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The flavors we associate with Jewish New Year are often apples, pomegranate, and carrots. Really, with the notable exception of fish heads, many of the symbolic foods of the celebration are naturally plant-based. So when Rosh Hashanah starts on September 6, 2021, we’ll be sharing an array of vegetarian and vegan Rosh Hashanah foods with friends and family.
“One of the most anticipated aspects of Rosh Hashanah is undeniably all of the delicious, sweet foods that Jewish people eat throughout the festival,” Sabrina Barr writes in The Independent. These dishes, she says, are “meant to symbolize the hope for a sweet and happy year ahead.”
Depending on how you feel about honey, many holiday recipes may require no modifications at all to suit your plant-based diet, but others might take a little more adaptation. Below, find some of our favorite vegetarian and vegan Rosh Hashanah foods from around the web.
Vegan Apple Cake with Cinnamon Streusel – Bianca Zapatka Honey cakes are one of the most identifiable dishes of the holiday. This honey-free vegan Rosh Hashanah ready cake recipe also includes a gluten-free variation.
Seitan Brisket – My Jewish Learning Brisket refers here not to the specific cut of beef, of course, but to juicy, flavorful protein created by a slow, aromatic braise. Writer Leah Koenig notes that “the resulting dish is by no means an exact replica of my mother’s, it definitely holds it own on the Rosh Hashanah table or at a Purim feast.”
Pearl Barley with Roasted Squash, Pomegranate, and Pistachios – Vegetarian Times This dish works as a stand-alone grain bowl or as a side dish and gives us instant sweater-weather vibes, to boot.
Beet and Carrot Fritters with Dill Yogurt Sauce – Food 52 These brightly-hued little snacks get their color from beets and carrots, and are dolloped with a dilly Greek yogurt sauce. Want to go dairy-free? Check out our review of recent developments in vegan Greek yogurt.
Traditional Rosh Hashanah Tzimmes – Chabad One of those dishes that can adjust and evolve to your family’s preferences and whims, traditional tzimmes start with carrots and honey, and then build from there. Agave, date syrup, or Un-Honey can all step-in as honey alternatives.
Fennel and Apple Salad with Honey Yogurt Dressing – The Spruce Eats Combining apples and honey is an iconic tradition of Rosh Hashanah. This salad creates a sweet-savory-tart combo that brightens the palette and compliments a variety of dishes.
Mesclun Mix Salad with Apples, Pomegranates, and Goat Cheese – Vegetarian Times This recipe from our archives incorporates a number of seasonal flavors – and the sautéed shallot-balsamic dressing is a special touch.
Pomegranate-Roasted Carrots – Food 52 From renowned recipe creator and cookbook author Melissa Clark, this simple side dish is an elegant essential for an vegan Rosh Hashanah meal. The roasted carrots get a sweet finish from pomegranate molasses.
Vegan Apple Bundt Cake – ZardyPlants When it comes to apple cake, why not give yourself options? This variant is super easy yet looks very impressive with its shape and decoration.