Your Favorite Holiday Sweets Made Vegan

Your 13 Favorite Holiday Sweets Made Vegan

A vegan-friendly twist on 13 classics.


With the holidays right around the corner, now is the perfect time to start baking some festivity into your life! Whether you're a sweet or savory kind of person, no holiday is really complete without its cooked counterpart.

Here are 13 of your favorite holiday foods, made vegan-friendly.

1. Pumpkin Bread

To make this fall-favorite fit for a vegan diet, follow any pumpkin bread recipe you like best, but swap out the eggs for applesauce.

Yes, applesauce.

Generally, one egg equates to about 1/3 cup of applesauce, so measure it out accordingly.

If your preferred recipe calls for milk (I find that pumpkin bread usually doesn't, but on the off chance that it does), swap out the dairy for your favorite plant milk! Almond milk or oat milk are two great options.

2. Apple Pumpkin Muffins

This recipe tells you everything you need to know!

Important notes: they suggest using almond milk specifically, and do not forget your nondairy butter!!!!! If you are trying out a vegan lifestyle or just generally lowering your dairy/animal product intake, it can be easy to forget to switch your butter.

One interesting ingredient used here is a flax egg. This involves mixing flaxseed meal with water in order to create a gelatinous substance with a texture similar to that of an egg. For specific details, this how-to is your best friend!

3. Peppermint Hot Chocolate

A detailed recipe isn't completely necessary here, because this one comes down to personal preference!

For a starting base though, 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk, 1 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon of (dairy-free) chocolate chips, and some sweetener of choice, such as sugar, should be on your list of ingredients.

It is definitely important to ensure that your almond milk and cocoa powder are unsweetened if you plan on adding sweetener, because otherwise you'll be sipping straight up sugar. Unless that's what you're going for.

Start by putting your milk into a microwave safe mug, and microwave it for about a minute, or until it is your preferred level of warm. Once this is done, add your cocoa powder, chocolate, and sweetener as desired, and mix this together. It entirely depends on exactly how you want your hot chocolate to turn out. If you want a thicker, creamier result, vary your ratios. Add more depending on the consistency.

One important thing to note here is that you can always add more ingredients, but you cannot take them away once they've been added. Start small!

Add a candy cane to stir with in order to add a hint of mint.

Personally, I love adding a tablespoon of vanilla extract to my hot chocolate for extra flavor. For even more of a peppermint flavor, swap this out for peppermint extract.

4. Holiday Biscotti

This is an awesome recipe if you're a biscotti person. With cranberries and pistachios, this treat dons the classic colors of the holiday season, but you can also add extras of your choice! Slivered almonds or vegan chocolate chips are a couple great options.

In this recipe, you will need to use either a flax egg or some aquafaba. As strange as it may sound, aquafaba is the liquid that you usually drain from a can of chickpeas, but it is actually used in a lot of vegan cooking! Just make sure you are using liquid only from chickpeas. No other beans. Chickpeas.

5. Gingerbread Cookies

To make some vegan gingerbread men, you can really stick to your favorite recipe, but swap the egg for a flax egg, and use vegan butter.

If you don't have a recipe on hand, this should do the trick. It even includes a recipe for frosting, and we all know you can't have gingerbread men without some frosting details.

6. Apple Crumble

Just as good as apple pie, but only half the trouble.

This recipe gives you the complete lowdown on how to craft this holiday classic. It calls for honey crisp and granny smith apples, but you can really use anything your heart desires!

7. Peppermint Bark

Food Network

Peppermint bark is probably one of my top three favorite snacks during the holidays, and being able to make it vegan is even better.

Follow this recipe, and all you need is some vegan dark chocolate, almond milk, peppermint extract, coconut butter, and mint.

Really, peppermint bark is something you can pretty much just wing, but if you're more comfortable with a few guidelines, this recipe is the way to go!

If you want your end result to be closer to the classic version of this bark, grab some vegan white chocolate as well. Once you have finished your layer of dark chocolate and allowed it solidify, follow the same steps with the white chocolate and layer it on top before continuing to the next steps of the recipe.

Finish it all off with some crushed (vegan) candy canes, and you're set!

8. Crinkle Cookies

Crinkle cookies are definitely widely accepted and welcomed, and this gluten free, vegan version will leave you feeling great.

This recipe does call for applesauce to be used in place of eggs, as well as vegan butter.

If you don't have gluten-free flour on hand, or gluten-free just isn't something of value to you, you can definitely swap out the gluten-free flour blend for your flour of choice.

9. Egg Nog

Eggnog is easily one of the most popular things in the realm of seasonal foods and beverages, whether it be among parents, or kids opting for *non-alcoholic* versions.

For this one, you'll need some cashew milk, raw cashews, full fat coconut milk, medjool dates, vanilla extract, and some spices.

Though the recipe ultimately leaves you with a non-alcoholic version, it is up to you if you want to add a little something extra. I'll leave that to your discretion.

10. Snickerdoodles

Who doesn't love a good snickerdoodle?

To make this vegan version, grab some vegan butter, cream of tartar, white sugar, vanilla extract, flour, apple cider vinegar, baking soda, cinnamon (of course), salt, and plant milk of your choice (the recipe calls for soy milk, but you can use whatever you want).

The recipe specifies the use of 1 and 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon, but if you're like me, and therefore a biiiig cinnamon fanatic, you can surely use more than that. Get crazy with it. Go wild. It's the holidays. Ain't nobody judgin'.

You'll be left with a magically-scented home as well as a big plate of snickerdoodles.

11. Cinnamon Rolls

Truth is, we can always count on Tasty to bring us some quality recipes, and that includes holiday treats!

Specifically, these cinnamon rolls.

Stock up on almond milk (or any plant milk) and vegan butter and you're pretty much set to make any cinnamon roll recipe vegan, but this one is sure not to disappoint.

11. Pumpkin Pie

The only thing out of the ordinary for this recipe is using full fat coconut milk as an ingredient. In fact, this is actually pretty important to note, because this ensures that the consistency of your pie filling is correct.

Another important thing to note is the use of canned pumpkin, NOT pumpkin pie filling.

If you're a sucker for whipped cream, like I am, you'll also love the fact that a recipe for vegan whipped cream is included.

13. Sugar Cookies

Let's be honest. You simply can't have Christmas without some good, old-fashioned Christmas cookies. I'm talking some basic sugar cookies with some not-so-basic icing decorations. Get crafty, people!

You can find everything you need to know to make some fantastic sugar cookies here.

To whip up some icing, experiment with some powdered sugar, adding tiny (TINY!) amounts of non-dairy milk at a time until you get the consistency you want. Add a splash of vanilla extract for a little more flavor, and it's decoration time!

So there you have it. Now let's get cooking.

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How To Order Vegan Like A Boss At Dutch Bros.

Coffee is a plant. And plant eaters need their fix, too.

Recently, at my local Dutch Brothers Coffee stand (shoutout to Monmouth Dutch Bros.!) they put up a sign with allergen information, to make it easier for the gluten, soy, and lactose intolerant.

Not only is this considerate as all get out, it also makes it immensely easier to order as someone who eats a plant-based diet.

Which is just the most obnoxious way of saying that I'm a vegan.

Now that this information is available at stands, it's much easier for my fellow herbivores to make delicious new combos without worrying about accidentally ingesting milk or eggs. But I'll make it even easier: here are my favorite vegan orders at Dutch.

1. Mochas

The chocolate sauce is dairy free! Rejoice! Flavored mochas are so creamy and delicious... Especially with coconut milk (it has the most fat content of their alternative milks).

Here are a few of my favorites:

"Grasshopper" (dark chocolate and creme de menthe)

"Double Torture" (vanilla mocha with two extra shots)

"Black Forest" (dark chocolate and cherry)

And last, there's no name for this one, but an English Toffee Mocha is to die for.

2. Iced teas

As long as you avoid the occasional special with white chocolate thrown in, you should be good here. However, they can be quite sweet and if you're like me, that's not ideal.

In general, my tip is to order half sweet, but here are my two favorite, less sickly sweet orders:

A plain, pink grapefruit green tea

"Ray of Sunshine" (blackberry, peach, and grapefruit)

3. Lattes

Now, with no sauce (chocolate, caramel or otherwise) these will be less creamy, but also less sweet! If that's your dig, here you go:

"Nutty Irishman" (Irish cream and hazelnut)

"Amaretto" (almond and cherry)

"Islander" (chocolate macadamia nut, vanilla, and coconut)

4. Chai

Now, this is where it gets tricky. If you believe honey is vegan, then you're good to go; if you're not on the honey train, then chai is a no-go for you.

But for those who love themselves some bee-juice, I have two words for you: dirty chai. (A chai with espresso shots tossed in.)

It's a plain and simple drink you can get anywhere and adds no sugary syrup. Frankly, the Dutch chai is sweet enough, you really don't need any flavors added. However, I find that I do need the added espresso shots to balance it out. Plus, you get that added caffeine kick, and who doesn't love that?

Hopefully, this gives you some ideas for next visit, so you can do more than the (very safe) soy vanilla latte. Go forth and caffeinate!

Cover Image Credit: Monmouth Dutch Bros. | Instagram

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I Went Meat-Free For One Whole Week, And I Changed In Ways I Never Imagined

I didn't expect there would be these many benefits.


It all started with a simple challenge.

I urged myself to give the vegetarian diet a try, even just for seven days.

I got excited, but also really worried. Excited because this is another adventure in itself. New things are always fun, right? Because my family is not vegetarian, I had to either do my own meal preparations or buy outside food. I got the chance to experiment with ingredients that I didn't normally use. I didn't know that cooking your own food would be such a fulfilling, yet liberating experience. But also, I was nervous — simply because I was not sure if I could do this for a week. Moreso, I got worried about potential nutritional deficiencies. I didn't want to be missing the needed nutrients from my usual meat diet that could negatively affect my daily activities.

Little did I know, the opposite happened.

I expected that my lack of iron from meat would make me more restless and anxious. Rather, I felt way lighter and even had a better mood. Research suggests that the low amount of arachidonic acid from avoiding meat is the reason behind this. To make sure that my lack of iron from meat is being met, I ate right amounts of tofu, nuts, and mushrooms.

Before this challenge, I wasn't really conscious of what I put in my body. My regular diet usually consists of rice, protein (pork, beef, chicken, seafood), and maybe leafy vegetables. Note that "maybe" over there. As long as it's tasty, it will get in my belly. Through this challenge, I started to think about the nutrients that I do need and the junk that I should start to avoid.

Being my competitive-self, I knew I'd have to live up to the challenge no matter what. I also knew it would be hard, though; especially since I've never done it before. What initially started as a mission quickly became an enjoyable experience.

Why the sudden need to try a new diet, you may ask?

One day, I realized how I claimed to love the Earth so much but never considered how much processing went into my daily consumptions. This challenge forced me to dismiss packaged food such as bacon and SPAM for breakfast. It made me choose the actual whole food instead. These involved fruits like bananas, grapes, and kiwis. As a result, my plastic consumption also went downhill.

Even after this challenge, I might continue with my new habits of choosing healthier alternatives. It's always a good idea to be kind to our bodies — even better if that idea helps in taking care of our planet.

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