If you're new to having a vegan Thanksgiving dinner, it can be a bit overwhelming. What can I make? Is it going to feel traditional without turkey? And now with the added challenge of social distancing it's likely that you may not be gathering at all for this holiday. I wanted to help you by creating this guide for a Vegan Thanksgiving Dinner for 2. Whether it be social distancing that's keeping your celebrations small, or you just prefer it that way, this guide will help you design the perfect menu to celebrate this special occasion. Lots of tips are included to make your celebration easy and special.
10 Tips for Vegan Thanksgiving Dinner for 2:
1- Keep it simple. As you won't have many extra hands in the kitchen, it's no fun to overwhelm yourself with piles of work. Part of enjoying the holidays is finding time to relax, so since you're only cooking for two cut the stress and keep it simple. You don't need every single traditional side dish, an extravagant main, or an array of desserts to choose from. Instead choose just your favourite sides and choose recipes that are simple to prepare.
2- Find corners to cut. Along the lines of keeping it simple, don't hesitate to find corners to cut. Feel free to purchase store-bought vegan dishes for your meal. Vegan roasts, prepared cakes or pies, and vegan whipped cream in a can are all be great time savers that can still help you make a special feast. Many vegan restaurants or stores will also be selling pre-made treats. Sometimes it's a treat to buy something you wouldn't cook for yourself.
3- Make ahead. Some dishes are actually better made ahead such as my easy vegan pumpkin pie and pumpkin cheesecake. When designing your menu browse the recipes and see which recipes you can prep ahead of time. Spreading out the cooking over two or three days will mean you don't have to spend long in the kitchen on Thanksgiving.
4- Make or buy at least one special treat. Whether it be a homemade vegan cheese, a fancy dessert, or a show stopper main, to make the occasion feel extra special it's nice to have at least one dish you wouldn't find on your usual table.
5- Decorate. To make the occasion feel special, add some decorations. Spruce up your table by adding pumpkins, autumn leaves, fresh herbs such as rosemary or thyme sprigs, or other decorations. It can even be as simple as lighting a candle or using some cloth napkins. Even small touches will make this meal feel unique.
6- Relocate. If you always eat your meals in the same location, try changing the location up a bit. If you normally eat in your kitchen or on the couch, try cleaning off your dining table for this special occasion. If you don't have a dinning table (I don't), think of other creative locations you could enjoy your meal that might be fun. For my partners birthday we made a picnic on the living room floor. For our New Year celebration we prepared a feast and served it on our coffee table by the fire place. If it's warm enough it could be lovely to have an outdoor meal, wrap yourself in a blanket if needed. Sometimes all it takes is a new local to make the event feel totally new.
7- Make smaller portions. If there's only two of you, you really don't need a massive tray of scalloped potatoes, or a huge vegan roast. In many instances it might be a good idea to reduce the recipe so you don't prepare way too much food. In any of the recipes on my blog I provide the option to reduce the recipe size by just changing the serving size. See how in this little video.
8- Team work. There's two of you so make use of that. Cooking together can be fun and will give you a fun activity. You can each choose a few dishes to make, or if your teammate doesn't like to cook, you can recruit them for dish duty. Tip: try to clean dishes as you cook so there is less of a mess for after dinner.
9- Pop a bottle. Pop a bottle of champagne, wine, a fancy beer, apple cider, or fizzy water. When preparing for your Thanksgiving dinner don't forget to include a special drink too.
10- Plan an after dinner activity. Plan an activity for after dinner so that the special day continues. Star gazing, watching a great movie, a video game battle, sipping cocktails by the fire, or playing a board game are all fun ideas.
Menu guide for vegan thanksgiving dinner for 2
Now that you have some tips to make this day easy and special, here is a selection of recipes to choose from. I selected the below recipes because they are easy to prepare as well as super delicious, but feel free to swap any of the items out for a store-bought dish or your family favourite version.
Make a vegan snack board! This can be as simple as a vegan cheese and crackers with some olives, or a flavoured hummus with veggies for dipping. Follow my guide for how to make a vegan snack board but feel free to keep it much simpler since you're only feeding 2 people. I often find that I can put together a pretty great board just by rummaging through my cupboards and fridge.
Side dishes (choose 2):
Easy Vegan Stove Top Stuffing
5-Minute Creamed Corn
Garlic Sautéed Green Beans
The Best (and easiest) Vegan Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Creamy Vegan Coconut Potatoes
Lemon Cashew Asparagus
Grilled Butternut Squash(skip the chimichurri if you like)
Creamy Garlic Coconut Mushrooms
Quick Roasted Cauliflower
Agave Glazed Carrots
Sauce it up (choose 1):
The Main Event (choose 1):
Brown Sugar & Mustard Glazed Tofu
Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash (half the recipe unless you want leftovers)
Almond Rosemary Lemon Crusted Tofu
Puff Pastry Wrapped Lentil Loaf (half the recipe to make one loaf)
Dessert (choose 1):
I hope you found this guide to a vegan Thanksgiving dinner for 2 helpful. I have even more recipe option in my my Ultimate Vegan Thanksgiving Guide if you want to check that out, but I made a point to include the easiest and best recipes in this post for you.
Bon appetegan and happy holidays!