With more people becoming vegan, preparing a festive holiday meal to please everyone may seem a bit daunting. Traditionally the focus is on meat and so to please everyone the nutritionists at Spoon Guru have provided some tips and easy food ideas to help please vegans who may be attending a holiday gathering. These ideas will even please those who aren’t vegan. Spoon Guru is a free consumer iOS and Android app to help consumers with food allergies or following specific dietary needs.
Making unique dishes to accommodate everyone can be challenging, so instead explore dishes that can easily be adapted to suit your guests’ needs.
Serve dishes that anyone can eat, such as steamed green beans, roasted Brussels sprouts, mushroom gravy, and baked sweet potatoes with sides of non-dairy buttery spreads, virgin olive oil or seed oils, and roasted pecans.
Mulled wine can also be adapted. When making mulled wine you can still use the same fruits and spices as when making non-vegan mulled wine, but instead of using honey to sweeten it use maple syrup or organic brown sugar.
Eggnog for all: this festive drink can be quickly made from scratch using any non-dairy milk. Soak dates, cashews, apricots and mixed spice in the brandy overnight. The next day, tip the mixture into a blender and add the seeds from the vanilla pod and the almond milk. Blitz until smooth, then pour into eight tall glasses (use a sieve, if you like) with ice and grate some nutmeg on top.
Crispy roast potatoes: instead of using turkey or duck fat for your roasted potatoes, use olive oil and add some rosemary and salt. Or when making potato mash for both vegan and non-vegan guests, set aside some boiled potatoes before adding the butter or milk. Then for the vegan mash, use a dairy-free butter or a milk alternative.
For vegan pigs in blankets, pick up some vegan sausages available in the supermarket and wrap with sundried tomatoes.
Serve roasted parsnips in maple syrup instead of honey.
Trying to find vegan ready-prepared gravy or gravy granules can be difficult, so whip up your own. Gently fry one finely chopped onion in a tablespoon of olive oil in a large, deep pan for five minutes. Add one teaspoon mustard seeds, two chopped garlic cloves, one chopped stick of celery and five cherry tomatoes and cook for another five minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add 500 ml vegan vegetable stock, two teaspoons cranberry sauce, three tablespoons red wine and three tablespoons mixed herbs, season and simmer for 15 minutes. Purée with a stick blender until smooth.
Using a unique combination of AI, machine learning, nutritionist expertise and consumer insights, the Spoon Guru search engine delivers hundreds of thousands of food products relevant to the individual, along with thousands of tailored recipes. When shopping, the app’s powerful barcode scanner reads a product barcode to identify what the consumer can and cannot eat, making accurate grocery shopping enjoyable instead of a chore. The same search process has created tens of thousands of recipes.