The transition from autumnal winds and stench of bonfire into dreams of snow and scents of cinnamon is finally upon us! And since the supermarkets had adopted the festive frivolity way before it should have, it’s time for me to also take on the festive green and red in preparation for the current month. However, my previous Christmas nosh of pigs in blankets, roast chicken, beef, and gammon will not be going anywhere near my gut this festive season, it will be my first Christmas as a vegan! And if you’re in the same position or merely would be intrigued to see how unhealthy and ultra indulgent my vegan Christmas will be, I’ve complied a list of ideas/alternatives that vegans (or plant-based people) can enjoy this time of year, without being excluded from the spoilt season in the midst of Celebrations, Roses, turkey, and other sorts.
1: Alternatives are your best friend!
Tesco, Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and so many others now stock a fruitful abundance of ‘free from’ ranges. Dairy-free ranges from Alpro and Koko, for example, offer all dairy alternatives like yoghurt, ice cream, and mince pies! Even Iceland have started stocking vegan mince pies. So your sweet tooth won’t be neglected.
2: DIY chocolate selection box:
I found this neat way to feel included with the chocolate tins online and am now in the process of making one myself! Find an old tin from anywhere,(the more festive, the merrier) and fill it with a small (or large) selection of different vegan/dairy-free treats! For example, Tesco ‘Free-from’ Chocolate coins, M&S Swiss Chocolate box, and Vegolino Nougat Praline pieces, shoved into a tin and voila, your own personal box of Celebrations!
3: Change up the centre-piece of the Christmas roast with pie!
I’ve never been a fan of the usual nut-roast that many vegans swear by this season, so to make a pie that is classically British and vegan is a fantastic idea! Explore the different recipes of vegan pies that cater to your taste, like this one! https://realfood.tesco.com/recipes/vegan-potato-rosemary-and-onion-pie.html
4. Jump on the vegan cheese band wagon!
So finding a vegan cheese that actually tastes like cheese is rare, but it doesn’t mean you can’t find some ways to get the same type of taste! Sainsbury’s has recently released a selection of dairy-free cheeses in differing styles like Wensleydale and Strong Cheddar, trying to emulate not only the taste but the texture of the nations favourites cheeses! And despite the vegan cheeses like Violife which can have a rubbery texture, melting cheeses like that can make for a nice experience! Or if you’ve tried a range of these cheeses, and are not strictly vegan, Lacto-Free cheeses taste exactly the same but however does not contain the lactose. (*Lacto-free branded cheese is not vegan as it is still the bi-product of a cow).
5. Family of boozers?
Going to miss Irish cream? I will. Baileys had introduced a dairy-free alternative to the rich boozy beverage, but it eventually was revealed that it is not vegan (included beeswax) so we will have to wait a while before we achieve this landmark of veganism. There are so many recipes for a vegan Irish cream such as Simple Vegan Blog’s recipes, have a look at the other great vegan recipes they have on their site if you crave more vegan Christmas ideas!