Tips, Tricks and advice for Vegetarian-friendly holiday meals

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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

As a vegetarian, I often have anxiety around holiday meals. I either walk into the celebrations defeated, intentionally eat beforehand, or squirrel away copious amounts of veggies and fruits from their assigned trays. However, over the years, I’ve found ways to make holiday meals enjoyable and filling! I’ve compiled a list of tips, tricks, and words of advice to help you or your loved ones make the holiday season delicious for everyone.

Substitute meat broths with vegetable broth

Utilizing vegetable broth in your holiday cooking is a great way to make staple dishes or family-traditional meals vegetarian-friendly! Often, my own family will make both versions of one dish so it can be enjoyed by everyone. However, if you decide to do this, make sure you clearly label which dish is vegetarian to avoid confusion! Also, there may be slight differences in taste and texture, but nonetheless delicious!

Check out this list of 31 Vegetarian Recipes to Make with Vegetable Broth!

Use plant-based products instead of meats

The main course of holiday meals is often some variation of meat: turkey, ham, chicken, etc. Like the vegetable broth trick, using plant-based products instead of meats in holiday dishes is a great way to ensure they are vegetarian-friendly. However, be cautioned that some of your guests may not enjoy the taste or texture of plant-based products. Make sure you label these dishes accordingly and let your celebrators know that the dish is not made with meat.

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Ask for requests

When in doubt, ask your vegetarian guests what they’d like to see at the dinner table! As I mentioned above, making compromises and accommodations can make a world of difference to your guests’ experiences. Let the people you care about know that you appreciate them this holiday season with their favorite dish!

Pro tip: Write the request down on a recipe card (or index card), including ingredient portions and instructions from your guest! In doing so, you’ll collect recipes to try and give to other people who may be looking for vegetarian dishes.

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Include a variety of dishes, and make compromise where needed

There are many dishes that both vegetarians and non-vegetarians can enjoy: mashed potatoes, sweet corn, cranberry sauce, etc. However, vegetarian guests may be limited to only a few options at the dinner table. When choosing dishes, it is important to provide ones that everyone can enjoy. If changing a family recipe is necessary to succeed in this goal, consider this compromise with your guests. A quick group message to discuss will make your guests feel seen and cared for. That is what the holiday spirit is all about!

If you are perhaps unfamiliar with traditional winter holiday dishes, check out this Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner Menu! Even though it is a specific holiday, I find many of these dishes to be applicable to other winter holidays.

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