Have you been racking your brain trying to come up with healthy Thanksgiving food ideas with nothing to show for it?
Here are a few options to get you started so you can conjure up your own tweaks and make this holiday healthier for everyone. Don’t be afraid to let your imagination run wild and create your own masterpieces.
Healthy Sides Alternatives for Thanksgiving
Even Thanksgiving has been touched by the increasing tendency of people striving to eat healthier and get better nutrition. Where better to start than with healthy Thanksgiving sides, since this holiday boasts such a variety of them.
Instead of serving fried potatoes with the inherent fat and salt, use Basil Parmesan carrot fries instead. Preheat your oven to 450 Fahrenheit. Cut your carrots into thin fries, rub with olive oil, and spread on a cookie sheet. When they are slightly crispy (15-20 minutes), remove from oven and sprinkle with sea salt, minced basil and grated parmesan cheese.
You could do something similar with green beans. Toss your oiled beans in some garlic if you wish, and when they are cooked, sprinkle with salt, pepper and grated parmesan.
And finally, another popular dish that can easily be made healthier is the potato soup. For a low fat version, simply replace the butter with olive oil, and the sour cream with yogurt. Mash your boiled potatoes and add olive oil and yogurt until you are satisfied with the texture. Season with salt and pepper, add some minced green onion, and even minced garlic if you wish.
Going Low Carb at Thanksgiving
If you consider all the bread, pasta and baked goods consumed during a single Thanksgiving dinner, you realize how quickly carbs can add up. This is important to people who are trying to lose weight, so you might want to add some low-carb Thanksgiving dinner alternatives – one more thing for them to be thankful for!
Thanksgiving Broccoli soup for example can easily turn low-carb by simply substituting xanthan gum for flour. You’ll be surprised at what a minute amount (less than half a teaspoon) can achieve. Big chain restaurants have proven that combining cheese with broccoli is a clear winner, so why not follow their lead and add a little cheddar for another layer of flavor and great texture.
Other Thanksgiving dinner dishes that can easily be made low carb are side dishes. Instead of following tradition and using bread for your stuffing, substitute sausage instead. Chop it up into small pieces and add to your medley of chopped vegetables (onions, peppers, celery, etc.) together with your eggs, garlic, salt and pepper. Then cook in your oven till browned.
Cauliflower is a healthy choice and has gained popularity as a substitute for potatoes if you’re on a low-carb diet. First pan fry garlic and rosemary for about 3 minutes on low while you boil your cauliflower. Drain and mash your cauliflower, stir in some butter or cream, add salt and pepper, and finally your garlic and rosemary mixture.
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