Vegan Wonder

Unlock the Power of Batch Cooking: Vegan Staples for Effortless Meal Assembly

If you’re new to vegan cooking or simply looking to streamline the process, batch cooking is your new best friend. By cooking certain vegan staples in large quantities and storing them for later use, you can save time, reduce stress, and enjoy delicious, nutritious meals with ease.

The Benefits of Batch Cooking Vegan Staples

Batch cooking offers several benefits for those on a vegan diet. Here are some of the most compelling reasons to give it a try:

Save Time

By cooking certain ingredients in large quantities and storing them for later use, you can significantly reduce the amount of time you spend cooking each day. Rather than starting from scratch for every meal, you can simply reheat or use pre-cooked ingredients to assemble a quick, nutritious meal.

Another time-saving benefit of batch cooking is that it eliminates the need to make last-minute decisions about what to cook. Instead, you can plan your meals in advance and have the ingredients on hand, ready to go.

Ensure Consistent Nutrition

Batch cooking is also an excellent way to ensure that you’re getting consistent, balanced nutrition in your meals. By cooking large quantities of vegan staples like whole grains, legumes, and vegetables, you can have these nutrient-dense foods on hand at all times. This makes it easier to assemble meals that are rich in fiber, protein, and other essential nutrients.

Reduce Food Waste

Batch cooking is also a great way to reduce food waste. By cooking more than you need for one meal and storing the leftovers, you can use up ingredients before they spoil. You’ll also minimize the amount of unused leftovers you have to throw away, as you’ll be able to use up all of the cooked ingredients in subsequent meals.

Vegan Staples to Batch Cook

Now that we’ve covered the benefits of batch cooking, let’s talk about which vegan staples are worth cooking in large quantities. Here are some of our favorites:

Whole Grains

  • Brown rice
  • Quinoa
  • Farro

Whole grains are a great base for many vegan meals, and they keep well in the refrigerator or freezer. Cook up a large batch of one or more of these grains and store them for easy use in grain bowls, Buddha bowls, salads, wraps, and more.


  • Chickpeas
  • Lentils
  • Black beans

Legumes are a staple in many vegan diets, and they’re also great for batch cooking. Cook up a large batch of one or more types of legumes and store them in the refrigerator or freezer for easy use in soups, stews, salads, bowls, and more.

Roasted Vegetables

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower

Roasting vegetables in large quantities is another great way to save time and reduce stress in the kitchen. Choose sturdy vegetables like sweet potatoes, broccoli, and cauliflower, and roast them in large batches. Store them in the refrigerator or freezer and use them to add flavor and texture to bowls, salads, sandwiches, and more.

Sauces and Dressings

  • Pesto
  • Tahini dressing
  • Cashew-based cheese sauce

Cooking sauces and dressings in large batches is another great way to save time in the kitchen. Choose sauces and dressings that you use frequently, like pesto, tahini dressing, and cashew-based cheese sauce. Cook up a large batch and store it in the refrigerator or freezer for easy use in bowls, salads, pasta dishes, and more.

Batch Cooking Techniques

When it comes to batch cooking, there are a few techniques that can make the process easier and more efficient. Here are some of our favorites:

Meal Portioning

One of the keys to successful batch cooking is portioning out your meals in advance. This not only helps with portion control, but it also makes meals more convenient to reheat and enjoy. We recommend using freezer-friendly containers that can be easily transferred from the freezer to the refrigerator or microwave when you’re ready to eat.

Cooking Methods

  • Instant Pot
  • Slow cooker
  • Sheet pan roasting

There are several techniques that are well-suited to batch cooking. For example, we love using an Instant Pot to cook grains and legumes in large quantities. A slow cooker is another great option for cooking stews, soups, and chili. And for roasting vegetables, we recommend using sheet pans to maximize surface area and cook as many vegetables as possible at once.

Flavor Combinations

One of the keys to delicious batch-cooked meals is using flavorful ingredients and combinations. Here are a few of our favorite ways to add depth and complexity to batch-cooked dishes:

  • Spice blends: We love using spice blends like garam masala, curry powder, and chili powder to add flavor to soups, stews, and sauces.
  • Herb infusions: Infusing herbs in oil or broth is a great way to add flavor to dishes without using salt. Try infusing basil, thyme, or rosemary in oil for use in dressings and sauces.
  • Citrus and acid: Citrus juice and acid like apple cider vinegar or lemon juice are great for brightening up batch-cooked dishes. Add a squeeze of citrus juice to grain bowls, or use acid to make dressings and sauces.

Assembling Vegan Meals with Batch-Cooked Staples

Now that we’ve covered the basics of batch cooking, let’s talk about how to use these techniques to assemble delicious, vegan meals. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Bowl-based Meals

  • Grain bowls: Cook up a large batch of your favorite whole grain, like brown rice or quinoa. Top it with roasted vegetables, cooked legumes, and a flavorful sauce or dressing.
  • Buddha bowls: Similar to grain bowls, but with more ingredients. Top your grain base with a variety of cooked vegetables, legumes, sauces, and nuts or seeds for crunch.

Bowl-based meals are a great way to use up a variety of cooked ingredients, and they’re also highly customizable. Feel free to get creative with your toppings and sauces.

Salad Bases

Salads are another great option for using up batch-cooked ingredients. Start with a base of leafy greens or cooked grains, and top with roasted vegetables, cooked legumes, and a flavorful dressing.

  • Leafy greens: Spinach, kale, and arugula are all great options for base greens.
  • Grain salads: Cook up a large batch of your favorite whole grain, like farro or bulgur, and use it as a base for your salad.

Wraps and Sandwiches

Wraps and sandwiches are a convenient option for using up batch-cooked ingredients, especially if you’re planning to take your meal on the go. Use whole-grain tortillas or bread as your base, and fill with a variety of veggies, legumes, and sauces.

  • Whole-grain tortillas: Look for tortillas made with whole grains, like whole wheat or corn.
  • Veggie-packed fillings: We love using roasted vegetables, cooked legumes, and sauces like pesto or tahini dressing to fill our wraps and sandwiches.

Meal Planning and Prepping Tips

Now that you have a better understanding of how to batch cook vegan staples, it’s time to plan your meals and do some prepping. Here are some tips to help you get started:

Weekly Meal Prep

We recommend doing a weekly meal prep session to cook and portion out your staples for the week ahead. Start by taking inventory of the ingredients you have on hand, and planning your meals for the week based on what you have and what you need to buy.

Next, do your grocery shopping. We recommend shopping for ingredients that you’ll use in multiple dishes, like grains, legumes, and vegetables, to get the most bang for your buck. Once you have all of your ingredients, it’s time to cook.

Cook up large batches of your chosen staples, and portion them out into freezer-friendly containers. Be sure to label each container with the name of the dish, the date it was cooked, and the date it should be used by.

Storage and Reheating

When it comes to storing and reheating your batch-cooked staples, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Refrigerator storage: Store most vegan staples in the refrigerator. Grains, legumes, and savory sauces and dressings are all good options for refrigerator storage.
  • Freezer storage: Freeze staples like cooked legumes, roasted vegetables, and sauces that you won’t use within a week. Be sure to let these staples cool completely before freezing, and use freezer-safe containers to store them.
  • Efficient reheating methods: To reheat staples that have been stored in the refrigerator or freezer, we recommend using the microwave or a pot on the stove. If you’re using the stove, add a small amount of water or broth to help the staple reheat evenly.

We hope these tips and techniques help you unlock the power of batch cooking and make meal prep on a vegan diet easier and more enjoyable. Happy cooking!