Gluten and dairy free holiday recipes

28 Decadent Dairy and Gluten-Free Holiday Recipes!

Dr. Kimberley O'Brien Blog, Food 4 Comments

Festive holiday recipes allergen free

Holiday meal planning can be a challenge for anyone, but it becomes more difficult when you are trying to avoid one or more ingredients in your cooking. To make meal planning as easy as possible for you I’ve put together a compilation of gluten and dairy-free holiday recipes!  Many of the recipes are from my own blog, Healthy Life Redesign, but a large number of them are the creations of other talented food bloggers, many of whom I had the pleasure of meeting when I spoke at the Food Bloggers of Canada Conference in October!

All of the following dairy and gluten-free recipes are a healthy yet delicious way to feed a crowd over the holidays!  Whether you’re hosting a big Christmas dinner or you’re simply looking for a delicious recipe to bring along to a potluck, you will find your inspiration here.  

I hope that you enjoy these delicious meals that will fuel your health and keep you energized throughout the holidays!

Enjoy, and happy holidays!



Decadent Dairy Free Chocolate Cheesecake

Chocolate Cheesecake

Creamy, rich vanilla cheesecake on a pecan crust with dark chocolate swirled into each decadent bite! Believe me when I say that no one will ever guess this “cheesecake” isn’t the real thing! This vegan cheesecake is entirely dairy-free and its richness is instead derived from heart healthy cashews and coconut milk. Vanilla and maple syrup are combined with lemon juice to create an amazing dairy-free version of a classic vanilla cheesecake! Top this with dark chocolate and we have an absolutely perfect dessert.


Spicy Baked Salmon with Pomegranate Raita

You don’t have to make a turkey for your Christmas dinner and this salmon makes a fabulously festive alternative!  It’s rubbed in warming spices like coriander, cardamom and cumin and optionally it may be topped with a pomegranate raita, which is a yogurt based dip.  I recommend using plain almond or coconut yogurt instead of milk-based yogurts if you have a dairy-sensitivity. This heart healthy and delicious recipe is from Colleen at The Food Blog.

Spicy Baked Salmon

Lentil Mushroom Walnut Balls With Cranberry-Pear Sauce

Lentil Mushroom Walnut Balls with Cranberry-Pear Sauce

Are you going meat-free this holiday season or looking for a unique vegetarian side dish? Try these Lentil Mushroom Walnut Balls from Oh She Glows! The cranberry-pear sauce provides a unique, fresh and flavourful twist on canned cranberry sauce and is sure to impress at the dinner table!


Wild Rice & Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash

This Wild Rice and Cranberry Stuffed Squash makes for a delicious side to your holiday meal but can also stand alone as a delicious vegetarian main dish! The sweetness of the acorn squash and cranberries combines deliciously with the aromatic flavours of sage and thyme. Get your forks ready for a healthy feast!

Wild Rice and Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash

Vanilla Pomegranate Mulled Wine

Vanilla Pomegranate Mulled Wine - The perfect holiday drink!

This Vanilla Pomegranate Mulled Wine by Justine Celina is a warm and festive way to welcome your holiday guests this year!  Zinfandel is mulled with delicious spices like anise, nutmeg and clove and then infused with vanilla liquor, pomegranate, clementines and honey.  This mulled wine is rich with antioxidants and healing spices, which adds a healthy twist to your holiday beverage! 


Butternut Squash Hummus

Mmmm….what a tasty dip for veggies or crackers! This savoury Butternut Squash Hummus from Minimalist Baker contains cumin, cinnamon and smoked paprika.  There’s plenty of flavour in this impressive dip, which is a must have on your holiday snack platter!

Butternut Squash Hummus

Fall Spice Granola

Fall Spice Granola

This granola is infused with vanilla, molasses and sweet fall spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cardamom. I love enjoying a bowl of Fall Spice Granola with fresh chopped apples and topped with almond or coconut milk. For a truly festive delight top with baked cinnamon apple wedges and coconut cream for an apple crisp-like morning treat!


Vegan Blueberry Cheesecake

This tasty blueberry-lemon cheesecake is ridiculously easy to make as long as you have a blender and/or food processor. The pecan crust is gluten-free and naturally sweetened with dates and coconut. The homemade blueberry topping is sweetened with maple syrup and fresh lemon zest is added for a delicious twist! Friends and family will be head over heels impressed with these tasty little treats!

Blueberry Cheesecake

Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles with Coconut

Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles

These Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles are absolutely delicious and remind me of “Ferrero-Rocher” Chocolates! Trust me when I say that your friends and family will LOVE these! Rich dark chocolate, hazelnuts, coconut, cocoa nibs, honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon and cardamom combine to create a delicious dairy and gluten-free holiday dessert!


Mexican Christmas Salad

Bring some colour to your plate with this gorgeous Mexican Christmas Salad from Diversivore!  This salad is topped with candied pistachios and is infused with holiday spices like cardamom and cumin.  Enjoy this as one of your gluten and dairy-free side dishes this Christmas!

Mexican Christmas Salad - Citrus and beets

Festive Cranberry Fudge

Cranberry Fudge

This festive holiday fudge combines the rich taste and texture of dark chocolate with a festive cranberry-orange twist. It’s dairy free and instead uses cashew butter for a creamy, rich texture. I use fresh cranberries for this recipe, which I highly recommend instead of using the canned alternatives.


Spiced Apple Margaritas

There’s nothing wrong with letting your hair down a bit over the holidays!  These Spiced Apple Margaritas from Cookie and Kate look like a tasty way to celebrate over the holidays!  Why not bring a beach-infused holiday vibe to your festivities this year?

Spiced Apple Margaritas

Warm Winter Kale & Delicata Squash Salad With Maple Vinaigrette

Warm Winter Kale Salad

This beautifully coloured winter salad is sure to be a hit at your holiday dinner table! Roasted delicata squash with warming spices like nutmeg and clove, kale, hazelnuts, dried cranberries and a delicious maple syrup-sweetened red wine vinaigrette. Yum! Thanks to Do You Even Paleo for this gourmet gluten-free holiday recipe!


Juicy Roast Turkey Recipe

This looks like a delicious way to bake a moist and flavourful turkey to feed your friends family this holiday season. I suggest replacing the butter in this recipe with ghee as a delicious dairy-free alternative. Thanks to Natasha’s Kitchen for this recipe!

Juicy Roast Turkey Recipe

Pecan Pumpkin Pie Bars

Pecan Pumpkin Pie Bars - Gluten and dairy-free!

These Pecan Pumpkin Pie Bars are my favourite dessert these days!  They are a real crowd pleaser – even for those who aren’t gluten and dairy-free!  You’ll love these chewy pumpkin pie bars topped with coconut ice cream!  You may just want to make a double batch 😉 


Wild Rice, Fruit, and Pecan Stuffing

Here’s to a stuffing recipe that will leave you feeling energized instead of in a sleepy, bread-induced food-coma! This recipe by Sarah Dickerman at Bon Appetit is one worth trying this holiday season! Impress family with this tasty looking gluten-free holiday recipe!

Wild Rice, Fruit, and Pecan Stuffing

Roasted Carrots with Honey Mustard Glaze

Roasted Carrots with Honey Mustard Glaze

Roasted Rainbow Carrots!  They are so gorgeous on any holiday table.  This recipe from Flavour and Savour is not only delicious, it’s also simple to throw together.  Your holiday plate should be filled with colour and flavour…this recipe takes care of both!


Best Ever Paleo Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipe

Thanks to Paleo Foundation for this low carb, paleo holiday stuffing recipe. Instead of using bread for this dish, the recipe instead calls for ground pork as the “meat” of the dish (no pun intended). Alternatively you may also try using ground chicken or turkey instead. Enjoy this paleo, gluten-free twist on more traditional stuffing recipes!

Best Ever Paleo Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipe

Homemade Apple Pie

Apple Pie with Homemade Gluten-free Crust

Who doesn’t love a homemade apple pie at Christmas?  You can make your own by following this simple recipe from Cathy at From Our Hideaway!  She makes her own gluten-free crust in addition to a delicious apple pie filling.  Your guests will love it!


Christmas Fruitcake (Raw, Vegan)

This Fruitcake from A Virtual Vegan  isn’t your typical Christmas loaf!  It’s moist, sweet and flavourful with all of the fruit, nuts and spices that it contains.  It’s grain-free and vegan, which also makes it a healthier holiday treat!  It doesn’t need to be baked and instead you’ll let in set in your refrigerator overnight. This means more room in your oven to make all of the other delicious meals in this Gluten and Dairy-Free Holiday Recipe Guide!   

Christmas Fruitcake - Raw, Vegan & Gluten-Free

Mulled Cranberry Apple Cider

Mulled Cranberry Apple Cider

Delicious cranberry-apple cider spiced with whole cloves, allspice, ginger, orange rind and cinnamon. How can you go wrong? This looks like a delicious “warm-up” to enjoy after exploring the great outdoors over the holidays! Thanks to The Kitchn for this delightful looking drink!


Chewy Gingerbread Cookies (Vegan)

How tasty do these gluten, dairy and egg-free gingerbread cookies look?  Keep Santa healthy this holiday season by leaving out a plate of these festive Christmas cookies with a tall glass of almond milk on Christmas Eve!  He can thank Delightful Adventures for this great recipe!

Chewy Vegan Gluten Free Gingerbread Cookies

Spiced Cranberry, Pear and Maple Chutney

Cranberry, Pear and Maple Chutney

Instead of canned cranberry sauce this year, why not try something different?  Sure, you could keep things fresh by making homemade cranberry sauce…but why not spice things up a bit and make a Cranberry, Pear and Maple Chutney instead?  This chutney from Eye Candy Popper is a perfect addition to your holiday dinner plate and it also makes a delicious dip or a topping for gluten-free crackers!


Swiss Chard Rolls Stuffed with Turkey and Rice

These Swiss Chard Rolls are a delicious variation on the classic version of the recipe that uses green cabbage.  Swiss Chard has dark green leaves and red stems, which provides a Christmas feel to this dish!  It’s such a comforting and delicious meal.

Swiss Chard Rolls Stuffed with Turkey and Rice

Chocolate Winter Bark

This delicious dessert is so festive and it’s also incredibly simple to make!  I suggest using dairy-free dark chocolate for the bark and sweetening it to taste with honey or maple syrup if required.  Thanks to Nutrition by Nazima for this recipe!

Chocolate Winter Bark with almonds, pomegranate and coconut

Mashed Potatoes with Roasted Cauliflower

Liven up your mashed potatoes with roasted cauliflower and garlic!  This recipe provides a delicious twist on a classic holiday side dish. The ingredients include vegan butter, which you can use if you have on hand or you can replace it with ghee or additional olive oil.  Thanks to Kim at Picky Diet for this recipe!

Mashed potatoes with roasted cauliflower

Poached Pears with Blackberry Sage Sauce

Poached Pears with Blackberries and Sage

These Poached Pears with Blackberry Sage Sauce from Making Healthy Choices are a light, fresh and festive dessert!  You may also serve these poached pears topped with coconut ice cream for an indulgent yet healthy treat!


Pomegranate Quinoa Salad with Mandarin Ginger Dressing

This Pomegranate Quinoa Salad has festive flair and is perfect for the holidays! You’ll love this delicious combination of juicy mandarin oranges, warming ginger dressing and refreshing pomegranate seeds!  This salad makes a great side dish to your holiday meal, but it also makes a deliciously nutritious lunch topped with grilled salmon or chicken breast.  You and your guests will love it!

Pomegranate Quinoa Salad with Mandarin Ginger Dressing

 That concludes my Gluten and Dairy-Free Holiday Recipe Roundup!  Make sure to pin this post and please share with your friends and family!  

Also make sure that you check out my Healthy Holiday Gift Guide and enter to win our Gift Giveaway!  The winners will be drawn on December 21st, 2016.

Healthy Holiday Gift Ideas

I hope that your holidays are healthy, happy and filled with delicious (and nutritious) food!

About the Author

Dr. Kimberley O'Brien

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Dr. Kimberley O'Brien is a Naturopathic Doctor with a medical practice in Calgary, Alberta. She is the founder of Healthy Life Redesign and creator of the Elimination Diet Meal Plan online program. Her mission is to help you own your health and live a life you love!


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Comments 4

  1. Thank you so much for including my Vanilla Pomegranate Mulled Wine, Kimberly! I’ll be sure to share the round up this weekend and am currently drooling over all the delicious looking creations you’ve included here. Cheers and happy holidays to you — I’m so glad we were able to connect this year!

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  2. What a beautiful post, Kimberley! Thanks for including my recipe; I’m especially honored because, when I saw the number of great submissions just on your FB post, it looked like an overwhelming task! All of these recipes look delicious, proving that dairy or gluten free dishes can take their place on the holiday table.

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      Thank you so much Colleen! Yes, I definitely had my work cut out for me and I sifted through a number of delicious looking recipes to create this post. I got very hungry putting this compilation together! 😉 I hope that it inspires people to add some of these healthy yet delicious meals to their holiday table! Merry Christmas Colleen!

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