Indian Festive Dishes For Vegan

Pramita P N ·
Indian Festive Dishes For Vegan

A Vegan Spread

The struggles of being vegan in a dairy-rich country like India are magnified tenfold during the festive season. Although India has gained a reputation for being a vegetarian paradise, the truth is, leaving out a hunk of meat doesn’t change the fact that ghee, butter, milk are intrinsically woven into all of our meals, not to mention the overload of them in festive feasts.

A typical festive day for a vegan would be filled with hostile relatives (probably the distant cousin) trying to berate you for your choices, and the constant agony of having to say no to most of the traditional festive dishes. Have your own festive fun with these vegan festive dishes that taste like the “real deal”.

Quinoa Chivda

Irrespective of the region, chivda is a popular snack during Diwali. This could also be made only with puffed rice or Poha, but if you are looking for ways to make it healthier, then quinoa would help you get that protein even during the festive season. Vegan Richa was the pioneer behind the original recipe.


  • Organic Canola oil - 1 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds - ½ tsp
  • Fennel seeds - ½ tsp
  • Green chilli chopped - 1
  • Cilantro - 2 tbsp
  • Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
  • Salt - ½ tsp
  • Sugar - 1 tsp
  • Quinoa - 1 cup
  • Puffed rice - 1 cup
  • Rice Krispies -1 cup
  • Dried fruits - ¼ cup
  • Nuts - ⅓ cup
  • Chilli powder to taste


  • In a pan, heat oil and add mustard seeds and fennel seeds
  • Once they sizzle, add the green chillies and cilantro
  • Lower the flame and add chopped nuts and the dry fruits
  • Now add the quinoa, puffed rice and rice crispies
  • It’s time to spice things up, so add turmeric, salt and red chillies
  • Mix well until the spices are uniformly distributed and roast the chivda for 4-5 minutes
  • Store it for later or eat it straight from the pan!

Vegan Rasmalai

Yes, even Rasmalai can be made vegan. These sweet cottage cheese dumplings soaked in thickened milk are every Indian favourite. This royal treat will get you started for the ultimate Diwali feasting.


For Cheese Balls

    • Soaked Cashews - 1 ½ cup
    • Lemon juice- 3 tbsp
    • Maple syrup - 5tbsp
    • Hot water and salt

For Syrup

      • soaked cashews - 2 cups
      • Maple syrup - ¾ cup
      • Rosewater - 1 tbsp
      • Saffron a pinch
      • Cardamom pods - 2
      • Cardamom powder a pinch
      • Salt and water


    • Pistachios
    • Crushed rose petals


  • Blend all the ingredients of cheese balls into and smooth mixture and wrap it in a nutmeg bag and place it on a strainer. Twist the top and refrigerate overnight
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line it with parchment paper. Once you open the nutmeg bag, drain out the remaining liquid and make small cheese balls in your hand. Bake it for 15 mins
  • First, boil the saffron in water and let it steep. Then add all the ingredients of the syrup and blend into a creamy smooth mixture
  • Place the cheese balls inside the syrup and refrigerate it for a few minutes
  • Enjoy!

Masala Vada

Festive season warrants something special and what’s more special than these spicy delights that are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. They are utterly satisfying, crispy and deep-fried


  • Channa dal - 1 cup
  • Chopped green chillies - 2 or 3
  • Grated Peeled ginger - 1 medium
  • Garlic cloves - 2 or 3
  • Chopped spinach - 1 cup
  • Chopped onion - small
  • Cilantro - 2 tbsp
  • Curry leaves - 8 to 10
  • Mint - 1 tbsp
  • Oil to deep fry
  • Salt for taste


  • Soak the channa dal for 2 hours and add it to a blender after draining the water along with chillies, ginger, garlic and salt. Blend it to a coarse paste
  • Add the lentil paste to a bowl and then add curry leaves, spinach, onion, cilantro and mint. Mix them well
  • Flatten the lentil mixture in your palm and slide it into hot oil
  • Fry it till golden brown and serve hot!

Vegan Kheer

This is one of the easiest dishes to veganize. When it comes to Desi sweets, a dollop of ghee is present in almost every dish. Scented with the aroma of cardamom, this almond kheer is beyond sublime.


  • Basmati rice - ¾ cup
  • Almond cups - 4 cups
  • Sugar - ½ cup
  • Vanilla extract - 2 tsp
  • Nuts - ½ cup
  • Golden raisins - 2 tbsp
  • Crushed cardamom pods - 10
  • Vegetable oil - 1 tsp


  • Heat the rice and water until they come to boil or until the rice looks thick
  • Add the almond milk, vanilla extract and sugar for the sweet quotient
  • Simmer until it thickens
  • Then add saute the nuts, raisins and the cardamom powder in hot oil
  • Add it to the kheer mixture and enjoy!

Diwali Pataka Punch

Stir up a soul-soothing drink this festive season and welcome your guests with a fruit punch. Who wouldn’t want to guzzle down a super sweet, super fruity refreshment? There are also endless variations to this recipe.


  • Orange juice - 6 ounces
  • Lemonade- 6 ounces
  • Pineapple juice - 48 ounces
  • Smashed strawberries - 2 pints
  • Ginger ale - 1L


  • Blend the pineapple juice, orange juice, lemonade, and water
  • Fill up the end of the glass in strawberry fruit slushy and pour the juice inside and refrigerate it
  • When ready to serve, mix it with ginger ale and garnish with fruit pieces

Hope you have a grand old time this festive season. Fear not, vegans, you won’t be left out of the fun because of the food choices you make. Join the celebration with your own vegan recipes.

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