Whether it is Christmas, Chanukah, Solstice, or Kwanzaa – enjoy a vegetarian feast. We have links to the best recipes, tips on what to serve, gift suggestions, and E-card links.

Avoid stress when vegetarians and meat eaters will be at the same meal. See our Surviving a holiday dinner page for suggestions on:

  • Catering to vegetarians (when you aren’t one yourself)
  • Being invited to a home where meat is being served
  • Inviting non-vegetarians to your home

Celebrating in Toronto

See where to find holiday fare in Toronto

Time saving tips

  • Call a vegetarian-friendly restaurant and order an entrée or side dish that you can pick up. Bring your own containers. Le Commensal (several locations in Quebec and one in Toronto) has an excellent selection in their buffet. They also carry pre-packaged savoury pies, pâtés, fancy desserts, etc.
  • Larger natural food stores carry Tofurky (“a bird-free feast with all the trimmings”) and a wide variety of vegetarian dips, pâtés, faux meats, frozen entrées, non-dairy ice cream, pies, soy nog (in December) and much more.
  • Arrange for some or all of the guests to contribute a dish.
  • At some point after the meal, ask for help with the dishes and clean-up. Many hands make light work.
  • Prepare some of the items ahead of time. Use easy recipes with which you are already familiar.

Holiday recipes

Vegetarian Holidays information & recipe sheet
View our printable two-page holiday fact sheet: vegetarian-holiday.pdf It includes the following recipes: Easy Festive Bake, Stuffed Tofu Turkey, Good Gravy, Sweet Potato and Parsnip Casserole, Chestnut Soup with Greens, Ginger Cranberry Mincemeat Pie, and Vegan Egg Nog.

Roasted Chestnuts
How to select, roast and serve chestnuts.

Holiday recipe links

Vegan recipe site by PETA. Special gourmet holiday recipes page includes: Vegetarian Pâté en Croûte, Rosemary and Hazelnut-Encrusted Seitan, Red Wine and Shallot Gravy, Green Beans With Fresh Cranberries (see photo above), and Apple Bavarian Torte.

Christmas Celebration Feast
Viva! presents a large selection of delicious recipes for a four-course meal includingArtichoke & Wild Mushroom Strudel (picture to the right). Choose from starters, main course items, side dishes and dessert. Ingredient weights are in both metric and imperial.

Recipe Zaar
30,000+ | Ratings | Nutrition info | Change servings | Flag recipes | Many photos
They have over 1,600 recipes marked asvegetarian and Christmas (285+ of them are marked as vegan). There are also over 300vegetarian Hanukkah recipes, and over 75vegetarian Kwanzaa recipes. Excellent search and sort feature. You can also search for other holidays.

2,000+ | Ratings | All vegan | Flag recipes | Some photos
Several winter holiday recipes.

All Recipes
3,600+ | Ratings | Nutrition info | Change servings | Flag recipes | Some photos
A search for Vegetarian Christmas yields several choices.

For Jewish holidays including Purim, Passover, and Chanukah – an excellent list of recipe links is available from Jewish Veg.

Holiday shopping ideas

  • Many vegetarian restaurants have gift certificatesavailable.
  • Gift membership to vegetarian organization (for example, see below).
  • See our books page for some of the best veggie cookbooks and other books available. Or shop in person at our Resource Centre.
  • Vegetarian T-shirts. These can be ordered online or if you are near Toronto, stop by our Resource Centre.
  • Kitchen equipment, leather-free clothingbaby stuff, food items, etc. See ourMarketplace page for online gift ideas.

Don’t buy animals as presents!

A Reminder from Kelly Gredner, director of Companion Animal Exploitation. The innocent face of a kitten, puppy, rabbit, or other small animal is sometimes difficult to resist. We like to think that we are “rescuing” them from the store from which they are living, but what we are really doing is contributing to the exploitative industry of “pet supply”. It seems like a good idea at first, but the excitement of a new companion can soon wear off when the responsibility becomes too great, and the novelty fades. The animal
can end up in an overcrowded shelter, given away, left behind in a move, or even just set loose in a park.

If you are thinking about getting an animal as a gift for someone this
holiday season, please reconsider. Please think about the life of the animal first. If you are absolutely certain that the person or family in question wants a companion animal, and is ready for the lifelong commitment, then give them a gift certificate to their local shelter.

Gift memberships

A membership to Toronto Vegetarian Association can be an ideal gift for a friend or relative this holiday season. They will receive Lifelines, our bimonthly newsletter, which is filled with news, articles, recipes, restaurant reviews, and event information.

It is a gift that will make a lasting impression. Memberships are available for an annual donation of $20 or more.

For an additional $20, you can include a Vegetarian Discount Card. Cardholders receive savings at over 70 vegetarian-friendly restaurants, natural food stores, cooking classes and vacation spots. See here for the current list of discounts. Purchase a gift membership (specify the recipient in the comments field). They are also available at our Resource Centre


Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) has some nice holiday e-cards that you can send via the internet to your friends and family. See right, for an example.

PETA also has several holiday cards at their E-card web site. Most are animated, and several have moral messages such as “don’t buy animals as presents.”

Viva! has a cute Christmas e-card with sheep that says “Baa Humbug”