So you're hosting Thanksgiving this year — great choice! The joy and celebration will most definitely be worth the work required to set up and disassemble afterward. There are many reasons for guests to have dietary variations, including allergies and ethical choices. If one or more of your guests are vegan, making the whole meal vegan may be easier. Read up on these quick tips and tricks for how to host a vegan Thanksgiving.
Since butter and cream are involved in nearly every Thanksgiving meal item, you may need to readjust your recipes if you have vegan folks coming to dinner. Let us guide you if you plan to run Thanksgiving dinner differently this year — you'll see a vegan Thanksgiving meal is not so different than a traditional one.
Before planning the meals, check in with everyone on allergies that will add other alteration needs to your shopping list for ingredients. Once you've figured out whether folks have allergies you need to exclude from dishes, let's have an overview of the meal. The most significant difference between a plant-based Thanksgiving and a traditional one is replacing meat, butter, milk, cream, eggs and honey with non-animal derivative ingredients. Because the vegan diet has gained popularity in recent years, you don't have to reinvent the wheel. There are tons of dairy alternatives for these items, and they don't cost more than regular items. As far as the turkey goes, there are alternatives to that too. Tofurkey is a standard turkey replacement, but many creative recipes on the internet will provide a protein-based alternative to having a bird central to the meal.
Another aspect of hosting a meal is delegating. Though you may want to provide everything to your guests, sharing the responsibility of the Thanksgiving meal can be a great community-building decision. You may find that folks are more than willing to contribute even a central part of the meal. You will accommodate dietary restrictions, so no doubt they'll be happy to bring something to contribute. For those who aren't used to cooking vegan, you can send them specific recipes or ask them to bring simple items like bread. Sharing the responsibility for the meal is helpful and can make everyone proud at the feast.
The significant part of a plant-based meal is in the name - you can incorporate more healthy vegetables into your meal. With our modern lifestyles being the fast pace they are, everyone is so used to quick on-the-go meals, which typically have low nutritional value. Typically folks need some vegetables in their lives—what a perfect time to get them — the Thanksgiving meal. Vegan food has a wrap for not being as good as its meat and dairy alternative, but you'll be surprised to find out that vegan food, when prepared correctly, can be delicious.
Prepare as much as possible before the day of the big event. Start with a rough estimate of the number of people attending - last-minute changes, and getting called into work, are all real possibilities, so it's good to be flexible. Prepare extra food if you have add-ons, but not too much extra food that you will have leftovers for weeks.
As we said before, the internet has plenty of vegan recipes if you don't want to go through the effort of converting recipes. When planning out your grocery list, start with the list of classic Thanksgiving dishes and family recipes you want to include. With these lists, write out the ingredients needed, but replace dairy products with alternatives. Now you have your grocery list — don't forget your reusable tote bags. Hosting a vegan Thanksgiving can feel like a transition — so it's OK to purchase the main course from the store if you don't feel up to making it.
If you're hosting guests for a few days or even a week, there are a few items to make your guests feel more comfortable. A fresh set of linens, such as premium Supima cotton hand towels and bath towels will give guests a spa-like experience. New bedding such as our 400-thread-count no-iron sateen sheets and to top it off, one of our ultra-comfy down comforters, will go a long way in making guests feel at home.
Your efforts to accommodate your guests' dietary restrictions will go a long way in making them comfortable in your home. We think you'll be surprised at how satisfying a plant-based Thanksgiving dinner can be to make and eat. No doubt you will be going back for seconds and thirds.