One of my good friends is vegan and recently expressed that his family gets stressed cooking Thanksgiving every year, because they have no idea what vegans can eat on Thanksgiving.
It turns out…A LOT!
Obviously turkey isn’t vegan, but there is still a lot of vegan Thanksgiving deliciousness to be had.
When creating vegan recipes, my number one goal is to ensure they taste fantastic.
Whether you’re figuring out what you can serve your vegan guests or making these tasty Thanksgiving recipes for yourself, the food needs to be worthy of a spot on your holiday table.
From simple, crowd-pleasing side dishes to delicious desserts, this list has everything you need for the perfect vegan Thanksgiving feast!
If you’re ready for the recipes, use the table of contents below to jump to specific categories, or just scroll down to view them all.
Table of Contents
Plan a Vegan Friendly Thanksgiving
Vegans can enjoy many classic Thanksgiving dishes with a few tweaks.
Below, I’ve listed recipes belonging to each of the following key categories.
- Mains. While a vegan can not eat turkey, they can still enjoy a flavorful vegan Thanksgiving dinner. Tofu and vegetables are popular turkey substitutes on Thanksgiving. Or just make sure you have plenty of sides; they are many people’s favorite part of the meal anyway!
- Classic Sides, with Modifications. I have vegan versions of crowd favorites like dairy-free sweet potato casserole with pecans, vegan stuffing, cranberry sauce, and roasted veggies.
- Soups and Salads. From a crisp and refreshing slaw to a cozy butternut squash soup, vegans can enjoy many soups and salads at Thanksgiving.
- Desserts. Another category where vegans can enjoy the same food as everyone else. I have a vegan version of pumpkin pie and apple crisp below that are delish!
- Drinks. Most drinks are vegan (just watch out for honey and milk).
Vegan Thanksgiving Main Dishes
Here are some ideas of what you can make instead of turkey for Thanksgiving. Think plant-based protein like tofu, or hearty veggies like mushrooms and cauliflower.
Vegan Thanksgiving Side Dishes
Vegan swaps in baking recipes can be tricky, but thanks to ingredients like coconut oil, nutritional yeast, and coconut milk, it’s easy to adjust for savory sides.
Here are some of our favorite vegan Thanksgiving sides:
Vegan Thanksgiving Soups and Salads
A creamy soup or crunchy, refreshing salad both make well-rounded additions to Thanksgiving dinner.
Vegan Thanksgiving Drinks
To save time and stress, either batch your cocktails or set up a bar and let guests make their own.
Vegan Thanksgiving Desserts
Need to do a separate vegan dessert; everyone at Thanksgiving will love these these sweet endings!
Check out my full list of Vegan Recipes for even more ideas. Happy Thanksgiving!
Frequently Asked Questions
If there’s another recipe you’re hoping to make that wasn’t designed to be vegan, you can occasionally make adjustments to the non-vegan ingredients with good results.
If you want to make Scalloped Potatoes, for example, you could try swapping the milk for full-fat coconut milk (it will give it a slight coconut taste) or unsweetened almond milk, the goat cheese for vegan goat cheese, and the Parmesan for vegan Parmesan or nutritional yeast. I have not tested these swaps myself, but I think you could experiment with them.
Yes, you can prepare a vegan gravy using mushrooms. Mushroom gravy would be delicious on roasted vegetables, bread, tofu, and more.
To make an easy vegan mushroom gravy: Cook 1/2 of a small onion and 4 ounces of finely chopped baby portobello mushrooms with 1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the mushrooms are browned (about 8 to 10 minutes), stir in 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour. Let cook for about 5 minutes, then slowly whisk in 4 to 5 cups of vegetable stock. Let simmer until the sauce has thickened. Add 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper for umami and flavor.
Chicken or turkey broth/stock are common ingredients in many Thanksgiving recipes. If you have guests who are strictly vegan or vegetarian, use vegetable stock.
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