With a growing number of people adopting a plant based lifestyle, it’s not surprising that some find it challenging to navigate vegan holidays. However, with a little bit of planning and preparation, following a plant based diet during the holidays can be stress-free and enjoyable. In this topic, we’ll provide some tips and tricks to help you navigate vegan holidays with ease.
Research Vegan Holiday Friendly Options:
If you’re traveling to a new destination, research vegan-friendly restaurants and cafes in the area. You can use online resources such as HAPPYCOW or Yelp to find vegan or vegetarian options nearby. If there aren’t many vegan options available, look for restaurants that offer customizable options or make simple substitutions to make dishes vegan.
Pack Vegan Snacks and Portable Meals to Get to Your Destination:
Whether you’re going on a road trip or flying, pack some vegan snacks such as nuts, dried fruits, and energy bars to keep you fueled on the go. Check out our SNACKS PRINTABLE MEAL GUIDE for easily portable options that will keep you fueled and ready to go. Additionally, consider packing some plant based meal options such as sandwiches, wraps, or salads that you can easily assemble when you arrive at your destination.
Communicate Your Vegan Diet to Your Host:
If you’re staying with family or friends, communicate your vegan diet before arriving. Let them know that you follow a plant based lifestyle and provide some guidance on what you can and cannot eat. Offer to bring (or prepare together) some vegan dishes to share with everyone, so they can see how delicious vegan meals can be.
Be Adventurous with Plant Based Foods:
Use your holiday as an opportunity to try new vegan foods that you wouldn’t normally eat at home. This can be a great way to expand your palate and discover new favorite foods. Most people have preconceived notions of vegan foods – including vegans (funny but so true) so open up your mind and palate to new experiences.
Plan Ahead for Vegan Holiday Meals:
If you’re attending a holiday meal, talk to the host about your vegan diet beforehand. Offer to bring a vegan dish to share with everyone, so you have a guaranteed option to eat. Alternatively, ask the host if they can make some simple substitutions to make traditional holiday dishes vegan. For example, a simple tweak to Matzo Ball Soup to make it vegan is to substitute vegetable broth and a flax egg for the non-plant based chicken broth and egg. A few additional EASY PLANT BASED RECIPES for plant based meals or sides for the holidays are:
- Roasted Root Vegetables: A colorful mix of roasted root vegetables such as carrots, parsnips, beets, and sweet potatoes makes a delicious and healthy side dish for Easter or Passover
- Vegan Deviled Eggs: Use mashed avocado or tofu instead of egg yolks to create a plant based version of this Easter favorite
- Vegan Chocolate Cake: End your holiday meal on a sweet note with a decadent and rich vegan chocolate cake. Use plant based ingredients such as coconut oil, almond milk, and aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas) to make a moist and delicious cake
Most Importantly, Give Yourself the Agency to Eat How You Want Over the Holiday:
It’s important to remember that you have agency over how you choose to eat during the holidays. You started this lifestyle for a reason that was important to you, so it’s up to you to decide whether to take a break and enjoy a traditional holiday meal or stick with your plant based lifestyle. Ultimately, this is your journey and you should follow what feels right in your heart.
Following a vegan diet during the holidays doesn’t have to be complicated. By doing a little bit of research, planning ahead, and communicating your dietary restrictions, you can navigate vegan holidays stress-free and enjoy delicious plant based meals. Remember to be adventurous and try new vegan holiday foods, and most importantly, have fun and enjoy your time with loved ones.