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Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays because, for me, food is an expression of love. Through the years, I have celebrated Thanksgiving with up to 40 people in my home for what is known by my guests to be a grand affair. Although this year will be a much smaller gathering, I look forward to the blessings of family, friends, and a few “orphans” with nowhere else to go. I love setting the Thanksgiving table with special holiday linens and table settings reserved for this day. And I especially love the rich aromas in my kitchen with the turkey roasting in the oven and all the heavenly side dishes and desserts.
As lovely as it is, Thanksgiving can also be challenging as we try to stay on track with our health and weight loss goals. Thousands of you following my Fat Flush, Radical Metabolism, and/or Radical Longevity plans have requested the “Extreme Makeover: Thanksgiving Edition” for your favorite holiday foods. My clever nutritionists and chefs have come together to bring your timeless holiday recipes to a Radically healthy level!
I’ve handpicked some of my favorite healthy recipes for Thanksgiving from our personal holiday line-ups to share with you today. As always, I wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving, from my table to yours.
It just isn’t a Thanksgiving meal without a side of cranberries, and as you know, I’m quite partial to this tart superfruit. This sweet and savory recipe uses Lakanto, a monkfruit sweetener that tastes just as sweet as sugar, without all the carbs.
Combine all the ingredients in a 2-quart saucepan. Simmer for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cranberries are tender, stirring often. Remove from heat and allow to cool before serving.
This stuffing packs all the traditional savory flavors without the inflammation and belly bloat from traditional bread-based stuffing.
In a medium saucepan with lid, cook wild rice in 2 cups of chicken broth and spices. Simmer for 45 minutes or until wild rice has burst and is soft.
In another medium saucepan, melt ghee and sauté garlic, shallots, carrots and celery until soft. Remove from heat and add cauliflower, ½ cup chicken bone broth and salt, toss to coat. Place in a large oven-safe dish and bake uncovered in a 400 degree oven while wild rice is cooking, at least 30 minutes. Once wild rice is cooked, remove vegetable mixture from the oven, stir in wild rice, and garnish with toasted nuts, if desired.
How many of us watched our mothers or aunts cooking sweet potatoes with butter and brown sugar then topping them with marshmallows before putting them in the oven? This sugary, carb-filled casserole got a Radical makeover from our own Tracy St. Peter, who has been serving her healthy version to rave reviews from her family for years!
The sweetness in her casserole comes from peaches and is enhanced by slim-stimulating Ceylon cinnamon. Topping with pecans will lightly toast them as they bake, adding a depth of flavor and some extra crunch. Tracy recommends all organic ingredients and using spices that haven’t been irradiated.
Bake sweet potatoes in a preheated oven at 375 degrees F until tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool, then peel. Roughly mash, then add ghee, cream, and spices. Mash together, leaving some texture. Fold in chopped peaches.
Spread mixture in the bottom of a greased 9×13 baking dish. Top with pecans. Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes. Enjoy!!
Green Bean Casserole Gets An Upgrade
Traditional green bean casserole topped with crunchy onions is rich and creamy – and full of processed foods with chemicals, excitotoxins and highly inflammatory fats. Try this Radical version instead, which uses fresh green beans and gets its crunch from Spanish almonds.
Preheat oven to 450°F. Spray large rimmed baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray.
Combine green beans, and marjoram in a large bowl. Add bone broth and season to taste with salt. Toss; then single layer in prepared baking sheet.
Roast vegetables for about 25 minutes, adding more bone broth if necessary.
Transfer vegetables to a bowl. Add lemon juice, grated lemon peel, and half of cranberries and chopped almonds. Toss to coat; season with salt and sprinkle with remaining cranberries and almonds.
Even a perfectly cooked, pasture-raised turkey doesn’t taste complete without a drizzle of gravy over it. My take on gravy is very veggie and very delicious! Simply cut up mirepoix vegetables – celery, carrot, and onion or shallots – into small chunks and place in the bottom of the pan you’re roasting the turkey in. I also like to add peeled garlic cloves and a few slices of tart green apple for more depth of flavor. Once the turkey is done, scoop the soft, roasted vegetables out and puree in the blender. Use as much of this pureed vegetable mix as needed to thicken the turkey juices into a rich, flavorful gravy. Add seasonings to taste.
I just love a warm slice of Southern pecan pie as I linger with my family after Thanksgiving dinner. This version is one I can enjoy without the guilt!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the Crazy Simple Nutty Pie Crust below.
For the filling
Carefully spread pecans evenly inside warm pie crust. Set aside. Mix together the melted ghee, golden sweetener, and arrowroot together in a bowl until combined. Stir in the vanilla extract, salt, eggs or egg substitute, and “maple” syrup until combined. Pour evenly over pecans.
Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned. After the first 20 minutes of bake time, place a pie crust shield on top of the pie to prevent the edges from over browning. When done, remove pie from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. The filling will set as it cools. Slice and serve pie at room temperature.
Grind the nuts in a food processor or blender until they form a paste. Use your fingers to press onto the bottom and up the sides of a pie plate. Chill in refrigerator for 30-45 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For an unfilled crust, place on cookie sheet and bake for 12 – 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Watch carefully – they can burn easily if left in the oven for too long. For a filled crust, place on cookie sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and fill. Bake for the rest of the time specified in pie recipe above.
No Thanksgiving meal is complete without a slice of pumpkin pie. This healthy take on the classic can be made with or without the crust. Top with a dollop of whipped coconut cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon for added decadence.
Recipe adapted from Rachel Conners’ Paleo Pumpkin Pie
For the Crust:
For the Filling:
For the Crust:
In a medium bowl, stir together the almond flour, Lakanto, and salt. Cut in the butter or coconut oil with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly. Stir in egg until dough forms a ball. Press the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in freezer while you prepare the filling. Once you are ready to bake, roll out dough into a 12 inch circle between 2 sheets of parchment paper. Lay dough into 9 inch pie pan and press into place.
For the Filling:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients for the filling until completely smooth and combined. Pour the filling into the prepared pie crust. Bake for 45-50 minutes until the center of the pie is set and doesn’t jiggle. Let cool for at least 2 hours before serving.
With all of these delicious and healthy renditions of your favorite holiday dishes, let’s admit that even with the best intentions, we all tend to overindulge on this day. Here are a few tips to hedge your bets.
Radical Metabolizer is my favorite go-to supplement because it staves off my hungry appetite and it allows me to enjoy this special meal without overdoing it. Also, I have especially found Radical Metabolizer to keep my tummy tighter, which is a win-win for me!
To curb sugar cravings during the holiday season, I keep Y-C Cleanse on hand. It has helped me and thousands of others keep sweet cravings at bay. And remember, yeast and candida love to feed on sugar which is why we want to keep that out of our diet.
Last, but certainly not least, I always include Digesta-Key and HCL+2 with my meals to break down and digest my food. No more belly bloat and feelings of being stuffed like the turkey we are about to eat!