With all the recent changes to WW, you may be searching for a WW Guide to Thanksgiving for 2019 that can help you navigate the dinner table. There is always an abundance of food on the table loaded with carbs, fats and dishes that may not be the healthiest choices. I'm here to help you get through it!
A WW Guide to Thanksgiving 2019
I know for my family, our Thanksgiving table has a wide variety of dishes including mashed potatoes, candied yams, sweet potato casserole, yeast rolls, turkey, ham, lasagna… Shall I go on?
Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate everything you are thankful for. However, it does not need to derail the progress you are making getting healthier! WW is all about portion control instead of restricting what foods you can and can not eat. Enjoy the holiday and track your points. YOU CAN DO THIS!
How can I make traditional Thanksgiving dishes healthier?
My grandmother tends to go heavy-handed with cream, butter and oils in her recipes. This leads to higher fat content and ultimately, higher point values. There are a few simple swaps that you can make to lighten up these dishes that will help you stay on track without sacrificing taste.
- Nature's Own has a wonderful loaf of bread that contains double the fiber of regular white bread. Use that instead of traditional bread for your stuffing.
- Another tip for the stuffing, substitute low-sodium chicken broth for the butter.
- Before you make gravy, take a slotted spoon and skim the fat off of the turkey drippings.
- Trade Green Bean Casserole for Roasted Green Bean Almondine.
- When making mashed potatoes, swap out the heavy cream, butter or mayonnaise for a non-fat, plain Greek yogurt.
- Instead of making a full turkey, roast a boneless, skinless turkey breast.
How To Cook A Turkey In The Instant Pot
Save yourself a lot of time and frustration by cooking your turkey in the instant pot this year! Your turkey will stay moist and be ready to eat in less than an hour. One of the best recipes I have found for Instant Pot Turkey is from Recipesfromapantry I adapted some of her ingredients to be lower in points, but the concept remains the same.
- Start with a 2.5-3 lb boneless turkey breast.
- In a small bowl, combine 1.5 tbsp rosemary, 1 tbsp thyme, 1 tbsp cilantro or coriander, 1 tsp crushed garlic, 1 tsp salt.
- Spray “I can't believe it's not butter spray under the skin of the turkey and rub the seasoning blend in. Spray another layer of the butter spray on the skin as well.
- Add 1 cup of chicken stock to the Instant Pot insert.
- Add the trivet to the Instant Pot and then place the turkey breast on top of it with the skin side up.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot and turn valve so it would seal.
- Set to manual/high pressure for 35 mins and allow it to naturally release all of the pressure.
- At this point, you can put it in your oven broiler for 8-10 minutes to crisp up the skin with another layer of butter spray.
What Are Your Recipe Suggestions for Appetizers?
A fruit and veggie tray is always a great route to go as it's all zero points! If you must indulge in little bites, just be careful to monitor your points and don't overdo on your caloric intake.
- Turkish Carrot Dip
- Oven Baked Beet Chips
(serve this with the carrot dip!)
- Buffalo Chicken Wontons
- Feta Stuffed Mushrooms
- Butternut Squash Curry
- Cauliflower Ceviche
Recipe Highlight Lightened Up Macaroni and Cheese Recipe
FrekiFitWold on Youtube is one of my favorite Youtubers that follows the WW Green Plan. Along with several others, he posted a video recently to showcase a lightened up version of Macaroni and Cheese. Under normal circumstances, you may turn down this dish because of how many points would be in the pasta, cream and cheese. However, this version is only 8 points on the Green or Blue plan, or 2 points on the Purple plan!
- 2 cups Whole Grain Elbow Noodles
- 2 cups Unsweetened Almond milk
- 1/2 cup Fat Free Cheddar
- 1/2 cup Shredded Gouda
- 1/4 cup Flour
- 3/4 tsp Onion Powder
- 3/4 tsp Salt and Pepper to taste
This recipe serves 6 people and is just as creamy, gooey and delicious as traditional macaroni and cheese without the guilt!
What Are Your Recipe Suggestions for Side Dishes?
- Broccoli Stir Fry
- Brussels Sprouts with Maple Balsamic Glaze
- Crispy Green Bean “Fries”
- Baked Asparagus
- Kale Salad with Quinoa and Cranberries
- Cauliflower “Mac” and Cheese
What Are Your Recipe Suggestions for Desserts?
My personal favorite that I'll be making this year is Banana Cream Frozen Yogurt. Once you realize just how easy and quick this dessert is to put together, you may find yourself making it quite often!
Maple Walnut Banana Cream Frozen Yogurt Recipe
1 Point on WW Green Plan
1 Point on WW Blue Plan
1 Point on WW Purple Plan
The original recipe called for 6 oz of cream cheese but even when using a light version, the points can sneak up on you. Instead, I substituted 1/2 cup of Halo Top Vanilla Bean light ice cream to get the right consistency but you can also just double the amount of bananas you use!
- 2 Large Bananas
- 1/2 cup non-fat, plain Greek yogurt
- 3/4 Tbsp imitation Vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup of Walden Farms Maple Walnut Syrup
- 1/2 cup Halo Top Vanilla Bean Light Ice Cream
- Peel and slice the bananas into thin pieces and freeze in a ziploc bag.
- Once the bananas are frozen, add them to a food processor or blender with the yogurt, Halo Top and vanilla. Blend until smooth.
- As it is blending, slowly incorporate the syrup.
- You can serve immediately for a milkshake consistency or freeze for a minimum of 4 hours in a tightly sealed container to firm up.
Feel free to add your favorite zero point toppings like sugar-free chocolate syrup or fresh fruit!
Other Dessert Options:
- Boozy Apple Pie & Cinnamon Infused Bourbon (2 points on all plans)
- Healthy Banana Bread (5 points on Green, 3 Points on Blue and Purple)
- Apple Pie Pinwheels (3 Points on Green, 2 points on Blue or Purple)