Best Vegan Advent Calendars: Store Bought and Homemade

Create the ultimate Christmas countdown with a vegan advent calendar! Fill it with dairy-free holiday chocolates, small toys, love notes, or daily acts of kindness. Here are your best vegan options!
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Vegan advent calendar with dairy-free Christmas chocolates from the brand Moo Free.
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Christmas is one of the most anticipated times of the year for many people all around the world. It’s a time for slowing down, continuing beautiful traditions, and enjoying delicious food. But most importantly, it’s a time for sharing memorable get-togethers with family, friends, and loved ones.

If you’re someone who eagerly anticipates Christmas (just like me!), you’re likely familiar with the delightful tradition of the advent calendar. And if you’re not, get ready to discover and fall in love with this enchanting practice that enhances the holiday season.

But the question arises: Where can you find the perfect vegan advent calendar, or perhaps, how can you craft one yourself?”

DIY sustainable vegan advent calendar in paper envelopes.

What is an Advent Calendar and Where Does It Originate From?

The advent calendar is an opportunity to celebrate the exciting countdown to the holiday by bringing even more festivity throughout the month of December.

This tradition goes all the way back tot he 19th century! German protestants used to mark their doors with chalk counting the days until Christmas and slowly this tradition morphed into what it is today. Like many other customs, it started spreading to other countries and it became a ritual even for those who are not religious.

Psst…They’re Not Just For Christmas!

These festive calendars aren’t limited to Christmas—you can make your own version for Hanukkah or other fun events or seasons too. Here are a few countdown calendar ideas!

…the sky is the limit!

How Do Advent Calendars Work?

The purpose of the calendar is to count the days leading up to Christmas—and here’s how they work. Every day from December 1st until December 24th you (or your children) open a mini-surprise present or treat to commemorate each day until Christmas Eve (or any holiday you’re celebrating). So fun!

So, How Do I Start This Awesome Tradition?

There are many options to choose from! You can buy pre-made vegan advent calendars that are already filled with surprises, or you can make your own.

Vegan Advent Calendars (Store-Bought)

If you’re short on time and don’t want to add more hustle to your (already crazy) Christmas prep schedule, you can choose a store-bought vegan advent calendar. There are so many options out there these days, and below you can explore a curated collection of our favorite vegan options.

Chocolate Advent Calendars

Moo-Free Dairy-Free Chocolate Advent Calendar: This delightful vegan advent calendar offers a daily dose of mouthwatering milk chocolate treasures that are not only dairy-free but also made with a commitment to ethical and sustainable practices. With playful and festive designs, it’s perfect for kids who love creamier milk chocolates (rather than dark).

Woman holding up a Moo-Free advent calendar filled with vegan holiday chocolates.

Monty Bojangles Vegan Advent Calendar: This luxurious vegan calendar promises a daily dose of irresistible cocoa creations, carefully crafted to tickle your taste buds and delight your senses. Monty Bojangles is renowned for its decadent chocolates, and this calendar is no exception, offering a curated selection of indulgent treats that capture the spirit of the season.

Decadent belgian chocolates in a festively designed Monty Bojangles advent calendar that's labeled vegan.

No Whey Foods Vegan Chocolate Advent Calendar: Discover a worry-free, chocolate-filled countdown to Christmas with the No Whey Foods Chocolate Advent Calendar. Designed with allergen-conscious consumers in mind, this vegan chocolate calendar is entirely free from the top eight allergens, including dairy, nuts, and gluten. Each day brings a delicious and safe chocolate delight, making it the perfect choice for those with allergies or sensitivities.

Vegan advent calendar from No Whey Foods filled with dairy-free chocolates.

Nomo Dairy-Free Advent Calendar: This advent calendar is filled with 12 drip-shaped creamy chocolates, and 12 drip-shaped caramel and sea salt chocolates.

An advent calendar box from the brand Nomo with dairy-free, nut-free, vegan chocolates.

PETA’s Peace on Earth Vegan Advent Calendar: A beautiful way to enjoy daily treats throughout December while also supporting a nonprofit organization. This advent calendar is filled with 25 unique chocolate truffles and treats from the brand Divine Treasures, and would make a fantastic gift idea.

PETA's vegan chocolate advent calendar box.

Divine Dark Chocolate Advent Calendar: While this is one of the most budget-friendly advent calendar options on the market, it’s less exciting than the others because all of the chocolates are the same, and are simple dark chocolate rather than filled truffles. Designed with adults in mind, this calendar offers a sophisticated daily treat for dark chocolate enthusiasts.

Classy adult advent calendar from Divine chocolates featuring dark chocolate.

Plamil So Free Vegan Oat Milk Advent Calendar: With a fun hot-pink box decorated with modern snowflakes and proudly vegan messaging, this option comes from the UK but is also available in the United Stated through Amazon.

Oatmilk vegan advent calendar in a pink box from Plamil.

Advent Calendars for Adults

Popcorn Shed Gourmet Popcorn Christmas Calendar: For salty snack lovers, this calendar is filled with vegan and gluten-free single serve popcorn packets for each day in December leading up to Christmas. Delicious!

A popcorn advent calendar shaped like a large, fancy Christmas townhouse against a white brick wall background and accessorized with a bowl and opened packages of popcorn.
Adorable holiday popcorn advent calendar by Popcorn Shed. (Source: Popcorn Shed’s Amazon page)

Vegan Yarn Advent calendar: The perfect gift for any knitter or crafter in your life! The lovely kit comes with 24 colorful mini-skeins of vegan yarn for each day of December until Christmas. Choose to buy a pattern that goes along with the set or use the yarn to knit or crochet your own beautiful creation. The most wonderful earth and animal-friendly yarn you’ll ever try!

A craft box decorated and cut with advent day boxes accessorized with red skeins of yarn and fairy lights.
Festive Advent Calendar by Vegan Yarn. (Source: Vegan Yarn website)

Alcohol Advent calendars: Indulge in the holiday spirit with calendars featuring vegan beer, wine, whiskey, or other delightful beverages. You can even craft your own personalized version.

Best Advent Calendars for Kids

National Geographic’s Gemstone Excavation Advent Calendar: A treasure-filled adventure awaits! Kids can open the door to a new gemstone daily, with one dig kit at the end! This is one of our favorites, filled with educational stones that kids can can keep forever, or give as gifts to friends.

Holding out the National Geographic advent calendar with gemstones.

Lego Advent Calendar: Ignite creativity and learning with this insect-building Lego-style calendar. It’s not just fun; it’s also a STEM-inspired experience. Look out for vehicle-themed versions too!

The lego advent calendar in a holiday festive scene.

Melissa & Doug Countdown to Christmas Wooden Calendar: For an eco-conscious twist, opt for this reusable wooden calendar. It shifts the focus from treats to educational fun, promoting learning and creativity.

Or unleash your creativity and personalize your own advent calendar with these inspiring ideas.

Best Advent Calendar for Teens

DIY Vegan Bath and Beauty Advent Calendar: Give your teens the gift of self-care with a cruelty-free advent calendar filled with cruelty-free lip balm, nail polish, skincare, and more. It’s the perfect way to promote wellness and indulgence in a vegan-friendly way.

Make Your Own DIY Advent Calendar

Another option is to buy an empty reusable advent calendar and customize it yourself! Here are a few examples of gorgeous advent calendars you can purchase (or make yourself) and reuse for years to come.

Advent Calendars With Little Drawers

These are usually made out of wood and they are beyond beautiful! A bit like something taken out of a winter wonderland. There are 24 mini drawers where you can place your little treat or mini-gift. These can be a bit pricier but they will certainly last for years to come. This one is especially gorgeous!

Guide To Vegan Advent Calendars: Store Bought & Homemade | World of Vegan | #christmas #calendar #holidays #vegan #conscious #eco #worldofvegan
Photo: Etsy

Pocket Advent Calendars

These are simple and easy! It’s usually a rectangle made of fabric with 24 pockets on one side. You can hang it on the wall or from a bedroom door. This could a super fun project for those of you who are crafty.

Advent calendar with pockets to fill with toys or vegan chocolate for kids.

Advent Calendars Made With Hanging Bags

A row of hanging single bags is also a great idea! Each bag with its number from 1 to 24 and each with a lovely surprise treat. These kinds of calendars can also be easily made at home with a few simple materials. 

Rustic ladder with hanging bags you can fill with Christmas treats as a homemade advent calendar.

Fill Them Up!

Now onto the fun part! Filling the calendars with some yummy or special vegan surprises. Advent calendars are most often filled with chocolate or candy, which is certainly possible to make vegan. But you can get so much more creative than that!

What I love the most about advent calendars is the simplicity of the gifts. You could get anything from a mandarin to a vegan keychain, a vegan chocolate coin or a note with a love message (my personal favorite).

Getting the idea? Let’s get to the specifics. 

Vegan Advent Calendar Fillings

Vegan Chocolate, Vegan Candy, Snacks, Tea, or Cookies

We love buying a variety of vegan treats like dairy-free chocolate coins, vegan marshmallows or some gingersnaps and placing them in a few of the days. No need to give candy or chocolate every day!

Small Vegan Gifts (extra points if they’re sustainable too)

Anything from bamboo straws, to vegan nail polish or vegan lip balm, to special rocks or crystals, to fun stickers! Peruse our vegan gift guide for hundreds of ideas.

Sweet or Inspirational Notes

There’s no need to spend lots of money on your advent calendar. Sweet, simple notes to remind your loved ones how special they are or with words of inspiration can be the most meaningful surprises of all! I love taking advantage of every special occasion to write a letter about how proud I am of my kids and how they give my life meaning. They can keep those letters and compare them year after year as they grow an amazing collection of love.

Seasonal Activities & Experiences

Write the activity you’ll do that day on a card and pop it in the calendar. So what could it be? Anything from watching a Christmas movie to doing a coloring page to building snowmen. So many cozy and enjoyable choices—check out some of our favorites below!

Advent Calendar Activity Ideas

  • Enjoy some plant-based hot cocoa.
  • Watch a Christmas movie or documentary while munching on some vegan popcorn (did someone say Love Actually?).
  • Go ice skating or sledding.
  • Bake Christmas cookies and decorate them together with vegan royal icing and sprinkles.
  • Cook something special for dinner together (perhaps try a new recipe from your favorite cookbook). 
  • Go to a Christmas concert (look into your local churches or town halls—they have so many free events with beautiful Christmas music to enjoy).
  • Head out as a family to pick a Christmas tree!
  • Decorate the tree with ornaments and lights. Consider making your own salt dough ornaments instead!
  • Build a snowman.
  • Write a card to someone special.
  • Light a fire in the fireplace, cozy up with a good book, and read.
  • Shop for a gift to donate to a family in need.
  • Make a donation to an animal sanctuary or favorite charity.
  • Go on a neighborhood walk and look at all the Christmas lights. 

The options are endless and this can help inspire you to make more unforgettable memories than you would have otherwise. That’s what life’s all about, isn’t it?

We hope this guide gives you some great vegan advent calendar ideas to use this holiday season. Happy holidays from all of us at World of Vegan!

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6 comments
  1. Aww this is super cute! Kids would love it!

  2. Andrea White says:

    Loved learning the backstory of these cool calendars. Thanks for such a detailed article!

  3. Beatriz Buono-Core says:

    My kids love these 😀

  4. What awesome ideas for Advent Calendars! Our family favorite is usually a LEGO kit but, this year, I bought a book (Cat Family Christmas) which is an adorable picture book with over 140 flaps to lift. It’s super sweet and I’m really enjoying it! I might try the mini jams or the day-by-day watercolor calendar next year 😀

  5. Such a great and comprehensive guide on advent calendars … thank you!

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