I’ve always found the secret to a successful Christmas (or any other dinner party) is to be extremely organised. Lists are your friend!
I’ve had quite a few veggie Christmas’ now and have a few rules that I live by. Don’t make anything too ‘weird’ and ‘healthy’, or anything too vegan (eg plain tofu). Let other people eat and bring whatever food they want, and be accepting of everyones choices.
Christmas is a fun time to spend with family, not a veg vs meat war zone. Keep it light and happy and let other people choose their own path.
Whether you’re having a summer Christmas with swimming and BBQ’s (like we are here) or a white Christmas by the fire, these menu planning tips will make sure you’re veggie Christmas goes off without a hitch!
1. Do you research and put together a list of dishes
Get out your recipe books & saved recipes from online together and go through them. Put together a list of dishes you are thinking of making including appetizers (think dips, crackers, veggies, brushetta), drinks (mocktails, bubbly water, juices), main dishes + sides, and the best part: desserts!
2. Get some input
Send the list out to the family & friends that will be there, and get their input. See if other people would like to bring dishes or if they would like to make something from the list. If they want to eat meat, kindly suggest that they buy the highest quality possible (free-range, grass fed, organic) – Christmas isn’t a time to be a veggie dictator, but make that suggestion and let them decide. If you’re okay with organising a higher quality option for them, do so (I live by the ‘least harm possible’ rule).
Note for celiacs: as always it’s best to make everything that you will be eating in your own gluten-free kitchen to avoid any cross contamination. Don’t take chances, other peoples gluten-free standards might not be the same as yours.
3. Enlist some help
If you can, get other people to make some of the dishes or have a Christmas prep party in your kitchen the day before with some helpers.
4. Make a list of the dishes you are making
Make a list of every single thing you need make, in order of when it needs to be made (eg. if you need to make the dressing for a salad, list both the dressing and the salad separately). Make separate lists for anything that can be made prior to the day. Have a list for 2 days before, and 1 day before. The goal is to do the absolute least you have to on the day, without eating mouldy food.
5. Make a grocery list
From the list of all the dishes you are making, write out a grocery list. Anything you can buy a few weeks ahead, do so and store it. Plan to do one big shop 1-2 days before Chrismas (and another one 3-5 days before if that suits you). Check out your farmers market and organic grocers store times in advance. My farmers market is the day before Christmas and the delivery service I use runs until the 23rd so I can plan around those.
Bonus (and most important) tip: Enjoy the day!
Don’t find yourself stuck in the kitchen all day! That pile of dishes can wait until tomorrow. Christmas is one day a year, so make the most out of it and enjoy it with your family. Family can get on your nerves and they know what buttons to push, but make a concious effort to not get in silly squabbles with anyone. If you need to, excuse yourself, take a deep breath and do some tapping (EFT)!
Pssss. If you’re looking for some amazing veggie Christmas dishes, look no further!
My two eBooks are filled with awesome recipes that meat-eaters and vegans both LOVE! And as my Chrissy present to you, they are on sale for just $29! So many delicious recipes, all at your fingertips for your meal planning – get your hands on them right now (use the coupon code MERRYXMAS). 🙂