Healthy Thanksgiving Dessert Recipes
Thanksgiving is a time for indulgence, but that doesn’t mean we have to abandon our healthy eating habits. In fact, there are plenty of delicious and nutritious dessert options that can satisfy our sweet tooth without derailing our progress. In this article, I’ll be sharing some of my favorite healthy Thanksgiving dessert recipes that are sure to impress your guests and keep you feeling good.
When it comes to healthy Thanksgiving desserts, it’s all about finding creative ways to incorporate nutritious ingredients. From pumpkin pie made with whole wheat crust to apple crisp sweetened with natural alternatives, there are endless possibilities to explore. In this article, I’ll be sharing my top picks for guilt-free desserts that will make your Thanksgiving feast complete.
Traditional Thanksgiving Desserts Made Healthier
Pumpkin Pie with a Twist
When it comes to Thanksgiving desserts, pumpkin pie is a classic that often takes center stage. But who says we can’t enjoy this traditional treat in a healthier way? With a few simple tweaks, we can create a pumpkin pie that is just as delicious but also guilt-free.
Instead of using a traditional pie crust made with refined flour and butter, I opt for a nut-based crust. Using a combination of nuts like almonds, pecans, or walnuts, we can achieve a crunchy and flavorful crust that adds a delightful twist to the pie. Not only are nuts packed with healthy fats, fiber, and protein, but they also provide a rich and nutty flavor that pairs perfectly with the spiced pumpkin filling.
Speaking of the filling, we can make it healthier by using natural sweeteners such as pure maple syrup or honey instead of refined sugar. These alternatives not only add a touch of sweetness but also bring some added nutrients to the table. To enhance the flavor, I like to incorporate a blend of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. This combination gives the pie a fragrant and cozy taste that is synonymous with Thanksgiving.
To make this pumpkin pie even more nutritious, I recommend using canned pumpkin puree instead of the pre-made pumpkin pie filling. Canned pumpkin is rich in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants, making it an excellent addition to our diet. It’s important to choose pumpkin puree without any added sugars or artificial ingredients to keep our dessert as healthy as possible.
Creative Alternatives to Traditional Thanksgiving Desserts
Gluten-free Sweet Potato Brownies
When it comes to satisfying your sweet tooth while still sticking to your healthy eating habits, these gluten-free sweet potato brownies are a game-changer. Made with wholesome ingredients, these brownies are packed with nutrients and flavor. Here’s how to make them:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- In a food processor, combine cooked and mashed sweet potatoes, almond butter, maple syrup, cocoa powder, almond flour, and a pinch of salt. Blend until smooth.
- Transfer the mixture to a greased baking dish and spread it evenly.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the brownies are set and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Let them cool before cutting into squares and serving.
These gluten-free sweet potato brownies are a healthier alternative to traditional brownies. They are naturally sweetened with maple syrup, and the sweet potatoes add moisture and a boost of vitamins and minerals. Plus, they are gluten-free, making them suitable for those with dietary restrictions.
Vegan Pecan Pie Bars
For vegans or those looking for a dairy-free dessert option, these vegan pecan pie bars are a must-try. They capture the rich and gooey goodness of traditional pecan pie, but without any animal products. Here’s how to make them:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking dish with parchment paper.
- In a mixing bowl, combine almond flour, coconut oil, maple syrup, and a pinch of salt. Mix until well combined.
- Press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared baking dish to form the crust.
- In another bowl, whisk together coconut sugar, maple syrup, cornstarch, vanilla extract, and almond milk until smooth.
- Stir in chopped pecans and pour the mixture over the crust.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the edges are golden brown and the filling is set.
- Let them cool completely before cutting into bars.
These vegan pecan pie bars are a healthier take on the traditional Thanksgiving dessert. They are made with wholesome ingredients like almond flour and coconut oil, and the sweetness comes from natural sources like maple syrup and coconut sugar. They are also completely dairy-free, making them suitable for vegans or those with dairy allergies.
These creative alternatives to traditional Thanksgiving desserts are not only healthier but also delicious. They allow you to enjoy the indulgence of dessert without derailing your health goals. Whether you’re gluten-free, vegan, or simply looking for a guilt-free treat, these recipes have got you covered. So this Thanksgiving, satisfy your sweet tooth without compromising your health with these amazing dessert options.
Bob Duncan is the lead writer and partner on ConversationsWithBianca.com. A passionate parent, he’s always excited to dive into the conversation about anything from parenting, food & drink, travel, to gifts & more!