What are the holidays without copious amounts of homemade food on a table dressed in beautiful adornments? And with the many holiday parties you’ll be hosting and attending, you’ll want to please everyone with delectable, seasonal dishes. However, when it comes to entertaining guests with cruelty-free lifestyles, cooking vegan cuisine can seem daunting if unfamiliar with the diet. But don’t fret—preparing impressive vegan dishes is possible. And the best part? Your guests won’t even realize your offerings are free of meat and animal by-products.
From main courses to side dishes and desserts, there are vegan recipes that will satisfy everyone invited—even the most ardent meat-eaters. Prepare holiday classics like biscuits, chili, pumpkin pie, and peppermint bark with simple vegan ingredients—no compromises or family bickering required. Looking for some inspiration to get you in the kitchen this holiday season? Create a whole menu with these 15 vegan holiday recipes that will please all your guests.
FOR THE MAIN COURSE
Crockpot Moroccan Lentil and Chickpea Soup
This hearty Moroccan lentil soup recipe from Half Baked Harvest will impress any crowd. It’s full of spicy Moroccan flavors that rival traditional, cozy holiday fares. Serve it with a side of naan bread and top it with whipped goat cheese for lacto-ovo-vegetarian guests.
Stuffed Eggplant With Sunflower Romesco
A stuffed eggplant recipe with sunflower romesco from The First Mess makes for a perfect vegan main course. The presentation alone will please all guests, and the beautiful, fragrant flavors will definitely pass the taste test. This dish is essentially safe for any dietary restrictions, thanks to the nut-free sunflower seed romesco.
Nothing screams holiday comfort food more than shepherd’s pie. This vegan recipe from Minimalist Baker takes just one hour—with lentils taking the place of traditional ground beef filling. Get ready to make this savory, hearty dish your go-to winter recipe.
Instant Pot Pumpkin Walnut Chili
Add pumpkin to a winter favorite like chili, and you’ll have the perfect vegan-friendly holiday meal. Pinch of Yum brings you this vegan chili recipe that’s sure to be a showstopper. The best part is that you can make it in an instant pot—so you’ll have more time to socialize instead of spending hours in the kitchen.
Mac and Cheese With Butternut Squash Noodles
There’s something about mac and cheese that feels so right during the holidays. This butternut squash mac and cheese recipe from Food Faith Fitness lets you enjoy all those warm holiday memories without any of the dairy. Start with spiralized butternut squash noodles as your base, then create a lactose-free cheese sauce by adding nutritional yeast to cashew cream.
FOR THE SIDE DISH
Curried Kale Salad
For an upgraded take on the traditional side salad, try this curried kale salad recipe from Fed + Fit. You’ll love the vibrant mix of flavors—including curry, tahini, and golden berries. Try mixing in different kinds of kale for an array of flavors and micronutrients. This is a perfect side dish for feeding large crowds.
Cauliflower "Risotto" With Asparagus and Cilantro-Basil Hempseed Pesto
Unlike most risottos, this cauliflower version from Half Baked Harvest is completely grain-free. The cilantro-basil hempseed pesto is really the star of the dish, providing bright and intriguing flavors. Trust us—your guests won’t even know they’re eating cauliflower.
Biscuits and Gravy
If anyone ever doubted that you could make a vegan version of biscuits and gravy, let this recipe from Minimalist Baker serve as proof. Mushrooms provide the base of this vegan gravy—giving it a meat-like texture and taste. Drizzle (or pour) over a batch of vegan biscuits, and enjoy.
Green Bean Casserole With Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup
Everybody knows that a holiday gathering must include some form of green bean casserole. Thankfully, Hello Glow has a healthy, vegan version of the holiday favorite—complete with green beans, mushrooms, and a crunchy onion topping made from vegan Parmesan and sliced almonds. It only takes about an hour to make and the homemade taste makes it totally worth it.
Squash, Arugula, and Pomegranate Salad With Tahini Dressing
While side salads have a reputation for being bland and boring, this squash mix salad from Salt and Wind is anything but. The orange squash and pink pomegranate seeds make for a colorful presentation, while vegan and gluten-free ingredients make it accessible for almost any dietary restriction.
FOR THE DESSERT
Vegan Peppermint Bark
This vegan peppermint bark recipe from Food Faith Fitness requires only six ingredients and 15 minutes to prepare. The dark chocolate, fresh mint, and pure peppermint extract give this light dessert a delightful flavor. Serve it up after a holiday feast or wrap it up in festive packaging for a homemade gift.
Winter Bliss Balls
Just what does winter bliss taste like? According to this recipe from Half Baked Harvest, it’s a mixture of dates, roasted cashews, cacao powder, and coconut flakes. Toss all the ingredients into a bowl, roll the dough into balls, then dip them in chocolate and other toppings.
Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake
In case you didn’t know, vegan pumpkin cheesecake exists, and this recipe from Minimalist Baker makes it look better than the traditional treat. Make a graham cracker crust out of vegan, gluten-free gingerbread cookies, then fill it with a pumpkin spice cheesecake mixture made out of pumpkin puree and brown sugar.
Chocolate Peppermint Truffle Bars
These no-bake chocolate peppermint truffle bars from A Healthy Life for Me are made with gluten-free, vegan ingredients that are packed with superfoods. This rich dessert is naturally sweetened with honey, Dutch cocoa powder, and cacao powder. Trust us—these bars will please any crowd for the holidays.
Chocolate Hazelnut Torte
When you place this chocolate hazelnut torte on the table, no one will guess it’s vegan and gluten-free. The recipe from The First Mess calls for a chocolate brownie base, hazelnut mousse, and salty date caramel. The best part? This torte is made with healthy ingredients like ground chia seeds, coconut milk, hazelnuts, and dates. You’ll earn plenty of points on both presentation and taste.