Vegan Friendly Thanksgiving Dishes

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Written By: Suzanne Kvilhaug

The traditional Thanksgiving spread is about as far away from vegan as you can get. A turkey, maybe even a ham, mashed potatoes and a bunch of sides made with butter means only one thing...a vegan sitting there with an empty plate and an empty stomach giving thanks for all of the vegan meals they’ll get to eat in the future.

If you’re vegan, expecting vegan guests, or want to cook a more plant-based Thanksgiving this year, there’s a lot of different options that do not disappoint. Rave reviews are headed your way.


Vegan Stuffed Butternut Squash

Whoa! Who needs a turkey when you have this Stuffed Butternut Squash recipe from It Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken. The phrase “it will blow your socks off” feels appropriate. Made with rice, carrots, celery, onions and garlic stuffing, this looks like a jaw-dropping vegan option at the Thanksgiving table. Especially if you’re going all out and want to give off plant-based Martha Stewart vibes. Pretty, healthy, and entirely dairy-free. A vegan slam dunk.


Vegan Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole, an old-school favorite that’s entirely vegan from Minimalist Baker is bound to be a favorite for vegans and non-vegans at the table. And most likely no one will even know it’s vegan. Described as simple, creamy and savory, this green bean casserole is topped off with crispy fried onions. Mmmm! The best part about it? It calls for only 10 ingredients and 30 minutes to make.


Vegan Lentil Loaf

Sometimes Tofurkey just doesn’t cut it. If you’re looking for a more meat like option that’s meatless, this Vegan Lentil Loaf from the Yummy Mummy Kitchen is it. Use only green or brown lentils and be ready to do some work in the kitchen. But don’t let that deter you from trying this one out, it’s totally worth it. This perfect for Thanksgiving vegan lentil loaf is super filling, packed with veggies and has an incredible flavor to it.


The Ultimate Thanksgiving Salad

Thanksgiving is not the time to throw a few greens in a bowl, drizzle some salad dressing on top and call it a day. This Vegan Autumn Harvest Salad from The Full Helping is the picture-perfect choice for Thanksgiving day. Described as a celebration of the season, this salad has roasted sweet potatoes, a mix of greens, brussels sprouts, and crisp apples. Top with dried cranberries, toasted pumpkin seeds, toasted almond, or all three. This recipe can be filed under the category of “salads you turn to when you want to razzle and dazzle em”.


Vegan Mashed Potatoes

If you don’t want to ditch the traditional favorites, veganize them instead. If you’re adamant that mashed potatoes need to be a part of your Thanksgiving dinner, this recipe from the Simple Vegan blog has you covered. Creamy, and tasty, with a prep time of only 10 minutes and a cook time of 20 minutes, you can keep it traditional or add spices or herbs. To make an oil-free version of this recipe, use tahini or some nut butter instead of the oil or add some liquid like almond milk, water or broth. For extra flavor try this super simple vegan gravy recipe.

 
 

Carrots with Shallots, Sage and Thyme

This has to be one of the prettiest vegan side dishes I’ve ever seen in my entire life. Carrots with Shallots, Sage and Thyme from Well Living is completely vegan, gluten-free and has a great mix of spices and herbs. The recipe is super easy and the total time between prep and cook is only 40 minutes. Expect a lot of ooohhhs and ahhhhhs from everyone when you place this down on the table.


Maple Syrup Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Toasted Pecans

Roasted to a high heat to bring out the natural sugars and topped with pecans and a drizzle of maple syrup, these Brussels Sprouts from A Side Of Sweet are the perfect addition to a vegan Thanksgiving spread. In season, healthy and easy to prepare --plus the brussels sprouts have just the right amount of sweet to convince anyone at the table to give them a try.


Easy Vegan Stuffing

Because what’s Thanksgiving without the stuffing?! It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the stuffing inside the turkey isn’t vegan, but other kinds of stuffing aren’t either. A lot of traditional stuffing mixes contain animal-based ingredients so make sure to read the labels if you’re going with the boxed kind (no judgement). A basic vegan stuffing recipe from Karissa’s Vegan Kitchen works perfectly. It’s a more simple seasoned stuffing with celery and onions--nostalgia guaranteed!


Cornbread

Those boring dinner rolls that come in the bag that you have to rip apart have no right to be at your Thanksgiving table this year. This Vegan Cornbread from Nora Cooks is soft, moist and sweet with just the right amount of cornbread texture. No eggs, no butter, and vegan approved! If you don’t like sweet cornbread, you may want to lower the amount of sugar called for. And if you want to make an oil-free version, use applesauce.


Gooey Pumpkin Spice Latte Chocolate Cake

You want to bring in the big guns, and this Gooey Pumpkin Spice Latte Chocolate Cake from Oh She Glows is definitely the big guns. Heavenly, majestic, out of this world and then some. Made with pumpkin, chocolate, brewed coffee, pumpkin pie spices and almond milk, this to die for recipe is gluten-free, oil-free and vegan. If you need it to be, there are also nut-free and soy-free options as well.


Easy Vegan Apple Pie

Traditional apple pies are not vegan, so this Easy Vegan Apple Pie recipe from The Spruce Eats is simple, delicious --and most importantly --vegan. If you’ve never made a pie before, this would be a great one for your first time. Made with crisp granny smith apples and a store-bought pie crust, it saves you a whole lot of prep time , and the vegan margarine keeps it dairy-free. Apple pie is one of those things vegans have to give up, so you’ll get major brownie points for making this one.