To tie in with the global Veganuary campaign, Emirates has announced the introduction of new vegan dishes onboard and in its lounges later this year.
Emirates has noted a surge of 40% in customer demand for plant-based meals, which it is addressing by adding even more dishes to its ‘vegan vault’ of more than 300 curated plant-based recipes.
In 2023, Emirates had more than 300 vegan recipes in rotation across 140 destinations, up from 180 recipes in 2022. Furthermore, last year Emirates served more than 450,000 plant-based meals onboard, an increase from the 280,000 plant-based meals served in 2022.
Emirates claims vegan meal consumption has grown 40% year on year in line with passenger volumes, but in some regions, consumption has exceeded passenger volume growth – such as Africa with an additional 4% increase, Southeast Asia with an additional 5% increase, and the Middle East showing a significant additional increase of 34%.
The biggest increase in consumption of vegan meals occurred in Economy class, and significant increases were noted specifically on Emirates routes to China, Japan and the Philippines.
Many Emirates cabin crew are also embracing a plant-based diet, as Emirates introduced vegan meals for Cabin Crew in 2018.
Vegan meals on the menu
In Economy class, Emirates passengers will find dishes including chickpea crepe stuffed with carrot, peppers, mushroom and tomato concassé; a textured pumpkin frittata; a tofu tikka masala, and a hearty chickpea kale stew with parsley pilaf rice and baby spinach. Vegan desserts in Economy include a coconut mousse with mango compote; banana cake with chocolate crumble or chocolate pudding with cocoa soil.
In Premium Economy class, customers choosing vegan cuisine will be served dishes like jackfruit curry with basmati rice, or a rich squash chestnut stew followed by a light chocolate tofu cheesecake or a raspberry parfait with a pop of orange compote.
In Business class, a range dishes are offered including roasted cauliflower with ancient grains, caramelised pear and lovage pesto or a ragout of Asian tofu and shitake mushroom with glass noodles. Passengers who have room for dessert can enjoy a tropical coconut pineapple cake or a chocolate cheesecake accented by a dark chocolate cigar and strawberry compote.
In First class, customers will be treated to elevated vegan cuisine like creamy polenta cake with thyme mushroom ragout and sautéed spinach drizzled in a rich root vegetable jus. Other dishes include an aubergine curry with charred rice and turmeric potato, with a dash of coconut and mint chutney. Desserts feature curated contrasts including the tartness of rhubarb tempered with strawberry charlotte, Chantilly cream and raspberry tuille, or a warm chocolate fondant with salted caramel sauce and whipped cashew cream.
Later in the year, Emirates will be launching a selection of new vegan main courses, new vegan snacks such as fruit muffins and vegan pizza, and an array of desserts including chocolate pecan cake, pistachio raspberry and raspberry tonka cake.
Vegan options are available to pre-order onboard and order directly in First class, as well as in Emirates Lounges. Customers can request vegan meals on all Emirates flights and across all classes of travel up to 24 hours before departure.