Try serving these healthier side dishes with your Thanksgiving meal and create new holiday traditions. 

Nov. 22, 2018

Traditions and Thanksgiving go together like two peas in a pod. Pulling out grandma’s cornbread stuffing recipe or daddy’s gravy recipe stirs up all of those great memories.

What if we told you that you can add some healthy options to your holiday table this year and still keep your memories and traditions? Crazy right? No, not really. You can begin making new traditions this holiday by adding a couple of recipe twists and new takes. Here are some suggestions for a healthier holiday table.

Hummus VEGGIE TRAY WITH YUMMY, HEALTHIER DIPS AND SPREADS. Simply replace some of those traditionally heavier dips, cheeses and spreads with delicious hummus, salsa or guacamole. These are traditionally made with very little added fat and come either prepackaged or you can make them at home.

GuacamoleGuacamole can be easily prepared at home - but you can buy it that way too! Hummus can be served with pita breads, crusty breads and veggies.

Puree chickpeas in a blender, mash avocados in a bowl or pour salsa right out of the jar. They are made with whole foods and are minimally processed. Your guests will fill up on veggies and that’s not a bad thing!


SaladBIG SALAD. Make with tons of veggies, fruits and raspberry vinaigrette dressing. We know that salad is not a traditional item on most people's holiday table however stay with us here. Offering this as a side may encourage your guests to venture out a little and put something on their plate that they may not have done so in the past. Chopped romaine, bagged cabbage slaw, baby spinach, tomatoes, cukes, red bell peppers, dried raisins or cranberries, sliced strawberries, sprinkle of sesame seeds or raw pumpkin seeds topped with a light, oil free dressing of your choice. Look for oil-free vinaigrettes in your supermarket.  It's all good!

Turkey fruit platter

This fun turkey fruit platter was made by Aesook, the blogger behind Working Mom's Edible Art, for her son's school party. Photo courtesy of Aesook.

TURKEY FRUIT PLATTER. A great way to get everyone to eat some fruit on a traditionally fat-laden day is to create this very easy fruit platter. A little organization at the grocery store and you will have all you need to be successful. You might want to engage others to help you with this and create a new tradition!  

BroccoliSTEAMED VEGGIES. We know this is radical right? Hold on to your hats cuz here's a little secret - this makes your job so much easier. This year, try steaming your corn, broccoli, spinach or other favorite veggies and serve them as is, without buttery or cheesy toppings. Let your guests decide if they want to top it off with butter or not. You would be surprised at how delicious veggies taste just by themselves or with a little salt and pepper added. The savings in calories is huge!

The bottom line is you can add healthier options to your holiday table, while keeping your old traditions, and, maybe get lucky and create some new ones along the way. Have fun with this and keep it easy. Happy Holidays!

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