With more and more of us deciding to follow a plant-based diet, it can be tricky to see how our favourite Christmas foods can be adapted so they're suitable for vegan family and friends. We say: throw the rulebook out the window and embrace these delicious vegan Christmas recipes! Whether you are vegan or not, you'll love the exciting flavours in our festive treats.April 27, 2022 4:49 pm October 26, 2020 9:48 am
Chestnuts roasting on an open fire or the smell of freshly baked gingerbread… Everyone has a food that reminds them of Christmas. The warming scent of cinnamon and nutmeg, orange and cloves takes us back to our festive celebrations of years gone by. Hours spent playing board games or huddled over the floor hunting for a missing jigsaw puzzle piece, as mulled wine warms gently in the kitchen.
Many of us were brought up with traditional Christmas foods which are often full of meat and dairy products. But, luckily, it’s perfectly possible to have a fully festive Christmas laden with plant-based goodies. Our very favourite vegan Christmas recipes are gathered here to inspire you to try a plant-based Christmas menu for yourself.
Cooking for vegans
If you don’t follow a fully plant-based diet, hosting a fully vegan dinner party or family gathering can seem like a daunting prospect.
Many traditional Christmas foods, from the turkey to the cheese board, are based around meat, fish and dairy. If you’re used to feeding your family and friends these familiar foods, it can be tricky to imagine how to recreate a festive atmosphere without using any of these ingredients.
Or, perhaps you’ve decided to adopt a fully plant-based diet this year. Maybe you aren’t sure how to navigate the festive season without the foods you would normally eat at this time.
The good news is that there are plenty of easy swaps you can make to turn your favourite Christmas foods vegan. Not only that, but you’re about to discover a whole new range of Christmas foods you might never have tried before!
If you are preparing vegan meals for family and aren’t a vegan yourself, there are a few tips to remember.
A few tips for hosting a vegan Christmas 2021
Check your ingredients carefully. Some products might seem to be purely plant-based, but may be hiding animal-derived ingredients. This is especially true for processed foods, seasonings and condiments.
The same goes for snacks and packaged foods such as nibbles and crisps. These often contain ingredients like milk powder, even when the flavour is vegetable based.
Don’t feel obliged to simply swap out meat products for processed vegan substitutes. There are many convenient meat substitutes out there, and making these simple swaps can work very well. However, if you’d rather avoid processed foods, you can also sub in some of the ‘meatier’ and denser vegetables. Aubergines, mushrooms and artichoke work well. Or, you could try tofu, tempeh or seitan.
When baking, you might feel stuck as recipes tend to ask for butter, milk and eggs. Luckily, you can easily swap butter for oil, apple sauce or margarine, use a plant-based milk, and make your own flax eggs.
Cooking vegan might seem restrictive if you’re usually an omnivore. But, a little experimentation will soon reveal that there’s a huge amount of variety and creativity to be had in plant-based cooking!
Here are our best vegan dishes that’ll keep your vegan and omnivorous friends coming back for seconds.
Breakfast and snacking
It can be easy to focus all your energies into dinner when you have guests. But, If you have people staying over, make sure to stock up on vegan-friendly snacks and breakfasts too.
Pancakes are a universally loved indulgent breakfast, and great for feeding a crowd.
Our vegan cakes and breads can be brought out at tea time, and we have a few suggestions to make them more festive than ever.
Our fluffy breakfast pancakes are made with whole wheat flour to add fibre and apple sauce to bring natural sweetness. We flavour them with toasty cinnamon and sweet vanilla to get festive scents wafting through your kitchen from the very start of the day.
Try adding half a teaspoon of ground ginger to your pancake batter to evoke gingerbread-themed nostalgia.
Stick with our classic apple and maple topping. Or, go fully festive by spooning over warmed vegan mincemeat. Alternatively, finish with a decadent drizzle of dark chocolate and a scattering of dried cranberries.
Apple Bread with Sweet Almond Oil
Christmas is perhaps the only time of year when cake can be justified as breakfast. Top a slice of our apple bread with vegan yoghurt and berries for an indulgent start to the day. Or, bring it out at teatime for a sweet afternoon snack.
Dates and apples provide natural sweetness, while our Organic Sweet Almond Oil brings a moreish nuttiness. It makes a beautiful pairing with a freshly brewed cup of tea.
Completely vegan and free of refined sugar, our apple bread may also be among the healthiest things you eat this Christmas.