More and more people are starting to ask me about eating a more plant based diet or they know someone who is leaning in that direction so with the Thanksgiving holiday or thanksLIVING holiday as I like to call it coming up I wanted to highlight a few items that might make your holiday season a little easier if you choose to not eat animal products or you are entertaining someone who chooses to eat this way.
Fortunately options are easier than ever to find and most of our local grocery stores carry some kind of option at this point for the center of the plate. This year we are trying out Gardeins holiday roast (in picture) its a meatless turk’y roast stuffed with kale,cranberries and wild rice. It serves 8 and comes with gravy. Other favorites I have seen are field roasts “celebration roast” Trader joes has a vegan turkey-less stuffed roast with gravy. Tofurky makes a vegan roast and a new item this year is a ham loaf. I am certain there are even more than I have listed here but there are plenty of options. You can always make your own homemade versions to, such as a lentil loaf, roasted and seasoned cauliflower steaks or stuffed butternut squash.
When it comes to stuffing that’s no problem, swap out any chicken broth for vegetable broth and swap out dairy butter for a plant based version such as miyokos (pictured) or earth balance. Use those same butter options in making desserts, they work just fine and taste great. If your stuffing uses meat then buy some frozen meatless crumbles from Beyond meat or gardein or even use crumbled tempeh. All cholesterol free and add lots of flavor.
I have you covered on cheese which I know I know can be a tough sell but the market is IMPROVING! Companies like Vio-life (pictured), miyokos, follow your heart and kite Hill are doing some great things so check them out. These cheeses can also take your mashed potatoes to the next level! Speaking of mashed potatoes….
Dairy free milks are quite readily available at this point, sweetened or unsweetened for any recipes that call for dairy milk switch it out with cashew, almond,coconut or make your own….I have a great you tube video showing you how to do that in 5 min!
Animal free gravy is not an issue, my husband makes an amazing mushroom gravy using vegetable broth, vegan butter, and flour…but if you do not want to make your own, pacific foods makes a vegan mushroom gravy.
Whipped cream is a must when it comes to pumpkin pie or pecan pie! We make our own using a can of coconut cream and maple syrup. Very easy and extremely tasty, trust me no one will spit it out. OR check your store for dairy free whipped topping options I know the So delicious brand make s a great whipped topping. Ice cream falls right next to this category and this area is a simple one, even Ben and Jerry’s is on board with several dairy free options, so delicious has several as well. Many of these plant based ice creams are coconut milk based and they are incredible.
We are making a vegan pecan pie this year and we also got one of Daiya’s cheezecakes and we will make a maple pumpkin topping to drizzle on top of it.
I know of 2 vegan restaurants near me that do fully prepared vegan meals that are ready for pickup and I know Whole foods stores do a similar option. While these might be a little costly it certainly saves time and takes pressure off of the host OR if you are a guest at someones house and you know there will be minimal options for you then this can be your solution!
As you can see a few simple swap outs can be made without a lot of trouble because when it all comes down to the holiday season it should be about spending time with those close to us, helping out others and making good memories and finding joy together.
Reach out to me with any swap out questions you are struggling with or if you have tried some items you want to share with me that would be great!!