Can you believe it? The holidays are almost here again. If you're planning to throw an all-vegan Christmas dinner party, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll have a look at some tips that’ll make your gathering one for the history books, whether it’s an evening with close family members or a big bash with friends and colleagues.
Plus, we’re sharing five of our favorite—albeit untraditional—recipes that’ll earn you some serious respect among your guests.
Hosting a vegan Christmas dinner: Ideas for a fun party
Planning ahead goes a long way if you intend to host a completely vegan Christmas dinner party. Need some inspiration? Here are some tips for a fun vegan Christmas dinner without causing yourself a complete meltdown.
Consider your crowd.
What’s the average age group? Will there be children around? Information like this determines how sophisticated you want your food to be, and whether you want the party to be a boozy bash or more low-key.
If there will be drinking, you could make your event BYOB (bring your own beverage) to cut down on costs. Of course, it’s not a holiday party without a punch bowl, so making your homemade punch while your guests bring along their own drinks could be an excellent way to ensure that there’s a variety of choices (especially because there may be guests who don’t drink beer or wine).
If there will be children in attendance, be sure to plan for kid-friendly snacks. One easy option is red ants on a log, a classic recipe that we’ve changed up by using dried cranberries instead of the usual raisins like you’d find in your ordinary ants on a log recipe.
How’s it done? All you need to do is wash and chop celery stalks in half crosswise, then fill the crevices of the stalks with your choice of nut butter—about a tablespoon or so should do. Lastly, top the “logs” with dried cranberries or another topping of your choice. This fun snack should hold over the little ones until the main course!
Make it inclusive.
When sending out your RSVP cards (or online invites for that matter), ask your guests to specify if they have any food allergies or restrictions. Not only is this a polite gesture that won’t go unnoticed, but it also ensures that there aren’t any unfortunate reactions. After all, you wouldn’t want to have to call an ambulance on such a special night!
With enough notice, you could easily plan to replace ingredients—think almond butter instead of peanut butter. At the very least, you could label some dishes with common allergens like soy, dairy, or peanuts to avoid any blunders and instead focus on making memories with your guests.
Got allergies yourself? Learn about food sensitivities and how to cope with them in this article.
Make food in advance.
Instead of scrambling to make all your food at once, determine which dishes you can make ahead of time, and reheat them when it comes time to serve. Some recipes that work well when made ahead of time include:
Stews, veggie chilis, and soups: Just put them in a pot on the stove and bring them back to a simmer.
Casseroles: Reheat them in the oven at a low temperature. Easy!
Desserts: You can bake muffins, pies, cakes, and other sweets well in advance.
Making some dishes ahead of time will free up your hands to work on other tasks and ensure that you feel relaxed when your guests arrive.
Take some of the pressure off
If you’re inviting a lot of family and friends to your vegan Christmas dinner and you find the idea of preparing all the food stressful, make it potluck-style! Just ask your guests to bring a vegan dish that everyone can share. Just be sure to have your guests announce the meal they’d like to bring when they RSVP so that you can assess what’s missing.
Really feeling the stress of the season? Here are some tips to cope with Christmas anxiety.
The real secret to success? Our recipes! Take a look at a few of our favorites below.
Vegan Christmas Dinner recipes
Below are a few vegan recipes that can work for your holiday dinner. They're easy to make in bulk, so feel free to triple or quadruple the recipes depending on the number of guests.
Vegan Green Bean Salad with Hazelnuts
- 1 ½ cups fresh green beans (cut in half) (~5 oz)
- ½ onion (medium sized) (~2 oz)
- 2 tsp balsamic vinegar/modena vinegar (~⅓ oz)
- ¾ tsp olive oil (extra virgin)
- a tiny bit of salt
- ¾ tsp black pepper
- ¾ tsp black pepper
- 2 ¼ cups water
- 1 ½ tsp fresh mint (chopped)
- Put water in a pot and bring it to a boil. In the meantime, peel and thinly slice onion.
- Wash, remove stems, and cut green beans in half.
- Add the green beans to the water and cook for 2 minutes or so, until the beans are just barely cooked through, but still crisp.
- Rinse beans in cold water
- Drain the green beans and put in a bowl.
- Toss with sliced onion, balsamic, oil, salt, pepper.
- Top with chopped hazelnuts and mint (optional) and enjoy!
Thai Peanut Quinoa Salad
- 1/2 cup dry quinoa
- 2 ½ cups spinach
- ½ cabbage, chopped
- 1 carrot
- 1 red bell pepper
- 12 peanuts
- 1 lime
- 2 Tbsp peanut butter
- 1 ½ Tbsp soy sauce
- ½ tsp vinegar
- ½ Tbsp sesame oil
- ½ tsp maple syrup
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- Get the full recipe in the 8fit recipe book.
Wholesome vegan stuffing
- 1 large loaf whole grain bread
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion
- 1 cup celery
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 1 cup canned green lentils
- 1 flax egg
- 1 tsp sage
- The night before, cube your bread and add it to a large bowl. Leave it out to dry overnight. It should have the texture of stale bread.
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) and line a baking dish with foil or non-stick spray.
- In a pan on low-medium heat, sauté the onion and celery in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until translucent.
- Meanwhile, add most of the vegetable broth to the bowl of bread, along with the cooked onion, celery, flax egg, lentils, and sage.
- Mix everything with a wooden spoon, and add more broth if it’s too dry. It should have the consistency of meatloaf.
- Transfer the mixture to the baking dish and cover with foil. Bake for about 45 minutes.
- Then, remove the foil and increase the oven temperature to 400°F (200°C). Bake for another 10 minutes, or until the top is crisp.
Curried tofu, rice & cabbage
- ¼ red cabbage head (small) (~5 oz)
- 1 tsp olive oil (extra virgin)
- ¼ cup unsweetened coconut milk (canned) (~2 oz)
- 1 ½ tsp curry powder (dry)
- ½ tsp black pepper
- a pinch of salt
- ¼ cup rice (dry) (~1 ½ oz)
- 3 ½ oz tofu (raw, firm)
- Put water in a pot and bring to a boil. Aim for about 2:1 water to rice. Add a bit of salt.
- Stir in rice and turn to medium heat. Cook for around 16 to 18 minutes (white rice), for around 30 to 35 minutes if you use brown rice. Meanwhile, you can continue with the next steps.
- Drain the tofu and dice.
- Heat the olive oil on medium-high heat in a pan. Cook the tofu for 3 minutes, stirring until lightly brown. Set aside., In the same pan, add the coconut milk and the curry powder, bring to a boil. You can add salt and pepper (optional).
- Reduce heat and let it simmer for 4 minutes.
- Add the tofu and cook for 1 last minute., In the meantime, cut cabbage into small pieces.
- Serve all together and enjoy!
Pumpkin Soup With Ginger-basil Garnish
- ¼ cups sweet corn (cooked) (~1 ¼ oz)
- ¼ cups unsweetened coconut milk (canned) (~2 oz)
- ⅓ cups white beans/cannellini beans (canned and drained) (~3 oz)
- 1 whole grain bread slice(s), 100% whole grain (~1 ½ oz)
- ¾ tsp fresh basil (chopped)
- ¾ tsp ginger (grated) (~⅛ oz)
- 1 ¼ cups vegetable broth (~10 oz)
- 2 tsp curry paste (~⅓ oz)
- 10 oz pumpkin
- Wash the pumpkin and cut it in half. Remove its seeds, and cut into small cubes. Drain and rinse the beans and corn.
- Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Once the saucepan is hot, add the curry paste and cook for about 30 sec or until the paste becomes fragrant. Add broth (or water) and the pumpkin cubes, then stir and cook for about 20 min or until soft.
- Once the pumpkin is done, add the beans, sweet corn, coconut milk and heat the mixture. Then blend with a mixer or food processor until smooth.
- Ladle the soup into a bowl. Add the chopped basil and finely grated ginger on top. Enjoy with bread (toasted for a nice crispy texture!).
Healthy gingersnap recipe
- 1 egg (or vegan egg alternative)
- ½ cup ground almonds
- 1 ½ cup whole grain flour (we used spelt flour)
- ½ cup coconut oil
- 2 Tbsp almond butter
- ½ cup pitted dates, chopped
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, grated
- 1 tsp salt
- Add the egg, coconut oil, almond butter, dates, and freshly grated ginger to a food processor and blend until creamy.
- Add ground almonds, salt, cinnamon, and ground ginger, and mix again., Take the mass out of the mixer and transfer it to a bowl. Slowly add flour. Knead the mixture with your hands until you have a smooth dough.
- Store the dough in the fridge for 1 hour.
- Roll the dough out on a surface that is lightly dusted with flour. The dough should be about 4 millimeters thick., Preheat the oven to 320°F.
- Cut the cookies with your favorite cookie cutter and place the pieces on a baking tray that is layered with parchment paper.
- Place the tray in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes until they become slightly darker.
Want to learn more? For more information about living a plant-based lifestyle, check out our guide to veganism here.