It's early November, and yet, as I type this I'm listening to "Christmas Piano" on Google Play :). As we exit out of October and into November, many are looking forward to the holidays- some with excited anticipation to visit loved ones, or to have some time/space away from work and our normal daily activities- some with hesitation and anxiety over hosting a holiday and all that that may entail!
Many of you have been asking for holiday recipes, new takes on old classics, different ways to prepare staples, or perhaps ways to ninja more veggies onto the table in a yummy way! While I'm not much of a "recipe Bryan" (inside joke with husband over a goofy youtube show we watch! Bonus points if you know the reference ;)!)- many of my meals are pretty simple, and I mostly enjoy them without fancy seasonings or sauces. However, having experienced some food sensitivities, and having had many a family member and client who've chosen to adapt their eating style in a way that supports their healing, one of the ways I LOVE to support people is by finding alternative recipes to foods/flavors that they love! And lucky for us, there are some RECIPE GENIUSES (hello @unboundwellness @fedandfit @megtherhn )out there, who've created beautiful and DELICIOUS alternatives, some of which I enjoy MORE than the OG versions (stuffing- I'm looking at you!).
So without further delay, I give you a THANKSGIVING RECIPE ROUNDUP! From classic staples like turkey, sweet potatoes, cranberries, stuffing, and pumpkin pie, to perhaps new side dishes like vegetable hashes, stuffing meatballs, and brussels sprout chips, there's sure to be at least one recipe that intrigues you, and I encourage you to add at least one new thing to your table this year, even if it's a new take on an old classic! Traditions are sacred, for sure, but perhaps we can be the bearers of traditions that honor the best health and thriving of our future generations- food and otherwise ;).
Let's start with the main course...
Turkey & OTher Proteins
1. Rosemary Apple Turkey from Amazing Paleo : This version looks DELICIOUS! Turkey is pretty nutrient-dense food as is, so much of where the alternatives come in is as marinades, sauces, and oils. Although this recipe uses olive oil, which is a great source of monounsaturated fatty acids, it doesn't stand up well to heat; I recommend swapping with Avocado oil, which you can find HERE . If you are adjusting your own recipe, see if you can swap canola, sunflower/safflower oils out for avocado oil, white sugar out for maple sugar, honey, or coconut sugar, and check any pre-made marinades for these as well!
2. Turkey with Sage Butter from I Breathe I'm Hungry: this preparation also looks DELICIOUS and provides more of a savory option if you don't usually like sweeter accents like apple.
3. Thanksgiving Stuffing Meatballs from Balanced Bites : If you are serving an alternate meat dish, such as ham, perhaps adding this turkey stuffing meatball might be a fun way to add some of the traditional flavors in a new way! Alternatively, maybe you make these babies with turkey/stuff leftovers ;).
4. Paleo Deviled Eggs by Delicious Paleo : deviled eggs are a common side dish served on the holiday table. As with turkey, eggs in and of themselves are a pretty nutrient-dense food! Things can go south with deviled eggs if we are using mayo which has hydrogenated oils and refined sugar added. Sure, it's not much, but when there are so many alternatives, why not skip it? This is just ONE preparation method of many out there! If you simply need a mayo alternative for your recipe, I suggest Primal Kitchen Mayo - I bet your guests won't even notice the difference!
1. Paleo Turkey Gravy by Epicurious : again, if you are preparing your own homemade gravy from the turkey you've cooked, you've likely got a super yummy and nutrient-dense topping! Just watch for the hydrogenated oils, sugars, and use high quality salt, like Himalayan or Celtic sea salt ;). If you are using the canned versions and looking for a simple but delicious upgrade, here you go!
2. Paleo Herb Gravy by NomNom Paleo : Michelle of Nom Nom Paleo is a recipe genius, and here she offers a simple, flavorful option that can be made vegan for those who don't tolerate butter, milk, or cream!
1. Thanksgiving Caramelized Onion Sausage Stuffing by Paleomg: honestly, these stuffing alternatives are the recipes I'm most excited to incorporate. I never was much of a StoveTop fan (sorry!), so I've been making variations for my family for a few years, many of which they've liked and asked me to bring back! Win!
2. Paleo Thanksgiving Stuffing by A Girl Worth Saving
3. Grain Free Thanksgiving Stuffing by Against All Grain: in this recipe, Danielle offers a recipe for almond flour breadcrumbs to give a texture like the old fashioned way; this is the one I'm excited to try this year!
4. Paleo Thanksgiving Cornbread Stuffing by Unbound Wellness: while I haven't tried this recipe yet, every recipe I've made from Unbound Wellness has been AMAZING! This recipe is also autoimmune paleo friendly :).
1. Rosemary Sweet Potato & Onions by Garnish With Lemon: sweet potatoes are another 'easy' swap, in that they are already nutrient-dense and yummy on their own! It's all the sugar and marshmallows that we add to them that add to post-meal bloat and exhaustion ;). But if the gooey caramel-ly sweet potatoes are your favorite dish, give the next recipe a look! This one is savory and actually my preferred way to eat 'em!
2. Paleo Sweet Potato Casserole by Cupcakesomg: sweet potato casserole lovers rejoice! I have to admit, even as a "savory" sweet potato lover, this sweet version DOES look DELISH!
1. Cranberry Sauce by Amazing Paleo: another simple swap and I promise, so much better than the canned version! I used to think I didn't like this dish until I had them prepared from scratch!
2. Cranberry Cherry Relish by Elana's Pantry: I use quite a few of Elana's recipes and really love them! Being a cherry lover, this one sounds super intriguing to me but AJ (husband) is the cranberry sauce maker, so we'll see if he's willing to add some cherries into the mix this year!
Green Veggie Dishes
1. French Green Bean Casserole by Urban Poser: this is another recipe I'm adding to my list (yum!) I think diet culture has thrown major shade on green veggies but I think they are actually very tasty when prepared with the flavors that you like (I personally love em in butter and salt!).This one is vegan, paleo, and GAPS friendly.
2. Vegan Green Bean Casserole by Detoxinista: I haven't tried this recipe yet, but we've made many of her desserts and they've become repeats!
3. Brussels Sprout Chips by NomNom Paleo: I haven't tried this exact recipe, but we've made brussels sprout chips a few times and LOVVVEE them! The only caveat: much like kale chips, it does take a bit of tediousness (in my opinion) slicing off the brussels pieces and in just a few bites they're gobbled up! So if you're serving a large party, maybe save these for another time!
4. Thanksgiving Slaw by Unbound Wellness: here's a super easy and tasty way to insert some greens onto the table in fun, flavorful way!
5. Harvest Vegetable Hash by Unbound Wellness: another way to prepare and serve root veggies; or maybe a fun way to use leftovers!
1. Grain Free Dairy Free Pumpkin Pie by Against All Grain: while it's not going to taste exactly the same as the OG, I highly recommend giving these recipes a try sometime, and noticing how you feel AFTER. Less tired? Satiated after one slice? Less bloated? Keep in mind that "paleo" treats are still TREATS- not meant to be a replacement/substitute for a meal/snack! So have your cake (or in this case, pie) and eat your meal, too! :)
2. Pecan Pie by The Healthy Foodie: another contender for top thanksgiving dessert! As more and more individuals are finding that they cannot tolerate the massively hybridized wheat in the US, alternatives are becoming increasingly sought after. Homemade is almost always higher quality than store-bought (because you get to decide what oils, sugars, and flours to use!). And if you're like my family, pecan pie isn't complete without...
3. Vanilla Bean Ice Cream!! by Jays Baking Me Crazy: this is a DIY ice cream recipe that looks so, so good! It does have egg yolks in it, which may not be an option for all. If you'd rather save making homemade ice cream for a more leisurely time, a couple dairy free and yummy ice cream recommendations include Coconut Bliss brand and Nada Moo brand!
4. Apple Pie by Zen Belly: Last but not least, a classic! Less common on the thanksgiving table, but this recipe looks delicious and what a great way to incorporate this seasonal super-fruit (apple!) which can support digestion and assist with liver function (and who couldn't use the boost with a little holiday indulging? ;) ).
So there you have it folks! The 2018 Thanksgiving Recipe Roundup! I hope you find at least ONE of these recipes exciting, and if you are going to try one, please share which one and how it goes in the comments! Additionally, if you have a favorite upgraded recipe or would LIKE to upgrade a current favorite recipe, please share in the comments below!
Sending lots of holiday spirit your way,