Following a plant-based diet is beneficial because of the many health benefits associated with it. But it can be a challenge during certain situations like the Christmas holidays. This is because many of the traditional recipes are meat-based. It can be difficult especially for those who switched to vegan or vegetarian diets. Keep in mind that such occasions can sometimes lead to awkwardness, temptation, and deprivation. This includes cooking a meal at your home or bringing food to a relative or friend. Shared below are the recipes for a vegan or vegetarian merry Christmas; read on to know more about them.
As the name suggests, starters and appetizers get the festive meals and party going. They are usually food that people can casually eat and makes the environment relaxed and enjoyable. A good starter for Christmas plant-based meal is bruschetta; it is a crunchy toasted bread topped with spreads.
Shared below is the recipe for making Chimichurri Bruschetta:
You start by preheating the oven to broil. Next, in a bowl, you mix the following ingredients to make chimichurri.
- 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh thyme
- ½ tablespoon of dried oregano
- minced garlic
- pinch of red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons of vegan butter
- 1 tablespoon of grated vegan parmesan
- Kosher salt for taste
Spread the chimichurri over bread slices and broil them in the preheated oven. You can get perfect crunchy chimichurri bruschetta if you use Italian or French bread. The alternative method to prepare this starter is to spread the chimichurri on toasted bread.
Soups And Salads
Warm soups are good during cold weather, and so they can be included as part of your Christmas plant-based meal. It is good to prepare seasonal soups like curried pumpkin soup with apple croutons, roasted brussels sprouts and rosemary soup, apple butternut squash soup, roasted winter vegetable soup, and acorn squash apple soup.
Salads are a good way to start a Christmas meal. You can use seasonal ingredients and flavors for making excellent salads. One such recipe is apple, cranberry, fennel, arugula salad with honey apple vinaigrette. It has a delicately balanced sweet and spicy flavor that will be enjoyed by most people.
- 6 cups of arugula
- 1 head of fennel sliced in a bowl
- 1 large apple cut into bite-sized pieces
- ¼ cup of dried cranberries
Combine the arugula and fennel in a bowl, and then arrange the sliced apple and dried cranberries on the salad. For this salad, you can use a dressing made with apple cider vinegar, vegan honey, extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt, and black pepper.
An entrée is the centerpiece of all Christmas meals, and traditionally it is either ham or turkey. Some of the plant-based entrees are seitan and mushroom bourguignon, seitan pot roast, braised seitan short ribs in spicy chili sauce, and portobello wellington. Other options include unturkey roast and gluten-free vegan turkey cutlets. Some of the less meaty plant-based Christmas meal entrees are country meatloaf with gravy, roasted acorn squash stuffed mushroom and quinoa pilaf, tempeh shepherd’s pie, and eggplant garbanzo stew.
There are a wide variety of side dishes for Christmas meals, and there are usually more than one for a meal. An excellent plant-based option is stuffed cornbread with gravy. The stuffing can be celery, onion, and mushroom stuffing, or chestnut, mushroom stuffing. Roasted vegetables are another group of good side dishes for a Christmas meal. Some of these are pomegranate balsamic roasted vegetables, spicy lemon sauteed broccolini, roasted Jerusalem artichokes with garlic braised kale, thyme brussels sprouts, sauteed beet red greens, and roasted rosemary string beans.
Gravy, Biscuits, And Sauces
Instead of buying readymade biscuits that come in tubes, you can make them at home. Shared below is the recipe for making gluten-free garlic and rosemary cheddar biscuits.
In a large bowl combine the following ingredients:
- 2 cups of gluten-free all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon of guar gum or xanthan
- 1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- ½ teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon of dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
Into the combined mixture of the above ingredients add ½ cup of melted vegan butter or olive oil and 1 cup of plant-based milk; mix them to form a thick batter. Into this batter, add 4 oz of shredded vegan cheddar cheese. Drop this dough on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake it in an oven at 450 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes. The golden-brown biscuits can be served with vegan gravy.
Just like the entrée, desserts are an equally important part of a Christmas meal. Some of the desserts for a Christmas plant-based meal are whipped cocoa cream tart with fresh berries, raw gingerbread and chocolate tarts, lavender and lemon cheesecake, raw chocolate raspberry cups, orange chocolate cheesecake. Other options include cookies, pies, cakes, truffles, and chocolates.
We hope that the ideas shared above will help you in preparing a plant-based meal for Christmas.