Watch Cooking Channel

Healthiest Thanksgiving Sides

In our humble opinion, Thanksgiving is superior to any other day of the year. In an effort to make this year’s feast the best of all time (sorry, Pilgrims and Wampanoag tribe), we’re bringing you the recipes, how-tos and decorating ideas to help you become a Turkey Day pro.

When it comes to Thanksgiving, I’ve always been in it for the sides (and the pies … but that’s a topic for a different post). Turkey I can take or leave, but fall vegetables are among my favorites and there’s no better time to get a cornucopia of seasonal produce on your plate. Focusing on veggie (and fruit) sides has another important role. Nonstarchy/less starchy vegetables (like butternut squash, Brussels sprouts and green beans) tend to fill you up on fewer calories than starchy ones, like potatoes and sweet potatoes. One of my strategies for getting maximum flavor and enjoyment out of Thanksgiving without getting overly stuffed is to incorporate lots of nonstarchy vegetables into appetizers and side dishes and to take smaller portions of the starchy dishes (stuffing, I’m looking at you). If you want to try this strategy too, here are some good options to add to your Thanksgiving feast.

Veggie Starters
Rather than filling up right off the bat with nuts, crackers and cheese, start off with some nonstarchy vegetables. This acorn squash soup is a stunning starter that starts your meal off light. Alton Brown’s pumpkin soup is another good option.

Another way to go is with fresh crudites and a healthy dip. This cucumber and dill yogurt dip fits the bill. And this white bean dip gives you a healthy serving of fiber- and protein-rich beans to keep your appetite in check.

The Sides: Something Green

Green Beans with Blood Orange and Tangerine Dressing is a side dish you can feel good about. The bonus? It tastes great and is a lovely addition to the table.

Green beans with toasted almonds: It doesn’t get more simple than this. The classic pairing gets a light flavoring — a bit of olive oil and shallots — that keeps this dish down to 65 calories per serving. This rosemary-lemon green beans recipe is another great one to try.

Then there are Spicy Parmesan Green Beans and Kale. Try this recipe. Just try it. With four vegetables — onions, mushrooms, green beans and kale — and flavoring from wine and a dusting of Parmesan, this dish manages to deliver a ton of flavor (and nutrition!) for a mere 108 calories per serving. Lots of fiber and some protein help to fill you up, too.

Dave Lieberman’s Slow-Cooked Brussels Sprouts deliver 130 calories per serving, keeping these on the lighter side.

The Sides: Something Orange

One of my favorite rules for balancing out the Thanksgiving table is to choose either white potatoes or sweet potatoes and then swap out the one you skip for a nonstarchy analog. If you want a replacement for sweet potatoes, try a butternut or acorn squash dish.

Roasted squash is simple and easy to make, yet it scores high points for flavor with the addition of thyme and bay leaves.

Vanilla-Scented Sweet Potato Puree is a lighter but no less fully flavored alternative to sweet potato casserole.

Ellie Krieger’s Maple Squash Puree is easy to put together (it uses frozen butternut squash cubes) and is a less starchy, flavorful alternative to sweet potatoes.

The Sides: Stuffing

I know this doesn’t fall into the vegetable or nonstarchy category of sides, but I thought I’d include it because there can be big variations in stuffings. Bobby Deen’s Whole-Grain Apple Cranberry Stuffing is one of the healthiest out there. It uses whole-grain bread (check) and is loaded up with onions, celery and apples. For the finishing touch, it stays moist with chicken broth, rather than sticks of butter.

More Thanksgiving Sides

Kerri-Ann is a registered dietitian and nutrition coach who writes on food and health trends. Find more of her work at kerriannjennings.com or follow her on Twitter @kerriannrd or Facebook.

Tags:

Comments (123)

  1. Buy Hypercet Blood Pressure Formula posted 2 weeks, 1 day ago

    Hypercet Blood Pressure Formula…

    I used to be able to find good information from your blog articles….

  2. resource posted 1 week, 6 days ago

    The Absent Game…

    Concerning me and my husband we’ve owned additional MP3 players over the years than I can count, together with Sansas, iRivers, iPods (typical & touch), the Ibiza Rhapsody, etc. But, the last few decades I’ve settled down to one line of players….

  3. svsjgvgvbbvcfncggjkdf posted 1 week, 5 days ago

    Title…

    [...]always a major fan of linking to bloggers that I enjoy but do not get a lot of link enjoy from[...]…

  4. metal global posted 1 week, 5 days ago

    The Silent Shard…

    This will likely almost certainly be fairly valuable for many of your respective work opportunities I plan to really don’t only with my web site but…

  5. hp society posted 1 week, 4 days ago

    Souls in the Waves…

    Superior Morning, I just stopped in to go to your internet site and assumed I’d say I experienced myself….

  6. freshmentransition.net posted 1 week, 3 days ago

    Thorn of Girl…

    Excellent data might be located on this world wide web website….

  7. website posted 1 week, 2 days ago

    The Absent Game…

    In between me and my husband we’ve owned more MP3 gamers through the years than I can count, which includes Sansas, iRivers, iPods (traditional & touch), the Ibiza Rhapsody, etc. But, the last few several years I’ve settled down to one line of gamers…

  8. stlea.org posted 1 week, 2 days ago

    The Silent Shard…

    This may in all probability be quite handy for a few within your job opportunities I intend to you should not only with my blogging site but…

  9. aktifsu.com posted 1 week, 2 days ago

    Third Flower…

    My wife and that i are actually now delighted that Albert could carry out his studies because of the tips he had by means of your web content. It is on occasion perplexing to just generally be freely giving measures which a lot of people might have bee…

  10. shercockfestival.com posted 6 days, 23 hours ago

    Souls in the Waves…

    Great Morning, I just stopped in to visit your website and assumed I’d say I experienced myself….

  11. Click Here posted 6 days, 8 hours ago

    Sites we Like……

    [...] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose [...]……

  12. Superb website…

    [...]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[...]……

  13. Check This Site Out posted 3 days, 16 hours ago

    Gems form the internet…

    [...]very few websites that happen to be detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly well worth checking out[...]……

  14. commercial painting posted 2 days, 21 hours ago

    Title…

    [...]we came across a cool web page which you might delight in. Take a search in case you want[...]…

  15. Computer recycling berkshire posted 2 days, 17 hours ago

    Title…

    [...]Here is a great Blog You might Obtain Interesting that we Encourage You[...]…

  16. Corporate Computer Disposal berkshire posted 2 days, 12 hours ago

    Title…

    [...]Every when inside a although we decide on blogs that we read. Listed below are the newest web pages that we choose [...]…

  17. website posted 1 day, 22 hours ago

    Third Flower…

    My spouse and that i are already now delighted that Albert could carry out his studies due to the suggestions he had by way of your web content. It can be once in a while perplexing to simply normally be giving freely actions which some individuals mig…

  18. buffalo web design posted 1 day, 2 hours ago

    Websites we think you should visit…

    [...]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[...]……

  19. institutionsnews.info posted 18 hours, 53 minutes ago

    The Slave of the Husband…

    Seeking in advance to studying more from you afterward!……

  20. onblastsydv.com posted 15 hours, 25 minutes ago

    The Silent Shard…

    This could in all probability be pretty helpful for many of one’s positions I want to never only with my blogging site but…

  21. website posted 14 hours, 10 minutes ago

    Third Flower…

    My wife and i have already been now delighted that Albert could execute his research on account of the strategies he had by way of your web page. It is every so often perplexing to only usually be freely giving techniques which a lot of people could ha…

  22. mobile spy posted 5 hours, 47 minutes ago

    Title…

    [...]one of our visitors a short while ago recommended the following website[...]…

  23. website posted 5 hours, 4 minutes ago

    The Ships’s Voyages…

    I believe technologies just can make it even worse. Now there’s a channel to never treatment, now there is not going to be considered a prospect for them to discover….

Post a New Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

c