Vegan Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving dinner is one of the most exciting times of the year as a vegan.  I mean, a huge feast of vegan comfort foods? Who wouldn’t want that?!  Unfortunately though, since Thanksgiving is traditionally  is focused around having a turkey, people think that vegans can’t have a true thanksgiving meal.  But what better way than to give thanks to your body with a meal completely full of nutrients, and is completely healthy!  Since this is going to be a long post, we’re going to do it a little different and give you more time management tips, general notes to keep in mind, and the recipes ready for you with minimal photography  (we don’t want to publish a Thanksgiving novel here).  As well as being vegan, this menu is also completely gluten free!  But here is a list of everything we are making (besides desserts);

  • Caramelized Red Onion, Tempeh, Water Chestnut Stuffed Acorn Squash with Rye Barbecue Glaze, & ‘Everything’ Seeds
  • Mashed Potatoes & Rutabaga with Roasted Garlic & Fresh Dill
  • Maple Miso Roasted Brussels Sprouts
  • Cornbread Walnut Sausage Stuffing
  • Maple Yam & Kabocha Puree with Chili Candied Pecans & Caramelized Mushroms
  • Creamed Corn with Coconut & Sage
  • Maitake & Lemon Thyme Gravy
  • Sriracha Cranberry Jelly
  • Haircot Verts Casserole  with Crispy Shallots

thanks-15

So for time management, here’s a breakdown of how your cooking should go.  You’ll want to make your mashed potatoes / rutabaga, sweet potato & kabocha puree (just the puree and candied nuts, do not completely finish the recipe), the cornbread croutons for your stuffing, and your cranberry jelly.  If you make all of these the night before, you will have a really a pretty easy day on Thanksgiving.  On the day you’re hosting, start out by making your acorn squash.  This will take the longest, so you’ll want to start it first.  Once you’ve stuffed the squash and placed it back in the oven,  Start your brussels sprouts & haircot vert casserole.  These are easy because you essentially just mix everything together in your baking dishes, and place in the oven.  Both have the same cooking temperature, so you can multi task and cook both at the same time.  You’ll also want to make your stuffing and put it in the oven at this time as well.  Once your squash are finished, remove from the oven and wrap in foil to keep warm, and then put your stuffing, brussels, and haircot verts in the oven.  Since they are in not huge baking sheets, you should be able to fit all of them. Once those go into the oven, you can start your creamed corn.  This recipe, again, is very easy.  You just need to combine all the ingredients in a pot and allow it to cook on the stove top.  Once your brussels & haircot verts are finished, finish your sweet potatoes recipe, and place in the oven with your mashed potatoes & rutabagas so that they can reheat from the night prior.  While those are in the oven, you can make your gravy on the stovetop.  By the time your gravy is done, everything should be finished.  If you keep foil overtop everything and keep it in the kitchen, it should stay warm while you’re cooking.


thanks-18

CORNBREAD WALNUT SAUSAGE STUFFING

  • 6 cups cornbread (cut into bite sized pieces)
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 cup celery
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp fresh sage
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 3 tsp fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp pink himalayan salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes
  • 3 tbs oil from sundried tomatoes
  • 4 tbs vegan butter
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Place cornbread pieces on a baking tray and bake for 8-10 minutes, remove from oven and transfer to a bowl to cool.
  3. In a food processor, combine your walnuts, sundried tomatoes & oil, and 2 tsp rosemary until it resembles minced sausage.
  4. Heat olive oil in a skillet, add onion, celery, & garlic.  Cook down, then add sage, thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Add your sausage until slightly browned. Once cooked, set aside to cool.
  5. Mix your vegetables & sausage with the cornbread, and mix in your vegetable broth carefully to moisten.  Season accordingly.
  6. Spread your stuffing into a lightly greased baking dish, and slightly press it down.  Top with butter knobs, and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the top is crisped and golden brown. 

thanks-17

MAPLE YAM & KABOCHA PUREE WITH CHILI CANDIED PECANS & CARAMELIZED MARSHMALLOWS

  • 4-5 large garnet yams
  • 1-2 small kabocha squash
  • 1 14 oz. can of coconut milk
  • 2 tbs vegan butter
  • 4 tbs maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1-2 tsp pink himalayan salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 cup whole pecans
  • 1 bag of vegan marshmallows
  1. Peel your yams & kabocha squash, and dice into cubes.  Place in boiling water until fork tender, drain, and mash together with the coconut milk (add as much as needed, not the whole can), butter, cinnamon, nutmeg, white pepper, pink salt, 2 tbs maple syrup.  Set aside.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Toss your pecans with 2 tbs maple syrup, cayenne pepper, and chili powder.  Roast on a parchment paper lined baking sheet for 30-45 minutes, until they are toasted and have a nice crunchy glaze. 
  3. Spread your yam & kabocha puree into a baking dish, top with your candied pecans, and then place marshmallows over the top of the whole dish. 
  4. With your oven still being at 350, place the baking dish in the oven and back for roughly 40 minutes, until the marshmallows are nice and caramelized and golden brown. 
  5. Remove from the oven, allow to cool, and serve.

thanks-14

FIRE ROASTED CREAMED CORN WITH COCONUT & SAGE

  • 2 cups frozen fire roasted corn
  • 1 14 oz. can coconut cream
  • 1/4 tsp pink himalayan salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 3 tbs fresh sage
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • whites of 1 leek
  • 2 tbs gluten free all purpose flour
  1. slice the white part of your leeks into think rings (you can save the greens for another use), & combine them with the corn & coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat, bring to a simmer. then add your flour, whisk in well, and bring back to a boil. reduce to a simmer and allow to thicken.  add more coconut cream if it thickens too much.  season with salt and pepper.  cook until coconut milk has evaporated a bit and thickened, about 15 minutes.
  2. once the mixture has reached the desired consistency, mix in the sage, smoked paprika, and cayenne pepper.  

thanks-11

MAPLE MISO ROASTED BRUSSELS SPROUTS 

  • 1 lb brussels sprouts  
  • 1/2 tbs olive oil
  • pinch salt & pepper

GLAZE

  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ginger
  • 1 tbs maple syrup
  • 1 tbs mirin
  • 1 tbs rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp water
  • 1 tsp sriracha
  • 2 tbs white miso
  1. preheat oven to 375 F
  2. line baking tray with foil & spray with coconut oil
  3. rinse brussels and trim stems. remove any damaged outer leaves & slice them in half.
  4. add sprouts to a bowl and coat with oil, salt, and pepper.
  5. arrange them in a single layer, cut side down on the sheet. roast for about 30 min, flipping them halfway. remove from the tray and place into a large mixing bowl.
  6. mix all other ingredients together in a small saucepan on med heat. bring to a boil and simmer for about 1 minute until the sauce thickens slightly.
  7. pour sauce over brussels, and serve.

thanks-13

MAITAKE MUSHROOM & LEMON THYME GRAVY

  • 2 lbs maitake mushrooms
  • 4 sprigs fresh lemon thyme
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup gluten free flour
  • 5 tbs vegan butter
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 cup coconut cream
  • 2 cubes vegan beef bouillon
  • 2 tbs vegan worcestershire
  • 2 tbs tamari
  • 1/2 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbs pink himalayan salt
  • 3 tbs black pepper
  • 1 tbs dijon mustard
  • 1 bay leaf
  1. slice your mushrooms to your size preference, and also finely dice the onion & garlic.  Place mushrooms, onions, and garlic in a deep pan with vegan butter & thyme bundle.  allow to cook down until soft, then add in your flour and stir to combine. 
  2. add your vegetable broth, coconut cream, beef bouillon, worcestershire, tamari, balsamic, dijon mustard, salt, bay leaf, and pepper.  stir to combine.
  3. bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and allow to cook until thickened.  if you need the gravy to thicken more,  whisk about 2-3 tbs flour with 1-2 tbs vegetable broth until incorporated and pour into the gravy, stir, and allow to thicken more.  remove the thyme bundle & bay leaf before serving.
  4. transfer to a gravy boat, and serve.

thanks-8

CARAMELIZED ONION, TEMPEH, & WATER CHESTNUT STUFFED ACORN SQUASH WITH RYE BARBECUE GLAZE

  • 3 acorn squash
  • 4 red onions
  • 3 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbs vegan butter
  • 2 8 oz. blocks of tempeh (we used flax tempeh)
  • 1 cup roasted water chestnuts
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 1 granny smith apple
  • 2 tbs dijon mustard
  • 1 tbs tamari
  • 1 tbs pink salt
  • 1 tbs black pepper

RYE BARBECUE GLAZE

  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 3 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 vidalia onion
  • salt / pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 tbs dijon mustard
  • 2 tbs vegan worcestershire
  • 1 tbs tamari
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 5 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tbs caraway seed

‘EVERYTHING’ SEEDS

  • 3 tbs dried minced shallot (or onion)
  • 3 tbs poppyseeds
  • 3 tbs caraway seeds
  • 1 tbs pink himalayan salt
  1. in a medium saucepan heat oil and add onion, garlic, salt, and pepper.  cook until golden brown, then stir in sugar, tomato paste, mustard, tamari, worcestershire, and cayenne & rye seed, and cook until thickened.  add the vinegar and broth and bring to a boil.  reduce and cook until thick, about 10 minutes.  blend together until well combined, then set aside. 
  2. in a cast iron skillet, caramelize your onions over medium – low heat with balsamic vinegar, butter, and salt.  once caramelized, add your diced celery, diced granny smith apple (with the skins on), diced roasted water chestnuts, crumbled tempeh (so it resembles ground meat), tamari, dijon mustard, salt, & pepper
  3. slice your acorn squash in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds / inside meat so theres only a thin border of squash around the edge. also cut a small amount of squash off the bottom side, without cutting into the squash, so it can sit like a bowl on the baking dish.  fill the squash with your filling mixture, place on a baking sheet, and bake at 375 F for 30 minutes.  Top the entire squash & filling with the barbecue glaze, and return to the oven for 15 minutes. 
  4. remove from the oven and allow to cool.  garnish with ‘everything’ seeds.

thanks-21

MASHED POTATOES & RUTABAGA WITH ROASTED GARLIC AND FRESH DILL

  • 5-6 large gold potatoes
  • 2 rutabagas
  • 5-6 tbs vegan butter
  • 1/2-2 cups regular unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 heads of garlic
  • 3-4 tbs fresh dill
  • 3 tbs pink himalayan salt
  • 3 tbs black pepper
  • 1 tbs dijon mustard
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cut off the tops of the heads of garlic, and drizzle with olive oil & salt. wrap completely in foil and bake for roughly an hour.
  2. peel and dice your potatoes & rutabaga, boil in salted water until fork tender, drain and transfer back to the pot. 
  3. mash potatoes & add in your milk, butter, roasted garlic, salt, pepper, mustard, and freshly chopped dill.

thanks-10

HAIRCOT VERTS CASSEROLE WITH CRISPY SHALLOTS

  • 1.5 pounds haircot verts trimmed and cut in half
  • 8 oz mushrooms
  • 3 tbs + 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 cup creamy vegan portabello mushroom soup 
  • 1/2 cup regular unsweetened almond milk
  • 5-6 shallots
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbs dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tbs + 1 tsp pink salt
  • 2 tbs + 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3 tbs vegan butter
  • 2 bay leaves
  1. trim your haircot verts and cut them in half.  Boil in salted water for about 2 minutes until bright green, drain, and immediately transfer to a salted ice bath. allow to cool until you are ready to use them.
  2. in a saucepot, melt your butter until it starts to bubble on the edges. 
  3. finely dice 2 shallots, and add them to the butter.  cook until translucent. then add your slices mushrooms, and cook down until soft.
  4. add in 3 tbs of flour, and mix until fragrant.  add in your dijon mustard, mushroom soup soup, parmesan, almond milk, bay leaves, 2 tbs pink salt, and 2 tbs black pepper. 
  5. bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and allow to cook uncovered until thickened. you want it to be a thick gravy.
  6. add in your haircot verts and stir to combine.  Transfer to a baking dish.
  7. slice your shallots into rings. you will top the casserole with these, and they will crisp up in the oven.
  8. in a preheated 375 degree oven, allow your haircot verts casserole to bake for 30-45 minutes until crisped around the edges.  after it is cooked, top the casserole with your shallot rings, and place back in the oven for 10 minutes. 
  9. allow to cool, serve. 

thanks-22

SRIRACHA CRANBERRY JELLY

  • 12 oz whole cranberries
  • 1/4 cup cranberry juice
  • 3/4 cup agave nectar
  • 2 tsp pectin (mixed with 2 tsp calcium water)
  • 2 tbs sriracha *more or less depending on preference
  1. Put the juice in a heavy bottomed soup pot & bring to a boil.  Add the cranberries and cook, stirring occasionally, just until the berries have popped and begun to soften (about 5 minutes), then remove from the heat.
  2. Using a food mill, mash the softened fruit through the strainer leaving the peels behind.  Add the calcium water to the fruit. 
  3. Stir in the pectin powder & agave, mixing well to combine. Bring to a boil, and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently. 
  4. Pour the sauce into the mold of your choice & allow to cool undisturbed so it can set. 

Even though these recipes are meant for one meal, you can definitely make them for any other meal individually as well!  We also really encourage eating the creamed corn just alone with some hot sauce as a meal.   We hope that you have a great Thanksgiving, and that you take the time to be with your loved ones, enjoy nature, and thank your bodies with this delicious meal!  Have a great holiday everyone.

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