Top 5 Tips To Have A Successful Vegan Christmas!

Oct 26, 2021by Olivia - F&F

Navigating the festive season as a new or long-term vegan can be unpredictable, surprising, challenging, or smooth-sailing! Here at Flora & Fauna, many of us choose to lead a vegan lifestyle — so we’ve all been through the uncertainties of that first vegan Christmas! 

You can rest assured knowing that these tips are 100% tried and true, and will genuinely help you to navigate the festive season with ease.

How To Have A Vegan ChristmasHow To Have A Vegan Christmas

Tip #1: Tell Your Loved Ones In Advance

Obviously, the first step is to talk it out with family and friends before Christmas. Although veganism isn’t anything new, some people may have a hard time understanding why you’re cutting out meat, dairy and eggs, especially over Christmas! 

You can deal with the “why” later, but importantly, the people around you need to know that you won’t be consuming animal products. For example, if you’re attending a Christmas lunch or dinner with extended family members who are non-vegan, it’s important to let them know that you don’t expect them to only serve vegan food; all this does is create stress for the hosts! 

However, by letting them know in advance, they might adapt a couple of dishes to be vegan, or even ask you for tips on how to do so! We're sure they'd be happy to accommodate.

How To Have A Vegan ChristmasHow To Have A Vegan Christmas

Tip #2: Don’t Be Offended By Curious Relatives!

Here’s probably the most difficult part: the questions! If your family members or friends are struggling to understand why you’d give up meat and dairy, just remember that it’s completely natural for people to be curious and ask questions. 

You don’t necessarily “owe” anyone an explanation, but gently voicing your reasons — whether it’s animal welfare, the environment, or your health — can encourage non-vegans to understand your decision. 

We know that discussions about animal cruelty, climate change and healthy living can escalate quickly, so it’s important to remain calm and avoid criticising other people about their lifestyle. Remember that Christmas, first and foremost, is about being with loved ones!

Vegan Christmas LunchVegan Christmas Lunch

Tip #3: Think Of What’s Already Vegan (Or Easily Adaptable!)

First, get back to the basics. What’s already vegan, or easily adaptable? There’s mashed potatoes, roasted root veggies, beans/brussel sprouts, bread and dinner rolls, stuffing, gravy, and cranberry sauce. Many of us in Australia opt for a cold Christmas lunch/dinner, so there’s plenty of leafy salads, pasta salads, and potato salads that can be veganised. If you like extra crunch, Extrodinary Foods have delicious salad toppers.

It might be as simple as swapping out mayo for vegan mayo, dairy milk for plant-based milk, or veggie stock instead of chicken stock. In terms of meats, there are some amazing store-bought vegan roasts that can be eaten hot or cold — plus, you can season them however you like! There are some decent seafood alternatives emerging on supermarket shelves now too. You can always bring along these dishes yourself!

Avant Garde Vegan Christmas LunchAvant Garde Vegan Christmas Lunch

Tip #4: Cooking For Others? Do Some Research!

There’s nothing better than cooking for other people! But, it can be a little bit nerve-wracking at Christmas when people want to enjoy their favourite traditional dishes. Luckily, there are so many resources out there for vegans approaching their first Christmas. If you’re not a vegan Masterchef (yet!), we recommend reading some recipes and watching tutorials. 

We’re a massive fan of this Vegan Christmas book by Gaz Oakley, aka the Avant-Garde Vegan. These recipes will truly make your vegan dishes the star of the show! There’s decadent Christmas Pudding, Sweet Cranberry Glazed “Ribs”, a savoury Roast Wreath, and even a Vegan Roast Wellington. For more inspiration, here are some amazing vegan Christmas recipes by Jamie Oliver, PETA, Taste, The Edgy Veg, Delish and 35 Vegan Christmas Dessert Recipes

Vegan Christmas Pudding DessertVegan Christmas Pudding Dessert

Tip #5: Show People How Amazing Veganism Really Is!

Here’s the fun part! For non-vegans, it can be hard to picture a vegan Christmas feast — but many of them are shocked when they realise how many traditional dishes can be veganised. 

Whether it’s a savoury dish, like a roast with stuffing and gravy — or scrumptious desserts like Christmas pudding, a trifle, or a pavlova — with a few tweaks, many of your favourite dishes can remain on the festive menu. Showing up with an awesome vegan dish for everyone to share is a great way to start a conversation and introduce veganism to your loved ones. 

Just remember to relax and enjoy yourself, and be patient with the people around you. You might feel like the odd one out, but just remember your “why”.

With a little bit of preparation, you don’t have to “miss out” on anything this Christmas! Approaching Christmas as a new vegan can be daunting, but we really hope these tips help you to navigate some of the trickier aspects. The festive season looks different for everyone, so if you have any other tips we’d love to hear from you! 

Did we mention that we have an entire blog category dedicated to Vegan Recipes? Definitely check it out for some scrumptious Christmas recipe ideas. You can check out our amazing Cookbooks too!

Vegan Lentil Pie

Vegan Passionfruit Slice

Hemp & Kale Pesto Pasta

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