Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table

by in Thanksgiving, The Veggie Table, November 13, 2011
thanksgiving
Your vegetarian friends won't mind if there's turkey on the table, as long as there's plenty of veg-friendly fare for them to eat.

A 2008 study called Vegetarianism in America, published by Vegetarian Times, showed that 7.3 million people, and growing, follow a vegetarian diet. That means that there’s a good chance a vegetarian may be coming to your Thanksgiving dinner this month. If you’re not a vegetarian, you may be wondering how to accommodate an herbivore while keeping your favorite foods on the table. With a few simple recipe tweaks, you’ll be able to please both the meat and non-meat eaters alike without having to overhaul your entire menu.

Vegetable broth – When cooking recipes that call for chicken or beef stock, like in recipes for soups, stews, and casseroles, simply swap it for vegetable broth. Most of the flavors in both meat and veggie broths come from the spices anyway, so you won’t notice the flavor change one bit. A nice bonus is that it takes far less time to make a vegetable broth than a chicken or beef broth if you’re preparing it from scratch!

Dairy – If your vegetarian guests also don’t eat dairy, swap out the milk and butter for non-dairy replacements like soy milk, almond milk, coconut milk, and dairy-free spreads like Earth Balance Soy or Coconut spread.

Stuffing – Set some stuffing aside that hasn’t actually been, er, stuffed in the bird. To amp up the filling factor of your bread-based stuffing, you could add toasted nuts and dried fruit.

Omit the meat – If you’re using meat as more of a garnish for certain dishes, like bacon bits on a veggie side dish, keep them on the side for guests to sprinkle on if they wish.

If you have favorite meat-based dishes that you can’t possibly do without, just make sure to have enough well-rounded vegetarian dishes to satisfy all of your guests. Ask your guests ahead of time what they will or will not eat. Many people who call themselves vegetarians have different guidelines when it comes to eating poultry, fish, dairy and eggs. Knowing what you can serve in advance will help make menu planning easier and you can rest assured knowing everyone will enjoy your Thanksgiving feast.

Here’s a completely meatless menu; sub in meat dishes as needed if you’re serving a mixed crowd.

Even though everyone in my family enjoys meat, Thanksgiving is still one of my favorite holidays and I always find plenty to eat. This year I’ll be bringing my 3-ingredient vegan pumpkin chocolate chip muffins for dessert – a total crowd pleaser!

TELL US: What’s your favorite veg-friendly Thanksgiving dish?

Janel Ovrut Funk, MS RD LDN, loves experimenting with vegetarian and vegan cooking. Read her food blog, Eat Well with Janel, and follow her on Twitter @DietitianJanel.  Catch up on her previous posts here.

More posts from .

Similar Posts

Got Leftovers? Try These Creative Day-After-Thanksgiving Recipes

Rather than zapping Thanksgiving leftovers in the microwave, make scrumptiously creative day-after recipes instead....

Comments (62)

  1. Wow, incredible blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your site is magnificent, let alone the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

  2. Burton Olde says:

    Wow, marvelous blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your site is great, as well as the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

  3. on . April 18th, 2012 at . 9:39 am

  4. Wow, marvelous blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is great, let alone the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

  5. Wow, awesome blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your site is magnificent, as well as the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

  6. Wow, amazing blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your website is magnificent, as well as the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

  7. Wow, incredible blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is wonderful, let alone the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

  8. Hi ya, I’m new to all this blogging stuff But, I’ve just recently started my own blog, and I really like your site. I located it while looking for interesting posts on google. BTW If you are look for big discounts on eharmony, match or perfectmatch, please check out my site.

  9. e cigaret says:

    You could certainly see your enthusiasm in the paintings you write. The world hopes for more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. At all times go after your heart.

  10. Kacy Dotie says:

    Wow, fantastic blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is fantastic, as well as the content!. Thanks For Your article about Welcoming Vegetarians to Your Thanksgiving Table | Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog .

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>