Vegan cashew paella

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This vegan paella recipe uses cashew nuts, olives, peas and a whole rainbow of spices to keep the palate busy.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes

Serves 4


150g Arborio rice
1 red onion
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp chilli powder
3 garlic cloves
1 fresh green chilli, deseeded and sliced
2 tbsp stoned black olives
1 large tomato, deseeded and diced
450ml vegetable stock
85g cashew nuts
55g frozen peas
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Fresh basil (or rosemary) to garnish


    1. Heat olive oil in a deep pan, add the onions and cook till softened.
    2. Mix in the rice, spices, garlic, chillies, olives, tomatoes and sautée for another two minutes.
    3. Pour in the stock, one ladle at a time, ensuring the liquid evaporates every time, until the rice is al dente.
    4. Add the cashew nuts and peas and cook for a further five minutes on a low heat.
    5. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with the herbs and serve while still hot.

Every so often, it’s important to try dishes outside your comfort zone. This modern, vegan take on a traditional Spanish paella was one of the cooking adventures I take pride in the most. Much like the lasagna, paella is a core part of European cuisine, but often contains seafood, chicken or chorizo sausage.

Using cashews, olives, peas and a blend of spices, this vegan paella will keep your palate busy. Don’t worry if your rice catches at the bottom of the pan — this will add to the bite needed in this dish, as well as give the bottom a bit of smokiness. Your guests will end up fighting for that portion of the rice.

Check out more vegan recipes like this vegan cashew paella.

Olivia Rafferty
Olivia Rafferty
Olivia is the Assistant Editor of The Vegan Review. An aspiring Middle Eastern correspondent currently studying journalism at City, University of London, she is passionate about the planet, she believes veganism is the first step to solving the complexities of climate change.