Creating the Perfect Vegan Dinner For the Holidays

Creating the Perfect Vegan Dinner For the Holidays

Time to Read: 10 minutes


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The holidays are coming fast, which means you have to make a vegan dinner that your whole family will enjoy.

If you’re worried about serving them too many “vegan dinner dishes,” these recipes have your back. Your guests will enjoy eating these dishes as much as you will.

Take a look at this complete guide to your holiday vegan dinner!

Drinks

If you’re hosting dinner at your house, you’ll need a few fancier drink options than water and juice. These two drinks aren’t only vegan, but they fit the holiday spirit.

Vegan Eggnog

Eggnog is a holiday favorite, so why not create a version you can enjoy as well? This will serve five people.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup dates
  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • Nutmeg to garnish

Directions:

Put the cashews in a bowl and completely cover them with water. Soak for at least one hour. When they are soft, drain the remaining water.

Combine the dates with the cup of water in a separate bowl. Soak for at least one hour. Do not drain the water.

When the cashews and dates are ready, mix all the ingredients (including the date water) together in a blender until smooth and frothy.

Leave in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Note: The mixture may separate. If this happens, give it another quick blend before serving.

Vegan Hot Chocolate

This could be served before dinner or after dinner with dessert. Its the perfect drink for those nippy winter nights.

This recipe makes one cup, so adjust for the number of guests you have.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dairy-free semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon raw sugar

Directions:

Heat almond milk in a saucepan over medium heat.

When the milk is warmed thoroughly, add the remaining ingredients and cook until everything is fully combined.

That’s all! It’s ready to serve.

Appetizer

Appetizers are completely necessary for a holiday vegan dinner. If the main course requires a long cook time, this small dish is a great way to hold your guests over.

Roasted Cauliflower Bites

Think of these like chips with dip. You can even pair them with a vegan nacho cheese sauce.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 1 teaspoon mild chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle chile powder

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Cut the cauliflower into bite-sized pieces and rinse with cold water. Spread the wet pieces (they shouldn’t be dry or dripping) onto a pan lined with parchment paper.

Mix all other ingredients in a bowl and sprinkle over the cauliflower on both sides.

Bake for 15 minutes, turn over and bake for another 15 minutes.

They should be served warm with a dipping sauce.

Salads

Salads are a party of most holiday meals, and vegan dinners should embrace the greens. But, if you’re not much of a vegetable person, you don’t have to have a veggie salad.

Holiday Salad

It’s got all the good stuff, including pumpkin seeds. This batch will serve four people, so if you have a large crowd you’ll want to double it.

Ingredients:

  • 6 large handfuls of leafy greens (You can use any kind you want)
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 8 walnuts
  • 2 tangerines
  • 1 red apple
  • 1/2 pomegranate
  • 1/2 red onion

For the Dressing:

  • 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 4 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Directions:

Chop apples, tangerines, onion, and walnuts and mix with remaining ingredients in a large bowl.

To make the dressing, mix all dressing ingredients in a blender.

Drizzle the dressing over the top of the salad just before serving.

Wild Rice Salad

If you prefer a salad that isn’t so green, this wild rice salad keeps things fresh and healthy as well. It makes over eight servings.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups fresh corn
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup long-grain brown rice
  • 1/2 cup wild rice
  • 15 ounces can black-eyed peas
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 3 to 4 scallions
  • 2 large celery stalks
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Juice of 1/2 to 1 lemon, to taste
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions:

Add all the rice with the water in a pan and bring to a slow boil. Immediately reduce to a simmer and cook until the water is absorbed, about 30 minutes.

Rinse and drain the peas, and slice (or dice) carrots, scallions, celery, dill, and parsley.

While the rice is still warm, mix with the rest of the ingredients in a serving bowl.

Serve warm.

Side Dishes

Your main food won’t be enough for everyone unless you make sufficient side dishes as part of your vegan dinner.

Mac and Cheese

Vegan mac and cheese is a delicious addition to your vegan dinner. It’s also something your non-vegan guests can get behind. This recipe makes four servings.

Ingredients:

  • 2 2/3 cups dried macaroni
  • 1 cup peeled/diced yellow potatoes
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup peeled/diced carrots
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3/4 to 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 pinch paprika

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a bowl, cover cashews completely in water and soak for 30 minutes.

Cook pasta according to the package.

Boil potatoes, carrots, and onion together in a pot until they are soft enough to blend, about 10 minutes. Remove them from the pot and blend with 3/4 cup cooking water and the remaining ingredients until smooth.

Mix pasta and sauce into a baking dish and sprinkle with breadcrumbs. Bake for 15 minutes until golden brown.

Mashed Potatoes

Every holiday vegan dinner needs mashed potatoes, and this recipe will make six to eight servings. It’s perfect for large or small groups.

Ingredients:

  • 6 large potatoes
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened rice milk
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Minced chives for garnish

Directions:

Remove the outer layer from the head of garlic and bake in the oven for 40 to 45 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until soft.

Once cool, separate each clove and squeeze out the soft pulp into a bowl.

Peel and dice the potatoes and bring the potatoes to a boil in a saucepan. Simmer for 20 to 25 minutes and drain.

In a bowl, mix potatoes, butter, rice milk, and garlic pulp. Mash until smooth and fluffy. If the mixture is too stiff, add another 1/4 cup of rice milk.

Season with salt and pepper, garnish with chives and serve.

Main Dishes

This is the bulk of your vegan dinner, so it has to be something that really screams holiday. Either of these dishes will take the place of a main meat course.

Veggie Pot Pie

You can’t go wrong with a pot pie, and this recipe can serve 12 people. It’s perfect for family and a few friends.

Ingredients:

  • Two 9-inch prepared good-quality pie crusts
  • 3 cups diced vegetables of your choice
  • 1 cup fine whole grain bread crumbs
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 8 medium potatoes
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons white flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose seasoning blend
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Paprika for topping
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions:

Cook potatoes in the skin and peel them when they are cool enough to handle. Dice four and mash the other four.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Heat oil in a skillet and add diced onions. Saute until golden. Add your chosen vegetables with a touch of water and cook until just tender.

Sprinkle the flour into the skillet and add the stock and nutritional yeast. Cook until the mixture thickens, about two minutes.

Stir in all the potatoes, diced and mashed, and add the seasoning blend, parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper. Once warmed, pour the mixture into the pie crust.

Spread bread crumbs over the top with the paprika.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until golden. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Quinoa Broccoli Casserole

This comfort meal is also pretty healthy. It’s nice when you don’t have to count the calories during holiday dinners. This makes six servings.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed in a fine sieve
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups grated vegan cheddar-style cheese
  • 1/3 cup sliced black olives
  • 2 large or 3 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 large broccoli crowns, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 large onion, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt-free seasoning blend
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix the quinoa, seasoning, and broth in a saucepan and bring to a slow boil. Then immediately lower to a simmer, cover, and cook until water is absorbed.

While you’re waiting, heat the oil in a large skillet. Saut? the onion until golden before adding the broccoli. Add a touch of water and steam until just tender, about six minutes.

Mix the cooked quinoa, the broccoli, olives, and half the cheese in a mixing bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

Once mixed, pour into an oiled casserole pan and place the tomato slices on the top. Use the rest of the cheese to sprinkle over the top.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden.

Dessert

Finish up your dinner with a dessert all your guests will love.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie

It’s yummy, it’s a holiday tradition, and it’s vegan. All in all, that makes for a great dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 prepared and par-baked 9-inch pie shell

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix together all ingredients (but the pie crust) in a bowl. Pour into the pie crust, and bake for 35-45 minutes.

Let it cool on the counter before putting it in the refrigerator overnight. Serve the next day.

Impress Your Guests with a Holiday Vegan Dinner

The holidays are some of the best times of the year, and they are best spent with friends and family. But this year you don’t have to struggle with your menu. Give some of these dinner recipes a try.

You and your guests will love them.

Curious about trying some dinner options with vegan meat? Check out this vegan meat guide before you get started.

About the author

Julia Ott
Hi! I'm Julia and I'm a junior developer, vegan recipe inventor, furniture collector and mum to a little boy. I've been a vegetarian for 20 years, and a vegan for 3. I spend all of my spare time visiting farmers markets, searching for antiques at flea markets and cooking up a vegan storm in the kitchen! I co-founded Vegan.io to make the world a better place.

Want to try a vegan diet?

We created a meal planner app to help you! Get your fresh customized meal plan full of delicious, quick, budget friendly, healthy recipes.

GET YOUR MEAL PLAN!