After a couple of unconventional Thanksgivings (last year we were in quarantine, the year before we were in England), I’m looking forward to a traditional Thanksgiving feast this year. We are hosting 11 people in total, and I have control issues, so therefore, we are doing all of the cooking and baking. Here’s what on our Thanksgiving menu this year, which combines traditional foods with a healthy twist.
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I find Thanksgiving appetizers to be a little confusing because there’s so much food coming, and I don’t want anyone to spoil their appetites. However, I also don’t want people to start drinking alcohol without having some food to pair with it so we’re sticking with our typical hors d’oeuvres:
- crudités platter with celery, baby carrots and cherry tomatoes served with hummus
- a Mediterranean style platter with cut up parmesan and cheddar cheese, a variety of pitted olives (because who wants to spit out pits in company) and rosemary-spiced roasted cashews and almonds —> simply toss the nuts in the tiniest bit of olive oil, add some freshly chopped rosemary and a good quality sea salt, then roast at 350° for about 8 minutes.
Since I don’t eat a lot of meat, Steven handles the turkey (and my pre-party anxiety) while I take care of the rest. The dishes are a combination of some great recipes I’ve discovered over the years with some of our own. They’re all linked.
- Turkey & gravy – Since neither one of us are huge turkey fans, and therefore have little experience cooking it, I sent Steven this recipe because over 3,000 5-star reviews can’t be wrong. Also, I love the helpful prep tips. This recipe also links to a gravy recipe, but here it is anyway. (Note: we will sub the all-purpose flour for oat flour.)
- Brussels sprouts – I’ll be making these the exact same way as always: cut the stems, halve them, toss them in olive oil, season with sea salt and roast at 425° for 18-22 minutes.
- Green beans and almonds – Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart. No changes, Martha knows what she’s doing.
- Roasted root veggie mash – I loosely follow this recipe, but I throw in some sweet potatoes and turnips because I love turnips, but apparently, I’m the only one. The other, sweeter vegetables in this recipe help soften the flavor up and better appeals to all palates.
- Homemade cranberry sauce – I’ve been making this one for years.
- Roasted rosemary baby potatoes – I prep these similarly to the Brussels sprouts: slice in half, toss in olive, season with sea salt and freshly chopped rosemary and roast at 425° for 20-25 minutes.
This is my favorite part of Thanksgiving! I LOVE pumpkin pie so much, but the rest of my family prefers apple, so we offer both.
- Apple pecan crisp – click here for my recipe, which is much easier than making an apple pie. We offer vegan vanilla ice cream from Nada Moo to go with it.
- Pumpkin pie with pecan cookie crust – click here for my recipe.
The Morning After
We’ll have a handful of overnight guests this year so we’ll be having bagels and fruit, but later that day, we’ll be making “bubble and squeak”. It’s more of a British thing, but it’s a delicious way to use up the leftovers. Steven says he likes it better than the actual dinner! This is the recipe I use.
Whether you’re in the midst of planning an entire Thanksgiving menu or looking for a dish to bring to someone else’s house this year, I hope this post offers you some healthy, simple and delicious options.