ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Top 5 Healthy Side Dishes for Thanksgiving

Updated on December 10, 2012
Source

Eat Well - Look Good!

When you eat a healthy diet, you're bound to look better and feel rejuvenated. You may also live longer, with less disease. The following easy recipes for side dishes low in ingredients that can hurt us, like sugar, salt, and fat and can lead us into becoming increasingly beautiful people with increased health.

Not only are these recipes heart healthy and appropriate for many diabetic diets, these side dishes are delicious and and add a bit of a change to the holiday table or any meal of the year

Fast Garlic Broccoli

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

  • Large pan of boiling water, salted with Kosher or Sea Salt
  • 4 cups of broccoli florets
  • ½ teaspoon of minced garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon of minced shallots or tender young green onions
  • ½ teaspoon ground red pepper or pepper flakes
  • Cooking spray

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Blanch the broccoli in boiling water for 2 minutes, only until it is tender-crisp.
  • Drain the broccoli well and plunge into cold water for 1 minute to stop cooking.
  • Cooking spray a skillet and turn the heat up to medium.
  • Add the garlic and shallots to the skillet and cook for only 10 seconds.
  • Remove from heat, add in the broccoli and red pepper and toss to coat.
  • Salt and pepper to taste and place in a serving dish.

15 calories, 1 gram fiber, 1 gram carbohydrate

Tender Green Beans & Cranberries

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

  • Fresh tender green beans:10 oz.
  • Kosher salt or sea salt for boiling water for blanching beans (I use spring water)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries and 1/4 cup pecan halves
  • 1 red onion sliced in thin rings

FOR THE DRESSING

  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tblsp red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar; 1 Tblsp lemon juice, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, and 1 teaspoon honey; salt and pepper.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a large pot of salted boiling water, blanch the green beans for about 2 minutes.
  • Beans should still be crunchy -- drain them and plunge into a bowl of ice water for 60 seconds.
  • Drain beans again and spread on paper towels on a clean countertop to dry, then slice in half diagonally.
  • Put sliced beans into large salad bowl; add cranberries, onion rings, and pecans.
  • Drizzle the dressing by single tablespoonsful over yegetables and toss after each spoonful. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

134 calories, 12 grams fat with 2 grams saturated fat, 13 mg sodium, 6 grams carbohydrates

Broccoli Soup with Fennel

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

  • 5 Cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 Cups water
  • 6 Cups broccoli florets
  • 4 Cups chopped fennel
  • 1 Cup sliced leeks (white green sections)
  • 4 Tablespoons fennel leaves/fronds
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, and salt to taste
  • 1 Cup milk or broth. You can substitute 2% milk as well.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a large pan, bring the broth and water together to a boil.
  • Add broccoli, fennel, fennel fronds, leek, tarragon, and pepper and raise heat to the boil again. Immediately reduce heat to simmer and cook uncovered for 40 minutes or until vegetables are soft.
  • Turn off heat and cool the soup about 10 minutes.
  • Pour the soup into a blender, cover, and blend until smooth.
  • Re-season with salt and add more broth or milk for a thick soup that pours easily unto bowls. Reheat for 3-4 minutes in the pan and serve.

When made with vegetable broth – 72 calories, 1 gram fat, 10 grams carbohydrates, 3 grams fiber

Rice and Cranberries

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

  • ½ cup raw pistachios or almonds
  • 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 scallions or green onions, white and light green parts, sliced thin
  • 2 medium sized carrots, fined chopped
  • 2 ¼ cups long-grain rice
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 5 cups hot spring water. Vegetable stock or chicken broth may be substituted.
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 Tablespoons chopped parsley

INSTRUCTIONS

This recipe can be made a couple of hours ahead of time and held safely at room temperature. A 10-minute reheating will make it ready to serve.

  • Heat a skillet over medium-low heat and pour in the pistachios (or almonds).
  • Toss lightly for 2 - 3 minutes until light brown and place the nuts into a small bowl and set aside.
  • Place oil into a medium sized pot over medium heat and sauté scallions for 2 minutes, until just soft.
  • Quickly raise heat to high, add rice and sauté for 3 minutes, until coated and light brown.
  • Add cherries and stir well, then reduce heat to medium, add hot water/ broth, stir with a fork, then bring to the boil.
  • Immediately cover the pot and reduce the to low to simmer 20 minutes.
  • The liquid should be completely absorbed and rice, tender.
  • Add the carrots and cook for 2-3 minutes longer.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper, add parsley and pistachios/almonds on top of the cooked rice and serve at once.

270 calories, 8 grams fat with 1 gram saturated fat, 200 mg sodium, 46 grams carbohydrates, 4 grams fiber.

Spinach and Shallots

Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 Tbls extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 shallots or tender young green onion, sliced thin; 2 or more additional shallots for garnish.
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped fine
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 Tblsp unsalted butter
  • 3 pounds baby spinach leaves, washed and dried
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest and 2 teaspoons lemon juice

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a large, heavy pot heat 4 Tablespoons of the oil over medium-high heat.
  • Sauté shallots 3 - 4 minutes, just until tender. Don't over cook. 
  • Add the garlic, salt, and pepper, and sauté for 1 minute and then remove the mixture into a small bowl and set aside.
  • In the same large pot you first used, over medium heat, add remaining oil and the butter.
  • Next, add in half of the spinach and push the leaves down and turn with kitchen tongs.
  • Cover the pot and steam 2 - 3 minutes, turning spinach with tongs after the first 60 seconds.
  • Add the remaining spinach and turn it with tongs in the same manner.
  • Next, cover the pot again and cook 2 minutes, just until spinach slightly wilts.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Uncover and cook the spinach for 60 seconds while turning with tongs. The spinach will be wilted and bright green.
  • Drain excess liquid, then remove spinach with a large slotted spoon.
  • Place in a serving dish and sprinkle with lemon zest & juice. Toss well and re-season.
  • Serve with a garnish of thinly sliced shallots sprinkled on top.

130 calories, 9 grams fat with 2 grams saturated fat, 380 mg sodium, 15 grams carbohydrates, 6 grams fiber

Healthy Eating Poll

What is your Favorite Vegetable?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      manomoney 

      8 years ago

      thanks for the good tips its worth to preserve food values keep it up

    • elisabethkcmo profile image

      elisabethkcmo 

      9 years ago from Just East of Oz

      my favorite vegetable, asparagus, I know, weird

      your recipes are much healthier than mine, thats for sure, and they sound just as good!

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile imageAUTHOR

      Patty Inglish MS 

      9 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      I suppose you could fast the day before a holiday meal. :)

    • johnr54 profile image

      Joanie Ruppel 

      9 years ago from Texas

      My problem is that I don't mind the vegetables at all, but I like the desserts just as much, and on Thanksgiving they're all fair game.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile imageAUTHOR

      Patty Inglish MS 

      9 years ago from USA. Member of Asgardia, the first space nation, since October 2016

      Hi RGraf banana writer! - I'm with you on this - I feel more enrgy when I eat these types of dishes and also skip meat a couple days a week.

      Rochelle - I agree with you as well. I generally do not like lima beans unless they are either fresh or frozen and in a rice dish with say, onions and peppers and mushrooms. It's the butter beans I cannot swallow, because they are too, too starchy for me.

      Thanks for the comments!

    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 

      9 years ago from California Gold Country

      I like all of them. I don't care for plain Lima beans, but I might if they were were "done up" in a recipe.

    • RGraf profile image

      Rebecca Graf 

      9 years ago from Wisconsin

      Thank you for these alternatives. I'm trying to find healthier ways to eat.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)