Veganism is not a trend anymore; it’s quickly becoming a lifestyle that many are adopting. Veganism is a choice one makes consciously. It could be because one is trying to pursue a healthy lifestyle or it could be because one cares for the environment.
On the eve of November 28, millions of people will sit down for Thanksgiving Dinner. It’s a time when family and friends get together and give thanks. For many turkey is the main focus of the dinner, but as more and more are becoming aware about how bad meat-heavy diet is for the health and the environment, more people are switching to plant-based diets.
So how do you do a Vegan Thanksgiving and or any other holiday dinner which is centered around turkey and ham and have sides with dairy?
Here are 5 practical tips if you are an aspiring vegan or if this is your first Thanksgiving as a Vegan:
- Surf the net
Just type “vegan thanksgiving” and a plethora of recipes are available. If you are a more visual person, YouTube has a lot of dedicated channels for vegan recipes. Try a search on Pinterest for more ideas for recipes and decorations to get you inspired for a memorable night.
Be considerate to your non-vegan guests and have a couple of appetizers they can have if they are not into Veganism. Just remember to indicate which foods are Vegan and the ones that aren’t. Encourage all guests to try vegan foods that taste like their non-vegan option and have fun!
- Plan ahead
If you’ve been invited somewhere for Thanksgiving Dinner, bring a Vegan dish so that your host doesn’t feel overwhelmed by the prospect of making something just for you. Have plenty so people who aren’t Vegan feel free to try as well. The goal is to show your friends how delicious Vegan dishes can be!
- Make the sides
Thanksgiving sides are usually plant-based. Cranberry sauce, roasted Brussel sprouts, and stuffed mushrooms are sides which vegans and non vegans enjoy. But beware that many of such sides can brake a few rules for Vegans, especially when sweetened with honey or roasted with butter.
Search for sides that are flavorful and seasoned with different spices and herbs. You can make a feast with different appetizers that will have everyone skipping the main dishes!
- Ditch the dairy
Use plant-based dairy alternatives like cashew or soymilk to make mashed potatoes and use vegetable shortening for making gravy. If you got to this stage and are already tired of all the cooking you can always buy some of the sides and gravy in your local store or Whole Foods. Nowadays it is easier to find tasty options that will please everyone at your table.
- No Bird, No problem
Tofurkey has become a popular feature on many Vegan Thanksgiving tables. Tofurkey is faux turkey, a meat substitute in the form of a loaf or casserole of vegetarian protein. Gardien is another brand that offers vegan roasts for thanksgiving. Trader Joes also have a very good meatless option. Their Breaded Turkey-less Stuffed Roast with Gravy has a wild rice stuffing core surrounded by soy protein and grain meat coated with a crisp herb breading.
With all these great options one does not need Turkey for thanksgiving. We hope you enjoy your vegan thanksgiving and remember a turkey will thank you for your consideration!