Foodie Friday: Thanksgiving Traditions with a Twist

Thanksgiving TraditionsWelcome back to our weekly Foodie Friday link up! I’m linking up with Montana from Pretty Lil’ Mudder, Emily from Whatever Floats Your Oats, Esther from Chocolate Runner Girl, Farrah from Fairyburger and Cassandra from Powered by BLING to create awesome healthy recipes each week!  Also, make sure you hop around to check out all the amazing recipes in this link up and feel free to add your recipes as well! 

In honor of Thanksgiving yesterday, our theme today is all about Thanksgiving traditions with a healthy twist.  Instead of featuring one recipe, I decided I am going to do it a little different today and share my Thanksgiving menu with you and how I modified some traditional recipes to not only be healthier but also to accommodate those of us with food allergies.  

Of course there were a few that stayed the same for the rest of the family to enjoy but most of the recipes were easy enough to tweak and still tasty enough to be Thanksgiving worthy! :) Thanksgiving Menu Thanksgiving Traditions with a Twist

 Turkey~ I normally keep the turkey pretty basic as it is but since my sister is now on the Low FODMAP diet we had to eliminate some traditional seasonings such as garlic and onion that we’d normally use.  Instead to flavor the turkey, I used garlic infused oil and rubbed on the outside along with spices such as sage, rosemary, sea salt, and pepper. Potatoes and celery were just used to hold the bird up while it cooked! 

Gravy~ My mom has always made her mother’s turkey gravy recipe using flour but since that isn’t gluten free, I modified the recipe this year to make it gluten free by using 1 can of full fat coconut milk with turkey drippings and a teaspoon of gravy master (it’s gluten free, I checked).  Not only did this come out EXACTLY the consistency of traditional gravy but it was a HUGE hit! My guests were impressed to say the least!

Saweet! Potato Casserole~ Sadly, I cannot take credit for this recipe but it was also a huge hit! I got this recipe from Oh She Glows and it was AMAZING! Saweet Potato Casserole

 Are you drooling yet? The sweet potatoes are topped with a crunchy nut crumble and it is out of this world! This is probably my new favorite sweet potato dish.  Her recipe calls for some maple syrup but I didn’t have any and couldn’t justify buying it exclusively to make this so I excluded it and let me tell you, it wasn’t missed.  The entire table was raving about how much it tasted like dessert! Plus it’s gluten free AND vegan! WINNING! 

Mashed Potatoes~ These vegan tots were simply made by exchanging out butter and milk for vegan butter (I used coconut butter) and a splash of coconut milk with a dash of salt.  Boom! Easy peasy and delicious!

Syrian Stuffing~ I have had this every Thanksgiving since I can remember and it was something my grandmother used to make for her family.  It is really just a mix of rice, chopped lamb meat, chicken broth, cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice and pine nuts.  Sounds weird but it’s delicious and I love it! Here is a similar recipe for someone else’s grandmother’s Syrian stuffing I found (short on time or I would have shared mine) though we don’t included the pistachios or pomegranates. 

Roasted Green Beans~ My sister made these and they were simply delicious.  Fresh green beans, olive oil, balsamic, salt, pepper and sliced almonds.  Roasted at 425 degree for about 20 minutes or so and done! 

Down Home Italian Stuffing~ This is NOT gluten free or vegan by any means.  My mother added this to the Thanksgiving menu a few years back and it was a hit with the crowd.  It is what you’d traditionally think of as a Thanksgiving dish and has all the elements of something Paula Dean would whip up if she was married to Emeril Lagasse.  Read: Lots of fat, butter and bread. 

Homemade Cranberry Sauce~ Unfortunately this delicious turkey candy failed to make it to the photo shoot aka I forgot about it in the kitchen…whomp whomp.  Anyway, it was made by a friend of the family who joined us for Thanksgiving and while I don’t know the exact recipe she used, it was one that involved a splash of orange juice.  It was perfect, tasty and complimented all the trimmings without being overly sweet! 

There was also a table full of desserts too but in my turkey induced coma I totally forgot to photograph it.  We enjoyed ending our Thanksgiving devouring the desserts and watching the snow fall outside while we stayed toasty by the fire! Happy Thanksgiving!

How did you spend your Thanksgiving? What yummy things were on your menu?

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Reply November 28, 2014

oh wow! i think i need to redo my sweet potato casserole with yours! I can do that, right? hehe

    Reply November 28, 2014

    Haha, of course! But I'm sure you're is nothing short of amazing- everything you make looks like it's to die for!

Susie @ Suzlyfe
Reply November 28, 2014

Daaaaaaaaammmmmnnnnn girl. Damn. I want it all. this sounds AMAZING. I'm coming to your house for sure next year. That casserole is insanity. Hope everyone loved it as mumucas I would have!
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    Reply November 28, 2014

    Thanks lady! Make a pit stop on your way back to Chicago...I have plenty of leftovers ;)

Mary Beth Jackson
Reply November 28, 2014

Looks delish! I made homemade cranberry sauce for the first time ever and woke up this morning and realized I NEVER put it on the table!!! LOL! More for me :) Happy Friday!
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    Reply November 28, 2014

    Oh no!!! I hate when I do that, I have made entire desserts before and never put them easy to forget when you're multitasking, haha!

Nicole @ Fitful Focus
Reply November 28, 2014

Looks so yummy!!! I hope you have lots of leftovers :)
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    Reply November 28, 2014

    Oh girl I do and I intend on eating it alllll again today! ;)

Deborah @ Confessions of a Mother Runner
Reply November 28, 2014

Love roasted green beans and the sweet potatoes look fabulous!
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Joanna @Makingmine
Reply November 28, 2014

I love how everything was adapted so everyone could enjoy the yummy food! This year my mom and I tried making a traditional Norwegian recipe that my grandmother used to make. It turned out great! I think we'll be able to carry on the tradition ourselves now
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    Reply November 28, 2014

    That sounds yummy!!! I love incorporating traditional dishes into Thanksgiving dinner... I think it makes it more special :)

Dannii @ Hungry Healthy Happy
Reply November 28, 2014

That sweet potato casserole looks amazing. Can I come to yours for thanksgiving next year? :)
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Reply November 28, 2014

That sweet potato casserole looks glorious! I love how you shared your whole menu! Everything looks delicious! :] This year was probably my most "traditional" Thanksgiving meal ever! Back at home, we usually end up eating turkey and then mostly Chinese food, hahaha. :P
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    Reply November 28, 2014

    Haha that is awesome! Chinese food sounds kinda good right now after all that turkey I ate :)

Axel (@ Iron Rogue)
Reply November 28, 2014

I simply must get the rest of my family on board the Sweet Potato train... I'm missing out on so many tasty dishes!
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Reply November 29, 2014

I love how easy it is to make favorites GF or V…just takes a little creative thinking sometimes!
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    Reply November 30, 2014

    I know, me too! It has gotten a lot easier for me to make substitutions over the years as I'm learning and stuff has become more readily available in the store :)

Sue @ This Mama Runs for Cupcakes
Reply November 29, 2014

We spent Thanksgiving with some friends! We had a similar sweet potato dish, but i'm pretty sure that they maple syrup and sugar were NOT left out....yumm.
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Pragati // Simple Medicine
Reply December 2, 2014

how did you make your potatoes so smooth? Any tips? I feel like I always end up with rustic mashed potatoes because I'm afraid of over mashing :/
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