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Vegan Dolmades Kirily Thomas Naturally Balanced Healthcare, naturopath recipes, gluten free

This is a recipe I have been using for over 20 years, and it is great during the colder months when having something cooking on your stove top for an extended time period can help keep your house nice and cosy! I hope you enjoy my Vegan Dolmades.

It is a little more time consuming than my usual recipes, but the dolmades are yummy, and another way to add some more legumes into your diet (if you can tolerate them). Grape vine leaves are also high in fibre and naturally gluten free. 

I’ve not experimented with this recipe using wholegrain brown, red and/or black rice, but it’s on my list of things to try – if you do try this and have success, please let me know! 

This recipe will make approximately 30 Vegan Dolmades (I can’t remember exactly, it could be a little more or less).

They can be quite fiddly, but well worth the effort because they are scrumptious!

Cooking vegan dolmades, naturopath recipes, gluten free, egg free, vegan, vegetarian

Vegan Dolmades


  • 1 L vegetable stock (you can also use chicken stock if you are an omnivore)
  • 1 large jar of vine leaves (can be often be found in the “international” section of the supermarket or your local market or deli)
  • 1 cup of medium-short grain paella or risotto rice
  • ¾ cup of soaked or canned chickpeas, well rinsed and chopped
  • 2-3 tomatoes finely diced
  • 1 finely diced medium-large purple/red onion
  • ½ cup chopped parsley
  • ¼ cup chopped dill
  • 1 tbsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp chopped raisins
  • 2-4 garlic cloves crushed (optional)
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil (or so, may get away with using a little less)
  • 2 lemons 


  • Take vine leaves out of the jar, rinse well and then soak in hot water for 30 minutes.
  • At the same time poor boiling water over the rice, also soaking for 30 minutes.
  • Whilst waiting, prepare the remaining ingredients (but only using the juice of one lemon) and place them together in a bowl, with the exception of the vegetable stock.
  •  After 30 mins drain the rice and add to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Drain the vine leaves, using any really damaged or ripped leaves to line to the bottom of a large saucepan.
  • On a large, flat surface lay a number of vine leaves shiny side down, with the raised leaf veins facing up (like a mini production line).
  • Place about a heaped teaspoon of the ingredients in the centre of the leaf.
  • Fold the sides of the leaf towards each other and then the bottom of the leaf over the filling and roll so you have a little parcel.
  • Repeat until all the filling is used, stacking the dolmades in the saucepan as you go along.
  • Pour the vegetable stock over the dolmades and top up with water until they are barely covered.
  • Place an old plate on top of dolmades, bring to the boil (briefly) and then place the lid on the saucepan, cooking on a low heat for 1½ hours (take the saucepan lid off for about the last 30 mins or so) – the plate is important as it keeps the stack of dolmades in place, otherwise they’ll go everywhere and fall apart. It is wise to check that your plate will actually fit inside the saucepan before you commence!
  • The dolmades can be served hot or cold with lemon juice squeezed over the top and an extra drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

If you try my Vegan Dolmades recipe, I would love to know how you go! You can always tag me on social media with your photos too.

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