Vegan Mulligatawny

This vegan mulligatawny is a twist on the classic English curried soup. It’s a simple dinner that is ready in 30 minutes!

Vegan Mulligatawny - a hearty, curried soup that is perfect for cold winter nights | by Lisa Lin of

‘Ello from England, friends! After a long, bumpy flight, I don’t think I was ever happier to stand on solid ground on this side of the Atlantic. Now, where’s my tea?

About this time of the year, I usually find myself thumbing through my copy of Jamie Oliver’s Great Britain, trying to get reacquainted with all things British. A few weeks ago, I found myself bookmarking a recipe called “Mighty Mulligatawny.” It was a beautiful chunky stew, but I what attracted me most to the recipe was its name. I have yet to figure out how to pronounce “mulligatawny,” or spell it properly for that matter. What I do know is that mulligatawny is an English soup that is derived from Indian cuisine. One look at the recipe’s ingredients, and you can probably gather where the origins of this dish comes from.

The traditional recipe usually includes some sort of meat (chicken or lamb), but I wanted to make a vegan version. I needed to veg up before my three weeks of chocolate, biscuits and pasties, after all. Jamie suggests topping the soup with yogurt, but I opted for coconut milk instead, giving the soup more of a sweeter finish. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

Vegan Mulligatawny - a hearty, curried soup that is perfect for cold winter nights | by Lisa Lin of


  • Brothy or Chunky Soup? When it comes to stews, I like mine extra chunky, which is why I like cooking the butternut squash (or other root vegetables) in the broth. That way, the vegetables absorb some of the liquid. If you prefer soups that are brothier, cook the squash separately, and add rice to the soup only when you are ready to serve.
  • Using Pre-cooked Microwaved Rice: There is no shame in using pre-cooked rice for this recipe! I shot this recipe right before I left for England, and I didn’t want to leave a whole pot of cooked rice behind. I used about two bags of Tasty Bite Basmati Rice for this recipe, but any cooked rice you have on hand works.
  • Peeling Butternut Squash: I used to peel butternut squash with a knife, which was frustrating and turned me off from cooking with it for a long time. That was until I discovered how much easier it is to use a vegetable peeler to peel the squash!
  • Tomato Paste: In general, I like using double-concentrated tomato paste that comes in a tube rather than the paste that comes in a can. I can never use up leftover canned tomato paste before it goes bad. Tomato paste that comes in a tube can usually be stored longer in your refrigerator.


Vegan Mulligatawny - a hearty, curried soup that is perfect for cold winter nights | by Lisa Lin of



Vegan Mulligatawny

Vegan Mulligatawny - a hearty, curried soup that is perfect for cold winter nights | by Lisa Lin of

This hearty vegan mulligatawny is filled with rich curry flavors and is perfect for weeknights. Recipe adapted from Jamie Oliver’s Great Britain.

  • Author: Lisa Lin
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6
  • Category: gluten free, soup


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 large red onion, diced
  • 1/2 butternut squash, cubed (385g peeled)
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 medium red pepper, seeded and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 4 teaspoons mild curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • salt
  • 5 cups (1.2 liters) vegetable broth
  • 15.5-ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup (70g) peas
  • 2 cups of cooked basmati rice (any rice works, too)

Optional toppings

  • sweet paprika
  • chopped parsley
  • coconut milk


  1. Heat a heavy-bottomed pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add olive oil and swirl around. Add onions and let them cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until they start to soften. Mix in carrots, butternut squash, and red pepper and cook for about 3 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, tomato paste, curry powder, coriander, garam masala, a generous pinch of salt, and stir everything for about 30 seconds. Pour in vegetable broth, turn up the heat to medium-high, and bring broth to boil, uncovered. Reduce heat to medium and add chickpeas and peas. Let soup simmer until butternut squash is tender. Adjust seasoning to your taste and turn off the heat. Stir in rice.
  2. Serve soup in bowls with some paprika, chopped parsley and coconut milk, if you like.

Disclosure: The links to Jamie Oliver’s Great Britain and Tasty Bite Basmati Rice are affiliate links. The cookbook is a great reference for modern British cooking. You can usually find Tasty Bite rice at your local whole foods supermarket, but I’ve linked it here for your convenience. Thanks for supporting my humble kitchen!

29 thoughts on “Vegan Mulligatawny

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  2. Gena

    I love the idea of adding notes to your recipes that reflect your learning process as a home cook, Lisa! And this stew looks absolutely delicious. I’m bookmarking it.

    1. Lisa Post author

      Thank you so much, Gena! I love reading cooking notes from others, and keeping track of them helps me a lot, too! Merry Christmas!

  3. Carrie

    I made this tonight but used yogurt instead of coconut milk because it’s what I had. It was a bit too spicy for me and the kids (we are wusses) but the bf said it was delicious. I will probably just add a bit less curry powder next time.

    1. Lisa Post author

      Hi, Carrie! Thank you so much for trying the recipe! I should have noted that I used a very mild curry powder (from Trader Joe’s). Sorry that it was too spicy for you and your kids! I’ll make note of that in my recipe! Thanks again for letting me know how it turned out!

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  6. Suzy S

    This looks delicious but my husband hates chickpeas. Is there a good substitute for them that wouldn’t spoil the taste? Black beans or Great Northern Beans maybe?

    1. Lisa Post author

      Hi, Suzy! I think Great Norther Beans would work very well! I cooked a version with cannellini beans, and my family enjoyed it! Hope this helps!

  7. Edgar @ GarageGymPlanner

    I’ve never heard of this recipe called Mighty Mulligatawny. I’m a pure veg and was on a hunt for some delicious veg recipes. Glad that I landed on your blog. I must thank you for your efforts to make a vegan version of the dish. I’m gonna purchase the ingredients and try this for lunch. Special thanks for the cooking notes!

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  9. Amanda Smith

    This recipe was very good! For me it was actually better the next day. I added an entire can of coconut milk to the soup, crushed red pepper flakes for some heat and topped with a squeeze of lime and cilantro.

    1. Lisa Lin Post author

      Amanda, thank you ver much for trying out the recipe! The spices absorb into the rice overnight, so I can imagine why you found it tastier the next day. Thanks again!

  10. Julia Kruz

    I love vegetarian food, it is healthy and also looks delicious. I’ll try your recipe but only instead of the basmati rice I’ll add brown rice:) Thanks for sharing, Lisa!

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