A Truly Vegetarian Thanksgiving


You know, even though I live in Vancouver, Canada, and we celebrate our Thanksgiving in October, I never feel in the Thanksgiving spirit until the American one rolls around.

Weird how that works. I guess it’s the power of marketing! The American Thanksgiving is marketed a lot more than the Canadian one, even in Canada! Probably this has something to do with good ol’ Black Friday.

Thanksgiving, of course, is about so much more than just the amazing deals. It’s a time to be grateful for all that you have and are blessed with. This is something we could stand to do more than once a year, but at least once a year it’s accompanied by amazing food too!

For those of you who struggle with coming up with interesting vegetarian Thanksgiving meals (particularly if you’re entertaining meat-eaters), here are my suggestions for your vegetarian Thanksgiving menu later on this week. I’m hosting a Christmas dinner this year for a few friends, and it will be all veggie food, so this is also helping me to prepare my own menu!

**Many of these meals are gluten-free (or can be made gluten-free) or vegan, so if you have guests with those eating requirements, still check these recipes out! If you want to know which recipes of mine are gluten-free or vegan, go to the Recipes page and look for the letters GF or VGN after the meal name – that means they can be adapted for those diets.

Hors d’oeuvres:

Some crispy quinoa cakes with roasted red pepper sauce (make them miniature size) are the perfect hors d’oeuvres to pass around to your guests as people arrive and while dinner is still finishing up.

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Make my Mediterranean-Stuffed Whatevers and choose to stuff something miniature and hors d’oeuvres-sized, like small tomatoes, peppers or button mushrooms!

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Go for a roasted butternut squash bisque – warming, creamy and comforting; a perfect appetizer to whet your guests’ appetites!

If you want to have a squash-based main course (see below), try a stuffed mushroom starter, like my mushrooms stuffed with leeks and almonds. Omit the rice to ensure this is not too filling!

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Main Course:

Here are some options…

  • Mushroom  risotto– an impressive Italian dish bursting with flavour

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  • Go for an Indian-inspired Italian dish with the creamy decadent tomato sauce in my Riso alla Orientale.

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  • If it’s not a squash overload, try the pilaf-stuffed acorn squash– that is a hearty, filling and seasonal meal that will please meat-eaters and veggies alike!

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Don’t forget your side dish!

Give these Balsamic-Roasted Brussels Sprouts a try…you can use this marinade on any veggies of your choice. Roast them slowly and enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving side dish!

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Ah, everyone’s favourite course, no?

As I like to say: “Dessert’s always vegetarian!”

(Though lately I’ve seen a weird trend towards putting bacon in sweet things. Yikes.)

As I posted yesterday, the ideal pumpkin alternative for this year’s Thanksgiving dessert is an apple almond torte (I posted this recipe just yesterday):

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If you’re feeling more like a cake, stick with the apple theme with this unbelievably crumbly, warm and delicious apple walnut cake.

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If you want something more chocolatey, there’s Katie’s chocolate pie.

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Or Angela’s vegan yet decadent double chocolate torte.

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Take-Home Treat:

Stick with the seasonal theme and give these delightful Better-than-Starbucks’ Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins as a take-away treat for people to enjoy the next day – that way they remain impressed with your cooking long after the actual day!

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And here are some other Thanksgiving-appropriate vegetarian recipes that I’ve seen out there in the blogosphere!

If you have a Thanksgiving- or Christmas-worthy vegetarian meal or menu, please link ’em up in the comments below!

PS. I’m linking this post up at naptime creations‘ Tasty Tuesday Party, Mandy’s Recipe Box‘s Totally Tasty Tuesdays party, The Girl Creative‘s Just Something I Whipped Up part, Blessed with Grace‘s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday party and It’s A Blog Party‘s link party.


  1. Alexiasana says:

    wow, all these meals look amazing! I am especially intrigued by the quinoa cakes and red pepper sauce and the butternut squash bisque. yummy! I definitely think we should celebrate thanksgiving in europe too now.. at least the food part 🙂

    • Right?? I think so too! I grew up in the Caribbean and England where there was no Thanksgiving, so right now I’m all about getting into the food part of it now I’m living on this side of the world!

  2. Well it looks like you got thanksgiving all taken care of ; )

    I know Mama Pea has great thanksgiving recipes! I really want to make some of her cookies for thanksgiving to bring to my parents house, but not sure!

    Happy Tuesday love! xoxo

  3. Cool, lots of great ideas here. And thanks for including my vegan gravy!

  4. basically, i want everything!! i’m so excited for my first american thanksgiving!!

  5. Ohhh wow! Everything, everything in this post looks amazing!! I definitely want to try the quinoa cakes…and then everything else after 😀 The mushroom risotto looks heavenly, too…k, I’m hungry now 😛

    • Haha that happens to me when I look at food blogs too…all of a sudden I’m starving. Give the quinoa cakes a try, they really are so yummy! Thanks Char!

  6. Thanks for your comment Anna! I love your post! I love your ideas for all parts of the meal. Everything looks so delicious! Have a great week!

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