For people with dietary restrictions, especially with meat, the holidays can be a difficult time. For Thanksgiving, the main focus of the day is turkey. If you don’t eat meat, your options are limited to sides and desserts. For Christmas, most people make the focus ham, while some have a turkey as well. Whether you’re hosting Christmas dinner, or you’re planning to bring a dish over to your destination, there are plenty of options that can make your feast more inclusive.
Read on for vegan and vegetarian foods to try out for this year’s Christmas dinner.
1. Vegetarian pot pie (1)
On a cold winter’s night, there are few meals better than a chicken pot pie. This meal is just as satisfying, even without chicken, thanks to the plethora of warm veggies. You can do your typical recipe, sans the chicken, or you can replace the chicken with more veggies and protein, like beans.
2. Green bean casserole
This dish is a Thanksgiving favorite, so who says it can’t be brought around for Christmas, too? Some people make green bean casserole with bacon bits, which you can leave out to make the side vegetarian. To keep the bacon lovers happy, you can bring some bacon bits on the side to be sprinkled on at their discretion.
3. Spinach artichoke tartines (2)
The appetizers are just as important as the meal on Christmas day. While everyone sits around opening presents, this is the perfect hand-held snack to munch on. Rather than a typical spinach artichoke dip that requires crackers or chips, this dip is pre-spread on a broiled piece of bread. This way, dishes are optional.
4. Cranberry brie bites (3)
The holidays don’t feel complete without cranberry, and they’re a great vegetarian option for your guests. These bites look fancy, yet can be made in about half an hour. Plus, the festive colors make them perfect for Christmas.
5. Roasted cauliflower (4)
You can roast a turkey, and you can roast cauliflower, too! This is a great vegan option for your guests. It can be paired with sauce to spice it up, such as a garlic drizzle or a lemon-rosemary aioli. To give your guests options, you can leave dishes with sauces on the side so they can make the meal their own.
6. Maple glazed vegan holiday ham (5)
We’re not encouraging you to try to trick your guests, but if you didn’t mention that this dish is vegan, they might never have guessed. This vegan ham will be the star of the show at your table, even alongside a real ham. The glaze will make the delicious scent of this meal waft through your house, and make sure everyone comes to the table ready to eat.
7. Vegan eggnog cheesecake bites (6)
Just because you’re vegan doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy some cheesecake on Christmas day. These bitesize delights bring in the classic holiday flavor of eggnog, without all of the dairy typically associated with cheesecake. Plus, these desserts look beautiful and will impress all of your dinner guests.