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Your best vegan Thanksgiving side dishes

I make turkey for Thanksgiving, but have a lot of health-conscious eaters in the crowd so I always make all the sides vegan. But my goal is for every single dish to be equally as delicious as traditional ones loaded with butter/cheese/sausage, etc. I'm a chowhound, after all! Anyway, here are my favorite healthy sides. Please add yours!

Chestnut Apple Dressing - with whole wheat bread

Garlic and Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes

Pureed Roasted Squash and Yams with Citrus

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Maple Mustard Glaze

Green Beans Amandine - I leave out the butter

Vegan Gravy

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  1. Brussels Sprouts Hash with Caramelized Shallots


    I make this vegan without the butter. I also caramelize the shallots properly, not the silly 10 minutes stated in the recipe.

    Red and Black Rice Stuffing with Red Lentils


    1. Puréed carrots and rutabaga with coconut milk

      2 Replies
      1. re: magiesmom

        Take a look at the ottolenghi cookbooks many striking and delicious dishes there. A favorite of ours is also broccoli raab sauteed with garlic chopped parsley raisins and pine nuts in olive oil

        1. re: jen kalb

          This year we made a great and relatively simple dish from Ottolenghi's Jerusalem book which disappeared in a flash - the recipe is for wedged and roasted (unpeeled) butternut squash and purple onions drizzled with tahina and sprinkled with fried pinenuts, zaatar and parsley. We made it with sweet potato wedges instead

          Simple, great flavor blend a real hit

      2. I like simply roasted brussels sprouts with just olive oil and salt. Since I hate turkey with a passion, I eat mainly sides. Every Thanksgiving I make a huge pot of mushroom barley soup. I don't make it vegan, but it can easily be made that way by substituting olive oil for butter, and porcini mushroom broth for beef broth, and it would taste the same- I use porcini soaking water anyway.

        1. Frijoles refritos! I'm a chili purist...I don't include beans in my chili, but serve beans as a side dish. Yes, chili can be served on il giorno di Ringraziamento (Thanksgiving Day) much later after the turkey dinner, and so can refried beans.

          1. Mashed rutabaga with vegan gravy

            Green bean casserole- instead of using cream of mushroom soup, make a white sauce and add sauteed mushrooms

            Roasted brussels sprouts, or sauteed with earth balance, then add a bit of sugar and cider vinegar

            Pureed sweet potatoes with chipotle peppers

            1. I love and make this salad often- but i use 1/3c oil and you have to massage the dressing into the kale and let chill for several hours, omit the cheese:

              I tried this for the first time the other day- LOVE! I swapped earth balance for the butter and served with a romesco sauce instead of the goat cheese:

              I have made many recipes from ohsheglows.com, excellent vegan recipe source, this one i'm trying tommarrow:

              1. I like mashed rutabaga with a little maple syrup and crispy shallots.

                1. Have you check out Vegan Richa Blog, it's insane to begin with but now Thanksgiving Delicious-ness.


                  pumpkin ravioli ~ hazelnut tarragon butter recipe.

                  Lots of work to make ravioli but Rising Moon has a frozen vegan butternut squash Ravioli

                  Pumpkin Bread and Tempeh Stuffing

                    1. re: Funkalicious

                      Cauliflower steaks are great but that gravy sounds vile.

                      1. re: MplsM ary

                        Really, why? I like coconut milk sauces,though I'd leave out the cornstarch and reduce the sauce.

                        1. re: magiesmom

                          I guess the coconut milk really threw me.

                          One thing I've learned in the last few years is that my palate needs to be expanded through trying things I think are not 'to my taste.' I know there is a thread somewhere on Chowhound where I totally go off on mint and/or raisins in a savory dish as being crap ideas. I have done a 180 since then and embraced both raisins and mint anywhere and everywhere (wait a minute, that sounds dirty!).

                          I will backtrack. Coconut is not my favorite when not in a curry. I will now try this WITH an open mind and palate.

                    2. Have you ever been to Vedge Restaurant in Philly??

                      Roasted Sweet Potato Pate


                      This smooth, sweet vegetable pate is perfectly complemented by the crunch of the nuts and the bite of the mustard.

                      MAKE AHEAD: The pate needs to be refrigerated for at least 3 hours and preferably overnight.

                      Makes about 2 cups (8 servings
                      For the pate

                      2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 3 medium potatoes)
                      1/4 cup olive oil, or more to taste
                      1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
                      1/2 cup chopped onion
                      1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
                      1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
                      1 teaspoon salt
                      1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
                      2 cups no-salt-added canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
                      Hot water, as needed

                      For serving

                      Whole-grain mustard
                      Crushed roasted cashew nuts (salted or unsalted)
                      Baguette toasts


                      Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

                      Peel the sweet potatoes and cut them into 1/2-inch chunks; they don't need to be perfect, because they will be pureed. Transfer to a mixing bowl and add the oil, vinegar, onion, cumin, allspice, salt and pepper; toss to coat. Spread the mixture out on a baking sheet and roast until the potatoes are tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

                      Allow the mixture to cool just a little, then transfer to the bowl of a food processor. Add the chickpeas and puree until smooth and creamy. The pate should be quite thick but still able to move around in the food processor. If it's too thick, drizzle in a little hot water. Alternatively, for a richer pate, drizzle in more oil.

                      Allow the mixture to cool in the refrigerator, covered, for at least 3 hours and preferably overnight.

                      Serve in ramekins, accompanied by other ramekins filled with the mustard and the nuts, and offer toasted slices of baguette.

                      Recipe Source:
                      From chef Rich Landau of Vedge in Philadelphia.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Funkalicious

                        I want to go to Vedge so bad! I don't think I can convince my husabnd though. For a two hour trip, he better be getting something that HE likes too.

                        1. re: melpy

                          It's a two hour trip for me too, and I don't know anyone who be willing make that hike either for veggies. So I went alone. It was so worth it. I can't wait to go back again, I'm kinda glad it's hard to get a reservation otherwise I would on the road weekly.

                          I think your husband would probably be complaining going down but afterwards the trip back home he will be impressed. The food is that fantastic.

                      2. Love olive oil mashed potatoes!!! Or roasted garlic/olive oil mashed potatoes.

                        Roasted cauliflower is amazing; I particularly like it with a combo of garlic and rosemary, or in Middle-Eastern flavor profiles.

                        Roasted broccoli with garlic, red pepper flakes, and lemon zest. Addictive like potato chips.

                        Olive tapenade is awesome for dips or spreads.

                        My mom makes the best green bean dish I've ever had. Simple ingredients, but she's got a magic touch. Blanched beans sautéed in soy sauce, chili paste, brown sugar, and tons of garlic. The doctors at her hospital pay her to bring in large containers of it every week for lunch.

                        I got real into making corn-veggie-"hash" for a while. Sautéed corn with various other veg, served on top of rice. Something about the chew of the rice with crunchy corn is so fresh and addictive.

                        Perfectly roasted (or fried) potatoes will always be #1.

                        And lastly, I found a weird concoction on some blog years ago that blew my f*cking mind. It had roasted potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, corn, kale, and maybe some other things I can't remember. All seasoned/roasted separately, then tossed with fresh pesto and served on white rice. Seems REALLY weird, but was obscenely delicious, I couldn't stop eating it for 2 days.

                        1. I love this mushroom gravy:

                          recipe from our city's co-op grocery deli.

                          I'm making the mashed potatoes this year - I should try your vegan version for the heck of it!

                          1. I brought a big vegan salad to our gathering- no real recipe, but in the bottom was arugala, then fennel, celery and radishes on the mandoline super paper thin, chopped dried figs, roasted salted pumpkin seeds, pomegranate seeds and a lemon black pepper vinegrette

                            1 Reply
                            1. Very informative post and link will be a great help for those who are looking for healthy snacks. Keep sharing! Hope you had a happy Thanksgiving!