Y’all… I say this every year, but how is it already the holiday season?! Like OMG Thanksgiving is 2-weeks away! I’ve got 3 rounds of eating scheduled for this year so I figured it might be a good idea to make some “healthier” recipes. If you’re a long time follower then you may already know I absolutely love to eat, and I love love love hosting Friendsgiving!! But, I’ve been making some major lifestyle changes this year with my “body reset“. Basically, making a lot more healthy decisions which in turn has made me feel a lot better too.
However, eating clean or on a Whole30 diet around the holidays is freaking hard. Who am I kidding… It’s hard all the time! It was a struggle to figure out what I could eat and how to cook on the “body reset“. Now that it’s been over six months I think I’ve got the hang of cooking healthier. Your tastebuds may have to adapt to new flavors a little bit, but I think I did pretty good with these new healthy Thanksgiving recipes!
Healthier Thanksgiving Recipes
First up, we have a Whole30 spin on the traditional stuffing. My version is a potato stuffing with pomegranates. Honestly, I’m not a huge stuffing person in the first place so I kinda like this better anyway!
- 1 1/2 pounds small white potatoes (diced)
- ghee butter
- 8 ounces pork sausage
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 medium yellow onion (chopped)
- 3 celery stalks (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon fresh sage (chopped)
- 2 pears (diced)
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup half-and-half (Califia Farms almond milk + coconut cream!)
- 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In large skillet, cook sausage crumbling with a spoon. Remove sausage and set aside. Add 2 tablespoons of ghee butter, garlic, onion and celery and sauté for 6 minutes. Add the pears, thyme, and sage to coat everything. Pour chicken broth over the mixture and bring to simmer. Simmer until pears are tender, about 8 minutes.
In a large bowl, beat the egg and add the Whole30 half-and-half. Add the potatoes with the sausage and coat evenly. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the pear mixture over the potatoes and stir together. Spread entire mixture into a large baking dish and cover with foil. Bake for 20 minutes, and then remove foil and bake for an additional 30-40 minutes.
These are the turkey legs I made two years ago, and I still think this is the best turkey I’ve ever eaten. If you don’t have a big group or want to deal with a big turkey this is the way to go!
CROCK POT TURKEY LEGS
- 6 turkey legs; thawed
- 3 tablespoons ghee butter
- Fresh thyme
- Fresh rosemary
Use 1 tablespoon of butter and rub all over turkey legs. Finely chop thyme and rosemary. Sprinkle salt, pepper, thyme and rosemary onto turkey legs. Heat cast iron skillet to high. Turn heat down to medium, and add 2 tablespoons butter. Place 2 turkey legs into cast iron skillet and sear on each side 2-3 min. Repeat until finished.
Quarter onion and lemon then place in bottom of large crock pot. Place turkey legs on top of onion and lemon. Cook on high 2-3 hours or low 4-6 hours.
It’s not Thanksgiving without my mom’s sweet potato casserole. Honestly, it tastes more like a dessert because of all the butter and sugar. Love you mom, but I need a healthier version please! Sweet potatoes are sweet enough (duh) so even without the sugar my version was delicious!
MOM’S “HEALTHIER” SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE
- 2 large cans sweet potatoes (drained OR for Whole30 use cooked regular sweet potatoes)
- 1/4 cup ghee butter
- 1 cup “half-and-half” (Califia Farms Betterhalf almond milk coconut cream unsweetened)
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup pecans (chopped)
- 1/4 cup whiskey
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix sweet potatoes, ghee butter, half-and-half, 2 eggs, vanilla, salt, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in a mixer. Dump sweet potato mixture into baking dish.
In a small pan, melt 1 tablespoon ghee butter and add pecans. Slowly pour whiskey into the pan. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Sauté about 3-5 minutes. Sprinkle pecans over sweet potato mixture.
Bake 3-45 minutes.
Okay if you’re really trying to be Whole30 compliant then dessert is going to be hard… But, it’s dessert and it’s a holiday so if you have one piece of this apple pumpkin pie you’ll be fine! I have to admit I didn’t make up this recipe though… If I make it again though I’ll use regular pie crust bc I wasn’t the biggest fan. Not saying it wasn’t good though!!!
WHOLE30 APPLE PUMPKIN PIE
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 to 3 Apples (We recommend Honeycrisp, since they are on the slightly sweeter side)
- 1 3/4 cup steamed and pureed yam/sweet potato
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1/4 nutmeg
- 2 beaten eggs
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
For the crust: Throughly mix all ingredients together except for the coconut flour. Add the coconut flour in and mix well to form dough. Knead dough for ~1 minute. Roll dough out between sheets of wax paper until it’s big enough to fit the pie dish. In my experience transferring the pie crust usually results in it falling apart to some extent, so just plan on patching it up a little bit once you’ve transferred it.
For the filling: Thinly slice, peel and core apples. Coat with cinnamon and stir. Set aside. In a separate bowl, combine yam, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. Beat in eggs gently until just combined. Slowly add coconut milk until combined.
Layer apple slices and pumpkin filling in the pie dish. Bake in a 375 oven for 50 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
Now believe me, I’m not going to be 100% healthy this season but these recipes will help. If you want some other really really good Thanksgiving recipes (like pumpkin mac n’ cheese!!) then check out my last two Friendsgiving posts here and here!!