Thanksgiving Low-Calorie Recipes

Find healthy, delicious low-calorie Thanksgiving recipes. Healthier recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Onions

Rating: 4.93 stars
6
Fresh herbs, onion and bacon sauté alongside Brussels sprouts in this easy vegetable side dish recipe. This savory dish is delicious in the fall and winter months, when Brussels sprouts are in season. If you can find them still attached to the stalk, don't be intimidated--buy them, as they're likely more fresh. Recipe adapted from The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters.

Maple-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Rating: 4.86 stars
12
In this easy vegetable side dish recipe, sweet potatoes are tossed with maple syrup, butter and lemon juice and are roasted until tender and golden brown. The delicious glaze that forms on these maple-roasted sweet potatoes transform this ultra-simple dish into something sublime.

Lemon-&-Fennel-Rubbed Turkey with Homemade Giblet Gravy

Rating: 5 stars
1
Fennel has sweet flavor notes that pair vibrantly with tart lemon in this juicy Thanksgiving turkey recipe. A rub of herbs mixed with olive oil and lemon juice infuses the meat with flavor without all of the space needed to soak the turkey in a liquid brine. Making the giblet gravy in a large saucepan rather than in the unwieldy turkey roasting pan is way easier to manage on the stovetop--plus it frees up a burner.

Meringue-Topped Sweet Potato Casserole

Rating: 4.83 stars
8
This lightened-up take on the classic Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole is spiked with crushed pineapple and toasted pecans. We top it with an airy, slightly sweet meringue. You can pipe the meringue to make it look fancy or simply spread it neatly with a rubber spatula.

Cauliflower Casserole with Everything Bagel Seasoning

Rating: 4.5 stars
1
The cheesy-seedy crust that tops this healthy cauliflower casserole recipe evokes everything bagels. Serve for the holidays or as a hearty side dish with roast chicken.

Fried Apple Pie Rolls

Rating: 4.55 stars
10
In this healthy take on apple pie, wonton wrappers stand in for pie crust, saving you calories and the headache of rolling out dough. We like to use Granny Smith apples because they hold their shape and provide tart balance to the sweet filling. Try dipping these handheld crispy treats in whipped cream.

Cranberry Crumble Bars

Rating: 3 stars
1
These cranberry-orange bars freeze well. Make a batch on a free afternoon and pop them in the freezer so you'll always have a healthy dessert on hand when company calls.

Dill Mustard Sauce

Rating: 5 stars
1
This tangy mustard-dill sauce recipe is delicious served with smoked salmon, used as a vegetable dip or spread on a sandwich.

Chile-Lime Peanuts

Rating: 3 stars
3
These spicy nuts were inspired by ones sold by street vendors across Mexico. If you can only find salted peanuts, omit the added salt. Add the maximum amount of cayenne pepper if you want an extra hit of spice.

Massaged Kale Salad

Rating: 4.71 stars
11
Here a pungent garlicky dressing is infused into kale by massaging the greens and the dressing together with your hands. Any type of kale will work in this kale salad recipe, just remember to remove the tough stems before you start.

"Use a Spoon" Chopped Salad

Rating: 4.57 stars
6
When Paul Newman and Michel Nischan opened their Westport, Connecticut, restaurant Dressing Room, Paul's request was that the menu always include a chopped salad that you could eat with a spoon. This chopped salad recipe is full of great flavors, colors and textures, featuring celery, carrots, red pepper, apple, cucumber, greens, cabbage, goat cheese and almonds. This is great for any holiday meal: you can let it stand and it stays crisp.

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

Rating: 4.27 stars
4
Here's a simple recipe for low-fat vanilla ice cream. Our version has all the richness you'll need but about 90 fewer calories than store-bought premium ice cream and a whopping 15 grams less total fat and 10 grams less saturated fat per serving.
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Inspiration and Ideas

How to Cut Calories at Thanksgiving

Our version of the big meal has less than half the calories and a quarter of the fat of a traditional Thanksgiving meal!

Healthy Green Bean Casserole

Our healthier version saves about 160 calories and 12 grams of saturated fat compared to a traditional recipe.

Blueberry-Cranberry Smoothie

Rating: 5 stars
1

Ready to try kefir? We use it in place of yogurt in this healthy smoothie recipe packed with berries and banana.