Our 34 Best Holiday Recipes (That Also Happen to Be Vegan)

You know what? You can please everyone this holiday season!

December 13, 2019

Many holiday recipes contain dairy, eggs, or meat (or all of the above). But what if you're not eating milk or eggs, or entertaining guests that aren't, or simply want a short respite during the holidays before diving back in again?

Below are 34 of our best vegan holiday recipes—but with no sacrifice in flavor, heartiness, nor coziness—all smartly constructed, rigorously tested, enjoyed, and shared by members of the community. There's nary a sketchily retrofitted recipe in sight, just vegan dishes that happen to be.

Best Vegan Christmas Recipes

1. Banana, Blueberry, and Pecan Pancakes

Cookbook author Anna Jones turns to these pancakes—hearty with oats, nuts, and fruit—when needing some space (but not too much) from sweets over the holiday season.

2. Pumpkin Christmas Bread

Christmas morning is not the time for an elaborate breakfast; it is time for opening gifts. Slathered with softened butter, fig jam, or softened cream cheese, this pumpkin loaf is the perfect fuel for opening gifts.

3. Pickled Prunes

Serve these sweet, sour, and spiced bites in the snacky hours before the big meal, with yogurt for breakfast, or over ice cream for dessert.

4. Mint Pistachio Pesto

Served alongside the Minted Pepper Salad below, this vegan pesto means you're halfway to a festive holiday board—just add crudités and bread.

5. Minted Pepper Salad

Look at the peppers, so cozily tucked in.

6. Vegan Pie Crust

Keep this one in your back pocket for when you're ready to make pie. The secret ingredient? Coconut oil.

7. Fig and Olive Tapenade

Serve this tapenade as part of a spread, or spread on the bottom of a tart shell for a base of great flavor.

8. Crispy Spice-Brined Pecans

Everyone loves edible gifts. And if you're looking to gift something really special this year, turn to community member AntoniaJames' spice-brined pecans. "At first glance," co-founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs write, "they appear raw and untouched, but one bite betrays that they're actually perfectly salted and spiced from within, and dried to a crisp."

9. Vegan Caesar Salad With Polenta Croutons

An endlessly riffable salad, starring a dairy (and anchovy!) free dressing.

10. Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pears and Pistachios

And endlessly riffable sprouts! Try this recipe with walnuts and cherries, pine nuts and figs, or almonds and cranberries.

11. Roasted Baby Turnips with Dijon-Shallot Vinaigrette and Tarragon

Cozy enough for pajama brunch, but elegant enough for a dinner party.

12. Roasted Cauliflower with Gremolata Bread Crumbs

Mix panko with herbs, lemon, and garlic for a versatile crispy-crunchy topping.

13. Chai Spice Snickerdoodles

Writer Priya Krishna thinks of these as her back-pocket cookies—just replace the whole milk with with oat, almond, or coconut.

14. Vegan Apple Crisp

For another wintry riff, try subbing the apples with pears and cranberries.

15. Vegan Chocolate Pie

Get lost in these swirls.

16. Vegan Chocolate Cake With Creamy Chocolate Filling

Psst, there's pumpkin in here.

17. Ovenly's Secretly Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

From the founders of Ovenly, come this "soft-bellied, chewy, caramelly-crisp-edged, rippled and ringed and puddled with melty chocolate, haunting, well-salted, incidentally vegan" cookie. Perfect for cookie swaps and packed lunches year-round.

18. Vegan Dark Chocolate Peppermint Truffles

Use half of the coconut milk can for these stunning edible gifts...

19. Frozen Vegan Coconut Chocolate Almond Bars

...and the other half for these stunning edible gifts!

20. Vegan Peanut Brittle

Once you learn how to brittle, it's hard not to brittle everything (nuts, seeds, chocolate, puffed grains).

21. Magic Shell

Watch as the pourable chocolate hardens into a thin shell over ice cream. Really, truly magical.

22. Almond Ice with Glazed Cherries

A perfectly wintry way to round out your dinner party menu.

23. Boozy Sour Cherries

Enjoy them on ice cream, and in cocktails, cookies, and truffles.

24. Orange Blossom Candied Cranberries

Blogger, CozyDelicious, says "these bright gems look beautiful in a glass bowl, and are so easy for your guests to pop in their mouths any time of day."

25. 2-Ingredient Toasted Marzipan Ice Cream

For this Genius-approved ice cream, all you need is marzipan and coconut milk! (And spoons.)

26. Roasted Cherry Sorbet

Recipe developer EmilyC writes that roasting cherries for this sorbet works two-fold: It intensifies the flavor and sweetness of even not-so-stellar cherries, and makes the simple syrup right there on the sheet pan.

27. Vegan Fool's Chocolate Gelato

Author Caroline Wright admits the grocery list for this recipe is "kind of crazy." But she also wants you to know it's "full of anti-inflammatory ingredients—maca, carob, and chicory—which all offer a wide array of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants."

28. Vegan Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

"No one wants ice cream with ice crystals in it," says recipe developer Ashley McLaughlin. And so resulted this creamy, crystal-free ice cream base, thanks to arrowroot starch, liquid sweetener, and vodka.

29. Vegan Chocolate Sorbetto Cold Chocolate

We're not messing around.

30. Toasted Rice Chuhai

A stylish option for cocktail hour.

31. Vegan Egg Nog

Cookbook author Gena Hamshaw's version is made creamy with both cashew and coconut milk, and boozy with bourbon or rum.

32. Spiced Gløgg with Port Wine and Cointreau

Hot tip about this recipe, from our co-founders Amanda and Merrill: "Drink this soon after making, as it doesn't reheat well. But we doubt it will last that long anyhow. Cheers!"

33. Delicately Fragrant Mulled Cider

From recipe developer ody: "The recipe is a combination of ideas I found on the internet, inspiration from ingredients I happened to have on hand (the pear: a real winner), and memories of studding oranges with cloves as a child." Keep a pot of this going, all winter long, on your back burner or in a slow-cooker.

34. Hot Toddy with Dried Cherries and Lime

And lastly, another mug of cozies from Amanda: "It's a revitalizing antidote post-snow-shoveling, or post-holiday-anything. By the time you reach the bottom of the mug, the cherries are plumped up and boozy. Drink and treat in one—cheers!"

What is your best vegan holiday recipe? Share it with us in the comments below!

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    Coral Lee
Coral Lee is an Associate Editor at Food52. Before this, she cooked food solely for photos. Before that, she cooked food solely for customers. And before that, she shot lasers at frescoes in Herculaneum and taught yoga. When she's not writing about or making food, she's thinking about it. Her Heritage Radio Network show, "Meant to be Eaten," explores cross-cultural exchange as afforded by food. You can follow her on Instagram @meanttobeeaten.


Stephanie December 13, 2019
Just a heads up, they aren't all vegan! One of those cookie recipes has a few egg whites in it. Oops!
Coral L. December 13, 2019
Hi Stephanie! Thanks so much for the catch. The recipe has been swapped out for another cookie.