What to make for the vegetarians?

November 21, 20114 Comments

Chances are you’ll either host vegetarian guests or dine amongst herbivores this holiday season. Plant-based diets are growing in popularity and while this may cause the carnivore host to fret, it shouldn’t. There are so many wonderful options this time of year. Over the past several weeks, I’ve had this question pop up repeatedly: “My sister/cousin/aunt/brother’s girlfriend/neighbor is vegetarian and will be joining us for the holidays. I want to be sure to offer options for her/him. What do you suggest?”

You are in luck and you’ve come to the right place. I’ve organized my recipes page with a dedicated section for vegetarian main courses. Peruse the archives and see if anything suits your needs. The terrific thing about Thanksgiving dinner is that there are so many mouth-watering traditional sides, the turkey is almost unnecessary. From green beans and sweet potatoes to cranberry sauce and brussels sprouts, I could be pretty happy and stuffed even without the bird! And that doesn’t even take into account pumpkin or pecan pie (a small sliver of each, please. And don’t forget the whip!).

I also uncovered a stunningly easy and delicious recipe from Whole Living Magazine. I receive quite a number of magazines. In fact, I get so many I don’t even get through every one each month (environmentalists simmer down – I am pruning the collection for 2012). I typically let them pile up until I have a chance to scan them, tear out interesting articles or recipes, then set them aside. However, when the latest issue of Whole Living arrives, I dive into it right away. Sometimes I’m still standing at the mailbox with the door open. It never makes it to the pile. The recipes are simple and reliable. Most of the time, they only include a handful of ingredients. The roasted acorn squash recipe, pictured here, came from the latest issue and it was so delightful I made it twice within a week’s time. First, it appeared as a side dish accompanying a Sunday evening roast turkey dinner with friends. Disappointed that the leftovers I’d hoped for didn’t materialize, I made it again the following week for a hearty lunch.

What you may not realize is that unlike many typical vegetable-based side dishes, this recipe offers a substantial amount of protein and healthy fat thanks to the quinoa, nuts and olive oil. It’s also packed with flavor. If you don’t get around to it for your feast, consider it for the days following when you’re looking to scale back your diet to more reasonable day-to-day fare. After all, that string of holiday parties is just around the corner…

4 responses to “What to make for the vegetarians?”

  1. Karen says:

    BTW, the stuffed peppers on Halloween were great! I used the veggie broth to make the recipe vegan and my guests were impressed.

    Funny story, I knew my friends were vegetarian years ago and I knew she had made a dietary change a few months back–I thought it was to a vegan diet. Turns out, she actually became a meat-eater. Oh well, the peppers were great!

  2. Karen says:

    Quick follow-up: turns out, my friend was actually gluten-sensitive. Thank goodness rice is gluten-free! I swear those stuffed peppers are a great entree for sensitive eaters. Vegan, gluten-free, filling, and yummy!

    • Alicia says:

      Glad you enjoyed the peppers even though your friends had different dietary restrictions than you thought! Another great gluten free recipe is the plum tomato tart. It has a brown rice crust. These are some of my favorite recipes and I have no dietary restrictions whatsoever.

  3. Lynda says:

    This looks delicious, hearty and satisfying. Yum!

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