Gluten free and vegetarian Easter lunch and dessert recipe ideas

Gluten free buffet 1

As well as the yummy chocolate egg-travaganza that Easter presents, I love the opportunity to gather friends and family together for a home cooked, leisurely feast.

It has become a bit of a tradition at Naish Farm to lay out a buffet style lunch which looks bright and beautiful but is actually easy peasy to put together. Kind of like Christmas but without the ludicrous level of worry and work….

Guests can waft towards the kitchen and help themselves to a plate and cutlery and pick up whatever they fancy. From tapenades to tartlets, our favourite party foods can all be prepped and frozen ahead of time and the dreaded washing up kept to the barest minimum. Promise.

Here we share two of our favourite Easter lunch gluten free and vegetarian recipes with you including an exceedingly pretty vegan chocolate brownie dessert idea.

Tips on making safe gluten free food at home

Regarding baking and cooking gluten free foods safe for coeliac guests to eat, we recommend making all the food naturally gluten free as well as vegetarian. These recipes are so delicious no one will ever be the wiser. The dessert is vegan too. No need to then worry about cross contamination on the day.

Lunch main: Gluten free and vegetarian garlic, mushroom and peasto tartlets

This savoury recipe makes 6 individual tartlets.

You will need 6 x 10cm diameter loose bottomed tart tins.

You will need the following gluten free ingredients:

Gluten free pastry ingredients

  • Vegetable oil for brushing. We like using UK grown rapeseed oil
  • 140g rice flour. White or brown is fine
  • 75g cornflour
  • 2 teaspoons of sweet smoked paprika
  • 60g vegetable margarine, chilled. Flora is one of our go two brands  – just remember to check your chosen one is gluten free
  • 2 free range eggs

Vegetarian tart filling ingredients

  • 1-2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 250g mushrooms, thinly sliced

Nut free Peasto ingredients

  • 150g peas, fresh or frozen, brought to the boil and drained
  • 10 fresh mint leaves
  • 8 fresh basil leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper
  • 50ml olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 25g pine nuts, toasted
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or crushed
Little vegetable tarts on a wood platter
Jar of peasto

Step by step guide to making your gluten free pastry

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C / Gas 3 and brush each tart tin with vegetable oil.
  2. Pop all the pastry ingredients in a food processor and blitz. Stop every 20 seconds or so to scrape down the sides to ensure all the ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
  3. Place the mix (it will be quite sticky) onto a well gluten free floured work surface. With floured hands, form the pastry into a ball and divide evenly into 6 pieces.
  4. Roll each ball out to approx 1-2 cm thickness and press into your oiled tart tins, pressing the dough with your fingers up the sides too.
  5. Space the tart tins onto a baking sheet and bake for 18-20 mins until the pastry feels firm.
  6. Allow to cool before turning the baked tart case out.

How to make this quick, easy and healthy gluten free tart filling

  1. Heat one tablespoon of rapeseed oil in a frying pan on medium heat before adding the chopped garlic and cooking for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Once the garlic has softened, add the mushrooms. Feel free to add more oil if you need and fry for 6-7 minutes, turning them to stop them catching.
  3. The mushrooms will be turning a golden brown (and smelling heavenly) when they are ready.

Ridiculously easy one step Peasto recipe

  1. Pop all the ingredients in a food processor and blitz until you have a smooth paste- some texture is good. That’s it!

To assemble your tartlets

Simply spoon peasto into each one and lay sliced mushrooms over the top. For a decoration why not pop a couple of fresh mint leaves a top of each little tart? Maybe a sprinkle of toasted pine nuts too if you have the time?

Our easiest and best ever vegan and gluten free chocolate brownie dessert recipe will serve 8 guests.

Our best selling vegan dark chocolate brownie is super simple, extremely squidgy and gluten free, vegan, dairy free and nut free to boot. Make your own with this quick and easy vegan chocolate brownie recipe. For a stress free no bake option, our Chocolate Brownie Traybake Dessert Kit contains everything you need – just add your own filling of choice.

Chocolate brownie dessert

Once baked and cooled you need to cut your tray bake in half across its middle. You are going to pop one half on top of the other.

Then make a simple vegan butter cream filling using:

  • 250g sieved icing sugar
  • 125g softened vegan “butter”
  • the finely grated zest of one orange

Icing being spread on a brownie base

Spread your butter cream filling thickly over one half of the traybake and then pop your other half on top.

Decorating your vegan chocolate masterpiece could not be easier.

You can either spread a chocolate frosting over the top and then decorate with flowers, or skip the frosting and apply flowers and a chocolate drizzle.

To make a dark chocolate drizzle simply melt 50g of dairy free, vegan and gluten free dark chocolate either in the microwave or in a bowl set over simmering water using the bains marie method.

BAIN MARIE METHOD: Bring a saucepan of water to simmering point, placing a bowl on top of the pan. Place the chocolate in the bowl, ensuring no steam or water comes into contact with the chocolate. Stir gently and occasionally until the chocolate melts.

To make a chocolate spreadable topping melt 100g dark chocolate with 50g vegan “butter” using the bains marie method or in the microwave.

Top your cake sandwich with chocolate spread, using a palette knife and decorated with Spring flowers. Primroses, fresh baby mint leaves and violets are ideal. You can then apply a drizzle of chocolate over the top or leave as they are.

Alternatively, a light dusting of sieved icing sugar would look pretty.

Easter cake decoration ideas

Top Tips

  • Wild garlic is in season right now and can be used in stead of regular shop bought garlic.
  • Vegan ice cream can be used as a delicious alternative to the butter cream. We love Booja Booja.
  • The only snag with using fresh flowers is that they are quick to wilt. You can always keep flowers in the freezer until you need them. Pressed flowers can also look really pretty and are quite on trend at the moment. We found ours on Etsy.
  • For styling ideas for a fun and natural Easter table scape with a Mad Hatter’s vibe.
  • For more finger food recipe ideas check out our previous picnic blog.
  • Head over to our shop if you’d prefer to buy ready made traybakes and cake slices, or view our selection of gluten free desserts.
  • The tart and Peasto recipes featured here are available in our Honeybuns All Day Cook Book.

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You might also be interested in this easy peasy gluten free Easter cake recipe.