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Vegetarian Turkey Alternatives That'll Convert Even the Staunchest of Carnivores

Meatless for Thanksgiving? Avoid getting stuck nibbling a plate of side dishes with these six fantastic vegetarian turkey alternatives.

If you’re sitting down to celebrate with your family this year, chances are turkey is on the menu. Unfortunately, Thanksgiving dinner can pose some pretty obvious problems for the 7.3 million Americans who call themselves vegetarian for ethical, environmental, or health reasons.

But Turkey Day need not be a time of mourning for herbivores. Plant-based options have exploded in recent years, which means that a meat-free menu is easier — not to mention more delicious — than ever.

This Thanksgiving, check out these five popular (and satisfying) plant-based turkey alternatives.

Field Roast Celebration Roast

Now available as a two-pound roast, the Field Roast Celebration Roast has long been a go-to option for vegetarians over the holidays. Seasoned with sage, lemon juice, and garlic, both the taste and the texture are beyond incredible. Fixings include tried-and-true bread stuffing made from butternut squash, celery, and onions, and to-die-for shiitake and porcini gravy. The boxed dinner can serve up to eight. If you want to try something different, they’ve also got a Hazelnut Cranberry Roast En Croute and a Smokey Forager’s Roast.

Vegetarian Plus Whole Vegan Turkey

You have to hand it to Vegetarian Plus for this one — it’s about as realistic-looking as faux turkeys get, drumsticks and all. Weighing in at four pounds, this non-GMO soy and wheat protein option can feed a crowd. It nabs extra points for its stringy, turkey-like texture.

Gardein Savory Stuffed Turk’y

Gardein’s individually portioned turkey “rolls” stand out as a gourmet option. Even real turkey pales in comparison. You’ll taste the difference, and maybe even convert a few carnivores. With its flavorful natural ingredients — wheat, soy, beets, carrots, and peas—and hearty texture, it’s almost a shame to call this a “meat” alternative. It’s more like a mouth-watering vegetarian dish in its own right.

Tofurky Vegetarian Feast

Tofurky is the butt of pretty much every other plant-based diet joke, making it one of the most well-known meat-free turkey substitutes out there. If you’re looking for a hassle-free substitute, this is it—everything is pre-cooked and only needs to be heated up. The Holiday Roast is a rich wheat-gluten and tofu blend stuffed with wild rice and whole wheat bread crumbs. The way it carves, you’d swear it was turkey. Also included: a savory, herb-and-spice gravy, Jurky Wishstix, and a shareable vegan fudge brownie. Did we mention it feeds six?

Do-it-Yourself Vegetarian Turkey

Sick of store-bought meat alternatives? Feeling gutsy? There are a ton of online resources to help you put a meat-free turkey on your table this Thanksgiving. With a range of meat alternatives to choose from—from walnuts and lentils to seitan and tempeh — there’s no need to panic. Check out this yummy Tofu Turkey or get roasting with the crowd-pleasing Unturkey Roast. If you're into seitan, this Vegan Turkey is the perfect alternative. Gluten-free? Get your rice and beans on with a Gluten-Free Veggie Roast. Whether you’re cooking for two or twenty, these recipes have you covered.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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