By: Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA
Trying to embark on a thinner Thanksgiving? That’s probably a good idea given the stats on holiday weight gain. There is no need to deviate from the traditional plan – turkey, stuffing, potatoes, cranberry sauce, vegetables and dessert are all within your reach as long as you keep it simple.
Here’s the basic menu:
Turkey: Roasted – Can’t go wrong with roasting. Choose white meat for the leanest protein and use gravy sparingly.
Stuffing: Maximize nutrition by adding in celery, onions, mushrooms, carrots, raisins and apples.
Yams: Roasted, boiled or sautéed are delicious!
Cranberry sauce: Prepare with fresh cranberries and use the least amount of sugar possible to achieve sweetness.
Vegetables: Anything goes here; my family likes green beans.
Dessert: Fresh fruit or a slice of pumpkin pie; keep it to one serving.
Remember, the only one who should be stuffed on Thanksgiving Day is your turkey…everyone else should consider themselves satisfied.
Roasted Sweet Potato & Butternut Squash
Prep: 1 hour
Makes: 4 servings
- 2 Large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and diced
- ½ cup chopped walnuts, toasted
- 3-4 rosemary sprigs, stalks removed
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1/4 olive oil
- Salt & Pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place the vegetables and garlic in a single layer on a baking dish, and add the rosemary springs.
- Drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Roast for 40 to 50 minutes, turning once until lightly browned. Remove from oven and sprinkle walnuts over potato and squash.
- Serve warm.
Recipe: Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA
Orange Cranberry Sauce
Makes: 4 1/2 cups
Total time: 40 minutes
- 4 medium navel oranges, divided
- Water, as needed
- 2 (12-ounce) bags fresh cranberries (6 cups)
- 1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- Pinch of salt
- Use a sharp knife to slice the ends off 3 oranges and remove the peels and white pith; discard. Working over a bowl, cut the orange segments from their surrounding membranes. Squeeze the juice into the bowl before discarding the membranes. Leaving the segments in the bowl, pour the juice from the oranges into a measuring cup. Juice the remaining orange and add the juice to the measuring cup. If necessary, add water to make 2/3 cup liquid total.
- Combine the juice, cranberries, brown sugar, cloves and salt in a large nonreactive saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 15 minutes.
- Let cool for 10 minutes. Stir in the reserved orange segments. Serve warm, room temperature of cold.
Nutrition Information: 89 Calories; 0 g Fat; 0 g Sat; 0 g Mono; 0 mg Cholesterol; 23 g Carbohydrates; 0 g Protein; 2 g Fiber; 13 mg Sodium; 101 mg Potassium