12 Delicious & Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes Everyone Will Love

 

Written by: Liz Brown - Nov. 13, 2019

healthy thanksgiving recipes  

Thanksgiving is usually synonymous with watching football, drinking wine, and trying to survive painfully awkward conversations with distant relatives. It’s also the beginning of the end of your health and fitness goals. That’s right. With only one month left to complete your New Year’s resolution, the fat pants have made their way out of storage and your diet is suddenly tossed aside after one whiff of gravy! 

But it doesn’t have to be that way…

In fact, there are several ways to enjoy a healthier holiday season without having to sacrifice all the things that make this time of year so great. And it all starts with Thanksgiving. In this article, I’ll be sharing a few tips for eating healthier this Thanksgiving, along with 12 delicious and healthy Thanksgiving recipes that everyone will love—yes, even that picky cousin of yours! Bon appetit!

healthy thanksgiving recipes

How To Eat Healthy On Thanksgiving


Eating healthy on Thanksgiving doesn’t mean that you have to swear off turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing. There are ways to have your cake and eat it too (or should I say pie 😋). Here are three simple and effective tips for eating healthier on Thanksgiving without skipping out on your favorite foods.

1. Avoid appetizers and snacks before dinner


When it comes to Thanksgiving, people tend to have what’s called portion distortion. In other words, their eyes are bigger than their stomach and they end up eating way more than they should. Avoiding appetizers or snacks before the big dinner will leave room in your stomach and prevent you from overeating during your meal. It’s also helpful to practice better portion control leading up to Thanksgiving. Check out the 9 ways you can hack your appetite and eat less.

2. Take an appetite suppressant 30 minutes before dinner


If ever there was a time to take an appetite suppressant, it’s on Thanksgiving! Now, taking an appetite suppressant won’t kill your appetite altogether, it will simply reduce your appetite so that you don’t overindulge. This is a super-effective way to maintain control during dinner but still be able to enjoy yourself. Appetite suppressants, like SkinnyFit Snack Attack, are formulated to speed up your metabolism, curb cravings, and minimize snacking, to help you maintain a healthy weight. To learn more about Snack Attack and appetite suppressants, click here.  

3. Stay hydrated


Many of us are tempted to enjoy a glass of wine (or three 😜) on Thanksgiving. While enjoying a bit of booze throughout the holiday is totally fine, it’s important to remember to drink plenty of water, too! With the wine, beer, and eggnog flowing, it’s easy to forget to drink water. When your body is dehydrated, you’re likely to eat more than if you were fully hydrated. Water also helps to speed your metabolism to make room for more food. 

healthy thanksgiving recipes

Top 12 Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes


If you’re looking for a variety of healthy Thanksgiving recipes, this list contains healthy Thanksgiving appetizers, sides, desserts, and even healthy vegan Thanksgiving options! 

Healthy Thanksgiving Appetizers


Appetizers really set the tone for your Thanksgiving feast. It’s a little preview of what your guests can expect for the rest of the evening. These healthy Thanksgiving appetizers provide an abundance of flavor without filling you up before dinner. 

Bacon-Wrapped Brussels Sprouts

healthy bacon-wrapped Brussels sprouts

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 35 min
Total Time: 50 min
Servings: 24 sprouts

Ingredients

  • 24 strips of bacon
  • 24 medium/large brussels sprouts, washed and dried
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 F and line a baking sheet with tin foil.
  • Place a brussels sprout at the top of a piece of bacon and roll the brussels sprout inside of bacon one brussels sprout at a time, using the full piece of bacon to wrap. Place on baking sheet. Season them with salt and pepper.
  • Bake at 375 F for 30-35 minutes depending on how crispy you like your bacon.
  • To serve, insert a toothpick into each brussels sprout.

Hummus With Mushrooms

Hummus with mushrooms

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 15 min
Total Time: 35 min
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

For the hummus

  • 1 can chickpeas (15 oz)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • ⅓ cup tahini
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil 

For the mushrooms

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil (plus more if needed)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-pint white or cremini mushrooms
  • Splash of Marsala or white wine
  • Fresh thyme leaves
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Set oven to 300 F. Drain and rinse chickpeas. Add to the bowl of a food processor, along with the garlic and lemon juice.
  2. Process the beans for several minutes, scraping down the sides as needed. 
  3. Add the tahini and continue to process, scraping down the sides, for another minute. Add a splash of cold water to loosen the hummus. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Spread the hummus in a wide shallow bowl and use the back of a spoon. Drizzle the surface with olive oil, cover loosely with foil and put in the oven to warm.
  5. Meanwhile, trim and slice the mushrooms. Heat the olive oil in a skillet and saute the garlic for a couple of minutes, stirring constantly. Do not let it brown. Add mushrooms and saute for about 5 minutes over medium-high heat, stirring almost constantly until they turn golden. Add more oil if needed.
  6. Add a splash of marsala wine to the pan to make a thin sauce. Let the wine bubble for a minute, then season with 1-2 tbsp of fresh thyme leaves. Season with a little salt and pepper, to taste.
  7. Remove the hummus from the oven and add the hot mushrooms. Serve immediately with toasted pita triangles.

Butternut Squash Soup

butternut squash soup

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 25 min
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • ½ tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and diced into cubes
  • 32 oz vegetable broth
  • 1-2 tsp salt

Instructions

  1. In a dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add cut up butternut squash and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil then cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes until squash is softened.
  3. Carefully pour entire contents of the pot into a blender. Add salt.
  4. Carefully blend until smooth. Serve in bowls with thyme if desired. 

Healthy Thanksgiving Sides


Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like Thanksgiving is all about the side dishes. The turkey is great and all, but the variety of flavors that side dishes provide is unmatched. These healthy Thanksgiving sides are great alternatives to the traditional Thanksgiving sides—green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, and cranberry sauce. 

Roasted Green Beans And Mushrooms

healthy green beans and mushrooms

Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 20 min
Total Time: 25 min
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb fresh green beans, trimmed
  • 8 oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • ½ tsp garlic salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
  2. Toss together all ingredients and spread out on a large baking pan.
  3. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes.

Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole

healthy sweet potato casserole

Prep Time: 30 min
Cook Time: 40 min
Total Time: 1 hr 10 min
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients

For Sweet Potato Mash

  • 2 lbs sweet potatoes (about 3 medium potatoes), peeled and diced
  • ⅓ cup milk of choice
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs

For Topping

  • 1 ½ cups pecans, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch salt

Instructions

  1. Place sweet potatoes in a large pot and cover by at least 2-3 inches of water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil until completely tender (potatoes will pierce easily with a fork). Drain sweet potatoes.
  2. Transfer potatoes to a large mixing bowl. Add milk, butter, syrup, salt, vanilla, and egg. Mash until no lumps remain. If needed, add 2-3 tbsp additional milk if your mixture seems too thick.
  3. Pour the mash into an 8×8 or 2-quart baking dish and smooth the surface.
  4. Preheat the oven to 375 F and make the topping. In a medium bowl, combine pecans, butter, syrup, cinnamon, and salt. Sprinkle over the sweet potato mash.
  5. Cover the dish with foil and bake 20 minutes.
  6. Remove foil and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes. If pecans begin to brown too quickly, simply cover with foil again.

Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe

homemade cranberry sauce

Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 10 min
Total Time: 15 min
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 12 oz bag of fresh cranberries, rinsed
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • ¾ cup apple cider or unsweetened apple juice
  • ½ cup pure maple syrup or honey
  • ¼ cup coconut sugar
  • ⅛ tsp ground cinnamon
  • pinch of sea salt

Instructions

  1. In a medium sauce-pan, whisk together orange juice, apple cider, maple syrup, and coconut sugar over medium-high heat.
  2. Once the mixture comes to a boil, whisk in cinnamon and a pinch of salt.
  3. Pour cranberries into the saucepan and reduce heat to a simmer.
  4. Simmer the mixture uncovered for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cranberries begin to pop! (literally)
  5. Using a potato masher, gently mash the cranberries to thicken the mixture. The more you mash, the less chunky your sauce will be.
  6. Simmer for another 3 minutes and then turn off the heat but leave the pot uncovered on top of the burner to cool and thicken for 20-30 minutes.

Healthy Thanksgiving Desserts


As if a full Thanksgiving feast wasn’t enough, adding dessert to the mix certainly tips the scales! These healthy Thanksgiving desserts are just as delicious as a traditional Thanksgiving dessert, but minus the extra calories and guilt! 

Light Pumpkin Pie Parfait

light pumpkin pie parfait

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 30 min
Total Time: 45 min
Servings: 4 parfaits

Ingredients

  • 1 can (14 oz) pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 ½ tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups non-fat Greek Yogurt (vanilla)
  • 2 scoops Super Youth Collagen Peptides, unflavored
  • Pecans (for toppings)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, eggs, lemon juice, milk, maple syrup, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Stir until thoroughly combined. Pour mixture into a baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes. When baking is complete, let the mixture cool for at least 10 minutes.
  3. While pumpkin mixture is baking, add Super Youth to the greek yogurt and mix until blended.
  4. To assemble the parfaits, layer ¼ cup of pumpkin mixture into the bottom of a small glass or jar. Then, layer ¼ cup of the Super Youth yogurt over the pumpkin mixture. Repeat with another layer each of pumpkin mixture and yogurt.
  5. Top each parfait with pumpkin spice pecan granola, a drizzle of maple syrup, and extra nuts if desired.

For more details on this recipe, click here.

Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Truffles

dark chocolate pumpkin truffles

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Total Time: 20 min + 30 min to chill
Servings: 12 small truffles

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup almond butter
  • ¼ cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 scoop Super Youth collagen, unflavored
  • ¼ cup coconut butter, melted
  • 2 tsp maple syrup
  • ¾ tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • Pinch of sea salt (if almond butter is unsalted)
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • 6 oz. dark chocolate chips (~1 cup)
  • 1/4 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 scoop Super Youth Chocolate Cake collagen (for the chocolate lover who wants an extra boost of collagen)
  • Chopped or sliced almonds and coarse sea salt for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place almond butter, pumpkin puree, Super Youth unflavored, coconut butter, maple syrup, and pumpkin pie spice into a food processor and process until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides as needed.
  2. Stop processor and add coconut flour. Process until a soft dough forms. If dough is too sticky, add 1-2 tsp of additional coconut flour.
  3. Roll dough between your palms to form 12 equal-sized balls. Place on a plate in the fridge and allow to chill for at least 30 minutes.
  4. When ready to dip, place chocolate chips and coconut oil into a glass bowl set over a pan of simmering water. Stir occasionally until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. For an added boost of collagen, add Super Youth Chocolate Cake to the chocolate mixture and mix completely.
  5. Using a fork or wooden skewer, carefully dip truffles one at a time into the melted chocolate, rolling and dunking until evenly coated on all sides.
  6. Place the chocolate-dipped truffles onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and sprinkle with chopped almonds, salt, and additional pumpkin pie spice before the chocolate hardens.
  7. Transfer the baking sheet to the fridge until chocolate hardens.

For more details on this recipe, click here.

Baked Cinnamon Apples

baked cinnamon apples

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 30 min
Total Time: 40 min
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds apples peeled, cored, sliced 
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ⅛ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • lemon juice from ½ a lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Peel the apples, cut and remove the core and cut into slices about 1/3-1/2 an inch thick.
  3. Add apples to a 2-quart baking dish. Add the light brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt, cornstarch, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Stir to combine.
  4. Cut the butter into small squares, and place them over the top of the apples.
  5. Bake for 30-minutes, stirring after the apples have baked for 15-minutes. Bake until apples are tender and soft.
  6. Remove and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. Serve warm.

Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes


Who says that vegans can’t enjoy some delicious and healthy Thanksgiving recipes too!? Try these absolutely delightful vegan Thanksgiving recipes to spice up your family traditions! 

Tofurky Roast Recipe

tofurky roast

Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 1 hr 15 min
Total Time: 1 hr 30 min
Servings: 10 servings

Ingredients

  • Tofurky Roast, thawed in fridge for at least 24 hours
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 4 carrots
  • 16–20 fingerling potatoes
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp rosemary

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F.
  2. Run your Tofurky Roast under hot water to loosen the plastic casing. Use a knife to carefully remove the plastic.
  3. Peel and chop your carrots and sweet potatoes into large pieces.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together soy sauce, olive oil, thyme, oregano, and rosemary.
  5. In a pie plate or roast pan, place your Tofurky Roast in the center and arrange your carrots, sweet potatoes, and fingerlings around the outside.
  6. Pour about half of the soy sauce, oil, and herb mixture over the roast, and vegetables.
  7. Use tin foil to tightly cover the entire roast pan.
  8. Place on the middle rack of your preheated oven. Cook for 1 hour. Remove tin foil, baste with remaining soy sauce, oil, and herb mixture and return to oven to bake uncovered for an additional 10-15 minutes.
  9. For optimal flavor and texture, use a serrated knife and slice it as thin as you can. Serve hot.

Vegan Mushroom Wellington

vegan mushroom wellington

Prep Time: 20 min
Inactive Time: 30 min
Cook Time: 50 min
Total Time: 1 hr 40 min
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 8 large portobello mushrooms, stalks trimmed and cleaned
  • 2 large onions, peeled and chopped
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 10.5 oz baby spinach
  • 8 sprigs of thyme leaves, picked from sprigs
  • 2 vegan puff pastry
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste

Vegan Egg Wash

  • 2 tbsp aquafaba (chickpea water)
  • 2 tbsp almond or cashew milk
  • 2 tsp neutral-flavored oil
  • 1 tsp maple syrup or brown rice syrup

Instructions

  1. Place a large frying pan over low to medium-low heat. Add the ½ tbsp of olive oil followed by the onions and reduce heat to low. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20-minutes, until the onions are golden brown.
  2. Remove the onions from the pan and return the pan to the heat. Add the baby spinach and cook until wilted. Remove from the baby spinach from the pan and leave to cool.
  3. Increase the heat to medium-high and return the pan to the heat. Add the remaining olive oil and place the mushrooms, top side down. Cook until lightly golden (about 5 minutes) before turning over and cook for 5 more minutes or until golden. Remove from the heat, and drain on paper towel top side up as they will release a lot of liquid as they cool. Transfer the onions, spinach, and mushrooms to the refrigerator and cool completely.
  4. Preheat the oven to 390 F. Place a sheet of baking paper on a baking tray and then place the puff pastry sheet on top. Spread half the caramelized onions over the middle third of the pastry, making sure to leave an extra ¾ inch border at the edge of the pastry. Top with half of the baby spinach. Spread the dijon mustard over the mushrooms and season well with salt and pepper. Place the mushrooms on top of spinach. Top the mushrooms with thyme and the remaining baby spinach and onions.
  5. Very carefully roll the pastry over the top of the mushroom mixture until you have a log. Press down to seal the edges. Roll over the log so that the seam is facing the bottom.
  6. To make the vegan egg wash whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl. Very lightly coat the loaf with the vegan egg wash. Place the pastry in the freezer for 10 minutes before repeating with another layer of vegan egg wash and freezing the pastry for a further 10 minutes.
  7. Place the pastry back on the baking sheet and tray and place in the oven for 30 to 35-minutes, or until golden and flakey.

Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash

vegan stuffed acorn squash

Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 40 min
Total Time: 1 hr
Servings: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 acorn squash
  • ½ cup wild rice
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 carrot chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery
  • ½ cup red pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • ¼ cup walnuts, chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley (optional) to garnish
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Slice the acorn squash in half. Remove seeds with a spoon. Brush with 1 tbsp of olive oil on the flesh of the squash. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place flesh side down on a baking sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Cook for 40 minutes.
  2. While the acorn squash is roasting you can begin the wild rice stuffing. Bring1 cup of vegetable broth and ½ cup of wild rice to a boil. Add bay leaf. Cover and simmer for 40 minutes.
  3. While rice is simmering chop the red onion, carrot, celery, and red pepper. Mince the garlic. Sauté red onions in ¼ cup of vegetable broth for 3 minutes or until softened. Add garlic and simmer for an additional 2 minutes. Add carrots, celery, red pepper, thyme, and a dash of salt and pepper. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes or until vegetables soften.
  4. When rice is done allow to sit in a covered pan for an additional 10 minutes to allow all the liquid to be absorbed. Remove bay leaf and add rice to vegetable mixture. Add chopped walnuts. Stir to combine.
  5. Scoop about ½ cup of wild rice stuffing and place into the center of the roasted acorn squash. Top with parsley to garnish, and serve! This can be served warm or at room temperature.
 

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