Did you know that most of the common dishes in Turkey are strongly based on beans and vegetables, then flavored with olive oil?

Despite Turkish cuisine’s popular rep, it far more expansive than your classic falafel kebab and pide bread – with Middle Eastern and Asian influences, this style of eating consistently boasts a multitude of flavors, color, can be filling or light, and is generally not too unhealthy.

Here are a few ways to eat authentic, delicious and vegan-friendly Turkish dishes.

10 Ways to Make Authentic Turkish Food Vegan

1. Vegan Mezze – Turkish Dolmas and Garlic Flatbread

This recipe will be a hit at socials, BBQ’s or a relaxed family meal – you can easily make these at home and quickly have an impressive dish out. Serve as an appetizer, side or snack and you will be the favored host in no time.

Get a recipe here.

2. Classic Falafel

Let’s be real, the first thing that likely springs to mid when you think of Turkish food, especially vegan/vegetarian Turkish food is Falafel. These morsels of goodness are perfect with anything – try salads, kebabs, iskenders, pitta bread, or even in sushi!

Get a recipe here.

3. Jalapeño & Havarti Gözleme

Gözleme translates to pancake, but it’s closer to being like a Mexican quesadilla. These are a spicy, light lunch, perfect appetizer or hearty snack with a warming taste and aroma.

Get a recipe here.

4. Çiğ Köfte

This literally translates into “raw meatball”, they used to be made from raw meat but that was banned and are now made from bulgur wheat rice, onion, pepper and tomato pastes, spices and herbs – not meat. Cig Kofte (or cigkofte) are often spicy balls and flavored with pomegranate sauce -plus, they’re usually completely vegan.

Get a recipe here.

5. Baklava

You won’t be disappointed with this vegan baklava recipe which shows you how to make this classic dessert “with phyllo dough, agave nectar in place of honey, and not one but three types of nuts” – the perfect sweet dessert with any meal.

Get a recipe here.

6. Simit

Simit is one of, if not the most widespread Turkish street food. This bread ring covered in sesame seeds could be compared to a bagel but would be very difficult to find made with dairy or eggs, as they are accidentally vegan.

Get a recipe here.

7. Acılı Ezme

This is an often spicy side dish and staple appetizer on Turkish dinner tables. Acili Ezme is made from mostly diced tomato, red bell pepper, garlic, and parsley – making it a light and flavorsome dip which is enjoyed frequently with bread.

Get a recipe here.

8. Patlıcan Ezmesi

To put it simply – this is one delicious roasted eggplant (aubergine) salad with olive oil, garlic, parsley, salt, and pepper. The perfect side dish or light meal.

Get a recipe here.

9. Iskender Kebab

This slightly time consuming but well worth it meal will satisfy all your kebab cravings. Plus, it’s a lot of fun and makes even better leftovers for an easy next-day lunch.

Get a recipe here.

10. Pide

This simple recipe makes a delicious vegan Turkish Pide Bread. Perfect when served with Hummus and Falafel or Seitan Gyros!

Get a recipe here.