooked peas

  • 10-15 black olives, cut into rings

  • about 8 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, cut into stripes

  • 1 can artichoke hearts, drained and roughly chopped

  • 1 1/2 cups bomba or arborio rice

  • 3-5 cups vegetable broth depending on what kind of rice you use, adjust if needed

  • red pepper flakes, to taste

  • 1 handfull fresh parsley, chopped

  • 1 lemon slices, to serve

Directions

  • Heat some oil in a large pan and fry the smoked tofu cubes over medium heat until brown and crispy on all sides. Put aside.
  • Heat some more oil in the same pan and sauté the onion and the garlic for about 2-3 minutes. Then add the red bell pepper and the zucchini and cook for another 3 minutes. Stir in the rice and cook about 2-3 more minutes.
  • Deglaze with white wine. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika powder. Dissolve the saffron in 2 tablespoons of warm water and add to the pealla.
  • Add the vegetable broth (I recommend starting with 3 cups) and cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender and has absorbed all the liquid. If necessary add more vegetable broth.
  • Once the rice is tender, stir in the cooked peas, the sun-dried tomatoes, the olives, the smoked tofu, and the artichokes. Cook for about 2 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with fresh parsley and serve with lemon slices.

Notes

  • I used white wine in this recipe. So if you’re not consuming alcohol or if you’re making this vegan paella for kids, just sub the wine with some more vegetable broth. Also adjust the amount of red pepper flakes.
  • Make sure to pan-fry the smoked tofu cubes until they’re nicely browned and crispy. I love crispy tofu! 
  • The amount of vegetable broth can vary depending on the kind of rice and the heat you’re using. I therefore recommend starting with 3 cups and then adding more vegetable broth later if necessary. 
  • The vegan paella also tastes great on the next day. Its flavor even gets more intense. So if you’ve got leftovers, just bring them to lunch the next day. You could either heat up the paella on the stovetop again or just eat it cold. 

This recipe was created by veganheaven read the full article here

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