Recipes
November 10, 2017

Recipes: How to upgrade your Southern Thanksgiving

by Southern Thanksgiving recipes

Worried about overloading this holiday? Don’t pass up the traditions — try these healthy Southern Thanksgiving recipes.

 

Classic Cornbread Dressing

Serves 8

Stuffing, dressing … no matter what you call it, it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without Grandma’s cornbread dressing made in her cast-iron skillet. For the cornbread in the recipe below, you can use Jiffy corn muffin mix for a quick option. Or make your own favorite recipe, ideally without sugar, or try this no-sugar-added homemade recipe.

 

Ingredients:

2 1/2 pounds cornbread
3 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil
1 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
3/4 cup finely chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried sage
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chicken or turkey stock

 

Directions:

  1. Cut cornbread into 1-inch cubes, place on a large baking sheet and let dry out for several hours or overnight. Place in a large mixing bowl. Set aside. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large skillet, heat butter or oil over medium-low heat. Add onion, celery and carrot and cook, stirring frequently, until softened but not browned. Stir in the thyme, sage, salt and pepper.
  3. Add mixture to cornbread and toss to blend. Slowly pour in stock and toss to moisten. Spread the stuffing in a buttered or oiled 9-by-15-inch baking dish.
  4. Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until the top is crisp and golden.

 

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

Calories: 360. Fat: 12 g. Saturated fat: 5 g. Cholesterol: 20 mg. Sodium: 1,280 mg. Carbohydrates: 61 g. Dietary fiber: 3 g. Protein: 5 g.

Source: Whole Foods Market

 

Sweet Potato Casserole

Serves 12

Sweet potato casserole is a must-have around the holidays. But this year, consider skipping the marshmallow topping. Instead, check out this recipe topped with a delicious, buttery brown sugar-and-pecan mixture.

 

Ingredients:

Potatoes:

2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup evaporated low-fat milk
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
Cooking spray

Topping:

1.5 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1/3 cup)
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons melted butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Place potatoes in a Dutch oven; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until tender; drain. Cool 5 minutes.
  3. Place potatoes in a large bowl; add granulated sugar, evaporated milk, 3 tablespoons melted butter, 1/2 teaspoon salt and vanilla. Beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Add eggs; beat well. Pour potato mixture into a 13-by-9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray.
  4. To prepare topping, weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour, brown sugar and 1/8 teaspoon salt; stir with a whisk. Stir in 2 tablespoons melted butter. Sprinkle flour mixture evenly over potato mixture; arrange pecans evenly over top. Bake at 350 F for 25 minutes or just until golden.
  5. Remove casserole from the oven. Preheat broiler.
  6. Broil casserole 45 seconds or until topping is bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

Calories: 258. Fat: 9.2 g. Saturated fat: 3.6 g. Monounsaturated fat: 3.6 g. Polyunsaturated fat: 1.5 g. Protein: 3.3 g. Carbohydrate: 42 g. Fiber: 2.5 g. Cholesterol: 43 mg. Iron: 1.2 mg. Sodium: 199 mg. Calcium: 54 mg.

Source: Cooking Light

 

Herb-Roasted Turkey

Serves 12

This method produces all the good looks and moist flavor you dream of in a Thanksgiving turkey. Make sure you show this beauty off at the table before you carve it. Garnish your serving platter with fresh herb sprigs and citrus wedges.

Ingredients:

1 10- to 12-pound turkey
1/4 cup fresh herbs, plus 20 whole sprigs, such as thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano and/or marjoram, divided
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Aromatics such as onion, apple, lemon and/or orange, cut into 2-inch pieces (1 1/2 cups)
3 cups water, plus more as needed

Directions:

  1. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven; preheat to 475 F.
  2. Remove giblets and neck from turkey cavities and reserve for making gravy. Place the turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a large roasting pan; pat dry with paper towels. Mix minced herbs, oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the herb mixture all over the turkey, under the skin and onto the breast meat. Place aromatics and 10 of the herb sprigs in the cavity. Tuck the wing tips under the turkey. Tie the legs together with kitchen string. Add 3 cups water and the remaining 10 herb sprigs to the pan.
  3. Roast the turkey until the skin is golden brown, 45 minutes. Remove the turkey from the oven. If using a remote digital thermometer, insert it into the deepest part of the thigh, close to the joint. Cover the breast with a double layer of foil, cutting as necessary to conform to the breast. Reduce oven temperature to 350 F and continue roasting from 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and 45 minutes more. If the pan dries out, tilt the turkey to let juices run out of the cavity into the pan and add 1 cup water. The turkey is done when the thermometer (or an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh without touching bone) registers 165 F.
  4. Transfer the turkey to a serving platter and cover with foil. Let the turkey rest for 20 minutes. Remove string and carve.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

(Without skin) Calories: 155. Fat: 5 g. Saturated fat: 1 g. Monounsaturated fat: 2 g. Cholesterol: 63 mg. Carbohydrates: 0 g. Protein: 25 g. Fiber: 0 g. Sodium: 175 mg. Potassium: 258 mg.

Source: Eating Well

 

Maple-Cider Brined Turkey with Bourbon-Cider Gravy

If guests expect the ritual carving at the head of the table, opt for a classic whole presentation, like this recipe. It provides rich seasonal maple and cider flavor, and perfect juiciness from the brine.

Ingredients:

Brine:

2 quarts apple cider
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon whole allspice berries
3/4 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
6 (2-inch) strips orange rind
2 rosemary sprigs
2 bay leaves
1 gallon cold water

Turkey:

1 (12-pound) fresh or frozen turkey, thawed
3 tablespoons butter, softened
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 apple, cut into wedges
6 garlic cloves
1 rosemary sprig
1 sage sprig
1/2 orange, cut into wedges
1/2 onion, cut into wedges
Cooking spray

Gravy:

1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 shallot, finely chopped
1/2 cup apple cider
1/4 cup bourbon
1 1/4 cups fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon cider vinegar

 

Directions:

  1. To prepare brine, combine first 9 ingredients in a large stockpot over high heat; cook 6 minutes or until salt dissolves, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; add 1 gallon cold water. Cool to room temperature.
  2. To prepare turkey, remove giblets and neck from turkey; reserve neck. Trim excess fat; add turkey to brine. Refrigerate 18 to 24 hours, turning occasionally.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  4. Remove turkey from brine; discard brine. Pat turkey dry. Starting at neck cavity, loosen skin from breast and drumsticks by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Combine 3 tablespoons butter and next 3 ingredients (through 1/2 teaspoon pepper) in a small bowl; rub butter mixture under loosened skin and over breast and drumsticks. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under turkey. Place apple and next 5 ingredients (through onion) in the body cavity. Secure legs with kitchen twine. Place turkey on the rack of a roasting pan coated with cooking spray. Place neck in bottom of roasting pan; place rack with turkey in pan. Bake at 375 F for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Cover turkey loosely with foil; bake an additional 45 minutes or until a thermometer inserted into thickest part of thigh registers 165 F. Remove from oven; place turkey on a cutting board. Let stand, covered, for 20 minutes; discard neck and skin.
  5. To prepare gravy, place a zip-top plastic bag inside a 2-cup glass measure. Pour pan drippings into bag; let stand 10 minutes (fat will rise to the top). Seal bag; carefully snip off one bottom corner of bag. Drain drippings into a small bowl, stopping before fat layer reaches opening; discard fat.
  6. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add thyme and shallot; sauté 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup cider and bourbon; boil 3 minutes or until liquid is reduced by half. Combine 1/4 cup broth and flour, stirring with a whisk. Add flour mixture, remaining 1 cup broth, and drippings to pan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 4 minutes or until thickened. Stir in parsley and vinegar.

 

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

Calories: 326. Fat: 8.4 g. Saturated fat: 3.9 g. Monounsaturated fat: 2 g. Polyunsaturated fat: 1.5 g. Protein: 51 g. Carbohydrate: 7 g. Fiber: 0.2 g. Cholesterol: 177 mg. Iron: 3.6 mg. Sodium: 566 mg. Calcium: 42 m.

Source: Cooking Light

 

Buttermilk Chess Pie

Serves 8

OK, so maybe “healthy” isn’t the first word that comes to mind when eating chess pie. But it’s a Southern Thanksgiving recipe that can’t be ignored. So if you want to splurge a little, do it with this classic dessert.

 

Ingredients:

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
5 ounces buttermilk
1 cup evaporated cane juice sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
3 large eggs
1 8- or 9-inch pie crust (not deep dish)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Gently melt butter in a saucepan. Once melted, stir in buttermilk and set aside.
  3. Combine sugar and flour in a blender on low. Add melted butter mixture, vanilla and sea salt and blend. Add eggs, one at a time, blending until well combined.
  4. Pour batter into crust and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the pie is just set in the middle. Cool on a rack before serving.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

Calories: 340. Fat: 21 g. Saturated fat: 12 g. Cholesterol: 110 mg. Sodium: 180 mg. Carbohydrates: 34 g. Dietary fiber: 2 g. Sugar: .25 g. Protein: 5 g.

Source: Whole Foods Market

 

Maple-Walnut Cranberry Pie

Serves 10

While the buttery, maple-scented filling is inspired by classic pecan pie, this recipe swaps in toasted walnuts and adds chopped fresh cranberries for a beautiful pop of color and tart flavor contrast that cuts the sweetness.

Ingredients:

1/2 (14.1-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough
Cooking spray
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup dark corn syrup
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
  2. Roll dough into an 11-inch circle; fit into a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray. Fold edges under; flute. Line bottom of dough with a piece of foil; arrange pie weights or dried beans on foil. Bake at 425 for 5 minutes. Remove pie weights and foil; bake 1 minute. Cool on a wire rack.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 350 F.
  4. Combine maple syrup and next 6 ingredients (through eggs) in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gently stir in cranberries and walnuts. Pour cranberry mixture into prepared crust. Bake at 350 F for 45 minutes or until filling is just set, shielding edges of pie crust with foil after 30 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:

Calories: 287. Fat: 14.6 g. Saturated fat: 4.4 g. Monounsaturated fat: 4 g. Polyunsaturated fat: 5.2 g. Protein: 4 g. Carbohydrates: 37 g. Fiber: 2 g. Cholesterol: 62 mg. Iron: 1 mg. Sodium: 210 mg. Calcium: 32 mg.

Source: Cooking Light

Dinner, Autumn

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