Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes with a Texas Twist
Thanksgiving is a time for family, gratitude, and of course, delicious food. In Texas, we take pride in our culinary traditions, and that includes putting a Texan twist on classic Thanksgiving dishes. If you’re looking to add a healthy and Texan flair to your Thanksgiving menu, here are some recipes to consider:
1. Texan Roasted Turkey:
Start with a free-range, organic turkey. Season it with a Texan dry rub made from chili powder, cumin, paprika, and a touch of brown sugar. Roast it to perfection, and you’ll have a turkey with a subtle Tex-Mex flavor.
2. Sweet Potato and Pecan Salad:
Replace traditional candied sweet potatoes with a lighter and equally delicious salad. Roast sweet potato cubes until tender, then toss them with toasted pecans, dried cranberries, and a vinaigrette made from olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and a hint of honey.
3. Green Bean Almondine:
Instead of green bean casserole, sauté fresh green beans with slivered almonds in olive oil and garlic. Finish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for a zesty Texan touch. You can also make this dish Joanna Gaines-style, by throwing in brown sugar, dry sherry, and apple cider vinegar.
4. Cornbread Stuffing:
Texas is known for its cornbread, so why not use it in your stuffing? Replace traditional bread cubes with crumbled cornbread and mix in sautéed onions, celery, and sage for a savory, Texan-flavored stuffing. You can also throw in turkey drippings, chicken broth, and hard boiled eggs for added flavor and density.
5. Chipotle Cranberry Sauce:
Give your cranberry sauce a spicy kick by adding a touch of chipotle pepper. Simmer fresh cranberries with sugar, orange zest, and a small amount of chopped chipotle pepper for a sweet and smoky sauce.
6. Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup:
Start your meal with a Texan-inspired pumpkin and black bean soup. Combine pureed pumpkin with black beans, cumin, chili powder, and a dash of hot sauce for a hearty, healthy soup.
7. Texan Collard Greens:
Cook collard greens with smoked turkey instead of bacon for a healthier twist. Add some chopped jalapeños for an extra kick of Texas flavor.
8. Spiced Pecan Pie:
For dessert, serve up a spiced pecan pie. Reduce the sugar in the filling and add warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice for a flavorful and slightly healthier pie. Pro tip: to fit more pecans on your pie and give it some extra crunch, chop up your pecans into smaller pieces and add more of them into the recipe.
9. Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes:
Swap out heavy cream for buttermilk in your mashed potatoes. The tangy buttermilk adds creaminess without the extra calories. Throw in some garlic and onion to give it even more character and flavor.
10. Salsa Verde Cornbread:
Bake your cornbread with a dollop of salsa verde for a zesty kick. It’s a unique Texan twist on a classic side dish.
Remember, the key to a healthy Thanksgiving meal is balance and portion control. With these Texas-inspired dishes, you can enjoy the flavors of the Lone Star State while still savoring a nutritious and delicious Thanksgiving feast. Happy cooking!