Easy Recipe: Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

We were sent a selection of Violife vegan cheese to try, so we made these vegan cheese and baked bean pasties. All images and opinions are our own.

At some point in my late 30’s I started to develop what turned out to be lactose intolerance. As a cheese lover, this was something of a blow to me. I’ve been a vegetarian for 32 years now, and I find myself more and more cutting out dairy from my diet. I can take tablets to help me digest non-vegan cheese, but it’s just nice to be able to sit down and enjoy a meal that I know won’t make me poorly. Vegan cheese has come a long way since I first tried it several years ago, and Violife seem to be leading the way in making a range of vegan cheese products for all kinds of different vegan recipes.

I was chatting to a girl I work with who is vegan, and she recommended the epic extra mature cheddar as being the best vegan cheese she’d tried. So following her recommendation, I made a batch of vegan cheese and baked bean pasties for my hungry family. They are ridiculously easy to make, you don’t need any extra special culinary skills and they are so good, my 11 year old was scrabbling for more!

Easy Recipe: Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

This recipe makes four pasties, to make more, just double it, or triple it. It’s so simple to throw together and they make a lovely warming lunch, or pre-swimming snack in our case.

Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

A sheet of ready made puff pastry
1/2 tin of baked beans
4 big pinches of grated vegan cheese
Vegan egg wash, I used melted vegan spread.

How to make your Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties:

Pre-heat your oven to 200°. Unroll your sheet of ready made puff pastry and cut into four rectangles – have a look at the picture below which shows you the process.

Easy Recipe: Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

Open your tin of beans and tip them into a sieve to drain off some of the excess bean juice. Some brands are juicer than others, ideally you don’t want to add too much juice to your pasty as that will encourage them to leak out. Once they’ve drained off a bit, add about a tablespoon of beans to one side of the pastry and top with a large pinch of grated cheese.

Fold the pastry over and press the edges together. Using a fork, press the fork around the edges to seal them together. Arrange your pasties on a baking tray so they’re not touching and then brush with your preferred vegan “egg wash”. I used melted vegan spread and I was rather generous with it.

Easy Recipe: Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

Bake in your pre-heated oven for 15-20 minutes, until they are golden and gorgeous. Take them out of the oven and leave them to cool for a few minutes. Do not be tempted to dive right in as the filling will be as hot as molten lava!

Easy Recipe: Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

Once they’ve cooled off a little, eat them however you like. We ate ours on a park bench after school on our way to swimming, and very excellent they were too!

If you enjoyed this recipe, you might also like to try my vegan sausage rolls.

Vegan Cheese and Baked Bean Pasties

Frugal Recipe: Slow Cooker Pork and Baked Beans

This year, for various reasons we are tightening our belts. I’ve been looking to cut costs in the kitchen, and one way to do this is to batch cook dishes and freeze in portions. Another way to do this is to eat more beans and lentils. This week, I’ve done both and made a huge batch of slow cooker pork and baked beans.

This dish does take a bit of planning ahead, but at £1.12 (current price at Morrison’s) for 500g of haricot beans, it’s a pretty frugal way to feed the family. Sure, you can buy baked beans, but this recipe is worth trying at least once. It’s like the baked beans we get in a tin, but a little different. Lighter and less stodgy perhaps, they are certainly tasty.

I’ve used diced pork pieces in this recipe, but I think it’d be just as lovely if you swapped the pork for sausages or chipolatas. I like it served on thick buttered toast, but it would be great with a pile of buttery mash or on a jacket potato.

This recipe makes so much food, it’s great for batch cooking and freezing and really economical too. There’s probably enough for two good-sized meals for a hungry family of four.

Slow Cooker Pork and Baked Beans

Slow Cooker Pork and Baked Beans


500g dried haricot beans, soaked for 24 hours
1 tablespoon oil, I used vegetable, but use what you have
450g diced pork (or swap for sausages)
4 rashers of smoked bacon, finely chopped
2 tins of chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato puree
2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1/2 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons of dried mixed herbs
Salt and pepper
1 pint of stock, made with a stock cube

How to make your pork and baked beans:

The day before you want to cook your pork and baked beans, soak your dried haricot beans in plenty of water, following the instructions on the back of the packet. Once they’ve soaked for 24 hours, change the water and boil them for half an hour, or until they’re not chalky inside. Drain and set aside.

In a frying pan, add your oil and cook the diced pork until it is browned. Once brown put it in your slow cooker. In the same pan, fry off the bacon pieces (you can buy packets of lardons which are cheaper than bacon slices if you prefer). Once the bacon is cooked, add that to the slow cooker.

Turn the slow cooker to high and add the beans and rest of the ingredients, but leave the salt out until later. The economy stock cubes I used were pretty salty, so it’s worth waiting until near the end to taste and see if you need to add more salt.

I cooked the pork and baked beans on high for two hours, then checked it and gave it a stir. It looked watery and I wasn’t convinced it would work. I then went out for two more hours and while I was out, magic had happened in the slow cooker. The sauce had thickened, the beans had softened and the pork and smoked bacon had given out their flavours. It had in total about 4 and a half hours on high, but cook it until the sauce has thickened and it looks, smells and tastes good.

Taste the sauce. Add more of whatever you think it needs. I added a bit more ketchup and it didn’t need any extra salt. Serve it however you like, it’s great on toast for lunch or piled on top of mashed potato.

If you don’t have a slow cooker, this works just as well in the oven. Put it in a lidded casserole dish on 160° for 2-3 hours, stir it every so often and when the sauce is thick, it’s done.

This is a great dish to cook in the depths of winter. I’m pleased as punch to have several tubs of this in my freezer for a rainy day.

If you enjoyed this, you might like to try these slow cooker recipes:

Slow Cooker Pork and Baked Beans