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27 Nov 2019

16 recommended vegan Christmas eats 2019

Whether you're serving vegan Christmas canapes, a centrepiece or dessert, here are our recommendations to make your meat-free yuletide a success

Are you catering for a vegan this festive season or enjoying a plant-based diet yourself? Our food editors put their taste buds to the test sampling nearly 50 vegan products released by the top supermarkets for Christmas.

From our tasting, we've selected these 16 top picks to make your meat-free Christmas a mouthwatering success (all vegan).

See which wines we recommend for vegans and vegetarians:

Vegan party food and canapes

Stuck for party food ideas for vegans and veggies? Here are the best of our Christmas party nibbles (in no particular order).

1. Aldi Specially Selected Vegetable Tempura Nests (£2.99, pack of 8)

These not only looked delightful on the canape tray but were delicious, too, and gave a lovely, satisfying crunch when bitten into.

They didn't fall apart and each was more substantial than just a bite.

A really clever vegan festive party food option.

Availability: In store from 12 December 2019.

2. M&S Plant Kitchen No-Pork No Pigs in Duvets (£5, pack of 12)

There was a pleasing peppery bite from these extremely convincing 'pigs', which had all the texture and resonance of a meat sausage.

The pastry was also deliciously rich.

Serve these nibbles to meat-eater and there's a good chance they won't know there's no meat in them.

Availability: In store from 21 December 2019.

3. Iceland No Duck Spring Rolls (£2, pack of 10)

Our food editors enjoyed the punchy, spicy hoisin 'duck' filling encased in a lovely crunchy coating.

They dubbed these a crowd-pleaser that didn't shout 'vegan'.

Availability: In store and online now.

4. Aldi Vegan Mini Bites in Sweet Chilli Cauliflower & Pumpkin (£1.79, pack of 10)

Just because you're vegan doesn't mean you have to miss out on the cheese-like ooze so often associated with Christmas party nibbles.

These had a good crisp coating, but with a delectable creamy middle that also had a satisfying kick.

Availability: In store now.

5. Waitrose & Partners Vegan Moroccan Mushroom & Chickpea Pittas (£6, pack of 12)

These fabulously cute, 'enough for two bites' mini pittas had a spicy filling that was quite substantial. And that pitta bread's great for soaking up any Christmas party booze.

Availability: In store now.

6. Iceland No Bull Burger sliders (£4, pack of 8)

There was a pleasing mix of bun, mustard, sauce and filling with this mini burger option. And even though the bun was a bit sticky, it didn't detract from the overall impact of the snack.

A Nou00ebl nibble to please all.

In store now.

7. Morrisons 10 No Pigs In Blankets (£2.50, pack of 10)

These no-pigs had the texture of meat sausage, and our testers found the contrasting crunch of the pastry blanket crisp and enjoyable.

They captured the essence of pork pigs in blankets - and looked the part, too.

Availability: In store and online from 27 November 2019.

Find out how to make the best roast potatoes (for vegans and meat-eaters): a crowd-pleasing party nibble

Vegan centrepieces

No Christmas meal is complete without a hero dish to wow your guests, so here are our picks of this season's best vegan Christmas dinner ideas.

8. M&S Plant Kitchen Festive Roast (£12, serves 4)

Our tasters found this a real showstopper for a plant-based Christmas dinner, complete with cranberry and chestnut stuffing and no-pork cocktail sausoyges (sic).

It was meatily satisfying, down to the crisping on the outside, and topped off with luxurious jus-style gravy.

Availability: Pre-order online to collect from 22 December 2019, also in store from 20 December.

9. Morrisons The Best Layered Vegetable Tart (£4, pack of 2)

If you're after an evocative seasonal menu aroma to get you in the mood for festive fare, look no further.

The pastry on this tart was crisp and the fronds of green topped with chestnuts gave a riot of veggie flavours.

Availability: In store and online now.

10. Waitrose & Partners Vegan Root En Croute (£5.99, serves 2)

This vegan en croute was made with great pastry and the filling felt luxurious, thanks to a careful arrangement of marinated roasted vegetables and an excellent spinach bechamel sauce flavoured with paprika and dill.

Availability: In store and online from 4 December 2019.

11. Aldi Specially Selected Pastry Crowns in Root Vegetable with Vegan Cheddar Cheese (£2.99, serves 8)

Our tasters thought this was a bit different 'in a good way', combining beetroot, sweet potato, carrot, seeds and cranberries to create a tasty centrepiece with deliciously distinctive flavours.

Availability: In store now.

12. M&S Vegan Butternut, Almond & Pecan Nut Roast (£7.50, serves 4)

With lavish nuts and vegetables on a textured base - as well as a hint of cranberry now and again - this dish could really hold its own among the trimmings on a festive table.

The thyme gravy with its distinctive red wine taste was the perfect finishing touch to this top-notch meat-free dish.

Availability: Pre-order online to collect from 22 December 2019.

Learn How to cook red cabbage to go with your festive fare

13. Tesco Finest Squash, Mushroom & Chestnut Wreath (£4.50, serves 2 as a main, 4 as a side)

This wreath had a topping of seeds and breadcrumbs, and was made with delicate, crispy filo, making it a lot perkier than flaky pastry.

The filling contained decent chunks of vegetables in a rich Madeira and white wine sauce, which was satisfyingly spicy.

A worthy addition to the Christmas lunch table.

Availability: In store and online from 16 December 2019.

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Vegan Christmas desserts

Not everyone is keen on conventional Christmas pudding or mince pies. So, from non-dairy chocolate bites through to a gateaux-inspired dessert, here are our vegan dessert festive favourites.

14. Iceland No Moo Chocolate Snowflake (£2.99, pack of 2)

Beneath the thick, dark vegan chocolate shell was a delicious salted caramel and coconut centre that tasted like an ambient choc ice with a biscuit base.

Serve really cold for maximum chocolate crunch.

Availability: In store and online now.

15. M&S Plant Kitchen Chocolate & Cherry Dessert (£10, serves 6)

If you're looking for a decadent, grown-up dessert with the very best elements of black cherry gateaux and just enough sweetness to satisfy, then look no further than this mousse.

The dark mousse wasn't too bitter and the hit of morello cherry set it off nicely.

Availability: Pre-order online to collect from 22 December 2019, in store from 18 December.

16. Tesco Finest Vegan Chocolate Ganache & Coconut Bites (£4, serves 8)

There was no vegan compromise with these deliciously dense chocolatey bites.

These perfectly sized treats with a crisp coconut base were really moreish and perfect if you're a dessert devotee looking for a non-dairy treat.

Availability: In store and online from 11 December 2019.