Easy and Delicious Vegan Side Dishes

FullSizeRender (34).jpg

DON'T HATE ON VEGAN FOOD.

I know vegan food and Thanksgiving do not seem to be a match made in heaven but you'd be surprised at how yummy these vegan side dishes are.

This is great for anyone who hasn't figured out what to bring to Thanksgiving dinner or anyone that is hosting vegan friends/family.

It's surprising how many Thanksgiving foods are NOT vegan (aside from the obvious turkey).  Mashed potatoes tend to be loaded with butter and cream.  Gravy usually always has tukey fat.  Even the marshmallows on the sweet potatoes casserole aren't vegan!

I love these two sides even on a regular week but they suit the Thanksgiving feast so well.

I got all of the ingredients from Trader Joe's (no this is not sponsored).  I love their affordable prices and produce selection......also those free samples.

 

Side Dish # 1: Cauliflower Mash

Ingredients

- 3 bags of cauliflower florets 

- Vegan Butter (Earth Balance)

- Truffle Salt

- Pink sea salt 

- Olive Oil

- Fresh Rosemary

I begin with preheating the oven to 400 degrees.  I then lightly oil the bottom of a baking pan.  I empty the bags of cauliflower onto the pan and drizzle them with a little olive oil and himalayan pink sea salt.  I roast for 12 minutes and then use a spatula to flip the cauliflower over so one side does not burn.  I roast again for another additional 12-15 minutes.  Make sure the cauliflower is a very light, light brown shade from being roasted.  You do not want it too dark or it will taste charred. After removing from the oven I let the cauliflower cool for 5-10 minutes. I transfer the cauliflower to my Vitamix, but you can easily use a food processor as well. I pulse until it appears to look similar to cauliflower "rice".  I advise not using pre packaged cauliflower rice.  It is harder to roast properly and you will lose that nice hearty flavor by not roasting the cauliflower.  I then transfer from the Vitamix to a bowl and add two tablespoon of vegan butter.  I start mixing and add olive oil and truffle salt to taste.  Aim for a similar consistency to mashed potatoes.  Add a sprig or two of rosemary for garnish.

 

Side Dish # 2: Roasted Maple Harvest

Ingredients

- 1 large bag of precut butternut squash

- 1 bag of pre shredded brussel sprouts 

- 1 bag of dried cranberries

- 1 bag of chopped unsalted pecans

- Bourbon Maple Syrup

- Olive Oil

- Pink sea salt 

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Trader Joe's has the option now of a small or large bag of precut butternut squash.  I opted for the large bag this time.  They cut the squash fairly large so I start but cutting the larger pieces in half or thirds. I then lightly oil the bottom of a baking pan and add the cut butternut squash and drizzle lighting with olive oil and pink sea salt. I bake for 20-30 minutes.  It really is up to you on how roasted you want it.    About halfway through cooking the roasted butternut squash I add my shredded brussel sprouts to a new pan. You can use regular half cut brussel sprouts but I like the difference in textures with adding the shredded ones.  I lightly oil the pan, add the shredded brussel sprouts and drizzle with some olive oil and a sprinkle of pink sea salt.  By this time to brussel sprouts will have cooked 10-15 minutes and should be done at the same time the roasted butternut squash is.  Cook accordingly to how roasted you like them.  I love both my brussel sprouts and butternut squash a lil caramelized.   I remove from pan and add to a very large mixing bowl.  I then add 1/2 cup of the chopped pecans, 1/3 cup of the dried cranberries, and 1 tablespoon of the bourbon maple syrup.  Stir everything together and you're done!

 

To reheat I like to broil the Roasted Maple Harvest for 5-7 minutes.  I heat the Cauliflower Mash in a pot stove top on a low-middle heat setting for about 5-7 minutes as well.  You can always add lil olive oil to the mash if it seems a little dry. 

Enjoy!