This article was updated in August 2023 to include more of our favorite vegan Thanksgiving recipes.
Roast turkey, buttery mashed potatoes, creamed greens, and eggy desserts are all staples at Thanksgiving. So what does a
vegan Thanksgiving look like? Whether you follow this diet yourself, are hosting someone who does, or just want to change it up this year, we’ve got you covered. For starters, there’s probably no roast or deep-fried turkey and that’s okay. There are plenty of protein-rich dishes without a turkey at the center of them, and you can opt for a Tofurky if you’re really missing that centerpiece. But so many people wish for a sides-only Thanksgiving and this menu will deliver.
Here are 52 of our favorite vegan Thanksgiving recipes that will make any feast more delicious.
This vegan dip gets its gorgeous color from red bell peppers and creamy consistency from cauliflower. Serve with lots of raw vegetables and seedy crackers.
Plan ahead: This custardy eggplant spread is even better after it marinates in the fridge for a day or two.
Skip the honey and swap in maple syrup instead. Serve alongside a vegan ricotta, drizzled with olive oil, and crudités.
This hummus may require chickpeas to soak overnight, however, when it comes to active cook time, Yotam Ottolenghi’s technique (briefly cooking the beans directly with baking soda) should save you up to an hour. Of course, like any hummus, this will hold up well if made days in advance.
If you’re already making green beans this Thanksgiving, buy extra and pickle them. They’re great on cheese boards. Better in a Bloody Mary. And the brine can stand in for the olive juice in your dirty Martini.
Start your holiday with cold beer’s favorite friend: chips and guac. This recipe from Roberto Santibañezis is consistent, classic, and convenient (it requires just 6 ingredients and 15 minutes of effort).
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Caesar dressing has Parmesan cheese, anchovies, and egg yolks, so how do you make it vegan? Cashews, kelp, white miso, and nutritional yeast.
Ranch was made with buttermilk in mind, but it turns out, cashew cream does the job just as well—especially when lots of herbs (like parsley, chives, and dill) are involved.
This miso dressing is equal parts zingy and nutty, thanks to ginger and sesame oil. We bet it would be great drizzled over roasted squash, too.
Sweet potatoes, radicchio, and dried dates get treated to a maple–peanut butter dressing. Lovely as a side or main dish.
Carrots, shaved into ribbons with a vegetable, are like autumn’s answer to zoodles. Here, they turn into a bright-eyed salad with charred pineapple and a cumin dressing.
Vegetable gratins are all about the cheese and cream. This just-as-creamy vegan version uses plant-based milk, nutritional yeast, and almonds instead.
Endives get roasted until fork-tender and varnished, then drizzled in a big-personality walnut vinaigrette.
Tahini, Dijon mustard, maple syrup, soy sauce. There, you just memorized the ingredient list. Pour on literally any roasted vegetable.
Steamed broccoli may sound less compelling than roasted broccoli, but that’s just because you have yet to top it with this caper-raisin vinaigrette.
Turmeric gives roasted cauliflower a buttery-yellow color. Psst: This pistachio-date gremolata would be great with roasted squash, too.
Looking for an easy, no-fuss side dish that’s totally vegan? Choose sautéed Brussels sprouts, which are at their peak right around Thanksgiving. You don’t need to do much to dress ’em up—a little bit of oil, salt and pepper, and lemon juice will do it.
While we’re on the topic of keeping things simple, consider this cauliflower recipe too. The secret to flavorful, crispy, and definitely not boring cauliflower has to do with the way that you cut the stalks (slicing into thick slabs versus individual florets), roasting them with grated garlic, and then garnishing with raisins, red pepper flakes, and flaky salt.
These dressed-up sweet potatoes are hearty enough to be a vegan substitute for roast turkey (and they’re just as beautiful too). Once the spuds are thoroughly roasted, they’re topped with a spiced lentil salad, a drizzle of pomegranate molasses, and a lemony, garlicky dressing.
Clearly, we’re all about tahini. Why? Because it’s nutty, earthy, and totally vegan. It’s a super easy condiment to use to dress up a basic roasted veggie, like broccoli.
This dish is perfect for anybody trying to get ahead of their Thanksgiving cooking since the zucchini can be par-cooked 2 days in advance of finishing the dish, the freekeh can be cooked 3 days prior to making the stuffing, and the stuffing can be prepared 2-3 days prior to stuffing the zucchini.
“I really loved the flavors, which provided immeasurable depth and warmth,” writes community member Robin Taylor. “I would not change a thing except to make much more next time… Everything worked so well with the coconut oil.”
Braised, spiced, and deeply flavored, this cabbage from Sohla El-Wayl is as substantial and nourishing as any traditional Thanksgiving dish. Better yet, because it already looks so good, you can serve this cabbage directly from the skillet in which it’s cooked.
A hit among our community, this spiced Cauliflower has maintained a 4.5-star rating since debuting on our site in 2014. “This is so, so good! For Thanksgiving, I made a double batch because the organic cauliflowers weren’t large; I wish I had quadrupled it,” lauds community member Cheryl.
“I really loved the flavors, which provided immeasurable depth and warmth,” writes community member Robin Taylor. “I would not change a thing except to make much more next time. I’m still craving the flavors. Everything worked so well with the coconut oil.”
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Follow this formula toward your new favorite carrot soup. Or feel free to swap out the carrots and call in parsnips.
Vegan cream of mushroom? It’s possible, thanks to coconut milk. Try an assortment of mushroom varieties for more umami.
“While the soup comes out very creamy, it is actually vegan,” writes Sara Jenkins. “By adding a small amount of potato to the base, the soup becomes perfectly lush, with a velvet-like softness post purée.”
Pumpkin doesn’t need to turn into pie (though we have a vegan recipe for that, too, see below). Here, it stars in a hearty bean soup with lots of ruffly kale.
30. Mac & Cheese
Just like the original, a vegan mac and cheese should be creamy in texture and cheesy in flavor. Vegan recipe developer Gena Hamshaw achieves this with homemade cashew cream, canned beans, and lots of nutritional yeast.
Don’t let the long ingredient list deter you. These baked sweet potatoes are bold-flavored enough to serve as a main course.
“I was very excited to test [these] sweet potatoes, and my only regret is that I didn’t make twice as much,” wrote community member drbabs. While drbabs served them with roast chicken, these potatoes will work alongside any savory main (like Sohla’s braised cabbage).
Cornbread without the buttermilk? No problem. Souring soy milk with apple cider vinegar creates a strikingly similar effect.
Choose your own adventure: These tender, fluffy sweet potato biscuits can be made either savory or sweet.
Baked beans may not sound like a main course, but using oversized gigante beans makes them feel extra special. And, yes, the coleslaw is made with a homemade vegan mayo.
“Cauliflower, in this case, amplifies the joys of a real, delightfully starchy pasta creation rather than standing in for one,” writes recipe developer Gena Hemshaw. “Cauliflower creates the base for a creamy, rich, and completely dairy-free alfredo sauce, and the cauliflower florets you don’t use in the sauce are folded into the pasta, which means that you’ll get pockets of savory vegetable goodness between the penne.”
This recipe from Shanika Graham-White is packed with techniques that can be applied to any mashed potatoes, vegan or not. Here are two of our favorites: Using both Russet and Yukon spuds and baking instead of boiling the potatoes.
“This is a kind of bread that makes us forget the doldrums of winter: it is bright, it is addictive, and it is deeply satisfying,” writes our Editors. Also, it’s the perfect vessel for your day-after-Thanksgiving, vegetable-forward, leftover sandwich.
For the fullest flavor, use the best vegetable broth you can get your hands on. Caramelized onions or sautéed mushrooms would make great mix-ins.
41. Apple Crisp
Instead of butter, this vegan streusel topping uses coconut oil instead. Use refined coconut oil if you don’t want the coconutty flavor.
42. Pie Crust
Coconut oil does it again! This time, in a butter-free, flaky-as-heck pie crust. Fill with your favorite filling or crumble on top of a plant-based ice cream.
Thanksgiving breakfast? Yes, please. The filling calls for pecans and raisins, but feel free to swap in your favorite nut and dried fruit.
44. Pumpkin Pie
Cashew cream subs in for eggs and cream in this new-classic pumpkin pie. Even better topped with whipped coconut cream.
45. Raw Pecan Pie
Classic pecan pie only uses pecans in the filling—but this overachieving recipe uses them in the crust, too.
No, that one tablespoon ground ginger in the ingredient list isn’t a mistake. It’s what makes these chocolatey cookies so spicy and good.
If a slice of pie sounds like too much toward the end of your Thanksgiving feast, serve these itty-bitty chocolate chip cookies instead.
Frankly, these are closer to blondies than brownies (since there’s no chocolate or cocoa powder), but that’s no matter. Chopped walnuts, apples, and a duo of nutmeg and cinnamon are folded into the vegan batter for an easy Thanksgiving dessert.
49. Vegan Apple Pie
The filling for apple pie is generally vegan (maybe with the exception of a few pats of butter), so the real focus for this dairy-free dessert is in the crust. Instead of butter, it’s made with a combination of oat milk, coconut oil, all-purpose flour, and a wee bit of salt.
For a dessert on the lighter side that feels totally apt for Thanksgiving and is vegan to boot, try poached pears, which are cooked in a vat of red wine and orange juice along with cinnamon sticks, a handful of thyme, and sugar.
Pumpkin pie without baking? Sure. Yes. Absolutely. Also, there’s pecans, almonds, dates, and maple syrup in there—just in case you weren’t already convinced.
“Chocolate lovers of all stripes will appreciate this rich, easy to prepare confection,” writes community member Ellen. “The dessert can be lightened up by eliminating the coconut milk, or made even quicker by substituting raw cacao powder for the bittersweet chocolate. For a colorful touch top with fresh berries or chopped pistachios sprinkled with sea salt or a smidgen of cinnamon.”
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