Tips for a vegetarian Christmas

20 April 2017 by
First published: 16 December 2016

Ditch the turkey with these top tips for a vegetarian Christmas feast.

When we think of Christmas dinner, turkey is usually the first thing that pops into our head, but a scrumptious festive spread doesn’t have to be centred around the big bird. Simply get creative in the kitchen this Christmas and create a show-stopping meal minus the meat.

Make a homemade gravy

Christmas dinner wouldn’t be the same without lashings of gravy, so look out for vegetarian gravy granule and pre-prepared mixes, which are readily available at large supermarkets and health stores. Better yet make your own by sautéing onion, carrots and celery with vegetable stock, red wine and couple spoonfuls of flour to thicken the sauce.

Dish up the veggies

Good side dishes are so important when it comes to pleasing vegetarian guests, so make a variety of veggies. Honey roast a selection of root veggies, such as butternut squash, parsnips and carrots, and instead of goose fat-laden roast potatoes, whip up a creamy dauphinoise or buttery mash for extra wow factor.

Pull out the stops  

If you’re going meatless, make sure you replace traditional turkey with big, bold flavours that are sure to please. If you’re super-bored of nut roast, try your hand at a tangy fruit and nut stuffed butternut squash, make a delicious veggie wellington made with mushrooms and chestnuts or whip up a caramelised parsnip and leek tarte. Just yum!

Load up on healthy starters

If you want to keep your diet on track, there are plenty of vegetarian starters that taste amazing and cater to everyone. Tomato and ricotta bruschetta, crudites with hummus, olives with feta cheese or mini veggie burger buns made with lentil patties.

Buy vegetarian-friendly wine 

If you’re looking forward to getting in the festive spirit with a glass (or three) of mulled wine, just bear in mind that some wineries might use animal-derived products such as gelatin to clarify wines before they are bottled. Look out for options specifically marked as suitable for vegans and vegetarians – the chances are, your local supermarket probably stocks a decent selection.