Put down that pie crust and give puff pastry a little love. This store-bought dough is incredibly versatile, easy to work with, and relatively inexpensive. Whether used for sweet or savory dishes, puff pastry adds a buttery, flaky, tender, and golden element to every single bite. Allow your puff pastry sheets to thaw at room temperature for an hour before using, then get ready to create golden, crispy vegan goodness.
What is puff pastry?
Puff pastry is a flaky, light, delicate pastry that is made with thin sheets of laminated dough. To make it, the dough needs to be well hydrated and moist, because if it’s too dry, it may result in a tough, hard end result. This is why many elect to buy puff pastry from the store rather than make it from home.
Is puff pastry vegan?
Not all store-bought puff pastry is vegan, but you’re safe with brands like Pepperidge Farm and Wewalka. When you pick up a packet in store, make sure to scan the back for ingredients like eggs and butter, as, of course, these are not vegan.
10 vegan ways to use puff pastry
Turnovers are a great use of puff pastry. Who doesn’t love a flaky, buttery pocket filled with delicious savory or sweet goodness? They work as a great lunchtime option, or, if you’re hosting, you can hand them out as appetizers, too. If you’re going savory, we recommend opting for sautéed vegetables with plenty of gravy. But if you’re going sweet, you can’t beat the classic apple pie turnover.
Try this recipe: Flaky Vegan Mushroom Turnovers
2 Sweet or savory tart
The difference between a pie and a tart is vague, but generally, a pie is deeper and has more filling whereas a tart is more shallow. Another way to think of it is that a tart has a higher crust-to-filling ratio, and when that crust is made of puff pastry, we’re all for it. You can either make one large tart or create individual-sized tartlets. Either way, a tart is an effective way to transform minimal ingredients into a stunning dessert or main dish.
Try this recipe: Vegan Pineapple Ginger Macadamia Tart
Puff pastry rolls are another appetizer-friendly option. They’re easy to make and filling, too, so they’ll keep your guests from going hungry until it’s time to eat the main course. They work well with vegan meat (sausages, of course), but you can also fill them with your favorite vegetables or vegan cheese, too.
Try this recipe: Vegan Butternut Harvest Roll
4 Cheese wheels
This elegant appetizer and charcuterie board staple is so simple to make, but it’s a showstopper for sure. If you can find vegan brie (Jule’s Vegan Brie is the most accessible), use it. If not, any sturdy vegan white cheese with a truffle or mushroom flavor will do (not mozzarella or anything with an onion or garlic flavor profile). Lay one sheet of puff pastry on a parchment-lined baking pan, spread on jam or cranberry sauce, place the cheese wheel on top with another dollop of jam, then fold the puff pastry into a knot to seal in the cheese. Bake until the pastry is golden.
Try this recipe: 3-Step Baked Vegan Cheese Wheel En Croute
You’ve heard the saying, “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.” But when it comes to food, we’re all about experimenting and trying new things. Take pizza night to a new level by swapping out your standard dough for puff pastry. Roll out your puff pastry, brush olive oil over the top, add your favorite pizza sauce, and load up your favorite toppings before tossing it all in the oven. Pizza night will never be the same.
Try this recipe: Tomato Tart With Spiced Red Pesto
6 Puff pastry-wrapped vegetables
Not a fan of a certain vegetable? Wrap it in puff pastry. We can almost guarantee you’ll have a different perspective. Asparagus works particularly well here. Cut long, half-inch strands of pastry dough, then wrap each strand around individual asparagus stalks. Bake until golden and serve piled high on a platter. It just takes two ingredients, a dash of salt and pepper, and you’ve got a sophisticated appetizer ready to go.
Try this recipe: Vegan Asparagus Straws in Buttery Puff Pastry
7 Vegan Wellington
You’ve likely seen these centerpieces in stores or on the menu at vegan-friendly restaurants during the holiday season, but you don’t have to wait until the end of the year to enjoy them. With a few grocery store staples, you can make your own for dinner parties, graduations, and any special occasion. On one rolled-out sheet of puff pastry, layer your favorite sides (we love sautéed kale, caramelized mushrooms and onions, and thinly sliced seitan). Use another rolled-out sheet of pastry to seal the entire log. Bake until browned, and serve with vegan gravy.
Try this recipe: Vegan Wellington
8 Appetizer puff pastry shells
If you’re trying to save time, you can buy puff pastry shells from the store. Or, if you’ve already got a roll of puff pastry ready to go, they’re easy to make yourself, too. These small little puff pastry bites are a great dessert choice (you could fill them with dark chocolate and vegan whipped cream, for example), but they’re also perfectly suited to a savory appetizer, too.
Try this recipe: Vegan Roasted Cranberry Puff Pastry
When it comes down to it, we will happily devour baked puff pastry on its own. Cut your sheet into triangles, bake until golden, and consume minutes after they come out of the oven. For filled croissants, dot a bit of jam or sprinkle chocolate chips on the dough before you roll and bake them.
Try this recipe: Easy Vegan Croissants
10 Puff pastry-wrapped fruit
Who says the main dish has to be the star of the show? This fruity dessert is guaranteed to steal the spotlight. Decadent poached pears are wrapped in golden puff pastry and baked until golden. Dust in sugar, drizzle with chocolate sauce and serve with ice cream.
Try this recipe: Vegan Puffed Pears With Chocolate Sauce