Healthy Kwanzaa Recipes

Kwanzaa is one of the most community-centered holidays and because of that, the table you set should consider a crowd. Think of the dishes you serve as a bountiful, culturally-rich offering that welcomes your guests in and takes them on a trip around the African diaspora. Here you'll find healthy, delicious Kwanzaa recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

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Air-Fryer Crispy Chickpeas

Rating: 3 stars 3
Air-fried chickpea snacks are intensely flavored and incredibly crunchy. Drying the chickpeas is essential to a good crunch, so don't skip this step. If you have time, leave them out on the counter to dry for an hour or two before frying.
By Adam Hickman

Air-Fryer Sweet Potato Chips

Thinly sliced sweet potatoes fry to a crispy crunch in the air fryer. These homemade chips also use much less oil, which cuts down on calories and fat. They're a naturally sweet side for sandwiches, burgers, wraps and more.
By Sarah Epperson

Spicy Jerk Shrimp

Rating: 5 stars 7
Here's a shrimp sheet pan supper that's roasted and caramelized to perfection! The pineapple in this recipe makes a sweet sauce that balances the heat of the Jamaican jerk seasoning.
By Diabetic Living Magazine

Monticello's Macaroni

This is the macaroni and cheese recipe that would have been made in the kitchens at Thomas Jefferson's Monticello. Jefferson first became familiar the creamy, cheesy baked dish of macaroni from his time in Paris and it was enslaved cooks, James Hemings, Peter Hemings, Edith Hern Fossett and Frances Gillette Hern, who prepared this favorite dish over the years. The popularization of this iconic American dish can be traced to Black cooks, like Peter Fossett (the freed son of Edith Hern Fossett), Rufus Estes and Freda De Knight, who helped spread the dish throughout the United States. Learn more about Macaroni and Cheese at Monticello.
By Leni Sorensen

Purple Sweet Potato Pie

Rating: 5 stars 2
This purple version of classic sweet potato pie has a shot of brandy, which adds another layer of seasonal flavor. Serve with a dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream.
By Cheryl Slocum

Bourbon Hot Cocoa

Rating: 3 stars 1
Chocolate and bourbon? Say no more. Make this delicious hot chocolate recipe from scratch on a cold winter day.
By Diabetic Living Magazine

Salmon & Crab Cakes

Rating: 5 stars 3
These craveworthy fish cakes are made with a blend of crabmeat and pink salmon and coated with a panko-oat crust. Served on a bed of lemony arugula with a yogurt dip, this 45-minute entree is a great choice for a healthy family dinner.
By Diabetic Living Magazine

Gomen (Ethiopian-Style Collard Greens)

Rating: 5 stars 1
These collards can be served as a vegan main dish or as a hearty side. If possible, serve with injera, the traditional crepe-like bread common in Ethiopia (see Associated Recipe).
By Fetlework Tefferi

Southern-Style Oven-Fried Chicken

A blend of dried spices gives the crispy panko coating on these oven-fried chicken thighs plenty of flavor, and marinating the chicken in buttermilk makes it moist and juicy. If you don't have an oven-safe skillet, you can roast the chicken in a baking dish in Step 5. Serve with your favorite vegetables (bake them alongside the chicken to make it easy) for a healthy comfort food dinner that requires just 20 minutes of active prep time.

Fried Flounder

Rating: 5 stars 1
This recipe from Mable Clarke, a South Carolina cook and activist, is the centerpiece for the monthly fish fry she started to save the Soapstone Baptist Church in her community. Juicy inside and crispy outside, it's what hundreds of people look forward to every month. Serve with lemon juice and a quick tartar sauce of mayonnaise, capers, relish and a touch of Tabasco.
By Mable Owens Clarke


Rating: 5 stars 1
The origins of coquito, a creamy Puerto Rican coconut- and rum-based cocktail, are not fully known. Some say it comes from Spain, and others say it comes from the United States.
Jessica van Dop DeJesus
By Jessica van Dop DeJesus

Sweet Potato Bread Pudding with Pecan Praline Sauce

Rating: 5 stars 1
The dessert menu at Brigtsen's restaurant in New Orleans offers "Bread Pudding du Jour," which changes with the seasons. This sweet potato version plays well during the holidays.
By Frank Brigtsen

Celebrating Foods of the African Diaspora

12 Festive Recipes to Celebrate Kwanzaa
Kwanzaa is a community-centered holiday and, because of that, the table you set should feed a crowd, and then some.
Seared Steak with Roasted Garlic Aioli
Seared steak topped with a dollop of garlicky aioli makes a simple and satisfying supper. Experiment with different herbs in this easy, super-flavorful aioli. We love it on steaks, but it would make a perfect sauce for grilled or broiled salmon or a delicious sandwich spread.
Pecan Pie Cocktail

If you like pecan pie, you're sure to love this sweet and nutty cocktail for two. Maple syrup and crushed pecans line the rim of the glass, while bourbon and maple-pecan-flavored liqueur sweeten things up. Try this fun and festive drink on Thanksgiving as a before- or after-dinner treat.