You can almost smell the turkey cooking, can’t you? The warmth of the dining room provides a sense of belonging and family.
The noisy bustle of the family and the clink-clank of folks preparing the meal are becoming quite vivid in your mind already. Remembering the buttery goodness of last year’s mashed potatoes still bring a certain smack to your lips.
You don’t even think about what it feels like after indulging in a day of overeating.
The worst part is how bad you feel afterwards. And it may even begin a month-long binge as you tell yourself it’s too hard during the holidays, and you’ll start again in January.
Well, I’ll definitely be here for you in January, but I also want to tell you how you can have a guilt-free Thanksgiving!
It could be the healthiest holiday of the year
The foods we eat for Thanksgiving can be the most healthy foods we eat. Turkey is a great source of protein. Many families load up on green beans and spinach. Root vegetables are prominent, as that’s what was available at that time during the first Thanksgivings. Even the traditional dessert is made from a vegetable.
Sure, you can use it as a cheat day. No harm in that. But if you want to do your best, you can make sure Thanksgiving is full of amazing, delicious, whole foods that the whole family will love and will actually nourish you instead of make you feel like a tub.
Here’s a collection of recipes I found around the web, including a couple of my own, that will make this your healthiest, best-feeling Thanksgiving ever!
These are the recipes I found that are totally slow-carb compliant:
So the rest of these are not slow-carb, although they are pretty paleo-friendly. The main reason is the sweetener, but it’s also the use of tubers. If you want to make the sweet potatoes more strictly, use no-sugar-added juice and either skip the refined sugar or use raw honey.
- 3 tbsp butter or animal fat
- 1 very large (or two average-sized) onion, thinly sliced
- Pan drippings from your roasted meat, with excess fat skimmed off so it’s not too greasy
- 1 cup chicken stock (or however much you need to total 2 cups between this and the drippings)
- Aromatics of choice (sage, rosemary, thyme, etc)
- Salt and pepper to taste
1. Place your roasting pan with drippings over the stove and deglaze with a bit of the stock to scrape up the tasty bits on the bottom. Add aromatics if desired and let that sit on the stove over low heat while you caramelize the onions
2. Melt the butter in a large saucepan and cook down the onions, stirring constantly, for 30 minutes or until very well caramelized but not burned
3. Add the onions to a blender and process until as smooth as possible (you’ll likely need to add some stock to help them along)
4. Remove the aromatics from your drippings and add the onion puree and remaining chicken stock
5. Add salt and pepper to taste and simmer for at least ten minutes before serving
The drippings bring a great level of meaty depth to the table, while the aromatics add a lovely seasonal herbaceousness. However, both are optional. You can literally make this gravy with caramelized onions and chicken stock and it will still taste fantastic. I encourage you to play around with it-try different herbs and spices, add in more vegetables like carrots or celery, or add a little wheat-free tamari instead of salt to add even more umami flavor.