There are so many holidays between October and January that it can be a bit overwhelming. Thanksgiving is a holiday already rife with political meaning and controversy, so the knowledge that 40 million birds are killed in the name of “tradition” doesn’t exactly improve this holiday’s standing with many vegans and plant-based eaters, although this practice might adequately reflect what many would call a holiday that celebrates “genocide” and “massacre.” For someone who abstain from consuming animals, Thanksgiving can be a particularly grim holiday.
Never fear, there are many humane seasonal recipes and activities that compliment plant-based lifestyle practices. Check out the list of our favorite Thanksgiving activities and recipe resources below!
1. Adopt/Sponsor a Turkey
Did you know that you can sponsor a turkey this year, instead of eating one? Farm Sanctuaries across the nation usually use the holiday season as the time to promote their animal sponsorship programs. If you’re choosing to avoid eating animals due to ethical concerns, you might consider sponsoring one of these amazing animals. Find a sanctuary near you and sponsor a turkey today!
Happy Herbivore Holidays & Gatherings: Easy Plant-Based Recipes for Your Healthiest Celebrations and Special Occasions (Happy Herbivore). This is hands-down one of my (Tabby) FAVORITE holiday cookbooks. Blogger and author Lindsay S. Nixon assembles all of her favorite vegan holiday meals into a single cookbook. Find recipes for the holidays, New Years, Valentine’s Day, Easter, etc. She also has a few fabulous tailgate/cookout items! My favorite recipes include Nixon’s buffalo cauliflower, skillet green bean casserole, and sweet potato casserole.
We were pretty excited to see that the New York Times just published an article telling their readers how to prepare several vegan dishes this Thanksgiving. Good Housekeeping has prepared a list of 22 recipes for you to try out, including harvest succotash, savory pumpkin and sage soup, and gluten-free chocolate ganache tart (O-M-G YUM). Food blogs like I Love Vegan and the Minimalist Baker also offer a wide selection of 100% plant-based, vegan, holiday dishes.
3. Plant-Based Main Course
Alright, so you want to go turkey free but you’re not quite sure what the hec you can serve to your meat-lovin family. Don’t worry! We’ve put together a list of turkey replacements for you below.
A roast covered in delicious breading, stuffed with wild rice, grains, and cranberries. Also comes with a tasty gravy.
Sold at Trader Joes
Another roast, also stuffed with rice, grains, and cranberries. This roast develops a crusty out ter skin after backing and is similar in turkey-flavor to Gardein’s Turkey Cutlets and Savory Stuffed Turkey.
Sold at Whole Foods, Wegmans, Shop Rite, Target, and other select major grocery chains.
Stuffed with a traditional breaded stuffing, which includes onions, celery, cranberries, and butternut squash. Also comes with a tasty mushroom gravy.
Sold at Whole Foods
This roast is a little denser than other roasts, the leftovers are delicious on sandwiches. This roast is also packed with a traditionally flavored stuffing. The roast includes a pack of gravy and a brownie tray for dessert!
Available at Whole Foods, Trader Joes, Kroger, Shoprite and some other major grocery chains. Some Shoprite locations will give you a free Tofurkey roast option if you collect a certain threshold of reward points throughout the holiday season!
4. Celebrate with a LIVE turkey!
Many farm sanctuaries host their own Thanksgiving events, which include a celebratory feast. Sanctuary turkeys, many of whom were rescued from slaughter, are often the guests of honor. Visit a sanctuary, try out some good eats, and befriend a bird.
As always, we hope that you found this blog post to be both informative and supportive as you move onward on your plant-based lifestyle journey. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our show (available on itunes and stitcher).
~ Tabby and Holly