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3 Meatless Thanksgiving Staples to Help You Survive The Holidays

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There are few holidays that are as quintessentially American as Thanksgiving. Despite the cultural amnesia Americans suffer over the original Thanksgiving feast, it’s a celebration that endures because it signifies our gratitude for the blessings we’ve received throughout the year. I mean, who doesn’t love traveling through the crowded masses to go home, get interrogated by your parents about “your future,” and explain again to your relatives that you won’t be tasting their turkey because you’re trying to live a meat-free, cruelty-free life?

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Fear not, because we’ve rounded up some of our favorite meat-free Thanksgiving staple dishes, so that’s one less thing you have to worry about over Thanksgiving. And remember: if all else fails, you can always help yourself to another glass of wine.

There are few things better than crispy roasted vegetables with a glug of olive oil and sea salt. But being the first holiday of the season that lasts all through Christmas and the New Year, even something as humble as brussels sprouts deserve a little special treatment on Thanksgiving! This amazing recipe from Cobi Kim of Veggietorials is super easy to follow without any specialized ingredients that you might have to go out of your way to look for. The sweet and savory combination of ginger syrup and miso is sure to wow even most skeptical of your family members.

Just because a dish lacks meat doesn’t mean that it can’t celebrate the hearty flavors that Thanksgiving dishes are typically known for. Candice Hutchings of The Edgy Veg starts off her version of this vegetarian gravy by sautéing a base of aromatic vegetables before adding mushrooms, resulting in a surprisingly robust and meaty gravy without having to use any meat! The best part? All of Hutchings’ recipes are “carnivore approved,” which means you don’t have to be an herbivore to share the love. Feel free to smother on your seitan, turkey, stuffing, potatoes, and more!

What would Thanksgiving be without pumpkin pie? After all, it’s so good that it gave birth to pumpkin spice: the flavor that rules the fall. Healthy pumpkin pie recipes have a lot to live up to, but Olga of Fablunch has a version of the classic that does not disappoint. Not only is her recipe is free of dairy, gluten, and refined sugars (making it possible for everyone to enjoy), it’s bona fide delicious. As one commenter said: “I just wanted to eat the filling straight out of my Vitamix!” And since the pie is made in the style of icebox cakes, absolutely no baking is required.

Happy Thanksgiving! Gobble Gobble.

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Soyo Hong (b. 1989, Seoul, Korea) is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design with a BFA in Illustration. An artist and writer in NYC, she is a regular contributor to digital platforms such as Animal New York, Hopes&Fears, and Ratter.