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Posted at 3:00 PM ET, 11/23/2010

Going veggie this Thanksgiving?

By Lavanya Ramanathan

Sticky Fingers's spread looks like Thanksgiving dinner, but it's all vegan. (The Washington Post)

For some, Thanksgiving is one big Dionysian gorge-fest. For vegans and vegetarians, it can feel more like a day of fasting. More than likely, there's meat in the stuffing, butter in the mashed potatoes and giblets in the gravy. And you're left to nosh on the rolls.

The best way to put your mind at ease is to bring your own Thanksgiving dishes (and keep the fact there's tofu lurking in your stuffing to yourself) or spend Thanksgiving where vegetarians won't get short shrift.

Sticky Fingers is taking orders for a slew of savory vegan sides and desserts you can bring to Thanksgiving dinner; owner Doron Greenblatt says the sides are "inconspicuous" -- so your fellow feasters will never know there's soy milk in the mashed potatoes. The Columbia Heights cafe is open till 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving so you can pick up sides such as mashed potatoes or sesame-and-garlic-laced kale. A moist, tasty pumpkin "cheesecake" (made with Tofutti cream cheese and dotted with pumpkin seeds) is a ringer for the real thing, as is an eggless, butterless pecan pie.

Sunflower Restaurant in Falls Church is also taking Thanksgiving takeout orders for its "Homemade Smoke Little Bird of Happiness."(Call 703-237-3888 to order). Or you can eat the vegan dish -- made with tofu skin, pecans, rice and cranberries -- at the restaurant, which is open from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thanksgiving Day.

Soul Vegetarian on Georgia Avenue is serving mock meat and serious sides from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. on Thanksgiving. Think vegan stuffed roast with cornbread dressing, gluten cutlets, cranberry sauce, green beans, mac and cheese and more. If you're looking for something to take with you to dinner with the fam, call 202-328-7685 today (like, right now) to put in orders for takeout; the menu includes vegan roast, collard greens, mac and cheese, candied yams, a variety of cupcakes and even sweet potato pie.

Cork Market is offering takeout Thanksgiving sides this year, and options even include a couple of nods to vegetarians: there's a vegetarian cornbread stuffing with herbs and chiles and a meatless version of its braised winter greens. Pre-orders have ended, but the chef is making some extra, so come early Thanksgiving Day if you want to try to snag some of the veggie offerings. Cork Market will be open 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

If you just want to feast before you head to a meaty Thanksgiving dinner, Masala Art is serving lunch Thanksgiving Day from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and its menu is packed with vegan and vegetarian offerings, including samosas and pani poori (just let the server know if you're vegan), potatoes with dried pomegranate seeds, chickpeas curry and eggplant and pepper in sesame seed sauce and missi roti.

Finally, in College Park, Berwyn Cafe celebrates a day before Thanksgiving with a special tofu "turkey" plate (made in-house, not Tofurkey), layered potato pie, lentil loaf and steamed greens. It's served during the restaurant hours, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Wednesday.

By Lavanya Ramanathan  | November 23, 2010; 3:00 PM ET
Categories:  Holiday  
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Don't know what you mean about us vegans having to "fast" on Thanksgiving. I've NEVER been in that situation. Quite the contrary, from start to finish (never forget the yummy pumpkin pie), we enjoy the sumptuous meal to our hearts' (and stomachs') content. And the best part is we know no being had to suffer for our enjoyment.

Posted by: VegBikr | November 24, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

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