Typically the holidays are a time to indulge in a smorgasbord of delicious eats that may not be the best for your waistline. After all, there’s a reason that so many New Year’s resolutions are about eating healthier and exercising more. Well this year we’re determined to keep things light this Christmas with tasty, nutritious eats that won’t pack on the pounds. If you’re looking for some new ideas for festive eats that are actually good for you, these healthy holiday recipes are sure to impress your friends and fam.
Cannellini beans give this version of bruschetta a smooth texture that’s amped up by a citrusy hit of lemon and herbaceous parsley. It works great as a canape for a holiday party, as part of a buffet spread, or as an appetite-whetting starter before the main meal.
Perfect for a Christmas cocktail party, these stuffed mushrooms are earthy, crunchy and creamy all at the same time. Plus, they’re super easy to make, so you can prepare them ahead of time and then just pop them in the oven right before your guests arrive.
Despite being totally vegan, this soup is rich, creamy and full of flavour. Almond butter gives it nuttiness and thickens it up a bit, the pumpkin is packed with vitamins, and there’s even cauliflower in there for extra nutrition. If you’re planning a sit-down dinner, this is a great starter.
Most turkey recipes call for a ton of butter to get that golden, crispy skin, but this lighter version uses heart-healthy extra-virgin olive oil instead. Plus the secret spice mix gives the turkey a beautiful colour and flavour. Just be sure to let it marinate overnight to let the flavours all come together.
Mustard-and-Lemon-Glazed Pork with Roasted Vegetables
If you’re looking for an alternative to turkey this year, why not try this healthy pork loin roast? There are a few steps involved to get all the elements just right, but at the end you’ll have a beautiful and flavourful all-in-one meal of protein and veg.
It may only contain four ingredients, but this beautiful gluten-free dish is full of flavour and a great substitute for your typical turkey and ham meat dishes. It does contain butter to give it a golden hue, but if you can swap it out for a nut butter if you’re looking for a healthier vegan twist.
Rosemary Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are a great source of fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. This super easy recipe involves just a bit of chopping and tossing with oil and herbs before throwing the potatoes in the oven. The end result is a quick and tasty side for your holiday feast.
Farro Stuffing with Butternut Squash, Red Onions, and Almonds
Stuffing is definitely one of those holiday dishes that’s on the high-carb list. However, this unique twist replaces bread with whole-grain farrow and adds butternut squash and almonds for a range of interesting textures and flavours. It may not be traditional, but it’s every bit as satisfying.
Roasted Beets and Carrots with Goat Cheese Dressing
The colours in this veggie side are absolutely stunning, and it contains not only healthy beets and carrots, but also beet leaves for another level of nutrition. Served warm with a tangy goat cheese dressing made from scratch, this side is sure to draw people back for seconds.
Skip the store-bought chocolates and whip up a batch of these sugar-free, gluten-free and paleo coconut bliss balls made with dark chocolate and shredded coconut. They only take about 30 minutes to make and they work great as party favours or even Christmas gifts.
These baked pears not only look gorgeous, but they also taste amazing with floral notes from the Riesling and holiday aromas from the cinnamon and orange zest. As an added bonus, the recipe calls for honey as a sweetener rather than refined sugar.
Gluten-free Chocolate Sugar Cookies
For all the peeps with gluten allergies, these chocolate sugar cookies allow you to indulge those Christmas cookie cravings without suffering afterwards. Instead of flour, the recipes calls for almond meal to hold them together, as well as cocoa powder and honey to give them a sweet chocolatey flavour.
Use up your leftover turkey and sweet potatoes in this delish chili that gets another kick of protein and fibre from black beans. We suggest making a huge batch and then freezing some so you have quick and easy go-to meals later when you don’t feel like cooking.
Leftover turkey gets jazzed up in this Thai salad with a vibrant combo of fresh herbs, zippy lime juice, crunchy cucumbers and peanuts, and springy vermicelli noodles. Bring it to work as a healthy lunch or serve it up for dinner with sides like fresh spring rolls or crispy shrimp crackers.
Instead of throwing away your leftover cranberry sauce, parlay it into this healthy snack. The bars are dairy-free and vegan and can also be made with gluten-free flour for GF eaters. The oats make them a great source of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, and easy on the digestive system.