Vegan Easter

« LAST UPDATE: 25 March 2022 »

PUBLISHED: 4 April 2017

If you’re looking for information about celebrating a vegan Easter, you’ve come to the right place.

Easter is a Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The holiday features celebrations with food and family activities such as dyeing eggs, egg hunts, and the gifting of chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, and other confections inside brightly decorated baskets.

Because Easter is so egg-centric, it might be confusing how to create a fun-filled vegan version of all the traditions that make Easter celebrations so special.

Don’t worry; I’m here to help. Let me show you how.

QUICK FACTS

» Category: Holiday Guides
» Minutes to Read: 15
» Recipes to Try: 72

Vegan Easter

PUBLISHED: 4 April 2017  »  LAST UPDATE: 25 March 2022

If you’re looking for information about celebrating a vegan Easter, you’ve come to the right place.

Easter is a Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The holiday features celebrations with food and family activities such as dyeing eggs, egg hunts, and the gifting of chocolate bunnies, jelly beans, and other confections inside brightly decorated baskets.

Because Easter is so egg-centric, it might be confusing how to create a fun-filled vegan version of all the traditions that make Easter celebrations so special.

Don’t worry; I’m here to help. Let me show you how.

QUICK FACTS

» Category: Holiday Guides
» Minutes to Read: 15
» Recipes to Try: 72

Shopping Guide

Luckily there are plenty of vegan options to take center stage at holiday gatherings easily found at natural food markets or well-stocked grocery stores. The following plant meats are perfect for the vegan Easter dinner table.

Two hands holding a plate of Tofurky Ham and vegetables.

Vegan Ham & Vegan Lamb Brands and Other Meat Alternatives for Easter

We live in the golden age of vegan products; no matter which foods are part of your family traditions, they can be recreated using plant-based alternatives.

Look for these vegan meat alternatives in refrigerated sections of health food stores and well-stocked grocers.

Also, check the freezer section, sometimes the roasts are sold frozen.

Vegan Ham Alternatives
Vegan Lamb Alternatives

Do you make a vegan meat alternative that isn’t listed? Contact me.

Vegan Easter Candy & Confections

Living vegan doesn’t mean missing out on the things you love like chocolate Easter bunnies or bags of colorful jelly beans. Today, there are plenty of choices. 

An advertisement for the Natural Candy Store. Features a picture of colorful foil wrapped eggs.
vegan easter candy

Vegan Easter Candy & Vegan Jelly Beans

  • Amy’s
    Sunny Organic Candy Bar, Dreamy Organic Candy Bar
  • Clean Candy
    Hard candy (6 flavors)
  • Cocomel Caramels
    Vanilla, Sea Salt, Dark Chocolate Covered Bites, Chocolate Covered Vanilla Bites
  • Go Organic
    Hard candy (7 flavors), Peppermint Pinwheels, Fruit Chews
  • Surf Sweets
    Delish Fish, Cinnamon Bears, Fruit Chews, Fruity Bears, Sour Worms, Watermelon Rings, Lollipops
  • Yum Earth
    Organic Lollipops, Organic Hard Candy, Organic Fruit Snacks, Organic Licorice, Organic Sour Twists, and Organic Sour Beans

Do you make a vegan sweet treat that isn’t listed? Contact me.

Vegan Easter Eggs for Dyeing

Making new cruelty-free traditions has never been easier.

Egg-Free Vegan Easter “Eggs” for Decorating

Easter is ubiquitous with pastel colors, and dyeing eggs for Easter is a tradition for many families. Since vegans don’t use animal products, dyeing chicken eggs isn’t an option.

You might be asking yourself, “What’s the big deal? Chickens aren’t killed for eggs!”

It’s a good question.

Here’s the sad reality: Animals do die for eggs. Lots of them.

The Male Chick “Problem”

If there is only one fact that you remember about egg production, let it be this one: Male chicks don’t produce eggs; therefore, they are useless to egg producers.

So, what does that mean exactly? For male chicks, it means culling.

Chick culling is the process of killing newly hatched chicks for which animal agribusiness has no use. Because male chickens do not lay eggs, they are killed shortly after being sexed.

The primary methods of culling are gruesome stuff and differ from region to region.

Asphyxiation is the standard in the United Kingdom, for example. While the United States uses macerating with a high-speed grinder. (1)

A wooden basket with a green bow filled with wooden eggs sitting on a wooden table.
Egg Alternatives

Family traditions can be an important part of growing up, and parents might worry that their kids are missing out as wee vegans.

Luckily there are plenty of fun alternatives to help you ditch the chicken eggs while still keeping your treasured family traditions.

Here are a few egg-free eggs that are a great alternative and ideal for vegan Easter baskets or decorated egg plates.

Now, let’s talk about what to use to dye these egg-ternatives (sorry, I couldn’t help myself).

A variety of bowls and jars with various homemade food dyes in them (red, green, yellow, blue, purple).

How to Make Homemade Food Coloring

The unofficial colors of Easter are pretty and pastel. Not just limited to eggs, these colors are everywhere you look; from cookies to cakes to cupcakes, too. Generally speaking, these food and drinks get their colors from artificial food colors.

I am not a fan of artificial food colors.

These toxic chemicals masquerading as food, artificial food colors are possible through the wonder of chemistry and the industry of oil drilling. Studies have shown various adverse health effects from ingesting them. And, did you know that artificial food colors undergo animal testing to ensure their safety as a food additive?

It’s true.

Relatedly, animal testing sucks and can yield dangerous results when physicians treat patients using medicine based on the results of these studies.

Artificial Food Colors Are Everywhere

Every time a holiday approaches, the artificial colors go on sale. Magazines, blogs, and videos feature impossibly cute and creative treats made with a variety of unnatural colors achieved through the magic of artificial colors.

There’s a better way; make bright, vivid colors at home.

A Better, Plant-Powered Rainbow

Look at those colors! Yellow, red, purple, green, and even blue. Easy to make, these colors come from everyday ingredients found in your fridge or pantry. Trust me, it’s not complicated or expensive.

Click here for the full step-by-step homemade food coloring tutorial.

Buying Vegan Food Dyes

Here are a few dyes that are colored with vegetable juice or spices, and contain no synthetic dyes.

Color Kitchen Food Colors from Nature

This brand started popping up at my local markets, so I picked up a few packets to test out on my favorite sugar cookies. I’m a fan.

First, the colors come packaged in individual packets, which means I don’t over-buy. Second, the colors mix easily and create beautifully, even colors. I don’t even mind that they’re more pastel than bright. Lastly, they’re budget-friendly. Here’s a 10-pack, Color Kitchen Food Colors from Nature, that makes a perfect starter pack.

McCormick Nature’s Inspiration Food Colors

By far, these colors from McCormick are the cheapest and the most widely available in mainstream grocery stores everywhere. These plant-based powdered colors come in a pack of three colors (Sky Blue, Berry & Sunflower), which you can mix for an infinite amount of color options. And I know this is a small thing, but I really like how they’re packaged in resealable dry powder pouches. That makes for easy storage, and more importantly, easy re-use.

I bought this McCormick Nature’s Inspiration Food Colors pack for these unicorn sugar cookies, and I love how vivid the colors turned out. I would absolutely buy these again.

Natural Earth Paints

Natural Earth has a full line of products to choose from. They come in biodegradable packaging made from pure, natural earth and mineral pigments and organic ingredients. This natural egg dye kit is perfect for those who are looking to dye artificial eggs.

Disclosure: This article may contain affiliate links. I earn from qualifying purchases. See my Affiliate Policy for more details.

Buying a Real Easter Bunny or Baby Chick

There are many things to consider before bringing home a live animal for children. Here are a few of the most important things to know about living with bunnies and baby chickens to help you make informed choices.

Bunny rabbit on the grass.

What to Know About Bringing Home an Easter Bunny

The Easter Bunny is perhaps the most well-known holiday character after Santa Claus. Not only is he prominent in many family traditions, but he also makes appearances in Easter baskets everywhere in the form of chocolates or stuffed toys.

Many well-intentioned parents may also bring a real, live Easter bunny home to excited children. While these intentions may have been good, often bringing home a rabbit ends up badly for both the children and the rabbit. Sadly, after cats and dogs, more rabbits are abandonded or surrendered to animal shelters than any other animal.

It’s a Long-Term Commitment

Many people who purchase bunnies at Easter don’t realize that caring for a rabbit is a ten-year commitment. Including:

  • house-training (rabbits can be litter box trained)
  • bunny-proofing your house (rabbits like to chew on wires, boxes, papers, among other things)
  • several hours of daily playtime
  • spaying or neutering

Contrary to popular belief, rabbits are not the perfect small animal for children. Rabbits like the ground and become frightened when held or restrained. This fear can lead to kicking and scratching, which can cause injury to whoever is holding them. They also have incredibly fragile spines. If dropped the rabbit could break their back or worse.

Raising Rabbits is a Lot of Hard Work

Caring for a rabbit can be a lot of work. In fact, rabbits can take just as much time, attention and care as a dog or cat would.

Sometimes, when people realize they’re in over their heads, they’ll release their family pet rabbit into the wild. This is an extremely dangerous choice since domestic rabbits are not the same as their cousins and most won’t survive outside on their own.

Because well-intentioned people can unknowingly make bad decisions, it’s important to do plenty of research. Before making a lifelong commitment to a rabbit, take some time to read the information at rabbitron.com.

One last thing: If you’ve done all the research and still want a rabbit, please don’t shop, adopt. Contact your local animal shelter or a rescue organization like Hug-a-Bunny Rabbit Rescue, the House Rabbit Network, or Rabbit Rescue.

A close up of a box of brightly-colored chicks.

Candy-Colored Easter Chicks

Brightly colored newborn chicks might seem like the perfect festive Easter gift for an excited young person, but nothing could be further from the truth.

In reality, dyed chicks is a cruel practice that turns live birds into nothing more than playthings that are quickly discarded by children with short attention spans.

Caring for Baby Chicks

These birds have many of the same needs as rabbits do — plenty of attention, room to roam and roost, veterinary care — and they face many of the same problems, too. Much like rabbits, people can become overwhelmed by the idea of caring for a baby chick as it grows into adult chickens, which can lead to abandonment or worse.

Unfortunately, these young birds have no knowledge or the experience of foraging or evading predators, making death an inevitable possibility. For those that do survive, they can ban together into feral colonies, disrupting native wildlife populations. Once the communities become unmanageable, cities will enact mandatory culling of the birds.

Easter chicks surrendered to animal shelters (if you can find one to take them) don’t fare any better either. In spring, many shelters and humane societies become overburdened, and finding suitable homes for them can be a real challenge.

The sad truth is, many of these chicks will eventually be euthanized because there are not enough adoptive homes for them.

Other Ethical Problems

In addition to the problems of caring for young chicks, the practice of tinting animals is also problematic for other ethical reasons. According to the New York Times, about half of the United States currently have laws against dyeing animals.

The process is unnecessary and invasive.

“You take regular food coloring and inject it into the egg on the 18th day of incubation,” said Peter R. There, a retired poultry rancher who lives outside Lampasas, Texas. “They take 21 days to hatch. Put a little dab of wax on top to cover the hole up, and put it back in the incubator.”

But this is only one method; others are even crueler. 

Another tinting process begins with newborn chicks inside a large bucket or container. A worker will pour food dye over the chicks before shaking them — similar to tossing a salad — to obtain an even coat.

Some don’t survive the process, while others sustain injuries like broken bones. None of the birds make it out unscathed from the process.

Please remember, baby chicks might seem like a cute gift, but they grow up into adult chickens who will need time, attention, and veterinary care. Instead of offering children brightly colored chicks as real, live toys choose a cute stuffed toy for their vegan Easter basket instead.

Vegan Easter Recipes

Plan the perfect vegan Easter meal to share with friends or family this holiday with these recipes.

Serving plates, bowls with salads and vegetables dishes, eucalyptus flowers on pink shabby background.

How to Plan a Vegan Easter Meal

This guide contains more than 72 delicious vegan Easter recipes perfect for any holiday table. And for the culinary-inclined, I’ve also included a full menu of homemade candies and confections that’ll show off those cooking skills.

Browse by scrolling or select from the following categories to plan your meal:

Vegan Brunch Recipes for Easter

Vegan Appetizer Recipes for Easter

  1. Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip 
    Yummy Mummy Kitchen
  1. Carrot & Coriander Fritters 
    Thinly Spread
  1. Olive Tapenade 
    Fried Dandelions
  1. Spring Pea Hummus 
    Veggie Desserts
  1. Easter Egg Hummus Toasts
    Fork & Beans
  1. Cheese Hedgehog
    Vegan Dollhouse
  1. Cowboy Caviar 
    The View from Great Island
  1. Cucumber Slices w/Smoky Sunflower Seed Pâté 
    Kitchen Treaty
  1. Hemp & Sunflower Seed Pâté 
    The Conscious Dietitian
  1. Creamy Avocado & Edamame Hummus 
    Eat With Clarity
  1. Crispy Mac & Cheese Bites 
    Vegggies Don’t Bite
  1. Vegan Smoked Salmon 
    When Sweet Becomes Healthy

Vegan Main Dish Recipes for Easter

Vegan Side Dish Recipes for Easter

Vegan Dessert Recipes for Easter

  1. Wild Berry Tart 
    Green Kitchen Stories
  1. Lime & Coconut Cake 
    A Virtual Vegan
  1. Lemon Millet Bliss Balls 
    Feasting on Fruit
  1. Lemon Coconut Doughnuts 
    Connoisseurus Veg
  1. Pistachio & Orange Blossom Avocado Cake 
    Unconventional Baker
  1. Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake 
    My Darling Vegan
  1. Vegan Custard Puff Pastry Napoleon 
    Veggie Society
  1. Lemon Poppyseed Loaf
    Sweet Simple Vegan
  1. Bite-Size Coconut Macaroon Nests 
    Plant Crush
  1. Olive Oil Cake with Lemon 
    My Darling Vegan
  1. Chocolate Cake  
    The Plant Riot
  1. White Chocolate Fudge 
    Plant Power Couple

Vegan DIY Candies & Confections

Serving plates, bowls with salads and vegetables dishes, eucalyptus flowers on pink shabby background.

How to Plan a Vegan Easter Meal

This guide contains more than 72 delicious vegan Easter recipes perfect for any holiday table. And for the culinary-inclined, I’ve also included a full menu of homemade candies and confections that’ll show off those cooking skills.

Browse by scrolling or select from the following categories to plan your meal:

Vegan Brunch Recipes

Closeup of a group of hot cross buns sitting on a cooling rack.

1. Vegan Hot Cross Buns
Delightful Adventures

A plate of waffles sitting on a wooden table.
An overhead view of two plates with large cinnamon rolls on them with a cup of coffee sitting nearby.

3. Sweet Cinnamon Rolls
Connoisseurus Veg

A plate of three vegan egg cups sitting on a table with a fork leaned upon the plate.

4. Vegan “Egg” Cups
Bear Plate

A slice of tofu chickpea quiche sitting on a plate next to a serving of greens.

5. Tofu Chickpea Quiche
Yup It’s Vegan

A colorful smoothie in a clear glass sitting on a white outdoor railing.

6. Easter Smoothie
Vegan Dollhouse

An iron skillet filled with roasted potatoes and vegetables sitting on a white countertop.

7. Vegan Breakfast Skillet
Make it Dairy Free

An overhead view of a pan of breakfast bars cut into squares.
A closeup of a bite of blueberry waffle on a fork above a plate of waffles.

9. Blueberry Oat Flour Waffles
Feasting on Fruit

An overhead view of a vegetable frittata in a pan with a slice taken out and sitting next to it on a wooden board.

10. Vegetable Frittata
Sunnyside Hanne

Five tempeh maple breakfast patties sitting on a piece of parchment paper.
Closeup of a tomato and spinach tart.

12. Tomato & Spinach Tart
Veganosity

Vegan Appetizer Recipes

1. Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip
Yummy Mummy Kitchen

Three carrot fritters sitting on a white plate with a few decorative greens.
Closeup of a bowl of olive tapenade.

3. Olive Tapenade
Fried Dandelions

An overhead view of a bowl of hummus with various vegetables surrounding it.

4. Spring Pea Hummus
Veggie Desserts

Four pieces of toast sitting on a white background decorated to look like Easter eggs.

5. Easter Egg Hummus Toasts
Fork & Beans

A cheeseball decorated to look like a hedgehog sitting on a blue plate with a couple of stacks of crackers nearby.

6. Cheese Hedgehog
Vegan Dollhouse

Corn and bean salad in a colorful bowl sitting on a wooden table.

7. Cowboy Caviar
The View from Great Island

A white plate full of cucumber canapes.
Overhead view of pate on a white plate with a basket of crackers nearby on top of a wooden table.

9. Hemp & Sunflower Seed Pâté
The Conscious Dietitian

A bowl of hummus sitting on a white countertop with a few toast points sitting in the bowl and a bowl of chives sitting nearby.

10. Creamy Avocado & Edamame Hummus
Eat With Clarity

A glass bowl of mac & cheese bites sitting in a metal basket with sauce drizzled on top.

11. Crispy Mac & Cheese Bites
Vegggies Don’t Bite

A pink plate with three pieces of toast topped with vegan smoked salmon.

12. Vegan Smoked Salmon
When Sweet Becomes Healthy

Vegan Main Dish Recipes

A seitan roast sitting on a white plate with a red and white cloth napkin.

1. Seitan Roast Stuffed
Fat Free Kitchen

A close up of a sliced seitan roast sitting on top of a blue napkin.
Overview of four spanakopita sitting on a white plate with a blue background.
Seitan roast sliced on a plate next to a pile of mashed potatoes and gravy.

4. Seitan Mushroom Roast
Keepin’ it Kind

Lentil salad with roasted vegetables sitting in a serving dish with a single serving portion in front.
Overhead view of a fully cooked mushroom wellington.

6. Vegan Mushroom Wellington
Veggie Society

Closeup view of a cooked galette with peas and brocollini on top.

7. Spring Vegetable Galette
Cilantro & Citronella

Two slices of carrot pizza on a plate sitting on a wooden table with more pizza on wooden boards.
Overhead view of cauliflower steaks sitting on a silver platter with a few lemon wedges nearby.
A cutting board sitting on a wooden table with a piece of parchment paper wrapped lentil loaf sitting on top with a knife and condiments sitting in the background.

10. Vegan Lentil Loaf
The Minimalist Vegan

A large tart topped with asparagus and cut into long slices sitting on top of a well-seasoned cooking tray.

11. Asparagus & Cheese Tart
My Darling Vegan

Vegan Side Dish Recipes

Vegan Dessert Recipes

Overhead view of two mixed berry tarts sitting on a rustic wooden chair in a gravel walkway.

1. Wild Berry Tart
Green Kitchen Stories

A lime coconut cake sitting on a counter with a few slices displayed in front.

2. Lime & Coconut Cake
A Virtual Vegan

3. Lemon Millet Bliss Balls
Feasting on Fruit

Three donuts standing one on top of another and sitting on top of a spring-themed tablescape.

4. Lemon Coconut Doughnuts
Connoisseurus Veg

Three donuts standing one on top of another and sitting on top of a spring-themed tablescape.
A slice of chocolate bundt cake sitting on a flowered plate with a cloth napkin under it and the rest of the cake in the background.

6. Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake
My Darling Vegan

A serving of custard napoleon sitting on a plate with the a plate with more behind it.
A loaf of poppyseed bread with icing sitting on a white plate with a lemon and vegan milk in the background.

8. Lemon Poppyseed Loaf
Sweet Simple Vegan

A close view of a hand holding a coconut nest with flowers and more coconut nests in the background.
Overhead view of an olive oil cake with a slice missing that is decorated with fresh lemon wedges and blackberries with powdered sugar dusted on top.

10. Olive Oil Cake with Lemon 
My Darling Vegan

A chocolate cake decorated with various fresh fruits and dusted with powdered sugar.

11. Chocolate Cake
The Plant Riot

Overhead view of a pan of white chocolate fudge cut into squares.

12. White Chocolate Fudge
Plant Power Couple

Vegan DIY Candies & Confections Recipes

Cute decorated almond "chicks" sitting in a white cupcake liner with crinkled decoration laying around.
Two chocolate easter eggs sitting on a white doily which is placed on top of a light blue cloth napkin with a few pastel-colored eggs laying around.
A white plate with a few peppermint patties sitting on a white table with another plate of peppermint patties in the background.

3. Homemade Peppermint Patties
Pickles & Honey

A wooden basket filled with chocolate creme eggs sitting on top of a yellow cloth napkin on top of a wooden table.
A light green glass bowl filled with pink and white frosted animal cookies with colorful sprinkles on top.

5. Mother’s Bunny Cookies
Vegan Dollhouse

Rows of colorful mini eggs in a totally white surrounding.

6. Raw Vegan “Mini Eggs”
Radiant Rachaels

Three peanut butter and chocolate eggs sitting on a white bowl on a dark countertop.

7. Peanut Butter Eggs
Minimalist Baker

8. Easter Bunny Treats
When Sweet Becomes Healthy

Overhead view of a spoon scooping out a pink dessert from inside a half of a chocolate egg with various chocolate pieces and fruit pieces laying around.

9. Avantgarde Easter Chocolate Eggs
When Sweet Becomes Healthy

Overhead view of a spoon scooping out a pink dessert from inside a half of a chocolate egg with various chocolate pieces and fruit pieces laying around.

9. Avantgarde Easter Chocolate Eggs
When Sweet Becomes Healthy

Small decorative Easter tins filled with chocolate bunnies and eggs with a plate of chocolate eggs nearby.

11. Vegan Mounds Bars
Strength & Sunshine

Vegan Easter Guide PIN

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These days it’s hard to know which websites you can trust.

I am committed to providing accurate information to the vegan community. Meticulously researched, the vegan topic explored in this guide contains the information available at the time of publishing.

I don’t just say it; I source it too.

Reviews and updates happen when new material becomes available.

Please contact me if you find incorrect data.

Article Sources
  1. Wikipedia. (2018). Chick Culling. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chick_culling
Photo Credits

Guide Images: Adobe Stock
Product photos: Original Manufacturers
Recipe photos via recipe authors; used with written permission.