9 Healthy (but Scrumptious) Thanksgiving Recipes for a Cleaner Feast

Since autumn first began, we’ve been counting down the days to Thanksgiving! Snuggling on the couch to watch the Parade, cooking up a massive holiday feast, making merry with friends and family – what’s not to love? Thanksgiving is also the day we get to indulge on our favorite festive treats. Unfortunately, many classic Thanksgiving dishes are heavy on calories, and low on nutrition.

But don’t worry; your Turkey Day feast doesn’t have to be totally unhealthy! Just switch some of your favorite Thanksgiving eats with these equally tasty alternatives. These recipes bring a healthful twist to classic dishes – without sacrificing any of the season’s signature flavors. Now you can feel good about settling into that holiday food-coma, because you’ll be full of healthy, hearty dishes.

These recipes will keep your Thanksgiving dinner nutritious and oh-so delicious. So go ahead, help yourself to seconds.

Roast Pumpkin, Sweet Potato and Carrot Soup

Butternut squash and carrot soup
Love Swah

A steaming, flavorful bowl of soup is the best way to start any meal. This recipe mixes classic Thanksgiving ingredients like pumpkin and sweet potato into a cozy, comforting soup. The orange veggies that make up this delicious dish are full of nourishing vitamins and antioxidants, so you can feel good about eating every drop!

Get the recipe from Love Swah. 

Cauliflower Mash

Cauliflower mashed "potatoes"
Whole Living Lauren

Mashed potatoes might be a Thanksgiving staple, but the truth is, they just don’t have a lot of nutritional value. When starchy potatoes meet milk and butter, you end up with a lot of empty calories and carbs. Now swap the potatoes for cauliflower, and you get a low carb dish with just as much delicious flavor! This recipe is vegan too, so you can enjoy the creamy, dairy-free goodness with zero guilt!

Get the recipe from Whole Living Lauren.

Grain-Free Stuffing

Grain-free stuffing
Detoxinista

Stuffing is a Thanksgiving favorite, but carbs are usually the star of classic stuffing recipes. For a healthier twist, this recipe uses seasonal vegetables like turnips and carrots as the stuffing’s base. It still incorporates classic Thanksgiving spices like thyme and sage, but leaves the bread behind. The result is an extra flavorful, nutritious dish that is grain and gluten free!

Get the recipe from Detoxinista.

Stuffed Butternut Squash

Stuffed butternut squash for Thanksgiving
Kash in on Health

Turkey might take center stage on Thanksgiving Day, but for vegetarians, this bountiful butternut squash dish will be the main event. The squash is stuffed with a hearty helping of tofu, mushrooms and pomegranate seeds, and roasted to perfection. This rustic dish is like a cornucopia of Thanksgiving flavor!

Get the recipe from Kash in on Health.

Vegan Mushroom Gravy

Vegan mushroom gravy
Jessica in the Kitchen

Thanksgiving dinner isn’t complete without gravy to pour over… well, just about everything. But classic gravy can be a source of extra fat and calories. This recipe for guilt-free mushroom gravy is low in fat, but very flavorful! Using simple ingredients like mushrooms, almond milk, and vegetable broth, it’s super easy to whip up – and easy to eat up too!

Get the recipe from Jessica in the Kitchen.

Cranberry Relish

Cranberry relish
Pickled Plum

Cranberry sauce always seems to make an appearance on Thanksgiving, but the fruity mix can be way too sweet! Making your own cranberry relish is a great way to serve up the seasonal fruit without giving everyone a sugar-rush. This recipe for cranberry relish lets the fruit’s natural tartness shine through, and uses cinnamon and cloves to give it some holiday flair.

Get the recipe from Pickled Plum.

Green Bean and Kale Chip Casserole

Green bean and kale chip casserole
Feed Your Skull

A casserole containing green beans might sound healthy, but traditionally the recipe is more about the creamy soup and fried onions than it is about the veggies. This recipe turns the cream-based casserole into a clean eater’s dream. Using mushrooms, cashews, and green beans for the base, the finishing touch is the crunchy kale chip topping. Now you definitely wont forget to eat your greens!

Get the recipe from Feed Your Skull.

Mini Pecan Pies

Mini pecan pies
Choosing Chia

Thanksgiving just wouldn’t be complete without a piece of pie. Skip the usual decadent desserts, and mix up these mini pecan pies instead. These single-portion pies are way too cute to refuse! The recipe is vegan, gluten-free, and uses dates as a natural sweetener. So, even though they might taste sinful, these tiny treats are actually a healthy choice.

Get the recipe from Choosing Chia.

Pumpkin Ice Cream

Pumpkin ice cream
Tessa the Domestic Diva

Ice cream is always a good idea – even in November! This homemade ice cream might be an unconventional treat for Thanksgiving, but it’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser. The recipe uses pumpkin, coconut milk, and palm sugar to give it a light, natural sweetness. This frozen treat is like a slice of pumpkin pie and scoop of ice cream all in one.

Get the recipe from Tessa the Domestic Diva.