5 Meat-Free Christmas Dinner Recipes to Make

Being a vegetarian or vegan doesn’t mean you have to miss out on Christmas dinner. Here are some meat-free Christmas dinner recipes to see.


this dish is fit for a festive feast.

Embracing the festive spirit with a flavorful twist, you are invited to savour the joy of a meat-free Christmas with some delectable dinner recipes that redefine the holiday dining experience.

As we embark on a culinary journey, we’ll discover mouthwatering alternatives that cater to vegetarian and vegan preferences.

They also add a burst of creativity and deliciousness to your holiday table.

Whether you’re a seasoned plant-based enthusiast or just curious to explore new flavours, these meat-free Christmas dinner recipes promise to make your celebration both delightful and memorable.

Let the festivities begin with a feast that not only satisfies the palate but also celebrates the spirit of the season in every scrumptious bite.

Cranberry & Orange Quorn Roast

Meat-Free Christmas Dinner Recipes - quorn

This meat-free Christmas dinner option is a colourful showstopper.

It is made with a Quorn Roast, which is the perfect meat-free substitute for chicken or turkey.

Along with clementines and cranberries, this dish is fit for a festive feast.

Ingredients

  • 1 Quorn Roast
  • 1 Orange, sliced
  • 1 Clementine, sliced
  • 50g cranberries
  • 6 sprigs of thyme
  • 30ml orange juice
  • 2 tbsp clear honey
  • 1 tbsp oil

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C.
  2. Cover a baking tray with greaseproof paper and arrange slices of orange and clementine on it.
  3. Take the Quorn Roast out of its packaging and position it on top of the fruit slices.
  4. Sprinkle fresh cranberries and thyme over the arrangement. Drizzle the ingredients with oil and transfer the tray to the oven, baking for 30 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, combine the orange juice with honey and set it aside.
  6. Take the Quorn Roast out of the oven and carefully remove it from its cooking bag, as it will be quite hot.
  7. Place the Quorn Roast back into the roasting tray and brush it with the orange and honey mixture.
  8. Return it to the oven for an additional 20 minutes. Serve the sliced Quorn Roast with a variety of festive sides and trimmings.

This recipe was inspired by Quorn.

Glazed Tofu Roast

Meat-Free Christmas Dinner Recipes - tofu

This glazed tofu is a delightful mix of sweet and smoky.

Topped with an orange and whisky glaze, this meat-free Christmas alternative has just enough of the boozy flavour to give it a kick.

While it looks like regular tofu on the inside, every part of it is juicy and delicious.

Ingredients

  • 400g extra-firm tofu
  • 1 Orange, sliced
  • 16-24 whole cloves

For the Marinade

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup low-salt soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp + ½ tbsp liquid smoke
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp black pepper

For the Glaze

  • 1½ tbsp whisky
  • ¼ tsp orange zest
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • 1 tbsp + ½ tbsp dark brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp red chilli flakes
  • 2 tbsp apricot jam
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp black pepper

Method

  1. The day before, unwrap the tofu, drain the excess liquid and proceed to press it. A tofu press is recommended for optimal results. If you don’t have a press, wrap the tofu in a clean towel and weigh it down with heavy objects, such as textbooks or a cast iron pan. If using the towel method, replace the towel with a dry one after 15 minutes and repeat. With a tofu press, 15-20 minutes should suffice.
  2. Combine all the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Place the tofu block in a loaf pan, allowing the marinade to envelop the tofu.
  3. Pour the entire marinade over the tofu, cover it and marinate for 24 hours.
  4. Flip the tofu block halfway through this time, spooning marinade from the sides over the top. The objective is to infuse as much marinade into the tofu as possible.
  5. Once marinated and ready to bake, preheat the oven to 190°C.
  6. Line a small baking dish with greaseproof paper, extending it a bit around the sides for easy cleanup.
  7. Arrange orange slices on the bottom and place the marinated tofu block on top. Score the top in a diamond pattern with a small, sharp knife. Insert whole cloves into the intersections between the lines.
  8. Bake for 60 minutes, checking at 45 minutes and removing it earlier if the edges darken too much.
  9. While the tofu bakes, combine the glaze ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a boil, then simmer for 25-30 minutes until reduced by half, thick and glossy.
  10. Once the tofu is out of the oven, pour the glaze over the top and return it for an additional 10-15 minutes until it thickens and darkens at the edges.
  11. Allow the tofu roast to rest for approximately 15 minutes, then remove the cloves and burnt oranges.
  12. If desired, serve on a bed of fresh orange slices.

This recipe was adapted from Yup It’s Vegan.

Roast ‘Turkey’

Meat-Free Christmas Dinner Recipes - turkey

This roast ‘turkey’ is made with Seitan, a meat-free substance that is very similar in texture to meat protein.

Made from wheat gluten, the Seitan is shaped to resemble turkey while rice paper is used to mimic turkey skin.

For those wanting a meat-free Christmas dinner, this is the perfect centrepiece for the holiday season.

Ingredients

  • 350g silken tofu
  • 400g cooked chickpeas in unsalted water
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp white miso paste
  • 1 bouillon cube
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp vegan poultry seasoning
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 315g vital wheat gluten

Vegan Stuffing

  • 2 cups roasting vegetables and roasting herbs (celery, potato, carrots, parsnips, sage, thyme, rosemary)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth

For the Rice Paper Skin

  • 6-8 sheets of rice paper
  • 3 tbsp tamari soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp liquid smoke
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • Water

Method

  1. To make the Seitan dough, place the entire can of chickpeas (including the liquid), silken tofu, miso paste, vegetable oil, bouillon cube, vegan poultry seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder and baking powder into a food processor.
  2. Process the ingredients until a smooth mixture is achieved.
  3. If your food processor has a dough attachment, switch to it and gradually incorporate the vital wheat gluten while pulsing until a firm dough is formed.
  4. For those without a dough attachment, transfer the wet mixture to a large bowl. Mix in the vital wheat gluten with a spatula, then knead the dough by hand until thoroughly combined.
  5. Allow the Seitan dough to rest for 15 minutes.
  6. Using a large rolling pin, roll out the dough firmly into a sizable rectangle with an approximate thickness of ½ inch. Place the stuffing in the centre, forming a firm log shape.
  7. Fold the sides of the Seitan dough over the stuffing, then fold down the top, stretching it over the filling.
  8. Finally, fold over the bottom, stretching it firmly over the entire Seitan to completely encase it. Pinch the edges with your fingers to seal and create a secure parcel.
  9. With a sharp knife, make four diagonal cuts into the Seitan parcel.
  10. Knead each section firmly into the desired shape – the top two cuts will resemble turkey wings, and the bottom two, the legs.
  11. Secure the turkey legs together with a toothpick and make a shallow line cut down the middle of the turkey shape.
  12. Begin by wrapping the entire Seitan in greaseproof paper, followed by aluminium foil.
  13. Then, position it in a spacious steamer basket and steam for two hours.
  14. Once the two-hour mark is reached, allow the roast to gradually cool down within the steamer basket without immediate removal.
  15. Once the roast is prepared, unwrap it and place it on a large board.
  16. Begin the process of preparing the rice paper skin by setting up two bowls. Fill one bowl with water. In the second bowl, whisk together tamari, maple syrup, liquid smoke, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, smoked paprika and black pepper.
  17. Briefly dip each sheet of rice paper into the water, ensuring only a short immersion and allow any excess water to drip off.
  18. Subsequently, dip the sheet into the seasoning mix. As you coat it, the sheet should gradually become soft and pliable, maintaining a flat form.
  19. Remove any excess, then wrap the softened sheet around the turkey. Repeat this process 6-8 times or until the entire Seitan is covered. Remember to include rice paper at the bottom of the roast as well.
  20. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  21. Place the entire Seitan turkey in a spacious roasting dish.
  22. Add a selection of roasting vegetables, such as carrots, celery, onions, garlic, and potatoes, along with fresh herbs like rosemary, thyme and sage.
  23. Pour in the vegetable stock, cover with a lid and roast in the oven for 20 minutes.
  24. After 20 minutes, remove the lid and roast uncovered for another 20 minutes or until the skin becomes crispy.
  25. Transfer the roasted Seitan turkey to a large serving dish and slice before serving.

This recipe was inspired by Romy London.

Baked Tempeh Turkey

This baked tempeh is a delicious meat-free option for Christmas.

Tempeh is a fermented soybean product, usually sold in blocks in the refrigerated natural foods section of the supermarket.

With a nutty flavour, other ingredients like butternut squash and maple syrup add layers of flavour.

Ingredients

  • 170g tempeh, cut into squares
  • ½ cup fresh herbs
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tbsp maple syrup
  • ½ Butternut squash, peeled and sliced
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste

Method

  1. Place the tempeh in a single layer, either in a zip-top food storage bag or a shallow baking dish.
  2. In a small bowl, combine herbs, tamari, olive oil, apple cider vinegar and maple syrup. Stir the mixture well.
  3. Pour the marinade over the tempeh, ensuring it is coated on all sides. Let the tempeh marinate for two hours or up to overnight, turning occasionally to marinate all sides.
  4. Preheat the oven to 205°C.
  5. Brush a large-rimmed baking tray with butter. Arrange the squash ribbons in a single layer, then brush the top with butter and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Bake the squash for five minutes.
  7. Line a small baking sheet with greaseproof paper.
  8. Allow the squash to cool enough to handle, then wrap it around the top of the marinated tempeh and place it on the prepared baking sheet.
  9. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the squash becomes slightly crispy and the bottom of the tempeh is brown.

Vegan Nut Roast

If you are looking for the perfect meat-free Christmas main then this vegan nut roast is one to go for.

Packed with nuts and vegetables, this hearty dish is worthy of being at the centre of your plate.

Its appearance is similar to a vegan meatloaf but the taste is completely different.

Ingredients

  • 300g raw mixed nuts (Cashews, Almonds, Walnuts, Pecans, Brazil Nuts)
  • 95g cremini mushrooms
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 110g carrot, grated
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic, crushed
  • 65g tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1½ cups Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed meal
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ cup parsley, finely chopped

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and use non-stick spray to coat a loaf pan. Line it with greaseproof paper, leaving an overhang on each side. Set aside.
  2. In a food processor, finely chop the raw mixed nuts and transfer them to a mixing bowl. Process the cremini mushrooms, onion and celery in the food processor until finely chopped.
  3. In a frying pan, combine olive oil and crushed garlic with the chopped onion, mushrooms, celery, and grated carrot. Add tomato paste and soy sauce, sautéing until the vegetables are softened.
  4. In the mixing bowl with the chopped nuts, combine breadcrumbs, ground flaxseed meal, garlic powder and finely chopped parsley. Mix well, then add the cooked vegetable mix, creating a thick dough.
  5. Transfer the mixture to the prepared loaf pan with baking paper overhanging for easy removal and bake in the oven for 50 minutes.
  6. Allow it to cool for 10 minutes before lifting it out of the pan using the parchment paper overhang. Slice and serve.

This recipe was inspired by Loving It Vegan.

As we conclude our exploration of these delightful meat-free Christmas dinner recipes, it’s evident that a plant-based holiday feast can be just as indulgent, festive and satisfying as its traditional counterpart.

Each recipe offers a unique and delicious twist on classic festive fare.

Whether you’re committed to a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle or simply seeking to diversify your holiday menu, these culinary creations have showcased the versatility and richness of plant-based ingredients.

As you gather around the table this Christmas, may these meat-free delights bring joy, warmth and a sense of culinary adventure to your celebration.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

Images courtesy of Quorn and Yup It's Vegan




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