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How to be Lactose Intolerant and Have Holidays + Recipes

The holidays are a time for conveniently forgetting about your diet and indulging in the rich, buttery foods that you don’t encounter any other time during the year.

For most, this time of the year is so loved because of its cuisine. But if you’re lactose intolerant, your holidays probably look a little bit different as many of these dishes will contain ingredients that you are sensitive to.

No one wants to be left out during the holidays, especially at the dinner table. Because dairy ingredients are commonly found in some of the most well-loved holiday dinner table staples. This can prove a challenge for hosts and guests alike with lactose intolerance.

However, in recent years, with the rise of inclusiveness in health and wellness, dairy-free options have become great substitutes in kitchens. Long gone are the days where you don’t have to participate in the meal with everyone else. If you are a host or a guest, having these recipes on hand for the holidays are a sure way to make sure that everyone is included and is able to take part in the festivities to the fullest extent.

Grocery stores are now commonly stocked with dairy-free cheeses and milks that can be substituted into your favorite dishes. There are also a number of cheeses such as Parmesan and cheddar that include moderate amounts of lactose which can be tolerated by those who are sensitive to lactose. If you’re concerned about dessert, do not fret because there are dozens of your favorite brands that now carry dairy-free and vegan options that don’t compromise on flavor.

Here are some dairy-free recipes for you to try for your next holiday party that pack a punch flavor and are sure to impress your guests:

New Year’s Eve

Reign in the new year with these incredible crispy mushroom appetizers that are a great snack or finger food for your guests to enjoy as you watch the ball drop.

Who doesn’t love pretzels bites? These vegan and gluten-free bites are a great savory snack to enjoy alongside your favorite beer or cocktail as you count down the clock.


A big part of enjoying Easter egg hunts are the chocolate prizes that you can win. Most common chocolate brands in the supermarket contain dairy, but this does not mean that all hope is lost. Making your own chocolate gives you free reign to add whatever additional ingredients you love like dried fruit and nuts.

Valentine’s Day

What’s a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner without a rich dessert to finish off your meal? Here is a recipe for dairy-free chocolate molten lava cakes perfect for you and your partner to enjoy.

If you and your partner are looking for something even more indulgent, why not try a dairy-free cheesecake recipe for two? Cheesecake doesn’t have to be out of the question if you avoid dairy.

Mother’s Day

A great way to celebrate Mom is by getting her day started with breakfast. Here are some easy and delicious breakfast options to show your appreciation for the woman who does it all.

Surprise your mother with some delicious and warm scones straight from the oven. Paired with her favorite cup of coffee or tea, these are a great fruity treat in the morning.

If your mother loves something a little bit healthier and lighter first thing in the morning, homemade cashew yogurt is a tasty and new twist on a breakfast staple. Top with her favorite fruit and granola for a quick and easy but delicious meal.

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is the time to enjoy the sun with the rest of your family with some delicious cookout favorites.

Enjoy some delicious five-ingredient veggie burgers that are quick to put together but don’t skimp on the flavor. Serve with all the fix-ins for a hearty and tasty meal.

You don’t have to miss out on this year’s potato salad because of the mayonnaise. Here is a fresh take on potato salad that is dairy-free, vegan, and a bright addition to the rest of the barbecue.


Juneteenth is about education and reflection. Honor the ending of slavery in the United States by having an important conversation with your family about African American history and take this time to celebrate each other.

Frozen strawberry daiquiris make for a refreshing beverage to share with your family. Red drinks like strawberry soda were popular on Juneteenth because it was among one of the first beverages freed slaves celebrated with. Leave out the rum for a refreshing red strawberry drink that anyone can drink.

Father’s Day

Surprise Dad with delicious Turkish-style scrambled eggs to be the centerpiece of an incredible breakfast celebration. For a vegan alternative, substitute the eggs for tofu scramble.

Celebrate Father’s Day with an impressive addition to the breakfast spread with homemade bagels. These are dairy-free and hearty. Serve with a spread of favorite jams, dairy-free cream cheese and smoked salmon.

Back to School

Back to school is a hectic time for parents and students. Making a lunch that is healthy for your kids but doesn’t break the bank or take up your whole morning can be another added stress, especially if your child has dietary restrictions that you need to be mindful of. Here are a couple of recipes that are excellent when made ahead of time and can be quick and satisfying snacks for your child during their busy school days.

Serve up some chocolate chip cookie dough bars for your kids to keep on them as an on-the-go snack that is sweet and a healthier alternative to packaged and processed snacks.

Pumpkin pancakes are a great seasonal meal that can be made ahead of time and frozen for you to heat up just before your child goes to school. Substitute the butter for a non-dairy alternative and serve with fruit.

Labor Day

Labor Day is another excuse to spend your long weekend outside on the barbecue, enjoying the sun with the rest of your family. Here are some delicious dairy-free sides that you can bring that will be a hit with everyone.

Coleslaw is a barbecue staple and is luckily dairy-free and gluten-free and can easily be made vegan. Here is a fresh rainbow coleslaw to brighten up the table.

If coleslaw isn’t your thing, try a fresh corn salsa instead. This will go great with any barbecue you have.


While there are plenty of candies that are dairy-free and even gluten-free, here are some recipes if you want to get spooky and whip up something fun for everyone of all ages to enjoy. Halloween is definitely the time to pull out all the stops and show your creative skills in the kitchen.

These vegan cupcakes definitely fit the autumn theme with the combination of coffee and pumpkin. The black cupcake contrasting with the bright orange frosting will look great at your next spooky party.

For something less laborious but equally as delicious and fun, try your hand at making some chocolate bark that fits the occasion with the seasonal sprinkles to give it that spooky flare.


Thanksgiving is a time where families pull out all of their tricks to have a huge feast. Some of the best side dishes usually have dairy in them. But fear not, here are a couple of recipe suggestions that will leave everyone stuffed and satisfied.

This stuffing is both gluten-free and dairy-free. It’s a tasty side that is quick to whip up and just that much better than boxed stuffing.

Sweet potato casserole is a staple to an American Thanksgiving and this one just got so much better because it can easily be made vegan and is naturally sweetened. You don’t have to miss out on the indulgence with this dish in hand.


Christmas is one of the most beloved holidays of the year, primarily because of the food. Most of the Christmas staples often contain dairy and are not vegan-friendly. But here are some recipes to help you out this holiday season if you’re struggling to find the perfect accompaniments that cater to your dietary restrictions.

Here is a flavorful dairy-free gravy that will be perfect to go with your turkey, ham or whatever you choose. It doesn’t skimp on flavor and tastes every bit like traditional gravy. By substituting a couple of ingredients, you’ll be prepared to face this holiday season.

Potatoes are a must-have on every holiday spread. These scalloped potatoes are decadent and rich without being too heavy thanks to the exclusion of cheese and cream.


Kwanzaa is a week-long celebration, which means lots of cooking and eating. Here are a couple of sides to go with your Kwanzaa meals that are great when made ahead and reheated later on.

These corn muffins are perfectly cozy and a delicious addition for any stews, curries or soups.

If you thought mac and cheese could never be dairy-free, you thought wrong. Here is a recipe for a cashew-based sauce tossed through macaroni that hits all of the flavors you’re looking for in a traditional mac and cheese.

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