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With one notable exception, a plant based Thanksgiving menu really isn't that much of a departure from a traditional menu. No, you won't be serving turkey like the vast majority of households, but many of the other Thanksgiving staples are already plant based - potatoes (sweet or not), green beans, cranberry sauce, dressing/stuffing, pumpkin pie, etc. Tweak a few ingredients and you've got a plant based meal that will have you basking in the holiday spirit!
Incorporating Essential Oils into the Menu
Thanksgiving is the perfect time to enhance your favorite family recipes with essential oils. The spice, herb, and citrus oils compliment so many of the traditional recipes.
- Instead of adding pumpkin pie spice to your pie, use 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 1 drop Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil, 1-2 drops Clove Essential Oil, and 1-2 drops Ginger Essential Oil.
- Add up to 3 drops Wild Orange Essential Oil per 10 oz bag of cranberries to your homemade cranberry sauce.
- Roasted carrots can be enhanced with a drop of Thyme Essential Oil.
- Add a drop of Rosemary Essential Oil and lots of minced garlic to your mashed or roasted potatoes. So good!
- Use Lemon Essential Oil in vinaigrette salad dressings. Just a drop or two should do it. Start small and dip a leafy green to sample then add more if necessary.
WHAT TO MAKE?
To help you plan your plant based Thanksgiving menu, we've pulled together a few links to recipes and resources. If you don't want to piece together a plan for the big day, several websites have full menus available.
- Forks Over Knives (Menu: Apple, Grapefruit, Pomegranate Salad, Mixed Beans and Root Vegetable Stew, Roasted Stuffed Winter Squash, Herbed Fingerling Potatoes, Pumpkin Cranberry Cookies)
- Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (Menu: Creamy Mushroom Bisque, Crispy Sage Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Delicata Squash Stuffed with Holiday Rice, Save-Cash Quinoa Loaf Apple Crisp)
- For ideas galore, check out Preparing For Vegan Thanksgiving on The Happy Herbivore. There are links to recipes on the website as well as suggested recipes from The Happy Herbivore cookbooks. (Don't skip the blog posts about her parents' plant based Thanksgiving journey. So cute!)
- Thanksgiving is not complete without pumpkin pie. Try The GREAT Pumpkin Pie from Dreena Burton's Plant Powered Kitchen. Not only is it plant based, it is also gluten, soy, and oil free. See our adapted recipe with essential oils below.
Plant Based Pumpkin Pie with Essential Oils
(recipe adapted from Dreena Burton’s Plant Powered Kitchen)Ingredients
- 2 cups rolled oats use certified gluten-free for a GF option
- 1/2 cup pitted dates packed
- 1/3 cup almond butter
- 1/8 tsp sea salt omit if almond butter has salt
- 2 tbsp non-dairy milk or more if needed to bring the crust together
- 1 can 15 oz, 398ml pumpkin puree (pure pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling)
- 2/3 - 3/4 cup raw cashews 2/3 for slightly softer set, 3/4 for firmer
- 1/3 cup plain unsweetened non-dairy milk
- 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tbsp arrowroot powder
- 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 drop Cinnamon essential oil
- 2 drops Clove essential oil
- 2 drops Ginger essential oil
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract or 1/4 tsp vanilla bean powder
- 1/4 tsp rounded sea salt
Preheat oven to 400°F. Prepare a pie plate. In a food processor, combine the oats, dates, and salt for the crust. Puree until fine and crumbly. Add the almond butter and puree for about a minute. Add the milk and pulse through until the mixture becomes sticky (it should hold together when pressed/pinched). If it's not holding together, add a little more milk, 1 tsp at a time, until it does. Remove and transfer to prepared pie plate. Press mixture in with your fingers until evenly distributed around the base and up the sides of the plate.
In a high speed blender combine all ingredients for the filling. Purée until very smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Pour mixture into pie crust and gently tip back and forth to distribute evenly.
Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350F (180C) and continue to bake for 25 minutes, until the pie is golden and has mostly set (the center may be soft, but it will set further as it cools). Remove from oven, transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool completely before slicing and serving (can refrigerate to chill first).
Serve with plant based ice cream or whipped cream
- And finally, in honor of Thanksgiving being the one meal where it seems acceptable to have side dishes that are pretty much dessert, I give you another delicious recipe, Sweet Potato Casserole with Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil. Oh, and pecans! Lots and lots of yummy pecans!
Sweet Potato Casserole with Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil
RECIPE & IMAGE FROM DOTERRA (Adapted)
- 4 cooked sweet potatoes, peeled
- 3/4 cup almond milk
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup (adjust to taste)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 orange, juiced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 4 drops Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil
- 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 2 drops Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil
- Place cooked sweet potatoes, almond milk, maple syrup, nutmeg, orange juice, and Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil into a large bowl.
- With a hand mixer, blend until everything is combined.
- Spread into an oven-safe dish and set aside.
- Combine all topping ingredients until pecans are well coated. Sprinkle on top of sweet potatoes.
- Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes, or until pecans have slightly browned. Serve warm.
What plant based recipes are on your Thanksgiving menu?