Everyone with a dietary restriction knows how difficult it can be to find food to eat around the holiday season. Traditional Thanksgiving foods aren’t all allergy-friendly, so here are some alternatives you can try this Thanksgiving so you’re not stuck eating only sides.
- The Basic Sides
Vegetarian/Vegan: If you’re on a strict vegetarian/vegan diet, some good alternatives to sides that will fill you up are roasted veggies. Pick your favorite veggies, toss some oil and seasoning on them, and bake. Instead of a bowl of stuffing, you can make a bowl of quinoa. Most grocery stores offer bags of quinoa mixes that are easy to prepare. It’s delicious and filled with nutrients.
Gluten free: If you are on a gluten free diet, a quick alternative to the classic green bean casserole would be buying a can of gluten free mushroom soup and instead of topping it with fried onions, top it with crushed Funyuns. They give the same taste and crunch and tastes delicious. If you enjoy gravy on top of your mashed potatoes, you can buy a cheap mix of Gluten Free gravy or make your own by mixing GF flour, butter, and milk in a pan until thick and season to your liking.
Dairy free: This is possibly the simplest allergy to substitute. For a dairy free version of those delicious dinner rolls your plate isn’t complete without, this recipe for homemade dairy free rolls are easy to make. It only requires water, yeast, flour, sugar, salt, and olive oil. Another easy substitute is replacing whole milk in mashed potatoes with your favorite dairy free milk or replacing the role of milk with chicken stock.
2. The Main Course
Vegetarian/Vegan: This can be tricky due to the fact that a traditional Thanksgiving menu is centered around a turkey. Instead of turkey, or a gross mock “Tofurkey” version, try a vegan winter shepherd’s pie or a fan favorite from Texas cuisine, tamales. Central Market and HEB offer meatless and vegan versions.
Vegetarian/Vegan: A delicious alternative to pumpkin pie is making a vegan chocola
te pie. This recipe is easy to make, and your guests won’t even know the difference from a regular pie.
Gluten free: If you’re looking for a GF version for pumpkin pie, you can easily make a crustless pumpkin pie. Luckily a classic pumpkin pie filling is dense enough to be baked in a pan with no crust and still taste delicious. If you’re looking for that crunch and want a crust, you can easily make or buy your own oat made pie crust. It’s a combination of rolled oats, butter, sugar, and salt.
Dairy free: This simple dairy-free pecan pie recipe is a nice change to pumpkin pie but still a favorite on Thanksgiving day. If you’re looking for a dessert that is different and non-traditional, try this easy applesauce spice cake. You’re still getting lots of fall flavors but getting away from a basic pie at the thanksgiving table.
The food industry finally understands how many people are having to accommodate to strict dietary restrictions, so it’s easier, now more than ever, to get access to delicious substitutes. Hopefully these tips helped you. Happy Holidays!