INVITE FRIENDS & GET $10
FREE SHIPPING and RETURNS

10 Tips for Delicious, Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

Want all the taste of Thanksgiving with less of the calories? Then you’ll love these 10 tips for healthy Thanksgiving recipes!

 

Thanksgiving is a holiday about gratitude and being conscious of what one has to value in life – awesome health, for example – but we all know there’s more to it than that.

The great American celebration is also about food. Lots of food. Lots and lots of indulgent, gut-busting food.

According to research from the Calorie Control Council, the average American may consume more than 4,500 calories and a whopping 229 grams of fat from snacking and eating a traditional holiday dinner with turkey and all the trimmings. And these figures don’t even include breakfast or the late evening munching on leftovers!

Is it possible to partake in a feast or two without feeling guilty for days after? Of course!

Follow these ten tips for healthy Thanksgiving recipes, and you’ll be able to make a meal that hits all the right traditional notes without hitting heavy on your waistline. Recipes are provided below, or you can use these ideas to adjust your family’s favorites.

1. Roast Turkey

healthy-roast-turkey

The star of the Thanksgiving table is already a good-for-you dish with tons of protein and very little fat.

Don’t worry about adding much to the bird besides a light coat of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and other seasonings of your choice, like sage, peppercorns, rosemary, dry mustard, or paprika. As long as you don’t overcook it, the meat will be tender and juicy without a slathering of butter or other saturated fats.

2. Leaner Mashed Potatoes

Especially for holidays, innocent mashed potatoes get overloaded with butter and sour cream.

Start with a potato variety that has a naturally rich, buttery flavor like Yukon Gold, and don’t peel the skins before boiling – you’d be leaving out a lot of fiber, vitamin C, and iron if you did. When it comes time to mash, cut your usual amount of butter and sour cream in half, and use a low-fat milk.

If you really can’t enjoy your Thanksgiving potatoes without the added fat, you can always add it at the table, but instead you can add flavor with roasted garlic or fresh chives.

3. Healthy Green Bean Casserole

healthy-green-bean-casserole

Picture courtesy of The Lean Green Bean

This recipe is a great lower-calorie alternative to the traditional fat-laden casserole. You get a lot of the taste, with a lot less of the calories.

If you or your family must have the normal fried onion straws on top, you can serve them as an optional topping on the side.

4. Healthy Pumpkin Bread

healthy-pumpkin-bread

Picture courtesy of A Healthy Life For Me

No one’s saying you have to skip the pie on Thanksgiving, but baking up a fresh loaf of this healthy pumpkin bread will help you say no to a second slice. It also doubles as a satisfying and filling breakfast, helping you to snack less as you prep for dinner in the kitchen.

This recipe replaces some of the oil with non-fat Greek yogurt and uses separated egg whites to avoid the fatty yolk, but you can give it an extra boost of nutrition by mixing in pumpkin and flax seeds.

5. Multi-Grain Dinner Rolls

multi-grain-dinner-roll

Picture courtesy of Bon Appetit

Turkey might be the superstar of Thanksgiving, but butter is a close second. Never is that more obvious than in dinner rolls, which we bake with tons of butter and then slather with more butter.

This recipe uses only 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, easily replaced with more nutritious coconut, olive, or sunflower oils. And instead of white flour, the rolls use whole wheat flour, old-fashioned oats, cornmeal, and wheat bran.

Each roll is 110 calories with 1.7 grams of fat, 21 grams of carbohydrates, and 4 grams of protein.

Want to know how to build muscle and lose fat eating delicious foods like these?"Dieting" doesn't have to suck. You CAN eat foods you like and have the body you want!

6. Pear and Ginger Cheesecake

pear-ginger-cheesecake

Picture courtesy of Cabin Blendings

Almost every type of pie is loaded with fat; it’s hard to avoid when good crust takes so much butter.

If you’re looking for a low-fat, high-protein dessert, this cheesecake will fit in beautifully in any Thanksgiving dessert spread. It uses low-fat granola for the crust, dried pears and crystallized ginger for flavor, and non-fat cottage and cream cheeses.

Not only is it a relatively guilt-free dessert, but it’s a lot easier to make from scratch than a pie. Plus, your family will be none-the-wiser that it’s a diet-friendly indulgence.

7. Grazing Snacks

No family gathering is complete without a counter full of little dishes of snacks: potato chips, M&Ms, pretzels, you name it. If a snack can be scooped up by the handful, it will be at someone’s Thanksgiving celebration.

While you can’t make everyone watch their portion control, you can ensure your guests aren’t wolfing down empty calories. Treat your loved ones with healthful options like pumpkin seeds, popcorn, veggies and fresh hummus, or a charcuterie and cheese platter.

8. Healthy Homemade Cranberry Sauce

healthy-homemade-cranberry-sauce

Picture courtesy of Crave Health With Jill

If you’re cranberry sauce is shaped like the can it came in, it probably has next to no nutritional value. Instead, use this recipe to make it from scratch, which takes little more than stewing and stirring some fresh cranberries on the stove.

Mix in coconut sugar, orange juice, and chia seeds for added amino acids, vitamins, fiber, omega-3s, and more nutrients.

9. Maple Sweet Potatoes

SONY DSC

Picture courtesy of The Detoxonista

Sweet potatoes are a great addition to any diet because they’re chock full of nutrients: iron, magnesium, potassium, beta carotene, and vitamins B6, C, and D.

So whether you prefer them pureed, steamed, baked, or mashed, this recipe will give you a Thanksgiving dish you can definitely have seconds or thirds of. Skip the marshmallows and add an extra touch of sweetness with all-natural maple syrup.

If you don’t think they’re delicious plain, top with toasted walnuts and a dash of cinnamon.

10. Healthy Stuffing

cranberry-quinoa-stuffing

Picture courtesy of Heidi Powell

One of the worst offenders on the Thanksgiving table is the stuffing. It’s designed to be full of cheap grains, fatty cuts of meat, and to top it all off it soaks up the rendered fat drippings as the turkey roasts in the oven.

Instead ensure the bulk of your stuffing is fresh vegetables and healthy grains, and use healthier, lower-fat meats.

This Sausage, Apple, and Butternut Squash Stuffing is an interest Paleo take on stuffing: it has a full half-pound of meat, and it’s healthiest with a lean sausage like chicken or turkey. This Cranberry Quinoa Stuffing with Pancetta also caught my eye as a healthy, interesting variant on the traditional dish.

 

What did you think of these tips for healthy Thanksgiving recipes? Have any tips of your own to share? Let me know in the comments below!

Want to know how to build muscle and lose fat eating delicious foods like these?

"Dieting" doesn't have to suck. You CAN eat foods you like and have the body you want!

Click Here to Learn How

OVER 100,000 PEOPLE HAVE USED MY COOKBOOK TO GET THE BODY THEY WANT EATING THE FOODS THEY LOVE. WILL YOU BE NEXT?

What if I told you that just about everything magazines and trainers “teach” you about dieting is wrong?

What if you could build muscle and lose fat eating “naughty” foods every week?

What if you didn’t have to suffer through low-carb dieting to get lean? In fact, what if you could eat all the carbs you wanted?

And what if you didn’t have to gorge yourself just to gain muscle and didn’t have to put on pounds and pounds of ugly fat, either?

In short, what if I told you that proper dieting--whether you want to maximize fat loss or muscle growth--is much simpler and more enjoyable than you’ve been led to believe?

Imagine eating delicious, filling meals every day...never feeling starved or stuffed...having great energy levels and workouts...and watching your body respond exactly as you desire, dropping fat or adding muscle each and every week.

And imagine finally understanding how proper dieting really works, never again falling for the BS, tricks, and gimmicks pushed by “gurus” and other shysters.

Well, I have good news.

All these “fantasies” can be a reality...if you know how to do a handful of “little” things correctly.

You see, when you know how to diet properly--and this doesn’t mean learning to eat boiled chicken and raw broccoli six times per day--getting lean and muscular becomes simple, convenient, and dare I say...enjoyable.

And this book will show you the way.

If you enjoyed this article, get updates. It's free.

100% Privacy. We don't rent or share our email lists.

More from Legion

IT’S-ON-US MONEY-BACK GUARANTEE

Many companies offer a money-back guarantee because they know the majority of dissatisfied customers aren’t going to go through the hassle of actually returning the product to get their money back. We don’t play these games because we don’t have to, the quality of our products makes it unnecessary.

If you order any of our supplements for the first time and don’t like it, you can keep it. Just notify us and we’ll give you a full refund on the spot. No complicated forms and no return necessary.

To protect ourselves from fraud, the It’s-On-Us guarantee is only valid for first time purchases of a product, and redeemable up to three months after purchase. If you bought more than one bottle of a supplement on your first purchase and don’t like it, we would ask that you send the unopened bottles back to us for a refund because we can put them back into our sellable inventory.

FREE WORLDWIDE SHIPPING

Many companies use shipping and handling fees to increase their profit margins, but here at Legion, we hate profit so our shipping is 100% free!

Okay, we don't exactly hate profit, but we do offer 100% free shipping to everywhere in the world because it makes people you like happy, and that makes us happy.

So, if you live in the United States, your order ships free regardless of order size, and if you live anywhere else, your order ships free when it’s over $99.

Why the restriction on international orders?

Unfortunately shipping outside of the US is very expensive and if we didn't require a minimum order size, we'd lose a lot of money. That said, most customers spend about $100 with us each time they shop, so this setup is a win-win.

Fact Checked

Our scientific review board of nutritionists, dietitians, molecular biologists, doctors, and other accredited experts is responsible for reviewing every article, podcast, and video we produce to ensure they’re evidence based, accurate, trustworthy, and current.

Thanks to their connections, credentials, and academic experience, this team of MDs, PhDs, and other professionals has access to a wealth of research published in the largest and most prestigious journals in the world.

This allows them to not only review individual studies but also analyze the overall weight of the evidence on any and all topics related to diet, exercise, supplementation, and more.

If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, misleading, out-of-date, or anything less than factual, please let us know in the comments section of the article in question.

Evidence Based

We follow a detailed, rigorous, multi-step process to create content that meets the highest standards of clarity, practicality, and scientific integrity.

First, our research associates provide our editorial team with accurate, up-to-date, proven scientific evidence.

Then, our editorial team uses this research to draft articles and outlines for podcasts and videos.

Finally, our scientific review board reviews the content to ensure all key information and claims are backed by high-quality scientific research and explained simply and precisely.

If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, misleading, out-of-date, or anything less than factual, please let us know in the comments section of the article in question.