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Healthy Recipe Substitutes for Your Thanksgiving Dinner

This cornbread sausage stuffing will be irresistible at Thanksgiving dinner.
MarthaStewart.com

Dr. Jason Maggio has some great substitutes for your Thanksgiving dinner to make it healthier this year.

5. Dark turkey meat (4 0z) with jellied cranberry sauce (1/2-inch slice) :

410 calories, 10 g fat, (4 g satured), 320 mg sodium
Dark meat is about twice as fatty as white meat. Homemade cranberry sauce cuts the sugar by a considerable amount.
EAT THIS INSTEAD!
Turkey breast (4 oz) with homemade cranberry sauce (2 Tbsp)
195 calories, 4 g fat, 265 mg sodium

4. Stuffing (1/2 cup) :

175 calories, 14 g fat, (6 g saturated), 420 mg sodium
Stuffing is nothing more than a pile of croutons moistened with fat and loaded with sodium. Double this number if it was cooked inside the bird. A fresh grean bean casserole with sautéed onions is a much healthier alternative—just make sure you ditch the cream of mushroom soup.
EAT THIS INSTEAD!
Green bean casserole (1/2)
100 calories, 6 g fat (1 g saturated), 300 mg sodium

3. Candied sweet potatoes with marshmallow topping:

250 calories, 8 g fat (5 g saturated) , 270 mg sodium
Sweet potatoes lose their nutritional edge once they’re covered in marshmallows. Mashed potatoes with low-fat milk and a light dollop of butter is the best way to eat your spuds.
EAT THIS INSTEAD!
Mashed potatoes (1/2) cup with turkey gravy (1/4 cup)
140 calories, 7 g fat (2 g saturated), 340 mg sodium

2. Cornbread with butter:

190 calories, 9 g fat (4 g saturated), 360 mg sodium
Sweeter, saltier, and fatter than a regular roll. With a regular roll, a small pat of butter helps lower the glycemic index of the roll, meaning the carbs will have less of an effect on blood sugar.
EAT THIS INSTEAD!
Dinner roll with butter
130 calories, 5 g fat (2 g saturated), 210 mg sodium

1. Pecan pie (1 medium slice, 1/6 pie):

450 calories, 21 g fat (4 g saturated), 70 g sugars
The healthy fat from the pecans is not enough to justify the extra load of corn syrup calories. In the pantheon of pies, pumpkin ranks among one of the lower-calorie slices.
EAT THIS INSTEAD!
Pumpkin pie with low-fat whipped cream (1 medium slice, 1/6 pie)
335 calories, 15 g fat (6.5 g saturated), 38 g sugars

 

Thanksgiving-dinner
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DR JASON’S HOLIDAY RECIPE VAULT

Grain-less Vegetable Nut Stuffing
This is a great stuffing option for your Holiday feast. It contains no grains so is perfectly acceptable on the advanced plan. It can be made with or without meat and the flavors and the crunch of the nuts make it a great addition to the table.
Ingredients
1⁄2 large sweet (vidalia) onion, coarsely chopped 1 large bulb fennel (white part only) cut in half, then cut lengthwise into 1/4 inch-wide strips 4-5 stalks celery (including leaves), chopped 1⁄4 cup extra virgin olive oil 1 cup organic chicken broth 1⁄2 teaspoon rubbed sage 1⁄4 teaspoon oregano 1⁄2 –1 cup chopped walnuts (matter of preference) 1⁄2 cup raw sunflower seeds (soaked if possible) 8 ounces mushrooms, chopped sea salt and ground pepper to taste 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley 1⁄2 –1 lb ground turkey, turkey sausage, or chicken sausage, crumbled and cooked on the stovetop (optional)
Directions
Heat oil in a deep saute pan. Add onions, fennel and celery. Heat on medium for several minutes until vegetables are lightly browned.
Add chicken stock, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover pan. Simmer ingredients for 20 minutes. Add sage, oregano and salt and pepper to taste. Add walnuts and sunflower seeds, cover and continue to cook mixture, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.
Add mushrooms and meat (if desired), cover and cook on medium for an additional 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. If there is excess liquid, cook uncovered to reduce. If the mixture is too dry, add more chicken stock, a little bit at a time.
Check seasonings and add additional salt and pepper if needed. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

Holiday Roasted Turkey
This is a fail-proof way to cook a turkey. The bird comes out golden on the outside and juicy and moist on the inside.
Ingredients
1 organic turkey 1⁄2 pound butter 1⁄2 teaspoon dried sage 1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme 1⁄2 teaspoon dried marjoram leaves 1⁄2 teaspoon crushed rosemary
Directions
Preheat oven to 425oF. Rinse the turkey inside and out and then pat dry, stuff (if desired), and truss. Cut a piece of cheesecloth to a length that will cover the turkey and unfold to a single thickness. Melt 1⁄2 pound of butter in a small saucepan and add the dried sage, thyme, marjoram and rosemary. Place cheesecloth in the pan and completely saturate. (you can also brush skin with herbed olive oil and baste every 15 minutes.
Place turkey in oven and reduce heat to 325oF. After 15 minutes, drape butter-soaked cheesecloth over the turkey so that it is completely covered. After an hour, baste the turkey every 15 minutes or so, to keep the cheesecloth moist (you can use leftover butter as well). Remove the cheesecloth for the last 30 minutes of cooking time for crisp skin. Allow the turkey to sit for at least 20 minutes before carving.

Dr Jason’s Pumkin Pie
Enjoy this holiday classic without all the sugar!
Ingredients
1 (15oz) can pumpkin puree (no sugar-check the label) 3⁄4 cup stevia (spoonable) or 2/3 cup xylitol 1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt 1 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄2 teaspoon ground ginger 1⁄4 teaspoon ground cloves 4 ounces organic cream 8 ounces unsweetened almond milk, original or vanilla flavor 1 Almond Pie Crust (see recipe below)
Directions
Preheat oven to 425oF. Combine all the ingredients. Pour into a cooled almond pie crust. Bake 15 minutes at 425oF. Reduce heat to 350oF and bake for an additional 45 minutes. Cool and garnish with whipped (organic) cream, flavored with cinnamon and stevia.
Almond Pie Crust
11⁄2 cups almond meal or almond flour 3 tablespoons stevia or xylitol 3 tablespoons melted butter
Heat oven to 350oF. Melt the butter. Mix the melted butter with the almond meal and stevia. Pat into a glass pie plate with your fingertips. Gently heat in the oven for about 8 minutes. Do not let the crust go brown. Remove from oven and cool.

Strawberry Gelato
This is perhaps the easiest, quickest, healthiest dessert ever made. Just 3 ingredients and 3 minutes. Make this during your party and watch heads turn.
Ingredients
1 (10oz) bag of frozen strawberries (about 2 cups) 1 ripe avocado, pit and peel removed Stevia to taste
Directions
Put the strawberries and avocado in a heavy duty blender (preferably with a plunger). Make sure you blend it well then add stevia to taste. It won’t take much because the strawberries are sweet on their own.

Chili-Zucchini Mash
This is a great side dish that is not your run of the mill vegetable. The flavors mix perfectly for a great accompaniment to any meal.
Ingredients
1 tablespoon grapeseed or coconut oil 2-3 organic zucchini, halved lenghtwise then sliced 1⁄2 onion, grated or finely chopped 1 4 ounce can diced green chiles, drained 1⁄4 teaspoon sea salt 1/8 tsp fresh ground pepper dash cumin 1⁄2 cup organic (preferably raw) cheddar cheese
Directions
Heat oil in a large skillet then add zucchini and onion. Cook until soft and slightly browned (about 10 Min). Stir in chiles, salt, pepper, and cumin. Mash everything with a potato masher until chunky then stir in cheese.

 

Kale Caprese Salad
This salad is a fresh and energizing addition to any holiday menu.
Ingredients
Fresh garden roma tomatoes 1 bunch fresh basil Fresh, raw mozzerella Balsamic Vinegar
Olive Oil Sea Salt Pepper
Directions
Slice the tomatoes and mozzerella. Stack a tomato slice, a basil leaf, and a mozzerella slice. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Homemade Cranberry Sauce
Ingredients
2/3 cup xylitol
1/2 cup orange juice (no sugar added or freshly squeezed)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
One 12-ounce bag cranberries
Directions
Combine the xylitol orange juice, 1/2 cup water, the cinnamon, salt and cranberries in a medium saucepan. Bring up to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 15 minutes. Let cool completely before serving.

Steamed Asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce
Lightly steam asparagus and drizzle with hollandaise sauce. This recipe is for made-by-hand hollandaise. Many people will make this sauce in a blender but there is something to be said for making it the old fashioned way. It is where you get to put the extra love, care and attention to a dish. Give it a try.
Hand Made Hollandaise
1 cup butter 3 organic egg yolks 1 tablespoon cold water 1 tablespoon lemon juice Pinch of sea salt Additional 2 tablespoons of butter
Directions
Cut the butter into pieces and melt in a saucepan over moderate heat and set aside. Beat the egg yolks in a saucepan with a wire whisk for about a minute until the yolks are thick and sticky. Add the water, lemon juice, and salt. Beat until incorporated.
Add the additional 1 tablespoon cold butter but do not mix it in. Heat the saucepan over VERY LOW heat stirring the egg yolks with a wire whisk until they thicken into a cream. (If they are heating too quickly or becoming lumpy, quickly immerse the bottom of the saucepan in cold water and continue stirring). When yolks are thick, remove them from the heat and stir in another 1 tablespoon of cold butter which will stop the yolks from continuing to cook. While stirring the yolks with the whisk, slowly pour in the melted butter by 1⁄4 teaspoons until the sauce begins to thicken into a very heavy cream. Season to taste with additional salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

If the holidays are about one thing, it’s celebrating with friends, family and loved ones. In many cases, you have the opportunity to spend time with people you might not have seen all year or longer. That’s the spirit of the holidays, not the food. So enjoy a good meal, for sure, but spend most of your time enjoying the company of those who matter most and you’ll enjoy a guilt-free, healthy holidays that keeps you in shape and ready to roll in 2014!
-Dr Jason Maggio

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