Dressing For Success: Clean Eating Thanksgiving Ideas
This Thanksgiving, while you're giving thanks to family and friends, make sure to also give thanks to your gains with our clean eating Thanksgiving ideas.
Stuffing, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, turkey, and not to mention desserts that could put us into a sugar coma make Thanksgiving the ultimate cheat day. Avoid the challenge and prevent yourself from slipping into that Thanksgiving food coma with these great clean eating thanksgiving ideas. (Which also happen to make perfect leftovers for your meal management bag.)
The notorious deep fried turkey comes in at a gobbling 520 calories for a 6oz serving and contains about 1,130 mg of sodium and 195 mg of cholesterol. It almost seems impossible to come up with a healthy version of the classic turkey, but there are a few things that make a big impact and can get you to your clean eating Thanksgiving. To avoid using dairy, try using duck fat instead of butter. They're relatively the same in calories and fat intake, but duck fat has only 13 milligrams of cholesterol, where butter has 31 milligrams.
If you won't be making your own turkey this year, but still want to be intake-conscious, remove the skin. You can save yourself 40-50 calories by taking away the skin and choosing lighter meat from the turkey.
Coming in as the second most important part of your Thanksgiving table spread, stuffing can be quite a damaging addition to your meal management bag. One cup of bread stuffing can boost your calorie intake by about 356 calories. Avoid all of those carbs by making clean eating Thanksgiving stuffing with quinoa instead of bread. Quinoa is a super grain and averages about 222 calories per cup. It contains only 13 mg of sodium in comparison to bread stuffing, which comes in around 1086mg. To add some flavor to your quinoa stuffing, consider adding fresh herbs, apples, cranberries, and pecans for a clean stuffing that'll make a statement.
Cranberry sauce can be a diet killer because of all the sugar added to it. One popular sugar alternative is stevia. Stevia is a natural sweetener that is gaining popularity among health and fitness conscious meal preppers. It has zero calories, zero carbs, and scores a zero on the glycemic index. Try adding stevia as a sugar alternative to your cranberry sauce and be sure to use fresh ingredients to maximize your nutrition.
Green Bean Casserole
A typical green bean casserole is drenched with heavy cream sauce and topped with buttery breadcrumbs or cheese. Get the most out of your clean eating Thanksgiving vegetables by eliminating heavy cream sauces and replacing them with sautÃ©ed mushrooms, herbs and chicken broth. Opting out of adding cream sauce to your casserole could save you 100 or more calories. Another great alternative is to skip the casserole and throw in turkey bacon bits and shaved almonds to make a delicious side dish.
Sometimes it feels like forever before we're actually able to sit down for Thanksgiving dinner. That's where clean eating Thanksgiving appetizers come in. Deviled eggs are a great appetizer and can easily be made into a healthier pre-dinner snack. Instead of using mayonnaise or salad dressing, substitute with Greek yogurt and Dijon mustard. Add a little salt and pepper to taste, then mix together and fill the center of the whites. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika.
Sweet Potato Casserole
Sweet potatoes are a great alternative for classic Thanksgiving mashed potatoes. Packed with over 400% of your daily needs for vitamin A, sweet potatoes have more fiber and potassium as well as fewer calories than standard potatoes. Instead of a typical casserole, spice things up by cutting sweet potatoes into long wedges. Next take turkey bacon and cut lengthwise into long strips. Then wrap your sweet potato wedges with your turkey bacon and bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Be sure to flip your wedges halfway through to crisp the bacon.
As the staple of Thanksgiving desserts, it's hard to pass on pumpkin pie and you don't have to. When making your clean eating Thanksgiving pumpkin pie, consider using nuts such as walnuts and pecans for the curst as well as buckwheat flour. For those who are dairy conscious, use almond or rice milk when mixing the pie filling. To avoid any extra sugar, think about making your own pumpkin puree from scratch. Your homemade puree will keep the grams of sugar down and as an alternative you could add stevia to add the sweetness and keep calories down.
With the right determination and recipes, it's possible to have a holiday dinner with all of your favorite Thanksgiving dishes. This holiday, clean your plate with these clean eating Thanksgiving tips and you'll be thankful for your guilt-free celebration. After all, one of the best things about Thanksgiving is the leftovers. Use your meal management bag to keep yours fresh and the Thanksgiving celebration alive with your next few meals.