Clean Holiday Eats

Thanksgiving-Healthy-Nutrition-Eating The holidays are quickly approaching and as someone who likes to indulge in the holiday favorites around the dinner table, I run into a little problem. If I were to eat as much as I want of everything at that table, I would be triple the size I want to be. With that being said there is a predicament that I face. What should I do if I don’t want to see thousands of calories land on my hips after a couple of meals? So I want to shed some light on some healthy alternatives to eating your favorite holiday dishes. First things first:


I know that breakfast is my favorite meal of the day! Let’s see what we can do for some Cinnamon Rolls. For the dough
  • ¾ cup (180mL) warm nonfat milk (100-110°F)
  • ½ tbsp (7g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp (24g) coconut sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 ¼ tsp (7g or one ¼-oz package) dry yeast
  • 2 – 2 ½ cups (240-300g) whole wheat flour
For the filling • 6 tbsp (72g) coconut sugar • 2 tsp ground cinnamon • ½ tbsp (7g) unsalted butter, melted Directions
  1. Lightly coat a 9”-round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the milk, butter, sugar, and salt. Sprinkle the yeast on top, and wait 10-15 minutes or until the mixture turns frothy. Mix in 1 ½ cups of flour. If the dough is still wet, continue stirring in flour 2 tablespoons at a time until the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface, and knead for 3-5 minutes or until the dough springs back most of the way when you gently press your index finger into it. Let the dough rest while preparing the filling.
  4. To prepare the filling, stir together the coconut sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  5. On a clean, well-floured surface, roll the dough out into a 16×10” rectangle. Brush with the melted butter, leaving a 1” border on the two longer sides. Sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar, leaving a 1” border on the two longer sides again. Carefully roll up the dough into a log, starting at one long edge and rolling towards the other one. Pinch the ends to seal. If the dough won’t stick together, gently brush the second longer edge with water before pinching to seal.
  6. Slice the log into 12 pieces using dental floss or a sharp serrated knife. Place the rolls into the prepared pan, and cover the pan with a clean towel. Set the pan in a warm, draft-free spot, and let the rolls rise for 30-45 minutes or until doubled in size.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the cinnamon rolls for 18-22 minutes or until the filling is bubbling and the sides feel firm. Cool in the pan for at least 10 minutes before serving.These would be perfect paired with some scrambled egg whites and turkey bacon to start off your busy day!
During the holidays there is always turkey and ham at my house. For plenty of good lean protein, the turkey would be the best! These two items are usually the only things that come natural and clean. So load up on that protein! ☺

Side Dish – Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potato casserole is one of my favorite side dishes that the holidays offer. So thank you to instagram user j_bailey10.4 for this transformed recipe! Directions:
  1. Bake the sweet potatoes 1 hour at 375 degrees
  2. Peel and mash potatoes
  3. Mix potatoes with ¾ cup of Splenda, 1 jar of apples baby food, 1 tsp vanilla, 2 eggs, and a pinch of salt
  4. Topping: 1 ¼ cup of plain corn flakes, 1 tbs Splenda Brown Sugar, ¼ cup chopped pecans, and 2 tsp of baby food apple sauce
  5. Bake 35 minutes at 350 degrees in a 9x13in pan

Side Dish – Green Beans

Another holiday favorite is green bean casserole! Now I know this is a very hearty dish and you may be tempted to not change it, BUT this recipe seems just as good as the original. Big thank you to Olena from ifoodreal recipes! Ingredients:
  • 2 lbs green beans, trimmed and cut into 2″ pieces
  • Cooking spray
  • For Creamy Sauce:
  • 10 small white mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 tbsp whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup almond milk, unsweetened
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated (not packed)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • For Parmesan Topping:
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 small onions, thinly sliced into circles
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat or Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated (not packed)
  • 3 tbsp water
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees, spray large baking dish (approximately 8 x 11) with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Bring water to a boil in a large pot. Add beans along with pinch of salt, bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and cook for 5-6 minutes or until al dente. Green beans should be firm and not too soft. Drain and add a few cups of ice to stop the cooking process. Set aside.
  3. Preheat large skillet on medium high and add olive oil. Add onions and cook until golden brown/almost charred, stirring occasionally. Transfer to a medium bowl. Set aside.
  4. Return skillet to heat, spray with cooking spray and add mushrooms. Cook until golden brown.
  5. Reduce heat to low and add flour. Stir enough to coat the mushrooms. Slowly pour almond milk and whisk while you pouring, until no lumps are left. Add water, cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper and whisk again. Bring to a boil and let simmer to thicken, for about 3-4 minutes.
  6. In the meanwhile, add breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese and water to a bowl with onions and mix with your hands until crumbs appear.
  7. Drain green beans, add the sauce and stir to combine.
  8. Transfer green beans to prepared baking dish and sprinkle with topping. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes. Serve warm. Casserole tastes best within first couple hours after it has been cooked.Amount Per Serving = 1 cup: Calories: 196.1 Total Fat: 7.6 g Cholesterol: 12.4 mg Sodium: 458.5 mg Total Carbs: 20.0 g Dietary Fiber: 5.9 g Protein: 9.3 g


Now that we feel good about our meal so far, lets talk DESSERT! And of course we have to have some Pumpkin Pie!! Thanks to Tiffany and The Gracious Pantry for the recipe! (Makes 2 traditional sized pies) Ingredients:
  • 2 cups prepared pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 4 egg whites, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (you can substitute unsweetened soy, almond or rice milk)
  • Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl, and mix thoroughly.
  • Pour mixture into pie crusts. (I used this recipe)
  • Bake at 425 degrees F. for 15 minutes.
  • Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. and bake for 45 additional minutes.Side Notes: This pie is not very sweet. If you prefer a sweeter pie, add an additional 1/4 cup of honey.
Read more: © The Gracious Pantry. All rights reserved. Follow us: @graciouspantry on Twitter | GraciousPantry on Facebook This is a great start to any Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. You don’t have to worry about the watching your waistline. The only disclaimer I have to put out is that you will definitely have to show some self-control because these recipes are just SO GOOD you will want to eat it all!