Wondering what to serve for a vegan Thanksgiving? I have rounded up lots of ideas to help you plan your menu whether you’re cooking for vegans, vegetarians, or anyone who wants to add more healthy plant foods to their diets. Whether you are planning to cook for a crowd, for a small family meal, or for yourself, it is easy to enjoy lots of delicious fall favorites for the holiday. I hope you enjoy trying these recipes!
I think it is important to learn about another perspective on Thanksgiving. It is a Day of Mourning for Native and Indigenous people. Here is more information about Thanksgiving’s Dark Side from the Washington Post.
(This post contains affiliate links that won’t change your price but provide me with a small commission. All opinions are my own.)
I like to serve a garden salad (see the pumpkin vinaigrette dressing for a fall twist), and here are fall soups, a lentil salad, stuffed mushrooms, and an easy layered hummus dip also.
Thanksgiving Main Dishes
Here are some great vegan main dish ideas instead of turkey. What makes for the perfect entree on Thanksgiving? You can just enjoy lots of vegetable side dishes, but there is nothing like stuffed vegetables like squash, mushrooms, or peppers for something satisfying!
Here are some recipes for healthier versions of Thanksgiving sides. Find even more in this new post: 18 Favorite Vegan, Healthy Thanksgiving Side Dishes.
Other great options are baked sweet potatoes or oven-roasted potatoes or sweet potatoes with a little olive oil, rosemary, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
Another terrific thing to include is some freshly baked whole-grain rolls. Try making sweet potato rolls for something different. I am going to try making a turkey-shaped challah this year!
My favorite stuffing from my childhood was my grandmother’s Pennsylvania Dutch potato filling: which is basically bread stuffing mixed into mashed potatoes and baked. This could be made plant-based by just substituting with plant-based butter and using plain soy or oat milk instead of dairy milk.
No vegan Thanksgiving would be complete without dessert! Try these individual pumpkin pies, apple crisp, or brownies for a sweet ending to your meal.
You can make this dessert in a slow cooker or Instant Pot, which is very helpful if you need oven space.
Vegan Thanksgiving Planning and Cooking Strategy
These are my tips to have a less stressful Thanksgiving day. This does not mean that I have everything done before guests arrive: in fact, quite the contrary. I thrive on a little pressure and like to take some time that morning to get out for a walk!
About 2 weeks ahead of time: write out a rough draft of your menu. Check over the recipes for ingredients and make a shopping list. This is a good time to read the recipes and print them out if they are online.
One week ahead of time: buy non-perishable foods. A convenient suggestion I recommend is Thrive Market. There you can find staples to help you cook these recipes like chickpeas, lentils, wild rice, nuts, pumpkin, and spices: all organic and shipped to your home. It’s a great time saver and they have a low-price guarantee too! Please learn more from this link:
A few days ahead: organize the dining room: decide on your tablecloth, napkins, dishes, silverware, any place cards, table decor, and your centerpiece.
1 – 2 days ahead of time: buy perishable foods. Finalize the menu. I usually make adjustments based on which vegetables look good at the store or farmers’ market. if you have time, prepare a dish or two.
Set out serving dishes. Make a post-it note for each food you will serve. Place a post-it note in each dish and include a serving utensil. This helps me so much!
Write out a schedule for yourself for your plant-based Thanksgiving day cooking. If you are also making a turkey, of course carefully check your cooking time and plan to get up early enough. Then you need to see how you will cook everything else. Using other appliances like a slow cooker, electric skillet, or pressure cooker can help.
Many people recommend not cooking new recipes for guests. I disagree. I think it’s fun and exciting to try new recipes on a holiday. However, as sometimes things are unexpected, it’s not a bad idea to include some recipes you have made before too.
More Posts You May Enjoy
- 18 Favorite Vegan Thanksgiving Side Dishes
- 15 Healthy Vegan Desserts for the Holidays
- 12 Best Vegan Desserts for Thanksgiving – Under 150 Calories!
- 15 Best Vegan Side Dishes for Grilled or Baked Tofu
I hope these recipes help you have an enjoyable Thanksgiving!
Keep up to date with seasonal recipes from my free new monthly newsletter.
Which of these vegan Thanksgiving recipes do you plan to try? Please let me know in the comments below:
Originally published 11/8/20. Updated 11/4/22.