Guilt-free Thanksgiving meals to enjoy this holiday
Healthy and Thanksgiving don’t normally go hand-in-hand, but with just a few tips and tricks you’ll be able to have both an enjoyable and guilt-free feast.
Now is the time to kick back and enjoy your time off with family and friends. The last thing you want to be doing is stressing about is the extra calories and potential weight gain that usually comes along with this holiday.
So how do you fight the urge of eating one too many pieces of pumpkin pie? Finding the right balance is what it’s all about. Sure, it’s okay to indulge a little bit, but you don’t want to make yourself sick. Studies have found that holiday foods can actually give you a hangover as if you drank heavily.
Whether you’re hosting a meal at your house, or cooking a dish or two to bring over to a gathering, you can cut calories and fat tremendously with just a few simple substitutions. With a typical Thanksgiving meal adding up to 3,000 calories, you’ll be surprised to see how easy it to lighten up traditional holiday dishes without compromising taste!
We’ve got you covered with everything from turkey, sweet potato casserole, and even a pumpkin brulee cheesecake! Give thanks and enjoy the holiday while consuming these healthy, flavorful dishes:
1. Roasted turkey with balsamic brown sugar sauce
Here’s a lightened up way to make your turkey for less than 250 calories per serving! This recipe doesn’t add fat while cooking, and doesn’t even need the gravy. The turkey is complemented with an aged Italian vinegar-brown sugar sauce that gives it enough flavor!
Per serving: 247 calories, 6g fat, 10g carbohydrates, 34g protein
2. Pear prosciutto hazelnut stuffing
This low-cal stuffing calls for multigrain baguettes. Crisping the prosciutto and toasting the nuts gives this popular dish some great flavor without adding much fat (only 5 grams per serving!).
Per serving: 176 calories, 5g fat, 29g carbohydrates, 9g protein, 6g fiber
3. Green bean casserole with crispy shallots
This green bean casserole dish uses low-fat milk instead of high-fat soup in a can to give it that creamy texture. Also mixed in are mushrooms, parmesan cheese, and shallots.
Per serving: 186 calories, 9g fat, 19g carbohydrates, 9g protein, 3g fiber
4. Sautéed Brussels sprouts with parmesan and pine nuts
This recipe will have your family begging for more veggies! The Brussels sprouts are sautéed with olive oil, red wine vinegar, pine nuts, and Parmesan shavings to add delicious rich flavor. Plus, it only takes about 20 minutes to make.
Per serving: 83 calories, 5g fat, 8g carbohydrates, 4g protein, 3g fiber
5. Sweet potato casserole
No extra butter or sugar is added to this sweet Thanksgiving dish! Just several ingredients are needed – including sweet potatoes, raisins, pineapple, pecans, and marshmallows – to make this nutritious holiday favorite.
Per serving: 132.6 calories, 1.8g fat, 29.5g carbohydrates, 1.5g protein, 2.7g fiber
6. Pumpkin brulee cheesecake
We found the perfect sweet ending for your meal: a mix between pumpkin pie and cheesecake. This tasty dessert gets its flavor from the canned pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice, and cuts off a ton of fat by using reduced-fat cream cheese and Greek yogurt for the creamy texture.
Per serving: 228 calories, 9g fat, 31g carbohydrates, 6g protein, 2g fiber