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    How To Handle Thanksgiving This Year If You’re Vegan

    “It’s not always necessary to have meat on your plate.”

    On today's episode of BuzzFeed Daily, we broke down the top pop culture headlines AND discussed vegan Thanksgiving food alternatives. You can listen below or scroll down to read more about the interview!

    Listen to BuzzFeed Daily on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, or wherever else you might listen to your favorite podcasts!

    So let's dive right into it! Recently we talked to Chef Lyana Blount, the creator of Black Rican Vegan, about the best vegan dishes to try this Thanksgiving. Here's some of what we learned:

    BuzzFeed Daily: So, before we get into these dishes, would you mind telling us a little bit about yourself and how you got into cooking?

    BuzzFeed Daily: When did you start Black Rican Vegan and what made you want to put a vegan spin on traditional Puerto Rican food?

    LB: Black Rican Vegan was a thought I had in 2016. That's when I first went vegan and I was learning about how the animals were kind of suffering before they hit our plates. And I was into the holistic lifestyle, so I wanted to make a change to not eat meat. So I started to get creative at home because it was hard to find places that had a lot of vegan options, especially in the Bronx, New York, where I'm from. 

    So I just started to try out different things. And fast forward four years later, during the pandemic, I picked up the hobby again, once I had time to cook because I was stuck at home and I was like, "OK, I thought of Black Rican Vegan. We already had a logo. Let me just make a blog." So I started to make recipes and show everyone what I was doing with food, and everyone was amazed, and now it's turned into a whole business.

    BuzzFeed Daily: So, Thanksgiving is this week, which can be tough for people who don't eat meat or dairy. Do you have any advice for vegans who are attending a more traditional Thanksgiving, where everything is basically swimming in butter?

    BuzzFeed Daily: I feel like people hear vegan food and they're like, "Oh my gosh, that's so different." But really, there are so many sides to choose from that are vegan. It shouldn't even be that revolutionary. So what do you say to people who turn up their nose at vegan food on Thanksgiving?

    BuzzFeed Daily: OK, I want to talk about one of your dishes, Jackfruit "Vernil." Tell us a little bit about this dish.

    Photo of Jackfruit "Vernil with a side of plantains, avocado, and rice

    BuzzFeed Daily: Up next is your Fried Oyster Mushrooms, which is a spin on fried chicken, and our listeners should definitely go to your website to check out the photo of this dish because it looks amazing. So what was the inspiration for this one?

    Photo of a fried oyster mushroom with vegan mac and cheese, collard greens, and sweet potatoes

    BuzzFeed Daily: OK, so the last recipe I want to talk about is vegan meatloaf, which I honestly have not seen that often. How do you go about making vegan meatloaf?

    BuzzFeed Daily: Where can our listeners find your delicious food?

    LB: Bake Off. Find me on all social media platforms at @BlackRicanVegan, and they can also check out my website BlackRicanVegan.com.

    We also discussed how The Last Duel, starring Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, flopped big time at the box office — and who Ridley Scott thinks is to blame.

    Photo of Ridley Scott in a tux

    Plus, the 2021 Grammy nominations are in!

    As always, thanks for listening! And if you ever want to suggest stories or just want to say hi, you can reach us at daily@buzzfeed.com.