Tips & Tricks

Vegetarian guests coming for Christmas? Cool!


Has someone in your family circle “gone veggie” over the past year? Is there a vegetarian guest coming to your party? Well, that’s not unusual these days, so keep your cool. Vegetarian dishes make an elegant addition to traditional holiday menus. Recipes can be surprisingly simple, and delicious to boot. Here are some tips on how to add a dish or two to your festive table – or perhaps even serve an all-vegetarian feast. It’s really not complicated.


What kind of veggie are they?

For starters, you need to find out which type of vegetarian diet your guests follow so you can plan your menu. Some vegetarians just shun meat, while others (vegans) eat no animal products. Here’s a quick guide (1). 


Vegetarian diets

What they don’t eat

What they do eat


Red meat, processed meats, fish and domestic poultry

All products of vegetable origin, fish and seafood, wild game and fish in moderate quantities, eggs and dairy products


Meat and poultry

All products of vegetable origin, fish and seafood, eggs and dairy products

Lacto-ovo vegetarian

Meat, poultry, fish and seafood

All products of vegetable origin, eggs and dairy products


Meat, poultry, fish, seafood and eggs

All products of vegetable origin and dairy products


All products of animal origin

All products of vegetable origin


A veggie feast

Once you’ve figured out what your guests do and don’t eat, it’s time to start looking for some great recipes and plan your menu. You may decide to add one or two meatless dishes…or put together a whole meal (why not?). You could even ask your meat-eating guests to bring a vegetarian dish to add to the buffet. Potluck meals are great, especially  over the holidays.


Our top four festive veggie dishes

1- Barley Risotto with Cranberries and Root Vegetables:


2- Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup with Cranberry Sauce:

3- Chai Spiced Fruit Cake with Orange Vanilla Icing:

4- Harvest Crown:


Vegetarians and “fans”

If your guest list includes vegetarians and veggie fans, don’t forget to include some quality protein in your menu. Vegetable proteins, such as legumes (1 serving = 250 ml), tofu (1 serving = 170g) and nuts (1 serving = 45 ml), are nutritious, inexpensive and a great way of adding texture and flavour. Canned legumes are handy since they’re pre-cooked and can simply be added to salads, stir-fries and pasta dishes. Eggs and dairy products are complete proteins that can play starring roles in au-gratin dishes, soufflés and mini-quiches, depending on what kind of vegetarian diet your guests follow.


For a fun touch, add pomegranate seeds, citrus zest, nuts or roasted seeds to  make your veggie dishes colourful and appetizing. You can even revisit traditional recipes like tourtière by replacing the meat with lentils. Your guests will be impressed!


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