Enjoy A Very Vegan Thanksgiving At These L.A. Restaurants

Cafe Gratitudes Free Thanksgiving Plate
Cafe Gratitude's Free Thanksgiving Plate
Jarone Ashkenazi

Thanksgiving. You are probably thinking it isn’t the best holiday for vegans, right” Well, vegans in L.A. don’t have to worry as there are plenty of options for them. There is an array of restaurants in LA that are serving vegan meals this Thanksgiving. So go out and celebrate Turkey Day, even if you don’t eat turkey! Below are some delicious restaurants giving vegans a plethora of options on Thanksgiving. And if you would rather cook the food yourself, see towards the bottom of the article for some amazing recipes:

Matthew Kenney’s Plant Food + Wine is preparing for its first ever Thanksgiving feast this November and is offering their Thanksgiving Feast menu (found here) on Thursday, November 26 from 2-8pm. For $55, guests can choose three appetizers for the table, one of three entrees, two of four side dishes and one of four desserts.

The rich, veggie-focused menu offers guests a sustainable, cruelty-free and delicious alternative to this favorite holiday celebrating food, family and tradition. For those who want to host a meat-free Thanksgiving at home and still create the flavors so often associated with the holiday, Plant Food + Wine Chef Scott Wingard has shared his recipe for Foragers Pie, a dish with wild mushrooms, herb gravy and sweet potato mash in a spelt crust. Those celebrating at the restaurant will undoubtedly indulge in this seasonal dish, but recreating it at home couldn’t be easier.

Plant Food + Wine. 1009 Abbot Kinney Blvd, Venice, CA, USA, +1 (310) 450-1009

Plant Food + Wine’s Foragers Pie

Sage Vegan Bistro is offering some awesome Thanksgiving/holiday catering menu items. For example, on their holiday catering menu (which will be available through Christmas) is their Family Meal which feeds four people and includes: mac ‘n’ cheese, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce, greens, maple yams, four tamales and a pumpkin pie all for $189.

So if you don’t feel like cooking this Thanksgiving, someone could pick it up the Family Meal Wednesday night and then all you would have to do on Thanksgiving is warm it up…. Oh, and the meal is also all gluten-free!

Sage has locations in Culver City, Echo Park and Pasadena.

Sage Holiday Catering

M Café de Chaya, led by executive Chef Lee Gross, Gwyneth Paltrow’s former personal chef, will be offering a veg-friendly, meat-free Thanksgiving feast to-go – tailored for dietary needs, with no cooking required. M Café’s Thanksgiving Feast (to go) includes a choice of entrée, holiday soup, salad, salad and your choice of two additional accompaniments, full menu here. Entrée selections include a gluten-free tempeh loaf or a smoked tofu, pumpkin and chestnut terrine en croûte, with side dishes that include herbed bread stuffing with almonds and raisins, maple-glazed acorn squash, brussels sprouts, whipped potato and rutabaga, among many others. They will also be featuring six Thanksgiving special vegan desserts like a pumpkin cheesecake and gingersnap cookies. Price: $75/two person feast; $135/four person feast. To order, contact Kristel Kim at (213) 500.7220 or kristel@thechaya.com.

M Cafe has locations in Beverly Hills, Brentwood and in Hollywood.

M Cafe’s Seitan Roast

The Gentle Barn is hosting their 16th annual Gentle Thanksgiving event, from 3:00pm until 8:00pm on November 26th, Thanksgiving Day. With nearly 50 million turkeys consumed each Thanksgiving, The Gentle Barn wants to do its part to reduce this number. So instead of serving turkey, attendees will be given the opportunity to feed live turkeys that have been rescued from Thanksgiving! This one-of-a-kind event will have an abundance of delicious, healthy plant-based food provided by Tofurky. In addition to the great food, good company, and fun times behind the bonfire and Native American drum circle, you will walk away with an amazing swag bag. The bags, provided by the generosity of Crunchies Natural Food Company, will include products from many of the admirable organizations who support The Gentle Barn. To top it all off, the Gentle Thanksgiving event will feature top notch live entertainment provided by Los Angeles area band When In Rome II.

To RSVP or learn about the Thanksgiving event, please visit: www.gentlebarn.org/event-thanksgiving.html or call The Gentle Barn office at (661) 252-2440. Attendance can be gained through individual donations of $150 per adult, and $75 per child. A table for ten may also be reserved with a $1,500 donation.

The Gentle Barn, 15825 Sierra Hwy, Santa Clarita, CA, USA, +1 (661) 252-2440

The Gentle Barn

Crossroads by Chef Tal Ronnen is doing a four-course vegan menu for $75/person on Thanksgiving Day from 12pm – 5pm. Guests will enjoy a butternut squash bisque as the first course; an autumn chop salad for the second; rosemary and hazelnut scaloppini, mashed potatoes, stuffing, brussel and sweet potato biscuits for the main course; and an apple cobbler or pumpkin mousse verrine to finish the meal. All reservations for Thanksgiving must be made by phone 323-782-9245, so hurry up and make a reservation before all the timeslots fill up!

Crossroads, 8284 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA, USA, +1 (323) 782-9245

Crossroads’ Brussel Sprouts

Sāmbār, which is revered chef and owner Akasha Richmond newest concept is featuring a festive India-inspired Thanksgiving menu. Richmond is carrying the Thanksgiving feast and tradition from Akasha to Sambar as she aims to offer a departure from the traditional green beans and mashed potatoes with an Indian twist on the holiday. Vegan options are abundance on their menu, with items such as butternut squash and onion fritters with pomegranate mint chutney, tandoori roasted shiitake and crimini mushrooms with chaat masala & lime, heirloom apple crisp with cinnamon crumble and more. The restaurant is open Thursday, November 26 from 2pm – 7pm.

Sambar, 9531 Culver Blvd, Culver City, CA, USA, +1 (310) 558-8800

Sambar Feast (Photo Credit – Jesus Banuelos)

Real Food Daily is celebrating its 22nd Annual Thanksgiving To-Go feast allowing vegans to enjoy a wholesome meal. Butternut squash bisque, faux turkey breast, corn sage stuffing and garnet yams topped with marshmallows are just a few of the items available as part of $45 per person to-go menu. You can also order an organic deep dish pumpkin or deep dish pecan pie. Link to order online is here and all orders must be placed no later than noon on Tuesday, November 24th. You must pick up your order between 2-9pm on Wednesday, November 25th.

Real Food Daily has locations in Santa Monica, West Hollywood and Pasadena.

Real Food Daily’s Pecan Pie

Café Gratitude is hosting a free Thanksgiving event at their downtown LA location on Thursday, November 26th 11:00am – 3:00pm. The annual community event drawing friends, family, neighbors, and volunteers to Café Gratitude for a 100% organic holiday meal, will make its debut at the restaurant’s newest location in the Arts District. Similar to years past, guests will receive a free composed plate of Chef Dreux Ellis’ plant-based takes on favorite Thanksgiving dishes on a first come, first serve basis. A composed plated feast includes: red lentil butternut squash holiday loaf, raw pecan, cranberry, apple stuffing mashed potatoes with mushroom gravy roasted vegetables with rosemary mixed greens with persimmon, pomegranate and balsamic vinaigrette pumpkin pie apple and pomegranate spritzer.

Café Gratitude Arts District, 300 S Santa Fe Ave, Los Angeles, CA, USA, +1 (213) 929-5580

Cafe Gratitude’s Free Thanksgiving Plate

Tony’s Darts Away in Burbank is pulling out all the stops and featuring Thanksgiving-inspired vegan items. All week long, guests can enjoy these special Plantsgiving offerings along with local craft beer pairings. One such offering is the vegan french dip with cranberry sauce (paired with Mayberry IPA from El Segundo Brewing Co). Chef Caroline will also serve traditional Thanksgiving sides such as yams and green beans, all with a suggested craft beer pairing.

Tony’s Darts Away, 1710 W Magnolia Blvd, Burbank, CA, USA, +1 (818) 253-1710

Tony’s Darts Away’s Vegan French Dip

Mud Hen Tavern is doing a Thanksgiving to-go offering and all of their menu items can be made vegan. Menu items range from pumpkin and poblano tamales to candied yams with a spiced pecan crumble to a wild mushroom and sage seitan with gravy to roasted turkey breast with gravy and more. Kajsa Alger, chef and co-owner of Mud Hen Tavern, mentions that actually, ‘Vegan seitan outnumbers turkey orders 63 to 26 orders as of right now.’ People have until Monday, November 23 to place an order and Wednesday, November 25 is the last pick up day.

Mud Hen Tavern, 742 Highland Ave, Los Angeles, CA, USA, +1 (323) 203-0500

Mud Hen Tavern’s vegan pumpkin ravioli

Hugo’s Restaurant is offering a Happy Holiday Plate with a choice of two vegan options in the restaurant or a take-home Happy Happy Holiday feast that feeds six for $95. All menu items can be made vegan and gluten free and include a red lentil loaf, vegetable corn bread stuffing, herb mushroom gravy and more. Each side serves four and you have the option of a three-pack, five-pack or seven-pack as well as entrees. There’s also a vegan Roasted Yam Pecan Pie for dessert, by the slice or order whole for take-home. Last day for ordering is Tuesday, November 24 for pick up by 3pm Wednesday, November 25.

Hugo’s Restaurant has locations in West Hollywood, Studio City and Agoura Hills.

Hugo’s Restaurant’s Yam Pecan Pie

Shojin will be open all day on Thanksgiving Day from 12pm – 10 pm at both their Culver City and Downtown locations. They will be offering a Thanksgiving Day tasting menu for two people ($65), a Thanksgiving Day family tasting for three to four people ($120), a special dessert plate as well as the regular menu. And for those who want to have Thanksgiving meal at home, Shojin will be offering a Thanksgiving Day Special Platter ($60) with four kinds of their signature sushi rolls with special appetizer and soup. (Orders must be made at least two days in advance.)

Shojin has locations in Culver City and Downtown LA.

Shojin’s Thanksgiving Platter

Doomie’s Home Cookin will be open Thanksgiving Day and will be offering a classic Thanksgiving albeit vegan meal. For only $25, guests can enjoy turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, sweet yams, cranberry jam, a roasted veggie medley, flame kissed green beans, dinner roll and dessert! Reserve your meal by Monday, November 23 for dine in or take out. And don’t forget to pre-order a homemade pumpkin pie for only $16.

Doomie’s Home Cookin’, 1253 Vine Street #9, Los Angeles, CA, USA, +1 (323) 469-4897

Follow Your Heart Market & Café will be open from 9am until 3pm on Thanksgiving. All menu information and turkey day information can be found here. The menu includes oven-roasted rosemary basted vegetarian ‘turkey,’ yams, mashed potatoes and every other Thanksgiving essential. They will be taking pre-orders until November 23rd, with pick up beginning at 12 noon Nov 24th and running through 3pm Nov 26th.

Follow Your Heart Market & Café, 21825 Sherman Way, Canoga Park, CA, USA, +1 (818) 348-3240

And now for some vegan Thanksgiving recipes:

Roasted pear and parsnip salad: Executive Chef Rachel Carr of plant-based Latin-inspired restaurant, Chavela, located in Hollywood offers this easy-to-make holiday salad recipe.

Rachel Carr’s roasted pear parsnip salad

Pumpkin and cashew-cheese stuffed ravioli in sage-butter: Provided by Caitlin Galer-Unti of The Vegan Word – whose twice baked squash was recently featured in the New York Times – this dish is perfect for a Thanksgiving table with its seasonal combination of pumpkin mixed with a surprisingly light cashew cheese. Recipe can be found here.

The Vegan Words’ pumpkin and cashew-cheese stuffed ravioli in sage-butter

Seitan wellington with a creamy spinach sauce: Recipe found here by Spork Foods from their cookbook Spork-Fed which is currently in stores and includes a foreword by fellow fans Emily and Zooey Deschanel. Los Angeles-based Spork Foods is a gourmet vegan food company owned and operated by sisters Jenny Engel and Heather Bell. They offer live vegan organic cooking classes in Los Angeles at Spork Foods.

Spork Foods’ seitan wellington with a creamy spinach sauce

FoodNetwork.com’s deep-dish vegan apple pie: Extra-virgin coconut oil is a great substitute for butter in both the pie dough and the apple filling to make this all-American fruit pie vegan-friendly. We use a mix of apples for the filling: The Golden Delicious keep their shape and are a nice contrast to the soft McIntoshes, and the Granny Smiths give a nice tartness. Recipe and photo courtesy of FoodNetwork.com.

FoodNetwork.com’s deep dish vegan apple pie

Sweet potato pie tartlets: Provided by Michaell Johnson, chef and recipe creator behind Foodscape, this three-in-one pie: pecan, molasses and sweet potato pie is a beautiful looking and sweet tasting bite-sized dessert.

Foodscape’s sweet potato pie tartlets

So have a happy Turkey Day…even if you don’t eat a turkey!

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