Fennel, a unique vegetable with an anise flavor (mildly licorice is another way to describe it) and celery-like texture can add variety to your cool-weather repertoire. Here’s a roundup of plant based fennel recipes that you can enjoy all fall and winter long.
Fennel is delicious roasted, braised, and stir-fried as well as raw in salads, which will be amply demonstrated in the recipe roundup ahead. Fennel has a special affinity with citrus, potatoes, tomatoes, and leafy greens.
When is fennel best? Fennel’s true season is fall and winter, so that’s when it’s best to make the most of it. Choose fennel that’s unblemished, lightly fragrant, and firm. The dill-like feathery green leaves should be unwilted and bright green.
How to store fennel: Refrigerate unwashed fennel in a plastic produce bag in your refrigerator’s crisper for up to a week; like all vegetables, the sooner it’s used, the better it will taste.
Learn more about buying, using, and prepping in our Guide to Fennel
More about Fennel
From our guide to fennel, adapted from Melissa’s Great Book of Produce by Cathy Thomas:
Because it has its feathery, dark green tops, it’s sometimes mistaken for dill. Fennel is a green-tinged, almost white bulb with green celery-like stalks sprouting at the top. The stalks are adorned with fernlike, dark green leaves.
It has a gentle, sweet flavor reminiscent of anise or licorice. Eaten raw, it has a pleasing crunch. It’s available both in mature sizes, with stalks about 14 to 18 inches long, as well as “baby” sizes, with stalks about 5 to 8 inches long, less commonly. Baby fennel is especially sweet, with an intense anise aroma.
Called finocchio in Italian and fenouil in French, this aromatic vegetable is an essential ingredient in many mouthwatering Mediterranean dishes.
Thanks to the talented bloggers who participated in this roundup for permission to use their photos and link to thier recipes.
Jícama and Fennel Salad with Oranges and Herbs: A tasty cool-weather dish using two classic fall vegetables, this fennel salad gets a lovely citrus lilt from fresh oranges and lime dressing.
Potato and Fennel Salad with Artichoke Hearts: This recipe takes potato salad to another level with the addition of fennel and flavor-packed marinated artichoke hearts. It’s a hearty fall and winter potato and fennel salad that can be served warm or at room temperature.
Quinoa and Fennel Salad with Walnuts and Cranberries: Featuring this beloved anise-flavored vegetable, this salad is made festive with toasted walnuts and dried cranberries.
Pickled Fennel Citrus Salad: From Running to the Kitchen, a pickled fennel citrus salad filled with grapefruit, pomegranates, and quickly pickled fennel. Tossed with an orange dijon vinaigrette, it’s the perfect winter salad.
Beet and Fennel Salad with Citrus Dressing: From It’s a Veg World After All, this roasted beet and fennel salad is absolutely packed with flavor and gorgeous color! Every bite is brimming with fresh tastes from herbs, pistachios, and citrus dressing made from lemon and orange juices.
Citrus Salad with Fennel and Avocado: From Flavor the Moments, a salad that is guaranteed to brighten your day! This refreshing winter salad is served with a tangy sweet orange vinaigrette, and it comes together in minutes!
Blood Orange, Fennel, and Arugula Salad: From Cook at Home Mom, this colorful salad is everything on a cold winter day. It’s drizzled with a lovely Citrus Vinaigrette and finished with lots of black pepper.
Simple Shaved Carrot and Fennel Salad: From It’s a Veg World After All, this stunning salad is embellished with pistachios and a delicate dressing. A delicious vegan fennel recipe that makes a great side dish.
Fennel and Grape Potato Salad: From The Healthy Epicurean, who wants to know if you’re up for a unique potato salad recipe? If so, you’ll love this Yukon gold potato salad featuring grapes, fennel, and almonds in a tarragon dressing.
Apple Fennel Slaw with Lemon Dressing: From Homegrown Happiness, a fennel slaw with crispy apple, sweet fennel bulb, and spring onions. Topped with pecans for added texture and tossed in a zingy lemon dressing, it makes a simple and refreshing side salad.
Creamy Carrot Soup with White Beans and Fennel: From Running to the Kitchen, this creamy carrot soup is hearty and filling with cannellini beans yet light and refreshing for spring with fresh fennel.
Tomato and Fennel Soup: From Little Sugar Snaps, a tomato and fennel soup with courgette is fresh, wholesome and naturally suitable for vegetarians and vegans. It’s easy to make and freezer friendly too.
Slow Cooker Navy Bean Soup: From Living Lou, a hearty slow cooker soup made with dried navy beans, carrots, celery and fennel.
Potato Fennel Soup: From Greedy Gourmet, a big soothing soup with a deep rich taste and velvety texture — a delicious way to whip up an easy midweek meal.
Main and Side dishes
Roasted Vegan Sausage with Fennel and Polenta: What’s best about roasted dishes they need little embellishment. A few vegetables, a little olive oil, and subtle seasonings are all it takes to make a dish with an automatic wow factor.
Sautéed Fennel with Leeks and Mushrooms: Here’s a simple skillet side dish with lots of character. A great fall and winter side dish!
Root Vegetable Paella: From Ask Chef Dennis, spice things up at your family table with an easy to make root vegetable paella featuring plenty of vegetables, including fennel. Just make sure to make enough because everyone is going to want seconds!
Braised Fennel with Apples: From Where is My Spoon, this braise is a quick and delicious side dish, perfect for when fennel is in season.