Planning a plant-based Thanksgiving? You’re going to need plenty of plant-based Thanksgiving dishes that can fill out your table and even serve as main courses.
Where to start when creating your plant-based Thanksgiving? Think about some of your favorite hearty fall foods: Apples. Pomegranates. Potatoes. Sweet Potatoes. Nuts. Figs. The list goes on, and we’ve got appetizers, salads, side dishes, and more to match this list. All of these recipes will suit the needs of your vegetarian friends. In addition, most fit in the “vegan” or “vegan-friendly” categories. (In other words, they can easily be adapted to fit vegan standards.)
Plant-Based Thanksgiving Appetizers and Starters
We’ll start with some of our favorite plant-based starters. (You can never have too many starters in our book.)
Our first choice is a classic: Butternut Squash Hummus. This is the perfect addition to the Thanksgiving table because it’s served in a butternut squash. It’s also bean-free, for those who are avoiding beans for various reasons. (So yes, technically it’s not “hummus,” but the tahini and garlic gives it a true hummus taste.) The main ingredient is actually pureed butternut squash.
Speaking of hummus, we’d also recommend this Chestnut Hummus with Fresh Sage. You can get a head start by using prepared chestnuts from Melissa’s Produce – and after that it’s a snap.
Plant-Based Thanksgiving Side Dishes
We’re calling this category “side dishes” because they don’t have a direct source of protein like beans or nuts, but you’ll still find these hearty and satisfying.
First, if you love potatoes, you’re going to love these Smashed Potatoes with Sage-Garlic Olive Oil. Of course, everyone loves “smashed” potatoes, but when you serve it with this flavorful olive oil, it becomes a next-level experience.
We’d also love to share this Honey-Balsamic Kuri Squash. It’s a great way to prepare this “smiley-faced” squash, and it’s likely to appeal to kids and adults alike.
Plant-Based Thanksgiving Side Courses/Main Courses
Let’s start this category with a hearty salad. Hearty salads are such a great choice for Thanksgiving. They’re the perfect way to bring together lots of flavors in one healthful bowl. This Cauliflower Date Pistachio Salad, garnished with mint and dill leaves, is a perennial favorite.
We also love, love, love this Fig Millet Kale Salad. When you add in a hearty grain like millet, it’s really the only course you need.
Next, check out these colorful and dramatic Sweet Potatoes with Pomegranate and Red Walnut. This dish is so warm in reds, oranges, and browns that it will fit in perfectly at your Thanksgiving table. It’s vegetarian and vegan-friendly (you can tweak it to substitute for the butter and honey).
We also love this flavorful Italian-Style Fioretto Cauliflower with olives, pine nuts, and sun-dried tomatoes. This is one of our favorite ways to eat cauliflower. It absorbs all of the delicious tangy and salty flavors of the olives and tomatoes. Then the pine nuts add the perfect finishing “crunch.”
If you’re looking for both color and crunch, you’re going to love these Roasted Carrots with Walnut-Arugula Pesto. This pesto is to-die-for delicious, and the whole dish is surprisingly filling.
For a versatile choice, check out this Eggplant with Tahini and Pomegranates. You can serve it as a finger food (using smaller slices of eggplant). Alternatively, you can serve it on a platter as a main course. Either way, it’ll be a crowd-pleaser.
You know we love quinoa, so we’re happy to share two favorite quinoa recipes. First, we have this Quinoa Stuffing with Dates and Walnuts. The dates are a nice sweet-but-not-too-sweet addition to this hearty stuffing.
And last but not least, here’s a sentimental favorite of ours: Quince Quinoa. Of course we love it because the combination of quince and quinoa and cranberries tastes great. But you also have to love any dish that has not one but two “q’s.”
By now your table should be overflowing with delicious dishes. Let the feasting begin!
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