When it comes to the holidays, it can get difficult to keep on track when it comes to eating healthy – especially when the dinner table boasts favorites like stuffing, creamy casseroles, and delicious gravy.

 

But what if we told you that it was possible to have these delicious holiday favorites without all the calories? We’re not kidding. The recipes below are not only tasty and perfect for the Thanksgiving table, but they’re also healthy, too.

 

Gobble gobble!

 

Simple Vegan Stuffing

Recipe via minimalistbaker.com

Hearty and satisfying, this wholesome and flavorful stuffing dish is perfectly moist on the inside and crispy on the outside. It’s so good.

 

What you’ll Need:
1 large loaf whole-grain bread or 2 small baguettes, cubed & set out to dry overnight (~9 cups loosely packed)

3/4 cup uncooked green lentils

3 Tbsp olive oil or vegan butter (I used a mix of both)

1/2 cup white onions, diced

3/4 cup celery, diced

salt & pepper

3 – 3 1/2 cups vegetable broth (+ more for cooking lentils)
1 flax egg (1 Tbsp flaxseed meal + 2 1/2 Tbsp water)

3/4 tsp dried sage, or 1 1/4 tsp fresh sage, chopped

 

What to do:
The night before, cube your bread and set it in a large bowl to dry out – you want it to be the texture of day old bread – noticeably dry but not rock hard.

The day of, if you haven’t already cooked your lentils, do so now by thoroughly rinsing 3/4 cup lentils in cold water, then adding to a small saucepan with 1 1/2 cups veggie broth or water.

Cook over medium-high heat until a low boil is achieved, and then lower to a simmer and continue cooking uncovered for 20-30 minutes. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C) and line a 9×13 pan (or comparable sized dish) with foil or spray with nonstick spray. Also prepare flax egg and set aside.

Sauté onion and celery in the olive oil or vegan butter and season with a bit of salt and pepper. Cook until fragrant and translucent – about 5 minutes. Set aside.

To the bowl of bread, pour most of the broth then add the remaining ingredients (sage, cooked veggies, flax egg, and lentils) and mix with a wooden spoon. The key is to make sure it is about the consistency of a meatloaf. If it’s too dry, add more broth and mix again. If it’s gotten too wet, add more bread.

Transfer to the prepared pan and cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes. Then remove the top layer of foil so the top can brown. Increase heat to 400 degrees F (204 C) and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the top is well browned and crisp.

Remove from oven and let cool slightly before serving. Leftovers reheat well in the microwave or oven, though best when fresh.

 

Clean Eating Gravy

Recipe via thegraciouspantry.com

Light yet flavorful, this healthy iteration of a holiday favorite is the perfect accompaniment to turkey, stuffing, and beyond.

 

What you’ll Need:

4 cups chicken or turkey stock/broth

1/4 teaspoons sage

1/4 teaspoons marjoram

1/4 teaspoons thyme

1/4 teaspoons black pepper

1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons onion powder

1 teaspoons cornstarch or tapioca starch

4 tablespoon whole wheat pastry flour

 

What to do:
In a large pot, combine the flour, cornstarch and stock/broth using a whisk.

Add all other ingredients (spices), and whisk well to combine.

Turn on the heat and bring the gravy to a boil, whisking often.

Once the gravy boils, reduce the heat just enough to keep it at a low boil. Not a simmer.

Boil the liquid down until it’s about half gone. (This can take about 20-30 minutes or more). Whisk frequently. Adjust spices to taste.

Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

 

Vegan Creamed Corn
Recipe via greatist.com

Don’t let the word “cream” distract you, because this filling side is just that and more. Made with coconut milk, it’s warm, comforting, and the best kind of side for the holidays.

What you’ll Need:
2 cups frozen corn kernels
1 can (15 ounces) coconut milk
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon chopped scallions

What to do:
Combine corn and coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until coconut milk has evaporated a bit and thickened, about 15 minutes. Once the mixture has reached the desired consistency, mix in parsley, red pepper flakes, and scallions.

Naturally Sweetened Cranberry Sauce
Recipe via cookieandkate.com
Naturally sweetened and made with orange zest and honey, this recipe is not only easy to whip up, but it tastes amazing too!

What you’ll Need:
One 12-ounce bag of fresh cranberries
½ cup honey or maple syrup
½ cup water
Zest of 1 medium orange, preferably organic (about 1 teaspoon)
Optional add-ins: ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and/or ¼ cup fresh orange juice

What to do:
First, rinse the cranberries well and drain off excess water. Pick through the cranberries and discard any squishy ones. In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries, honey and water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have popped and the mixture has thickened to your liking, about 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the pot from heat and stir in the orange zest. If you’d like to add cinnamon or orange juice, add it now. Taste and, if the mixture is too tart (keeping in mind that cranberry sauce is supposed to be a little tart!), add more orange juice, honey or maple syrup to taste.

What do you think of these healthy takes on holiday favorites?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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