Recipes Using Ingredient Substitutes Perfect for Vegans

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Making a vegan dessert – a sweet treat without eggs, milk, cream or animal shortening – might seem like an impossible task over the holidays, but it’s one challenge that many a vegan or vegetarian undertakes when pulling together the holiday dinner menu. Vegan desserts can be as rich and satisfying as the ‘regular’ dessert lineup from the local bakery case, and the gourmet recipes can be comprised of organic ingredients, fresh spices, and tofu to substitute to create the right flavors and textures. If you’re in charge of baking up a vegan dessert storm this season, here are some dessert ideas and recipes to get started:

Vegan Carrot Cake with Tofu Cream Frosting

Carrot cake is one of the ‘safest’ vegan dessert recipes because the traditional recipe doesn’t call for an excessive amount of butter and eggs. The vegan version of this classic holiday dessert is made with soy milk, grated carrots, raisins and spices. You can whip up a batch of tofu cream icing by blending firm tofu with maple syrup and oil.

Vegan Bread Pudding

Bread pudding continues to be a holiday classic, but the main ingredient is usually a handful of eggs. Egg replacements work just as well for when baking up a vegan version of this comfort food, and the batter for the bread dunk is comprised of soy milk, vanilla and sugar. Use your favorite vegan bread to make this tasty pudding and top it off with a rich rum sauce.

Vegan Cheesecake

Cheesecake is one of the richest desserts for the holidays, but can be turned into a lighter, even healthier version with the help of tofu. Extra-firm silken tofu is the secret ingredient for making a tasty cheesecake replica, and mixing brown rice syrup into the crumb crust adds even more flavor. Another convenient alternative is to use Tofutti cream cheese; it doesn’t taste much like real cream cheese, but does deliver the right texture and consistency.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie

Is it really possible to make pumpkin pie without eggs, butter, cream or milk? Thousands of avid vegan bakers have proven it so, and it’s easier than you think. This tasty vegan holiday dessert can be made with canned pumpkin (open with can opener), silken tofu, pumpkin spice mix and brown sugar. You’ll just need to blend the tofu in a food processor to create a super-smooth, silky batter.

Vegan Pecan Pie

Pecan pie is traditionally made with shortening, maple syrup and sugar but you can go strictly vegan by replacing ingredients with vegan margarine, beet sugar and sucanat.

Take your pick of these great vegan holiday desserts for your holiday table. Whether you’re in the mood for pumpkin pie or bread pudding this holiday season, you don’t have to say not to dessert with a few modifications of traditional recipes!

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