Top 10 things to serve a vegetarian this Christmas

From pies and strudels to loaves and tarts, we've put together our favourite must-try vegetarian centrepieces, all packed with festive flavours.

Chestnut & shallot statins with mushroom & Madeira sauce

Wondering what to serve a vegetarian at Christmas this year? Fear not, we have plenty of delicious veggie main courses that will look pleasing on the plate and are bursting with festive flavours.

1. Chestnut, spinach & blue cheese en croûte

Chestnut, spinach & blue cheese en croute
Wrap winter veggies in flaky, all-butter puff pastry for a hearty vegetarian main. This spiced chestnut, spinach & blue cheese en croûte will perfectly complement all the usual seasonal sides.

2. Individual Christmas pies

Individual Christmas pies on a plate with sprouts
Fill mini pie dishes with mushrooms, leeks, potatoes and a creamy sauce for a substantial Christmas Day main. The quantities for these individual Christmas pies can be easily halved, which is perfect if you only need to feed one or two.

3. Layered squash, barley & spinach pie

Layered squash, barley and spinach pie
This delicious layered squash, barley & spinach pie looks simply stunning when sliced. Layers of pearl barley and butternut squash are flavoured with classic sage and onion to complement all the traditional trimmings.

4. Parsnip, cranberry & chestnut loaf

Parsnip, cranberry & chestnut loaf
Leave behind plain nut roasts and let this modern alternative take centre stage. Sweet chestnuts and parsnips are spiced with savoury mace, then layered with festive cranberry sauce for a lovely loaf to add to the table. Try our parnsip, cranberry & chestnut loaf.

5. Mini nut roasts with candied carrots

Mini nut loafs
These gorgeous mini nut roasts with candied carrots are a beautifully balanced main course – plus, the recipe is vegan if you need to cater for that too. Pretty and easy to make, these are sure to make your guests happy.

6. Polenta & goat's cheese stacks

Polenta & goat's cheese stacks
Soft, buttery polenta is seasoned with nutmeg and filled with a cheesy centre, then topped with roasted veg in these spectacular polenta & goat's cheese stacks. You can make the polenta cakes up to two days in advance, so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying the festive fun.

7. Chestnut & shallot tatins with mushroom & madeira sauce

Chestnut & shallot statins with mushroom & Madeira sauce
These individual tarts, topped with chestnuts and banana shallots, make a great seasonal starter, or serve with all the traditional trimmings for a delicious main course option at Christmas. See our recipe for these chestnut & shallot tatins with mushrooom & maderia sauce.

8. Parsnip, mushroom & barley wreath

Parsnip, mushroom & barley wreath
This parsnip, mushroom & barley wreath makes a lovely centrepiece for a vegetarian feast, and is flavoured with wonderful winter aromatics, such as nutmeg, sage and rosemary.

9. Mushroom & tarragon strudels with madeira sauce

Mushroom & tarragon strudels
Contrasting textures make these mushroom & tarragon strudels with madeira sauce extra special – crispy filo parcels are filled with a trio of mushrooms, sundried tomatoes and crunchy pine nuts. Scatter with tarragon and serve in the centre of the table, then let everyone tuck in to a slice.

10. Moroccan spiced pie

Moroccan spiced pie
This Moroccan spiced pie makes a showstopping centrepiece, bursting with warming flavours of cumin, paprika and cinnamon. Serve in wedges with a flavourful harissa yogurt.

Find more ideas for a meat-free Christmas:

Ultimate vegetarian Christmas recipe collection
Complete Christmas menu: Vegetarian
Top 10 vegetarian main courses
Vegan Christmas menu
Vegetarian Christmas canapé collection

Are you cooking a vegetarian feast this Christmas? We'd love to hear what you're making – let us know in the comments below...

Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
16th Dec, 2014
It's a shame that all but one of these are pastry based. Please try and be a little more imaginative next time :)
17th Dec, 2015
I agree with the two comments posted a year ago: why are these vegetarian Christmas dishes nearly all pastry-based? Several of them are described as "hearty", "substantial" or "filling" - and, incidentally, this is what I often find in restaurants in the dutifully offered "vegetarian option": stodgy dishes. In a traditional Christmas dinner it's only the meat component that needs replacing for a vegetarian; roast potatoes are usually vegetarian (and it would be a mean cook who chose not to avoid - say - goose fat to do the potatoes knowing a vegetarian was in the party), there are lots of stuffing recipes that don't include meat, and vegetables, bread sauce and cranberry sauce are all fine for veggies. So why fill the poor vegetarian up with pastry? For several years my favourite Christmas dinner centrepiece for myself and any other veggies present has been Tom Norrington-Davies's Christmas Roast ( This is much more delicious than you'd expect from the fairly ordinary ingredients. A normal sized portion is about as filling as the same volume of meat and it goes beautifully with roast potatoes, stuffing, etc.
evil_angelwings's picture
27th Dec, 2014
Be the first to ask a question about this recipe...Unsure about the cooking time or want to swap an ingredient? Ask us your questions and we’ll try and help you as soon as possible. Or if you want to offer a solution to another user’s question, feel free to get involved...
Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.