3 Healthy Recipes to Make on Thanksgiving

Yes, we should fully enjoy everything that comes along with Thanksgiving Day. The mashed potatoes, the gravy, the stuffing … mmm, yum. But if you’re looking for a few more nutritious alternatives, check out three of our favorite healthy holiday alternatives from bistroMD.

1. Roasted Turkey Breast with Cranberry Chutney

Source: BistroMD

Nutrition per serving (serving includes: 5-ounce turkey breast, ¼ cup cranberry chutney, ½ cup butternut squash and wild rice blend, and ¾ cup broccoli):

  • Calories: 300
  • Net carbohydrate: 27 grams
  • Protein: 29 grams


Roasted Turkey Breast:

  • 5-6 pound turkey breast, bone-in, skinless
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sage, fresh, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon thyme, fresh, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon rosemary, fresh, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Cranberry Chutney:

  • 1 pound cranberries, fresh
  • ½ cup raspberries, frozen
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup celery, finely chopped
  • juice and zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Roasted Butternut Squash and Wild Rice Blend:

  • 1 cup wild rice blend (We like Lundberg Wild Blend)
  • 1 butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 fennel bulb, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

DirectionsRoasted Turkey Breast: Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. In a small bowl combine the olive oil, garlic, herbs, sea salt and black pepper to make a paste. Then rub the mixture into the turkey breast, coating all sides. Transfer to a roasting pan and roast for about 1½ hours to 1¾ hours, until an instant read thermometer registered 165 degrees Fahrenheit when inserted into the thickest part of the breast. Remove from oven, cover with foil and allow to rest for 15 minutes before slicing.

Cranberry Chutney: Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add water, orange juice, orange zest, honey, and cinnamon and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and add cranberries. Continue to cook until they become soft and burst, about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add raspberries and celery, cook an additional 10 minutes, until raspberries begin to burst. Reduce heat to low and cover until ready to serve.

Roasted Butternut Squash and Wild Rice Blend: Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Cook rice according to package directions. Spread butternut squash and fennel evenly, in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil, sea salt, and black pepper over the squash mixture and toss with your hands to coat. Roast for 20-30 minutes, until squash is turning golden around the edges. Stir squash mixture halfway through cooking. Once rice is complete, fluff with a fork and transfer to a serving bowl. Combine butternut squash and fennel with the rice, toss and serve.

2. Gluten-Free Pumpkin Pie Tartlets

bistroMD's gluten free pumpkin pie tartlets

Source: BistroMD

Nutrition per tartlet (serves approximately 15 tartlets):

  • Calories: 150
  • Net carbohydrate: 12 grams
  • Protein: 4 grams


Pie Crust:

  • 1.5 cups almond flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, unsalted

Pie Filling:

  • 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree
  • ½ can coconut milk, unsweetened
  • ½ cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ginger, ground
  • ¼ teaspoon cloves, ground
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt

DirectionsPie Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Add all ingredients to a food processor or blender until a smooth dough forms. Spritz muffin pan with non-stick olive oil spray or use muffin liners. Press approximately 1 tablespoon of dough into each cup and press to evenly fill the bottom.

Pie Filling: Add all ingredients to a medium sized bowl and mix using a hand mixer until smooth. Or add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Divide filling amongst muffin cups. Bake approximately 10-15 minutes or until center is set. Allow to cool at least 10 minutes before removing from pan.

3. Quinoa and Pumpkin Seed Stuffed Acorn Squash

Acorn squash

Source: iStock

Nutrition per serving (serves 8):

  • Calories: 219
  • Carbohydrates: 44 grams
  • Protein: 5 grams


  • 4 medium acorn squash, halved lengthwise with the seeds removed
  • 3 cups of water
  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1½ cups diced onion
  • ½ cup diced carrots
  • ½ cup diced celery
  • 1 tablespoon minced cardamom
  • ⅛ tablespoon of turmeric
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ⅓ cup diced apples
  • ¼ cup dried currants
  • ⅓ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • ½ teaspoon of sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Adjust rack to the middle shelf. Simmer the quinoa in 3 cups of water to make fluffy, this should take 15 to 20 minutes. While the quinoa cooks, add the onions and ½ teaspoon of salt and cook until softened, stirring frequently, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the carrots, celery, cardamom, and turmeric. Using fresh apples, cut into small dices, and soak with lemon juice. Cover the pan and simmer the vegetables for 5 minutes until they are tender.

In a big bowl, toss together the quinoa and vegetables. Stir in the dried fruit, diced apples, pumpkin seeds, and nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper. Brush the skin of the squash lightly with olive oil. Place the squash, cut side down, in a baking pan. Pour ½-inch of boiling water into the pan and bake for 20 minutes to soften the squash. Move the squash to a plate and set aside until cool enough to handle. Stuff the squash halves with the quinoa mix, return them, stuffing-up to the pan, and bake until the flesh can be easily pierced with the tip of a paring knife. This should take 30 minutes or less.