My First Vegan Thanksgiving

My first vegan Thanksgiving was more than I hoped and dreamed. I’m actually not trying to be (vegan) cheesy here…I’m totally serious!

My husband and I were planning on doing our own thing this Thanksgiving because both sides of our family were out of town, but at the last minute I received an email asking if we wanted to attend a vegan Thanksgiving potluck. Um, yes please!

Squash Casserole

Squash Casserole

I made two new recipes and one oldie-but-goodie. The squash casserole turned out amazing, if I may say so myself. I was skeptical because it didn’t seem like it would be creamy like a milk-infused one would be, but it turned out flavorful and delicious.

Dr. Oz's Vegan Stuffing

Dr. Oz’s Vegan Stuffing

The other new dish was a stuffing recipe from Dr. Oz. It turned out too mushy, which I think was completely my fault. I didn’t realize that the apples and pears shouldn’t soak in the pineapple juice for too long. Messing up on this one step made it a little too soggy. I guess that’s better than it being dry, but all in all, it turned out OK. I did love the flavor of it, though, and now I know how to tweak it for next year.

Green Beans and Almonds

Green Beans and Almonds

The third dish is a recipe from my mom – green beans and almonds. This is the kind of recipe that’s printed out from an old email sent years ago, the paper crumpled from using it so many times, with directions I have to recall from memory because the ingredients and steps aren’t as nice and neat as a recipe you’d find online or in a cookbook. But, these are the best kinds of recipes, in my opinion. They are kid-tested, mother-approved. Anyway, I’m sharing this simple, yet delicious, recipe with you for Meatless Monday and to possibly make for the other major holiday that’s right around the corner. See below for the green beans with almonds recipe.

All of the food at the potluck was incredible and I wish I had a second stomach to eat more. It was a nice change tasting other vegans’ holiday fare, and it was great meeting really awesome people. Here’s a photo of the spread (unfortunately I didn’t snap a shot of the desserts or the appetizers; those dishes were amazing, too):

Thanksgiving Day Vegan Spread

Thanksgiving Day Vegan Spread

Thought I was done describing what I ate and cooked for my first vegan Thanksgiving? Think again!

Round 2: Friendsgiving

Every year my friends get together on the Saturday after Thanksgiving to watch Georgia beat play Georgia Tech. We always have a potluck Thanksgiving meal where everyone showcases their finest cooking abilities.

This year I decided to make it a Post Punk Kitchen kind of Friendsgiving. Isa’s green bean casserole and pecan pie recipes were to die for. The non-vegans surprisingly really liked these dishes. There were no leftovers to take home of the green bean casserole, and if my friends had it their way, there would have been none to take home of the pecan pie too.

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms

Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms

I also made my stuffed mushrooms, which were a big hit, and I brought a “turkey” loaf from Gutenfleischers. Unfortunately, it came out too dry for my liking. I know I did something wrong with following the instructions here, because I tried it at the Thanksgiving vegan potluck and it tasted good. I think I’ll probably stick to making the vegan side dishes next year because I can never seem to get the fake turkey loaves to cook correctly.

"Turkey" Loaf

“Turkey” Loaf

I thought it was extremely nice that some of our friends cooked vegan sides – and they were really good, too! I’m mad I didn’t get a picture of those dishes either…clearly I was in food heaven this Thanksgiving and didn’t think to take my phone out to snap some pictures.

Although I missed our family, we were well-fed and surrounded by good company. And, that’s all this girl can really ask for during the holiday season!

If you would like to see everything I made for both Thanksgiving meals, visit my Pinterest board.

Green Beans and Almonds Recipe

Green Beans and Almonds

Green Beans and Almonds


  • 2 (12 oz.) bags of Steamfresh whole green beans
  • 4 Tbsp Earth Balance vegan butter
  • 4 oz. (or 1/2 cup) sliced almonds
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic salt (or to taste)
  • crushed black pepper (optional)


  1. Follow instructions on the Steamfresh bags. After microwaving, drain any excess liquid from the bag. Place the green beans in a serving bowl.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small frying pan over medium-low heat.
  3. Add almonds to the pan, and toast until golden brown. Be careful not to burn the almonds by keeping on a low heat and stirring frequently.
  4. Add the almond mixture and garlic salt to the green beans; mix well.
  5. If preferred, add crushed black pepper to taste. Serve warm.

5 thoughts on “My First Vegan Thanksgiving

  1. I’m glad you guys could make it to glutton-fest! 🙂 It’s so hard to get a taste of everything without paying for it later. Your dishes were awesome and I was definitely happy to see some more vegetables.

    I wish I could help with the roast, but that was totally Kevin’s department. It was covered in foil, but that’s all the info I have.


  2. Pingback: A Very Vegan Thanksgiving | Running on Vegan

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