Let start this off by saying I am not vegetarian and I don't play one on TV (sorry, Dad joke). But I admire the self discipline and passion that those who live a completely vegetarian or vegan lifestyle have. I would love to eventually transition to a vegetarian diet and I think these AMAZING vegetarian Thanksgiving side dishes could help me do that. 

1. Veggie Mac and Cheese

pasta, cream
Eileen Wang

Simple, hearty and filled with yummy goodness. This vegetarian (and vegan friendly) mac and cheese uses cashews as a substitute for all the dairy, which actually increases the nutritional benefits of this yummy side dish.

#SpoonTip Add tomatoes to the mac and cheese. Trust me, you'll be 'thankful' you did  

2. Butternut Squash Soup

potato, parsley, bacon, pumpkin, carrot, soup
Katie Elliott

How much more fall can you get? This recipe calls for chicken broth that can easily be swapped for vegetable broth. And whats more impressive than homemade soup? Nothing, thats what. 

3. Vegan Maple Glazed Stuff Squash

rice, sweet, pumpkin, vegetable, squash, acorn squash
Kendra Valkema

If you couldn't tell, I really love squash. This stuffed squash will give you that wonderful sweet and savory combo that can replace your not-so-vegetarian friendly sweet potato casserole with marshmallows. 

4. Warm Spiced Lentils with Caramelized Onions

Tatum Kenrick

This spicy alternative to your typical turkey stuffing (what you cook inside the bird). It's warm spices and caramelized onions would be a perfect addition to any vegetarian Thanksgiving spread. 

5. Sauteed Apples

apple, grass, pasture, juice
Carolina Licalzi

Thanksgiving is one of the only times where it is socially acceptable in my house to eat anything that my mom's (broad) definition of desserts is, while eating dinner. These sautéed apples are one of those things, and I will enjoy every bite of it.

Whether you're vegan, vegetarian, or meat-eater, with a simple modification or two, all of these recipes should make it onto your Thanksgiving table.