Best Veggie Christmas Sides Recipes
Sure, the turkey gets all the attention, but it’s really the Christmas Sides that turn an otherwise ordinary meal into a Holiday Feast! In this article we’ve rounded up some of the absolute best Christmas Dinner Side Dishes for you to try for your next Christmas Dinner!
The first of our amazing Christmas Sides is a fantastic twist on classic candied root vegetables from Nigella Lawson:
Maple Roasted Parsnips
This recipe is from Nigella’s Christmas Recipe Book
"I’ve always roasted honeyed parsnips alongside a turkey but as a marker of the culinary special relationship celebrated at Christmas, I’ve remodelled slightly, adding intensity of sweetness to the already sweet parsnips, not with honey but with maple syrup. And actually, this is more than a change, it’s an improvement: there is more ambiguity about the maple syrup, it’s a sweetness less cloying." - Nigella Lawson
- 1 kilogram parsnips
- 125 millilitres vegetable oil
- 80 millilitres maple syrup
It seems foolish to say ‘preheat the oven’, when it’s frankly going to be on anyway, but if you were cooking this to go alongside – say – some cold, leftover turkey, when it would be just as good as first time around, then you need a hottish oven, say gas mark 6/200°C/400ºF, and the parsnips would need around 35 minutes in it. But if you’ve got the oven on very hot because of the roast potatoes, then you are better off parboiling the parsnips so that they need less time actually in the oven; 15 minutes should be enough to turn them chewy and maple-bronzed.
So, peel the parsnips and halve them crosswise, then halve or quarter each piece lengthwise, so that you have a bundle of spindly shards.
Either blanch these fawn coloured twigs in salted boiling water for 3 or so minutes, or just put them straight into a roasting tin, pour over the oil, smoosh them about and then dribble over the maple syrup and roast until tender and stickily brown. Be careful as you taste to test: the sugar content of the parsnips, more even than the syrup, make these blisteringly hot.
In the UK, Brussels Sprouts are a staple of Christmas Dinner. In the next recipe Jamie Oliver takes one of the most classic Christmas Sides to a whole new level, a must-try for the holidays!
(with Chorizo and Chestnuts)
This recipe is from Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Recipe Book.
- 1 kg Brussels sprouts
- 150 g raw quality chorizo
- olive oil
- 100 g vac-packed chestnuts
- 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Wash and trim the Brussels sprouts, clicking off any tatty outer leaves. Cook for 8 minutes in a pan of boiling salted water, then drain well. Squeeze the chorizo out of its skin, crumbling it into a roasting tray with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. On the hob, fry over a medium heat for 6 minutes, until you have ruby oil, then crumble in the vac-packed chestnuts, strip in the rosemary leaves and shake about. Tip in the sprouts and toss in the sherry vinegar. Squash and flatten the sprouts with a potato masher so they suck up more flavour. Roast for 25 minutes, or until starting to colour. Season to perfection, bang out and serve.
Next we have the amazing Martha Stewart and her even more amazing twist on the classic side dish of Candied Carrots. This twist are sure to impress any Christmas dinner guests you may have. The ginger is a zesty and welcome festive flavour.
Carrots with Ginger and Honey
Find more Martha Stewart holiday Recipes, Desserts and Christmas Sides in her book ‘Martha Stewart’s Christmas’
- 6 bunches (about 2 pounds) baby carrots
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 two-inch pieces fresh ginger , peeled and julienned
- 3 tablespoons honey
Trim stems of carrots to 1/2 inch. Peel carrots, and wash stem area.
Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Salt water, add carrots, and reduce heat. Simmer until carrots are almost tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove carrots from heat, and drain. (Carrots can be prepared earlier in the day to this point.)
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add ginger, and saute, stirring, until transparent, about 2 minutes. Add carrots and honey, and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, or until carrots are glazed. Serve immediately.
Finally, if you’re looking for something a little less heavy, but still festive (and maybe a little lighter on the carbs), check out this grilled salad, that just happens to have a Christmas color vibe.
Grilled Vegetable Salad with Feta
- 1 medium eggplant* , sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 1 medium zucchini , sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 1 red bell pepper , cut into 1/2 inch strips
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta
Preheat grill to medium.
Lay sliced vegetables on grill and cook until tender and slightly charred on edges, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.
Remove vegetables and let cool 5 minutes. Chop into ½ inch pieces and transfer to a bowl.
Add olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and oregano and toss to coat. Sprinkle with feta cheese and toss lightly.
*You can salt the eggplant slices for 30 minutes beforehand to aid cooking and reduce any bitterness.