Oh autumn… The cool crisp air in the mornings, the warm sunny afternoons, the dancing leaves animating our streets… I love fall with all its sunshine, its rain and its vibrant combinations of colours as a result.

We are so privileged to live in a place of changing seasons. There’s nothing I love more than watching nature dress and undress with layers of pure beauty. Indeed, seasons bring excitement, something to look forward to. I’m excited for forest walks on crunchy leaves, muddy boots, cozy sweaters, warm beverages and yummy foods.

Surely, fall is a wonderful and delicious time to cook. It’s that transition time between summer and autumn when the farmers’ markets are at their peak. Carrots, cabbages, beetroots, radishes, greens, and fresh herbs are amongst the produce that color the farmers’ tables with the hues of the rainbow.

Growing up and learning cooking skills with my mother, she always emphasized that the secret to good health is to ‘Eat the Rainbow’. A naturally colourful plate is a happy and healthy plate. Every colour of the rainbow is connected to a different nutrient composition. For example, green foods are rich in chlorophyll, while purple/blue foods are rich in anthocyanins, and one does not occur in the other. Eating a colourful diet will get you the vitamins and minerals you need, as well as a balanced, healthful diet full of fresh foods.

So, in honour of fall, I would like to present to you a list of my favourite vegan “rainbow” recipes.

1. Rainbow Hummus

Look at those vibrant colours! Beetroot, turmeric & cumin, and  spinach & basil hummus to light up the rainy days! Recipe here at Traveling Spoon Chef.

2. Rainbow Rolls

Courgettes, radishes, avocadocucumber and fresh mint colour this beautiful dish, while beets, carrots and cumin add a blissful colour to the noodles. Natural food coloring at it best! A popular summer meal, but healthy and delicious on a beautiful autumn day. Recipe here at Anne Lina Waller.

3. Vegan Buddha Bowl Garnished with Fresh Thyme and Drizzled with Lemon Tahini Dressing

A colourful combination of spicy chickpeas, roasted sweet potato, nutty wild rice, lacinato kalespiralized beetroot, shredded red cabbage, and creamy avocado make this nourishing Vegan Buddha Bowl not only tasty, but also filling, healthy and satisfying. A simple lemon tahini dressing is drizzled over the top and then pumpkin and hemp seeds are added as a finishing touch. Voila! Recipe here at As Easy As Apple Pie.

4. Collard Green Rainbow Rolls with Turmeric Rice & Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce

One of the great things about these rolls is how versatile they are. Any combination of veggies, proteins, or grains will work. But for that pop of colour we’re looking for, here we are using red peppers, cucumbers, carrots, avocados, red cabbage, and turmeric rice all wrapped up in collard leaves. A coconut peanut sauce on the side and it feels like you’re walking on sunshine! Recipe here at Will Cook for Friends.

5. Black Bean Pizza Crust with Purple Hummus

Look at this beauty! The combination of textures, flavors and colors is beyond amazing. Here you have black bean and beet crust with a red cabbage and beet hummus spread on top, and topped with blue potatoes, mushrooms, sweet corn, chickpeas, fresh herbs and seeds. A healthy pizza that will surely make you happy! Recipe here at Rainbow in My Kitchen.

6. Autumn Pearl Couscous Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash

Loaded with roasted butternut squash chunks, tons of sweet cranberries, nutty pecans, all tossed with Israeli couscous, and a Dijon vinaigrette. This pearl couscous salad is the ultimate autumn dish! It’s earthy, hearty, filling and so delicious looking! Recipe here at Little Spice Jar.

7. Roasted Veggie Rainbow Bowl

Not only is this bowl of purple sweet potatoes, carrots, cherry tomatoes, kabocha squash, red onion, basil and pine nuts beautiful to look at, but it is also so satisfying, delicious and simple to make. Recipe here at A House in the Hills.

8. Rainbow Nori Rolls

These raw, vegan and low-carb nori rolls have a generous layer of green tea edamame hummus inside. Both seaweed and green tea lend layers of umami taste to the rolls. Add in thin slices of red cabbage, red pepper, carrot and lettuce and you have beautiful and nutritious rainbow rolls. A healthy, colourful snack that is so yummy! Recipe here at Thirsty for Tea.

9. Rainbow Veggie Noodles

This bowl has all the flavors of traditional Pad Thai, but it’s made much healthier, more colorful and easier! We can’t get enough of these colours: beets, sweet potatoes, edamame, carrots, red cabbage, radishes, spinach, mango and basil. Yum-my! Recipe here at Half Baked Harvest.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your basket, head to the market, pick up a colourful veggie palette and eat the rainbow from your plate!