Vegetable Paella with mushrooms, kale and peas

There’s not much as satisfying as good paella, the taste of saffron is without comparison. One flavour most vegetarian paella miss out on is that evocative seafood flavour of mussels and shrimp, but we have a fish friendly solution in this vegan recipe! 

Adding some powdered nori sheets to the dish brings that sea breeze flavour to the base of veg and rice. We used leek, mushrooms and curly kale which are all in season at the moment and sourced from UK farms. This paella is a perfect healthy recipe to show off your veggie cooking skills!

Vegetarian Paella with mushrooms, kale and peas

Difficulty level: ⅘

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes.

Recipe Serves: 2 people



  • 1 leek, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, diced or chopped into matchsticks
  • 200g button mushrooms, finely chopped
  • Handful Curly leaf kale, blanched and chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika 
  • ½ sheet powdered nori
  • Pinch (8-12 strands) of saffron, crushed
  • Splash of Spanish sherry
  • 220g short grained paella rice
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • 1 Lemon
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 100g frozen peas


  1. Fry the finely chopped onion and leek over medium heat until softened.
  2. Add Garlic, cook for 2-3 minutes
  3. Make a space in the centre of the pan, add the carrots to centre of the pan, cook until the edges begin to turn golden.
  4. Add the chopped mushrooms and sauté for 3-4 minutes until reduced in size.
  5. Add 1tbsp tomato puree, 1tsp of paprika, crushed nori, crushed saffron and a splash of Spanish sherry. Mix until coated. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add the paella rice, sauté 1 minute
  7. Pour in vegetable stock and stir/shake to ensure even spread as we wont be stirring the paella after this point.
  8. Add lemon juice and salt to taste
  9. Add sprigs of rosemary
  10. Increase heat, simmer then lower to a gentle simmer uncovered for 15 minutes or until rice is al dente.
  11. Add the peas and blanched kale, cook for 5 mins
  12. Turn off heat, garnish with lemon and coriander and serve.

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