Hi, friends! So I’m really really really excited for today’s post. It’s not that I’m not excited for every other post, it’s just that I have finally recorded almost all the recipes I serve to my family on Thanksgiving here at Hungry Hobby!
Some of you may or may not know that Mr. Hungry and I have been hosting Thanksgiving for the last few years. Being the host for the holidays is both an honor and a learning experience. For me, it’s been a humbling experience, especially since that time I totally lost my shit over finding hydrogenated peanut butter.
I plan to share a few tips on hosting (how to make it great for your guests AND you.) soon, but today let’s talk Thanksgiving food!
LISTEN UP! My goal on Thanksgiving is not to make it low calorie, low carb, or no fun. My goal is to make 99% of what’s served real food that people talk about and request the following holidays and years.
We still use an irresponsible amount of butter (thank God Costco carries Kerrygold) and bacon, but I really try to limit the amount of refined processed carbs that make their way on the menu. That’s how we roll, you feel me? Team real food over here!
Below I’ve put together a step by step recipe guide on how to plan a healthy game-winning Thanksgiving (all recipes are also gluten-free.)
Also, yes I know that healthyer is incorrectly spelled, no need to tell me. I was trying to be funny, get it like healthy (er) meal plan, but if I spell it like heali (er) then people will think I don’t know how to spell healthy. Clearly, I should make my pinterest graphics not late at night!
Thanksgiving Breakfast Menu
[clickToTweet tweet=”Love this full #realfood #glutenfree #thanksgiving recipe guide, E-Cookbook, & shopping list!” quote=”Love this full #realfood #glutenfree #thanksgiving recipe guide, E-Cookbook, & shopping list!”]
Delicata Squash Egg Bake
I usually make some type of egg bake for Thanksgiving morning, this year I’m doing my Delicata Squash Egg Bake because everyone in the family LOVES it and one batch feeds a tribe! (Not everyone loves goat cheese though so I’ll likely swap feta for goat cheese.)
Pumpkin Protein French Toast
I like to keep breakfast high protein since we know ALL THE CARBS will be coming later. However, if you are your family are used to something sweet on a holiday morning I think this High Protein Pumpkin French Toast could be a fun recipe!
You won’t find Turkey recipes here at HH; I leave that to the boys. Mr. Hungry and his dad make the turkey every year which is a big stress reliever for me so that I can make all the sides and desserts!
Bacon Green Beans
We tend to skip the creamy casseroles for the vegetables, none of us are that into them which makes it easier to keep veggies a little on the lighter side, but let’s be real, not that much lighter. These Roasted Green Beans with Bacon were a huge hit last Thanksgiving, so much so that they requested it for Christmas too!
Healthy Gluten Free Cornbread Stuffing
We all love cornbread, and we all love stuffing, so last year I replicated my Grandmas cornbread stuffing using gluten-free cornbread mix instead of her beloved Jiffy. Definitely, give this Healthy Gluten-Free Cornbread Stuffing a try!
Creamy Mashed Cauliflower
This Creamy Buttermilk Mashed Cauliflower is a massive hit at our house as well. I tend to cover it with cheese and then bake it. Mama Shallal also makes regular mashed potatoes, so I’m always surprised how quickly this gets devoured! PS I also bake a layer of cheese on top, more on that later!
Oven Roasted Butternut Squash & Brussels Sprout Salad
In full disclosure, I haven’t served this Oven Roasted Butternut Squash and Brussel Sprout Salad yet, but I will this year! My MIL and I love Brussels, but the rest of the family aren’t into them, I can’t wait to serve them this to change their minds!
Cinnamon Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Another favorite in the house! If your family isn’t super into Sweet Potato Casserole (See my recipe for pecan oatmeal crusted sweet potato casserole), then try these Maple Cinnamon Roasted Sweet Potatoes instead! We go back and forth depending on what the vote is (last year I LITERALLY sent out a Thanksgiving survey, it was the BEST way to get semi-anonymous feedback ever) sometimes we do these, and sometimes we do the sweet potato casserole thing.
Pumpkin Pie Bars
These Pumpkin Pie Bars are your typical homemade pumpkin pie. The only difference is they are made with an almond flour crust. The almond flour crust is a great healthy swap for your usual refined white pie crust; it also makes this pie gluten-free!
Or, if you aren’t into pumpkin pie, then try my oatmeal crusted pecan pie bars!
What I Prep Early On In The Week
- Cornbread Stuffing: I buy and make packaged gluten-free cornbread a few days ahead, then let it dry out a bit on the counter. Tips on this: make the cornbread in a bigger pan than what the package directions state, so that it is thinner this will allow it to dry out a bit more.
- Pumpkin Pie Bars: I usually make these two days ahead since they are served cold.
What I Make The Night Before
The night before is really when I step my game up, in fact about 90% of the cooking is done the night before. The night before Thanksgiving, the preparation usually takes about 3-4 hours, but we drink and cook while having a good time! This prep time allows us all to more fully enjoy and relax on the holiday itself!
1. Breakfast: I usually make the ENTIRE egg bake the night before. Mr. Hungry and I do a turkey trot, and so we are out of the house early in the morning. I want my guests to have breakfast ready, so I would make the whole egg bake the night before. I might also make some breakfast sausage ahead of time in case anyone doesn’t want eggs. We ordered some sugar free pork sausage in our Thanksgiving Butcher Box order so I’ll have some on hand! If for some reason I didn’t make the whole thing before I would definitely roast the squash the night before, so it’s ready to pop into the egg bake!
2.Green Beans: Wash and trim all green beans. Make bacon (hide from the family after making it) and reserve the bacon grease
3. Gluten Free Cornbread Stuffing: We make the entire thing the night before and then bake it the next day.
4. Creamy Buttermilk Mash: I also make this the day before, yep the whole thing, then it goes in the fridge. (This year I plan to steam my cauliflower in the Instant Pot!)
5. Oven Roasted Brussel Sprout and Butternut Squash Salad: You guessed it, make the entire thing the night before, it will absorb all the flavors and get better the next day.
6. Mashed Potatoes: My MIL does this, and we don’t follow a recipe. We do one medium size potato per person and boil them. Sometimes we leave the skin on and sometimes we peel them first. Then we add half and half, garlic, butter, and salt until a satisfactory taste is achieved. It’s really scientific. This is another one I’m hoping to speed up with the help of the IP this year!
What I Make Day Of
Doing so much prep work the night before Thanksgiving means I have the morning free to go to a turkey trot or get some sort of workout done. The family likes to go to mass, but I usually opt for getting a workout in and having a little downtime before everyone comes over. (Some family members from out of town stay with us, and some from in town come over later.)
The day of is usually a jumble of trying to get things hot that was made the night before and trying to bake the few things I have left to bake. I try to leave at least two hours for things to get hot. Remember if you are reheating anything it needs to come to a temperature of 165F, use that thermometer people!
1. Maple Cinnamon Roasted Sweet Potatoes: I think these are best done as close to serving as possible.
2. Green Beans: I get these in the oven very first because they always take longer than I think, especially with the turkey is in the oven.
3. Gluten Free Cornbread Stuffing: I stick this in the oven a couple of hours before it will be time to eat, it takes a bit longer to cook with the oven full!
4. Mashed Cauliflower: Typically I stick this in the toaster oven covered with a layer of our favorite cheese (aka my favorite which is cheddar or bacon cheddar) and with tin foil. Once it’s hot, I switch the toaster oven to warm.
5. Oven Roasted Brussel Sprout and Butternut Squash Salad – to be 100% honest, I plan to microwave this right before serving. No need to take up precious oven space with something that’s already done.
6. Mashed Potatoes: They take about an hour to reheat in the oven, so they go in about an hour or 90 minutes before serving.
What to Do With Leftovers
I’m not gonna lie my favorite part about Thanksgiving is the leftovers, every year we make some sort of enchilada, and it’s the BEST!
This gluten-free breakfast turkey enchilada casserole is a delicious way to use up leftover turkey or to make with rotisserie chicken!
This Low Carb Turkey Enchilada Casserole uses zucchini noodles instead of tortillas for a veggie-packed win, fewer carbs, and all the enchilada flavor!
Do you usually host or attend Thanksgiving?
What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?