Eco Thanksgiving Recipes

As Thanksgiving draws closer, consider substituting some of your traditional Thanksgiving dishes for more environmentally sustainable foods. According to a recent study at the University of Oxford, cutting meat and dairy products from your diet could reduce an individual’s carbon footprint by up to 73 percent. To provide an eco-option for you, the following eco-recipes below are vegan. Eating vegan does not mean you have to spend money on exotic or expensive. Many of these ingredients can be found at affordable prices in your common grocery store. This Thanksgiving, let’s give thanks to the earth and do our part to ensure that we will have more to be thankful for in the future.

Vegan Pumpkin Pie:

For crust:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ cup (4 tablespoons) vegan butter or margarine, cold and cut into cubes
¼ cup (4 tablespoons) vegetable shortening, cold
4 tablespoons iced water
For pie:
1 (15 ounces) can pumpkin puree
1 cup full fat coconut milk
¾ cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon cloves
½ teaspoon salt

For Crust:
Add flour, sugar, and salt to food processor with the “S” blade
Add cold vegan butter and shortening, process for about 10 seconds
While the food processor is running, drizzle in 4 tablespoons of ice-cold water
Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface and shape it into a ball
Roll the dough with a rolling pin to about a 12-inch circle, and transfer to a pie plate (if you have excess, you can cut out shapes and put them on top of the pie)
Dough can be used immediately or refrigerate until you are ready to use
For Pie:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
Prepare a pie crust on a pie plate
Whisk together all pie ingredients and pour into pie crust
Bake for 1 hour

Stuffed Red Peppers:

Ingredients: (makes 8)
4 red peppers
½ cup cooked lentils
½ cup cooked barley
¼ cup chopped mushrooms
1 minced garlic clove
2 shallots diced
1 teaspoon chili flakes (or something that adds some spicy heat)
1 ½ cup tomato sauce

Preheat oven to 360 degrees
Halve peppers, removing seeds and stems
Place face down on baking sheet and put in the oven to soften while you make the stuffing mixture
Saute the stuffing until cooked through
Stuff the pepper halves and put back in the oven for about 20 minutes

Butternut Squash Soup:

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 (1 ½ inch) piece fresh ginger root, minced
1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch cubes
1 carrot, chopped
1 apple, peeled, cored, and chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
1 (14 ounces) can coconut milk
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 small lemon, juiced
1 teaspoon maple syrup

Heat oil in a large pot over low heat and cook onion and ginger until soft and translucent (about 10 minutes)
Add butternut squash and carrot; cook and stir (about 3 minutes)
Add apple and cook (2 minutes)
Pour in broth, increase heat to medium, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until vegetables are soft (about 20 minutes)
Puree soup with an immersion blender until smooth
Add coconut milk
Add lemon juice, maple syrup, and season with salt and pepper (stir for 2 to 3 minutes)