Large families can create a ton of different diets and problems with what a family member or friend can eat. It makes it hard for certain events especially around the holidays, like Thanksgiving and Christmas. Between having a family member who’s gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, or on a paleo/keto diet and having family who isn’t on any diet. It can make things seriously hard to figure out certain things for everyone to eat during an event. Being in a family as big as mine, for example, and having a lot of those certain things in my family I know what it’s like. Here are some amazing alternate meals though for anyone who may not be able to eat what would be typically served on Thanksgiving day.
Everyone or almost everyone loves the turkey on thanksgiving but they love the stuffing that goes along with it. If you’re a vegan or have a vegan friend or family member all you need to do to cook up this delicious dish is the same as normal but take out the butter and the eggs and switch out the chicken stock or vegetable stock. Maybe even switch both out for green tea? (I know sounds weird but I heard it can be quite good).
Gravy is another thing that is a huge part of thanksgiving. Whether your family has a traditional way of making their gravy-like mine does there is always another option. To make a vegan gravy all you need to do is chop up the vegetables before simmering them down to make a nice and appetizing stock for your gravy.
Not in the mood for turkey you can make some dinner spanakopitas to have instead of turkey. This delicious dish is a classic greek dish with spinach, feta cheese, and pine nuts all wrapped up into a thin phyllo dough and formed into the shape of a triangle. This earthy flavored dish is amazing and a definite favorite. Perfect for vegetarians out there.
Another amazing vegetarian dish would be a vegetarian lasagna. This dish is normally made with a hearty tomato sauce, onions, and carrots and it’s layered with spinach and creamy ricotta cheese. It’s cheesy and amazing. I highly recommend it for any vegetarians maybe even meat-eaters out there.
Paleo desserts are in my mind some of the easiest things to make. A paleo apple crisp, for example, is delicious and easy to make. This dish is a gently sweetened pie with non-refined sugar (coconut sugar, erythritol, &/or maple syrup.). It also includes apples, lemon juice, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, almond flour, stevia, coconut oil, coconut flakes or shredded coconut, and pecans (or your favorite type of chopped nuts). It’s delicious and easy to make, I recommend this for sure.
Another amazing Paleo dessert is a paleo chocolate mousse. This delightful dessert is made with ripe avocados (it’s the key ingredient to its creaminess), heavy cream, keto-approved chocolate chips, honey or a keto-approved sweetener, unsweetened cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and kosher salt. It takes a total of fifteen minutes to make and is incredibly delicious.
If you’re a person who doesn’t like turkey at all and just doesn’t see a lot that you like to eat on thanksgiving then maybe try these next few appetizers that can be very filling at times. To start would be a homemade spinach artichoke dip. This pleasing homemade dish consists of artichoke hearts, sour cream, mayonnaise, cream cheese, parmesan cheese, garlic, and spinach. It’s a crowd favorite for sure and is creamy and delicious.
Fried cauliflower can be another crowd favorite. This appetizer consists of cauliflower that is just breaded regularly or with gluten-free breadcrumbs and fried up. It can be served on its own which is good or with some sort of dip. Still amazing though either way. Rice balls are another fan favorite in my family. These appetizers consist of eggs, cheese, parsley, pepper, and salt all mixed up together and formed into the shape of a ball before being fried up. It is amazing with pasta and sauce or even just a marinara sauce on its own. Both of these appetizers taste best when they are served hot.
Don’t want turkey on thanksgiving? What about stuffed mini pumpkins? These small yet delicious pumpkins are served with wild rice and Brussel sprouts. There small and cute and you can even eat the bowl too if wanted. Another great substitution for a turkey could also be stuffed cabbage. This meal consists of cabbage leaves, ground beef, uncooked white rice, breadcrumbs, onion, and parsley. Topped with a satisfying sauce. This meal could be your perfect substitution.
Thanksgiving is a holiday full of joy and thanks. It comes every year and everyone always has to plan around the diets that come with their friends and family. It can be a challenge but it can also be a lot of fun. When you live in a huge family like mine and have twenty-five to thirty people sitting around ten tables you understand the true challenge of diets. It’s fun but a challenge for sure but there is always something out there for anyone’s diet.
Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you all have a wonderful and very joyful Thanksgiving!