July 26, 2014

Vegetarian Options for Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving Pumpkinsby Alexandra Caspero MS, RD, CLT

Are one or more of your Thanksgiving guests vegetarian? Considering that more and more people are turning to a vegetarian or vegan diet, odds are that you might be entertaining someone from the meat-free crowd.

Fret not; while the traditional turkey might need to be scratched, there are plenty of ways to serve a compassionate Thanksgiving, without alienating other omnivore guests.

If you don’t know your tofu from tempeh, plenty of companies make a meat-free roast that is perfect for serving alongside your turkey. Look for options like Field Roast, Tofurkey, or Native Foods Setien Wellington. All can be bought ahead of time and heated with very little prep work from the host. Since most of the usual sides are vegetarian-friendly (watch for broths and gravies), this can be a very simple substitution or addition.

Considering that most people enjoy plant-based food, you could also prepare two main entree choices. Vegetarian favorites include stuffed-acorn squash with vegetables and barley, butternut squash ravioli (either homemade or store-bought), or a tofu main dish.

As a vegetarian myself, our family usually skips the main entree and have a side-lovers Thanksgiving. After all, isn’t that the best part of the feast? Roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, stuffing, pumpkin soup, green beans, rolls, and pies – no guest has complained yet!

If you’re still searching for that perfect meat-free Thanksgiving dish, here are a few of my favorites; perfect for anytime throughout the holiday season.

Winter Greens Lasagna: perfect for large crowds and can be made ahead of time to cut down on prep time.

Celery Root & Squash Gratin

Crispy Spinach Phyllo Squares

Mushroom and Leek Galette

Winter Squash Risotto

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Alexandra Caspero, MS, RD, CLT is the phenomenal dietitian, exercise physiologist and founder of Delicious Knowledge. Specializing in weight management, sports nutrition, and plant-based diets, Alexandra shares real-life advice with clients and blog followers on a regular basis to help them successfully meet their healthy eating goals. Follow on Facebook and Twitter

Comments

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