By Kirsten Hawkins
Are you worried about cooking for a vegetarian in your family
this upcoming holiday season? Well, worry no more. This
will tell you exactly what you need to do and know before you
start cooking this holiday season.
You can start off by finding out what type of vegetarian your
guest is. For instance, if she is a strict vegan, then there’s
a chance she will not eat food that contains honey or yeast;
however, if on the other hand, she is a "semi" or "pseudo"
vegetarian, there is a chance she will actually eat the meal
it is prepared, including the meat. And if she’s a
lacto-ovo-vegetarian,she might eat anything with eggs and
but will probably avoid meat dishes.
If you talk to the vegetarian in your family before you
your holiday meal, you should consider asking the following
1. Do you eat certain types of meat or none at all?
If the vegetarian in your family will eat certain meats
(generally fish, chicken, and turkey), then you should
preparing that as a side dish or asking them if they would
to bring a small dish of it for their own meal.
2. Will you use serving utensils that have been placed in
dishes containing meat?
Some vegetarians experience severe gastrointestinal stress
they consume meat and grease from meat, so it is a good idea
find out whether or not they can do so ahead of time. If they
can’t, you can simply put out one utensil for all non-meat
dishes and ask that guests do not cross-contaminate.
3. Do you eat foods that contain milk and eggs?
As I mentioned above, lacto-ovo vegetarians will eat milk and
eggs, but other sub-categories of vegetarian will not. Some
wont do it for health reasons; others wont for ethical
Whatever the case, you can get around this problem by either
creating more dishes that do not contain milk and eggs or by
using egg replacer, which you can find at most supermarkets,
and milk replacements, such as soya milk.
4. Do you eat honey and yeast?
Some vegetarians do not eat honey and yeast for ethical
reasons. If you find out that the vegetarian in your family
does not eat honey and yeast ahead of time, you can either
prepare alternate dishes or ask if they are willing to bring
5. Would you like to bring your own main dish (to replace the
turkey, ham, etc.)?
Many vegetarians eat popular meat-replacement dishes, such as
"tofurkey" and "veggie burgers." Your guest will probably be
more than willing to bring her own meat-replacement dish if
To reiterate, there are a number of things you should take
consideration when you cook for a vegetarian this holiday
season; however, the single most important thing you can do is
actually approach the vegetarian and ask how you can
accommodate her and if she would like to cook with you or
her own dish.
If you keep this in mind, your holiday meal will be a success
with everyone - even the vegetarian in your family!
About The Author: Kirsten Hawkins is a vegetarian and
expert from Nashville, TN. Visit
www.recipe-vegetarian.com/ for more information on
vegetarian recipes and resources.