Delicious And Easy Meatless Dishes To Serve On Christmas Dinner
I always like to make the holidays extra special for my family by whipping up delicious food to grace the dining table. While a lot of people rave about ham and turkey, meatless dishes are more than welcome and embraced in my home.
In fact, I have been serving some vegetarian recipes over Christmas, and I don’t hear any complaint at all. If anything, I think I rubbed my love for vegetables to my family and guests who come over to celebrate the holidays with us!
So I compiled some of the most distinctive yet easy to prepare meatless dishes I serve at Christmas dinner.
1. Aubergine Meatless Stuffing
I adapted the meatless aubergine stuffing from this recipe. As I like presenting stuffing contained in another vegetable form, I picked aubergine. If your family likes a little spicy and flavorful kick, you can add more cayenne and thyme.
Still, this dish has been gracing our Christmas table for a few years now, and I consider making it quite a personal Christmas tradition.
- 3 large aubergines
- 1 stick salted butter
- 1 can vegetable broth
- 2 small carrots, finely chopped
- 3 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 tbsp fresh sage, chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
- 1 white onion, finely chopped
- 2 medium-sized apples, cut skin-on
- 1/2 tsp cayenne powder
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Pre-heat the oven to 350F degree.
- Slice the aubergines lengthwise and remove most of the flesh, retaining around 1 cm piece near the skin. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, place butter in a skillet and melt.
- Add in onion, chopped sage, celery and carrots and stir.
- Mix in garlic and chopped apples and season with salt.
- Stir ingredients until apples and vegetables are well-cooked.
- Add in cayenne pepper, thyme and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Pour in the can of vegetable broth and let simmer for 2 minutes.
- Remove the skillet from flame and scoop the stuffing into the aubergines.
- Top each dressing with a layer of shredded cheese.
- Bake for 30-45 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy.
2. Red Cabbage Salad
My mom always had red cabbage salad on Christmas, and I got used to seeing the purple and orange salad combo on the dining table each year.
There are many variations to the red cabbage salad, but this one is quite straightforward and easy enough to prepare even in busy kitchens.
Tip: you can prepare the vegetables ahead of time and refrigerate until you’re ready to mix with the dressing. You can also place leftover in the fridge and will keep for around three days. It is according to the recipe courtesy of the New York Times.
- 1/4 lb carrots, peeled and grated finely
- 3/4 lb red cabbage, finely shredded
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp fresh chives, minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp fresh dill, minced
- 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Place shredded cabbage into a huge bowl and pour cold water until cabbage is adequately covered.
- Set aside for 15 minutes, then drain.
- Add in carrots into the bowl of cabbage and combine.
- Stir in chives, dill, and parsley.
- In a smaller bowl, combine lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, vinegar, garlic and season with salt and pepper.
- Toss dressing into the cabbage and carrots and mix well until well-combined.
- Let sit in the refrigerator for an hour before serving.
3. Brussel Sprouts Casserole
The Brussel sprouts casserole is also a Christmas staple in our household only because everyone loves it! It’s a little crunchy from the outside but creamy at the inside.
I also love that it’s filling all on its own, but also makes an excellent side dish. I like this recipe from the Food Network because it makes cooking easy and straightforward. I just like to have more cheese on the casserole.
- 1 lb Brussel sprouts
- 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 350F degree.
- Meanwhile, slice the Brussel sprouts thinly into 1/8-inch pieces or use a mandolin slicer.
- Place sliced Brussel sprouts into a large bowl then stir in cheddar cheese, thyme, garlic and flour.
- Season with salt and pepper. Mix well.
- Transfer this mixture into a baking dish and pack evenly using a spatula.
- Cover the surface with heavy cream.
- In a medium bowl, combine extra virgin olive oil, breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese.
- Pour this over the dish and bake for 30 minutes uncovered.
- Season with picked Parsley before serving.
4. Carrot and Lentil Soup
And don’t forget the soup! A warm and filling soup is perfect for the cold Christmas and a hint of spice just makes soup even more exciting. My family loves the carrot and lentil soup due to the balance of flavors and the creamy texture.
We also like our soup on the spicy side, so I tend to get generous with the chili flakes. But you can adjust or remove chili flakes to your liking. You may also cook the soup right away, but I prefer to slow cook mine.
Here’s a great recipe for carrot and lentil soup from BBC Good Food.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 500g carrots, peeled and grated
- 250g red lentils
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp chili flakes
- Dry fry half of the chili flakes and cumin seeds in a frying pan for 2 minutes or until they begin to smell aromatic. Set aside.
- Place carrots and lentils into a slow cooker.
- Add the vegetable stock, olive oil and the remaining chili flakes and cumin seeds.
- Cook the soup on high for 3 hours.
- Add in the dry-fried cumin seeds and chili flakes.
- Stir in coconut milk and stir until soup is thick and creamy. Best served with yogurt and bread on the side.
I know most people like getting their fair share of meaty dishes during Christmas, but I also like to bring balance by whipping up delicious vegetarian dishes that I know my family will love.
Even the kids enjoyed the Brussel sprouts! It goes to prove that fulfilling your Christmas menu doesn’t have to be overly complicated and time-consuming.
I get the satisfaction of seeing the people I love gathered in one table and partaking of the food I have wholeheartedly prepared for them.