Thanksgiving is right around the corner (though with all of the advertisements, you’d think Christmas was tomorrow).
It’s the time of year to reunite with family members, whether or not you pretend to enjoy their company.
I’ve been a vegetarian (pescetarian, to be more exact) for almost seven years, so Thanksgiving can be kind of funky. I tend to enjoy the delicious sides dishes, mostly. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Wouldn’t you agree that the sides are the best part? Maybe that’s just me… That’s why the sides listed would make a great meal all together.
Be sure to keep all of the different needs of your guests in mind; a lot of people are eating gluten-free these days and would appreciate dishes that they can enjoy, too.
Here are some recipes you can use this year to please the special diets of your friends and family! Just follow the links of the recipes that interest you and you’ll have a holiday menu in no time.
- Roasted Pumpkin Bisque
- Usually, I’m not a fan of the squash family, but you can’t go wrong with this pumpkin soup. Another gluten-free and vegetarian recipe, this would make a great appetizer on Thanksgiving or an entrée on these cool, autumn nights before the holiday.
- Spinach, Mushroom, and Feta Crustless Quiche
- Making quiche is an easy way to combine tasty flavors. And because this quiche is crustless, it can please even more of your guests. Spinach is such a multi-purpose vegetable and it goes so well with mushrooms. The blend of cheeses in this dish ties everything together deliciously.
- Roasted Sweet Potato and Black Bean Salad
- What’s Thanksgiving without a little sweet potato? This salad is light, flavorful and absolutely delicious. It might even go very well with the flavors in the stuffing listed below…
- Plum-Glazed Tofu with Udon and Vegetables
- This noodle dish is a fun way to bring some international flavors to the table. Your vegetarian friends will definitely appreciate the delicious tofu as an alternative to the usual fowl-fare on Thanksgiving. Remember this recipe the next time you cook Chinese food at home!
- Stuffed Acorn Squash with Quinoa and Pistachios
- You can’t go wrong by combining the sweetness of this squash with the nuttiness of quinoa. Quinoa is a grain, sort of, that is packed with protein and other great nutrients – it also absorbs any flavors that you pair it with. Put this as the main dish and you’ll receive plenty of compliments.
- Parmesan Garlic Mashed Potatoes
- This recipe is gluten-free and vegetarian friendly – and delicious. There’s just something about blending the delicious aroma of garlic with the rich taste of Parmesan cheese. Try this version of mashed potatoes this year just to mix things up.
- Bacon, Goat Cheese, and Green Onion Biscuits
- Boy, these sound like a meal on their own, huh? They’re like those perfect biscuits from restaurants but even better. The author notes that you can substitute any other kind of cheese in these, just in case goat cheese isn’t a crowd pleaser. Definitely bookmark this recipe as a year-long favorite.
- Cornbread & Chorizo Stuffing
- Maybe this is how you’ll choose to spice up your stuffing this year. Chorizo is a spicy, Spanish sausage – so there’s little bit of everything in this stuffing. There are plenty of new flavors here in addition to traditional stuffing favorites.
- Zucchini Cakes
- This recipe only has four ingredients, so it sounds right up my alley. That also means you have a lot of freedom and could add your own spin to them. I bet you could also use other squashes (that can be easily grated). Give these to kids who are picky eaters and watch them, all of a sudden, love vegetables.
- Citrus Green Beans
- Does your table need some waking up? Bring bright colors and flavors with this side dish. This would be a great alternative to the usual green bean casserole (although that’s usually my favorite). The recipe recommends serving this warm with whichever meat you choose to serve.
- Brown Butter Peach Crumble Bars
- Now, peaches may not be entirely in season, but this dessert is worth it. (Included is also a recipe for a blueberry version.) The oats combine with the sweetness of the sugars to make a rich and gooey dessert. Here’s a secret: it also makes a great breakfast, trust me.
- Cheesecake Cookies
- Usually there is some sort of pie for dessert on Thanksgiving, but these cookies would be good for any holiday. There’s just something about cheesecake that means it’s a special occasion. The best part is that you probably have most of the ingredients in your pantry already.
- Pear and Cranberry Lattice Tarts
- Fall fruits! It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without some kind of cranberry dish, so why not make it dessert? These are individual tarts (or as I call them: mini-pies) that are sure to get everyone into the festive spirit.
Image property of Michael Whitney.