Growing up, you probably never imagined you’d think of a sandwich filled with vegetables and start salivating, but that’s mostly because you didn’t know about these recipes. Stuffed with flavorful sauces, spreads, and a whole new world of vegetarian-friendly fillings, they’re a far cry from the sad desk salads that normally divide a workday. Several of them are made up of components you can meal-prep the night before for speedy day-of assembly, and there are spicy wraps for the days when you need something to grab and go. Or for the mornings when you have a bit more time to indulge, try one of the grilled options for a fix of wonderfully melt-y cheese. They’re all proof that you don’t need meat for a filling lunch.
Fun fact: Shiitake, button, and portobello mushrooms mixed with caramelized onions creates a very similar texture to pulled pork, according to Crowded Kitchen. Simply use a spoon to remove the dark inner gills, slice the mushrooms into quarters, and lightly shred them with a fork. Finish off the bun with spicy vegan mayo.
Food Faith Fitness blogger Taylor Kiser’s twist on traditional peanut butter and jelly is packed with plant-based protein and offers a nod to spring with canned blackberries. Total time to prep and make: 10 minutes.
Salt and Wind founder Aida Mollenkamp claims that her ideal deli sandwich has a good deal of crunch to it, and this combination of multigrain bread, sprouts, and watermelon radish does indeed. The extra 20-minute step of baking the sweet potatoes until chip-like is definitely worth the wait.
Not only is beet hummus a welcome change from the traditional spread, but the bright magenta flavor makes it visually interesting. Aesthetics aside, it’s the perfect base for this homemade falafel sandwich recipe. Make extra falafel ahead and freeze, so you always have some on hand for a last-minute meal.
Anything with “cheese” in the recipe title is good by our standards. Grilled veggies make this sandwich especially great for summer months when the produce is in season. Topped with sundried tomato pesto and layered between crusty bread, the vegetables taste even better.
For the days when you need a bit more protein, turn to tofu. Here, it’s been marinated into submission so it’s packed with flavor and a far cry from the bland soybean concoction that’s gotten such a bad rap. Layered in with all the traditional ingredients and spices of a banh mi, it makes for one of the best vegetarian sandwich recipes we’ve ever tasted.
Yes, a burger qualifies as a sandwich. An herb-filled lemony radish slaw provides just enough zing to brighten up the burger and make it feel like less of an indulgence. You can adjust this recipe to make it gluten-free, too—just follow the steps for an even lighter meal.
For those who eat with their eyes—or at least, their Instagram—this is the sandwich for you. As flavorful as it is colorful, this healthy meal is pretty much the most enticing way to eat vegetables we’ve ever seen.
Aspiring Ina Gartens, pay attention. With the caramelized squash and sharp cheese perfectly balancing each other out, this toasty sandwich is one comfort food you’ll want to make year-round.
We’ll eat anything that has jalapeños listed as an ingredient, and the same goes for pesto, so there’s really no world in which we wouldn’t devour this sandwich.
Consider it the healthier version of a greasy breakfast sandwich. The addition of all those greens totally counteracts the gooey cheese in this recipe (right?).
This caprese sandwich has the one thing salad is missing: bread. Make some delicious homemade pesto (or save time and buy it) and slather it on a croissant for a flavorful lunch.
Yep, this one is comprised of almost every vegetable you could think of to put on a sandwich: lettuce, carrots, cucumbers, cabbage, avocado, sprouts, tomatoes, and onions. Dream team.
Does it get any better than this topping combo? Fresh mozzarella, avocado, and a special sauce (plus some other yummy vegetables). If you’re new to veggie sandwiches, this is the one to try first.
Isn’t pickling your vegetables fun? Or at the very least, isn’t eating them fun? If you agree, you’ll love this recipe.
Any sandwich that involves melted cheese is a must-try—this one included. The roasted veggies and spices add flavor to what is basically the sandwich version of a vegetarian quesadilla.
The key ingredient in this grilled veggie sandwich is obviously the tomato jam. If you haven’t tried a savory jam yet, move this recipe to the top of your list.
It’s like a salad, but with bread. Look closely and you’ll see a homemade lemon-basil aioli, which definitely makes this sandwich a winner.
This sandwich is kind of like avocado toast but with smashed beans added into the mix, which means more protein and flavor.
A good way to ease into veggie sandwiches is by getting well acquainted with the basics, like this straightforward veggie and hummus sandwich. All you have to do is spread on some hummus (to both pieces of bread, of course) and layer on your favorite vegetables. Easy.
Wraps also fall into the sandwich category. If you’re not already obsessed with eating buffalo veggies—instead of the usual wings—add some chickpeas to your grocery list and give it a try.
Do we even need to convince you? This recipe has all the flavor (hello, green aioli) and none of the meat.
Two spreads, five vegetables, and we’re sold. This sandwich involves a bit of prep (you have to pickle a few veggies), but it’s worth the extra effort.
This Mediterranean-esque sandwich has it all. Eggplant, garlic aioli, feta, and more.
Just so you know, naan-wiches definitely count as sandwiches. Pick up or make your own naan and falafel, roast your favorite veggies, and get familiar with this recipe’s Magic Green Sauce.
This sandwich is drool-worthy. Why? The mix of textures and flavors (plus the very little prep time involved) is enough to inspire us to lick our screens.
An alternative to the simple hummus veggie sandwich is the hummus veggie wrap. Vary the vegetables for a different taste or wrap up your faves and keep living the dream.
Cue a collective gasp. This pita is stuffed with veggie goodness, including muhammara, a Middle Eastern red pepper and walnut spread.
This story was originally published in August 2016. It has been updated in December 2019.
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