Yuletide greetings everyone! Epcot has been ramping up its festival season and we have the full rundown on vegan options at this year’s Holiday Kitchens located throughout World Showcase during the 2022 Epcot International Festival of the Holidays. This year we have some new booths AND new VEGAN items for the Festival! Come on, let’s eat!
What’s Vegan at the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays?
Vegan As-is Options at the 2022 EPCOT Festival of the Holidays:
New this year is the Nochebuena Cocina (Near Port of Entry) which will be offering:
- IMPOSSIBLE Chorizo Tamale with plant-based cotija cheese and spicy red Chile sauce (Gluten/ Wheat Friendly) (Plant-based Item) – $5.25
I love a good tamale and this did not disappont! This is a stellar new option for the festival and I’m so glad it’s vegan as is! The Impossible chorizo has a little kick to it but not too spicy. The traditional red sauce was perfect – missing was the plant-based cotija cheese, not sure if it’s just not in yet or if they reconsidered the recipe based on supply issues. We’ll check back throughout the festival, but even so, this is a must-try. Loved it.
I tried it with the Chai Ginger Mule, also from Noche Buena Cocina and this drink packed a punch! It comes with the mug (plastic) for $11.50, vegan as well.
Here’s a look at the inside of the Impossible Tamale:
Also new this year at the Refreshment Outpost:
- Peanut Stew with sweet potatoes, mustard greens, and roasted peanuts (Plant-based Item) (Gluten/ Wheat Friendly) – $5.25
- DOLE Whip Raspberry – $6 (yes, the Peanut Stew is cheaper than a Dole Whip!)
This also looks amazing and I can’t wait to try. It’s chilly right now as I type this and this would be the perfect dish for the cold I think! – Well, it was 83 degrees when I got it on opening day, but I still loved it! It will be amazing when the temperatures (hopefully) cool down, but it was still wonderful! It’s a huge portion too, which you can’t really tell from these photos but you’ll see on our upcoming video.
The peanuts were huge, and crunchy. There was a little spice coating on them, but not overly spicy. The sauce itself had a peanut flavor, and the sweet potatoes and mustard greens were a nice accent. This may be my favorite dish of the festival, I loved these flavors. Also new this year is the Chip ‘n Dale Spork for $2.50.
NOT Returning this year is the Holiday Pot Pie at the American Holiday Table Holiday Kitchen! I guess Disney gave up on trying to make this enjoyable for guests, which honestly is fine by me. The other dishes look considerably more interesting although I’ll miss having an “American” staple for the festival. I wish they could’ve figured it out and maybe just removed the jackfruit and added more veggies!
What IS returning this year are the vegan Potato Latkes – $4.25 available at the L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen. These are a fan favorite and with good reason.
At the Flower and Garden Festival these were topped with applesauce. For Festival of the Holidays you’ll find them drizzled with an herbed dairy free sour cream.
This year for 2022, the Potato Latkes are back and still delicious.
In 2022 the Holiday Cookie Stroll returns and with it comes the iconic black and white cookie. And we’re happy to report that it’s still vegan!
This year, the black and white cookie is a little…different. She thick. Real thick. Not sure what’s going on with the recipe this year, but the cookie is not really a cookie anymore. It’s like a thick, dense, little cake almost. See below for the inside shot.
The Black and White Cookie – $3.00 Last year, it was soft and delicious and there was no longer a lemon flavor in it on the first day. When we went back on Sunday and ordered one, it was lemony like previous years. If you aren’t familiar, this cookie is more like a little drop cake and not very cookie-like. Depending on the freshness, it may be more hard to eat than soft. Now this year, it looks like this inside:
Now compare to the year this cookie was introduced (from a media event) below. You cold not do this with this year’s cookie without getting covered in frosting. It was still tasty, but a little too much dough here. If it was half as thick, it would be even better.
You can find the Black and White Cookie at the L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen in between Morocco and France.
New last year in 2021 were the glazed nuts at the Chestnuts and Cheer Holiday Kitchen. They appear to be the same ones normally sold at Disney parks, which ARE vegan as-is, and they even just came out with the vegan leaf logo on the menu boards, but this new booth does not note them as being plant-based as of now. We had confirmed last year that they were vegan-friendly with no egg whites or butter added – we will re-confirm on opening day for 2022. Re-confirmed, they are all still vegan! Here’s a look at last year:
Chestnuts & Good Cheer Holiday Kitchen (Near Disney Traders) – each pack of glazed nuts are $5.50 each
- Cinnamon-glazed Almonds
- Cinnamon-glazed Cashews
- Cinnamon-glazed Pecans
- Fire-roasted Chestnuts – $6
The fire-roasted Chestnuts are roasted right next to the booth before your eyes and are seasoned and not just plain for those who prefer them one way or the other. I went back and tried the chestnuts and I actually really loved them! I’m not sure what they did to them back when I had them at the Grand Floridian years ago, but these were soft and delicious, a fun baked potato-like texture and the seasonings really added to it.
Update for 2022: On opening day I tried these and they were not really cooked enough, the shells were still pretty closed. As a result the chestnuts were pretty mealy and not that great. Wah wah. I did try all the other nut options as well and they are SO good. Crispy, crunchy and sweet, each type is slightly different due to the nuts having different textures and flavors themselves. A great addition to enjoy this season.
Modifiable Options at the 2022 EPCOT Festival of the Holidays:
At the Las Posadas Holiday Kitchen in Mexico you’ll find another returning option we were able to modify. Last year, they switched it up and the tostada is blue corn! This doesn’t make it quite as photogenic, but it is just as delicious as ever. This year, it looks like the white corn tostada is back.
This is the Giant Tostada de Chorizo – $10.50. Ask to omit the meat, queso and crema Mexicana. This will leave you with a massive crispy tostada topped with the creamiest black beans, salsa verde, tangy pickled red onions and green onions. I know it seems like a lot to pay for all the things you are removing, but this really is so delicious, it was worth it in my opinion – however, with the addition of the Impossible Tamale, I probably won’t get this again after opening day.
We verified with a chef that the beans are not cooked with any animal products.
Last year we also discovered another unique modifiable option for the 2022 Festival of the Holidays. The Turkey Poutine over at the Refreshment Port next to Canada and Starbucks. Now stay with us here…If you order this without the turkey, and without the gravy, it is vegan! You end up with hot french fries, topped with cranberry sauce and crispy fried onions. This sounds strange, we know, but it was kind of fun!
The cranberry is sweet and tart and the onions are crispy and savory. Combined with the fries, it really is like a unique twist on Thanksgiving and fun if you want a unique snack on your journey around World Showcase. Now we attempted to order this as the Turkey Poutine without the turkey and gravy, for $9, but the cast member actually said they would ring us in for the Traditional Poutine for $7 and they just told the cast assembling the dish to add the cranberry and onions. So we saved $2, which was great since we aren’t getting the meat or cheese or gravy. I wouldn’t demand that if you try it, but if you ask nicely, they may accommodate you as well.
An additional item that we are posting with a caveat is from the Mele Kalikimaka Hawaii Kitchen, located on the pathway heading to Imagination, across from the Starbucks. There is a Kalua Pork item, which can be modified to remove the pork. You’re left with purple Okinawa Sweet Potatoes with Mango Salad – $5.50 – the topping was diced mango with greens.
We ordered it, but the potatoes are so creamy tasting, we are wondering what the ingredients are on this. We did confirm it was vegan this year for 2022. We were also given two big scoops of the potato when they heard we didn’t want the pork, which was nice, but of course your mileage may vary. As always, with items not noted as being vegan, check ingredients before ordering as they could change the recipe at any time. Last year they ran out of purple sweet potatoes pretty quick too, so you may get regular sweet potatoes.
I paired this with the Melon Breeze with Spiced Rum cocktail – $14 and it was really delicious. $14 is a lot I know, but you could definitely taste the rum and midori liqueur and it was a delight to drink (and photograph!).
Lastly, in perhaps the most bizarre modifiable option, Shanghai Holiday Kitchen features a Veggie Spring Roll for $5.25 this year. HOWEVER – the “citrus sauce” it comes with is not only not vegan, it’s not even vegetarian. The spring rolls themselves are vegan (cross-contamination may occur). The citrus sauce contains chicken stock?! yes, really, as well as OYSTER SAUCE. So not only not even vegetarian, but a shellfish allergen as well. So you may want to avoid this just to be safe, but if you are in the mood for a basic spring roll, order it without the sauce. We note in our video you can add sriacha at the counter, or head to Lotus Blossom Cafe to grab some packets of condiments of your choice (soy sauce, orange sauce, hot sauce, or mustard sauce). It boggles my mind that they would create a sauce like this when a simple sauce would taste amazing and could be vegan too.
Not Able to Be Modified (but you may think they are):
There is an additional options that we thought might be modifiable but after consulting with chefs at the location we discovered that it wasn’t.
In the Tangierine Cafe in Morocco, they have kept the Assorted Dips and Stone Baked Moroccan Bread that was here for the 2022 EPCOT Food & Wine Festival, however for us to enjoy this, we had to switch the bread (which has dairy) for the pita bread that came with the falafel. Since they are not serving falafel anymore, they do not have a bread alternative. So if you wanted to get the dips on their own, you could I suppose, but not worth it in my opinion. I really don’t understand why Disney isn’t using the same bread for the Zucchi Wrap and Bright Suns Breakfast Wrap over here in Morocco, as it would be a delicious and vegan alternative.
We hope you enjoyed this list and review of all the vegan and modifiable options for this year’s EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays. Be sure to check back for our updated video and follow along on instagram @VeganDisneyFood for more content throughout the season!
Video Review of the Vegan Options at the 2022 EPCOT Festival of the Holidays:
We haven’t seen any updates on souvenir cups or holiday popcorn buckets, aside from the music-box-cookie-tin-style bucket available at Magic Kingdom, so we’ll check when the Festival opens and report back.
Living with the Land Glimmering Greenhouses is a holiday overlay within the greenhouse portion of this classic opening day attraction which has changed minimally in 40 years.
WARNING: If you are unaware, this ride features images of farming practices, and in the outdoor portion, a section on aquaculture or fish farming. As with many other experiences in Walt Disney World, this section is not vegan in nature so we advise doing research before experiencing things in person if these images or visuals will cause you distress.
After the sun sets, ride the Living with the Land attraction for a special sparkling tour. You can find Living with the Land inside the Land pavilion in the former Future World West, now World Nature.
Enjoy a peaceful evening cruise and view twinkling holiday light displays throughout the greenhouses here.
This overlay is magical and we are so happy that Epcot is bringing it back this year. Also making its triumphant return this year is the Candlelight Processional.
The 2022 festival will run from November 25th through December 30th.
For more information on the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays visit the official Walt Disney World website. Happy Holiday Eating!
LOOKING FOR VEGAN OPTIONS IN THE THEME PARKS, WATER PARKS AND DISNEY SPRINGS?
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LOOKING FOR VEGAN OPTIONS IN THE WALT DISNEY WORLD RESORT HOTELS?
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