Holiday meal table setting.
Photo from: Pixabay

Holiday Meal Recipes for Alternative Diets

Holiday Meal Recipes for Alternative Diets

As the holiday season approaches, many people may be planning something a little different than traditional American food staples such as meat and potatoes. When walking through grocery store isles the words “gluten-free,” “vegan,” “keto friendly,” “plaeo”, jump up at us. Diet trends are sweeping the nation and  many individuals are looking for a change. We also may have guests visiting with food intolerances or allergies and may want to ensure everyone is feeling satisfied at the dinner table. There is a plethora of unique and fun recipes to try out this holiday season or even for the new year. The recipes and directions are below. 


Nut Loaf
Photo by Pixabay

“Nutty Roast”

  • Serves up to 6 people 
  • What you will need:
  • -1 Finely Chopped Onion 
  • -2 Crushed Garlic Cloves
  • -2 Celery Sticks Finely Chopped 
  • -1 trimmed and thinly sliced leek
  • -2 coarsely grated carrots
  • – ¾ ounce of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • – 1 Vegan certified vegetable stock cube
  • -10 ½ ounces of mixed nuts
  • – 6 ounces of cooked chestnuts, broken into small pieces
  • -4 tablespoons of cashew butter
  • – 2 ½ ounces of dried cranberries
  • – 1 finely grated zest of lemon 
  • – 4 tablespoons of almond milk
  • – 1 teaspoon sea salt 
  • – 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
  • – 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, add extra for greasing  
  • – 2 pound loaf tin 
  • -baking paper 


  • Put nuts and stock into a food processor until chopped into small pieces or chop all the nuts as finely as you can. 
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Farenhiet. Lightly oil the base of the tin and then line the tin with baking paper. 
  • Heat oil in large size frying pan and lightly fry the carrots, celery, leek and onion for five minutes or until soft, adding garlic at the end of the five minutes. 
  • Add the fried ingredients into a mixing bowl, stir in the cashew nut butter, chopped nuts, lemon zest, cranberries, parsley, salt, black pepper, and almond milk until thoroughly mixed. 
  • Spoon the mix into the loaf tin, pressing down with a spoon or spatula to ensure a firmly compact mixture. Cover the tin with foil and set in oven to bake for 30 minutes. 
  • After 30 minutes moved the foil and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until loaf lightly browned. 
  • Let cool for 5 minutes, then loosed edges with a table knife and turn onto a platter.
  • Cut as desired and serve with choice of vegan mushroom gravy or ketchup. 


Veggie Meatballs
Photo provided by Pixabay

“Vegetarian Meatless Balls”*

*this recipe is lacto-octo-vegetarian friendly

What you will need:

  • ½ cup of chopped kale
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 1 grated carrot
  • 1 boiled potato, mashed with fork
  • 1 egg 
  • ¼ cup almond meal
  • ½ red onion, finely diced
  • A single 15 oz can of chickpeas
  • ¾ teaspoon salt 
  • ¾ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric 
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Olive oil 


  • Put chickpeas into blender or food processor until appearance is broken up and smashed, then put into a large bowl. 
  • Add all remaining ingredients except oil into the bowl and mix with a spoon.
  • Form mixture into balls
  • Saute balls in an oven safe pan or skillet on stove top with desired amount of oil until slightly browned. 
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Place the balls into oven and bake for 25 minutes 
  • Remove from oven and enjoy the meatless treats on a bed of greens and sauteed bell peppers
  • May add dipping sauce of choice 


Roasted Chicken
Photo by: Pixabay

“Greek Roast Chicken”

Serves up to eight people. 

What you will need:

  • 1 whole roasting chicken (4-5 lbs)
  • 1 ¾ cups chicken broth or stock, divided
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
  • 1 medium red onion, cut into ¼ -inch wedges. 
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into thick wedges
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon 
  • 2 tablespoons rosemary leaves and sprigs
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons of salt, divided
  • ½ teaspoons black pepper, divided
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • A shallow roasting pan 


  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Farenhiet. Place chicken breast up in shallow roasting pan. 
  • Combine 2 tablespoons oil, chopped rosemary and garlic in small bowl and brush over the chicken. 
  • Grate one teaspoon of lemon peel and set aside. Cut the rest of the lemon into quarters, squeeze juice over the chicken and place lemon quarters and rosemary sprigs into cavity. Sprinkle chicken with ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Pour 1 cup broth into the bottom of the roasting pan. Roast for 30 minutes. 
  • Reduce the oven heat 375 degrees Arrange sweet potatoes and onion wedges in single layer around chicken in roasting pan. Drizzle remaining ¾ cup broth and 1 tablespoon oil over vegetables; roast 15 minutes. 
  • Arrange asparagus in roasting pan; sprinkle with remaining ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Roast for 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked thoroughly (165 degrees) and vegetables are tender. Transfer chicken to the cutting board and then tent with foil. Let stand for fifteen mintues. 
  • Sprinkle lemon peel over chicken and serve vegetables in the pan juices. 


Photo By: Pixabay

Simple Keto Cheescake

Makes 10 slices

What you will need for crust:

  • 2 cups of almond flour 
  • 4-6 tablespoons of melted coconut oil 
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt 
  • 8 or 9 inch springform pan 
  • Parchment paper to line pan with

What you will need for filling:

  • ¼ cup of almond flour
  • ¼ cup monk fruit sweetener 
  • 24 ounces of cream cheese or vegan cream cheese
  • 2 cups of coconut milk yogurt
  • 2 ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract 
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions for crust:

  • Combine all listed ingredients 
  • Pour into lined 8 or 9 inch springform pan 
  • Press down until even 
  • Set aside while making filling

Directions for filling:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Fill any baking pan up about half way up with water and place on lower rack of oven
  • Bring cream cheese to room temperature. Use blender or food processor to blend all ingredients until smooth, avoid over mixing. 
  • Pour filling into premade crust then place on middle rack above the water filled pan
  • Bake for 30 minutes, do not open oven. After 30 minutes has ended turn off oven and leave in oven for additional five minutes. 
  • Take out cheesecake and let cool on the counter for 20 minutes. Then place the cheesecake in fridge to sit overnight. 


Kamilah Mirza

Contact me at: