Thanksgiving is one week away! It’s that time of year when we turn to our old family favorites and look for new recipes that inspire us to try something different in the kitchen. If you’re looking to add some healthier dishes to your Thanksgiving meal, take a look at this collection of recipes!
- Butternut Squash and Apple Salad
- Green Beans with Smoky Pecans from Tasty Eats at Home
- Herbed Split Pea Soup from Gluten-Free Cat
- Orange Cinnamon Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Maple Pecans
- Potato Boats with “Sour Cream” and Herbs from Ricki Heller
- Quinoa Stuffing from Queen of Quinoa
- Roasted Green Bean Salad with Citrus-Balsalmic Reduction from Ricki Heller
- Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Garlic and Thyme
- Rutabega Gratin from Ricki Heller
- Wild Rice Sweet Potato Salad with Pepitas
Gravy, Salad Dressings, & Sauces
- Cranberry Sauce with Apples and Pears
- Make-Ahead, Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy
- Creamy Caesar Dressing (dairy-free)
- Sweet Dijon Salad Dressing
Desserts, Pies & Pie Crusts
- Black Bottom Almond Mousse Pie with Chocolate Ganache Drizzle
- Chocolate Orange Cheesecake
- Cranberries & Cream Tart with Chocolate Crust from Daily Bites Blog
- Crispy Apple Crisp from Welcoming Kitchen
- Gluten-Free Pie Crust from Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free
- Flaky Pie Crust from Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free
- Maple Pecan Tart from Daily Bites Blog
- Vegan Pumpkin Spice Chocolate Chunk Cookies from Gluten-Free Cat
I have been brainstorming and testing healthy back to school breakfast ideas for a few weeks now so that I am not stuck in a cereal rut when the school year finally hits. Our daughter, Eliza, is entering sixth grade this year. If her summertime “primping” schedule is any indicator of just how long it will take her to get ready in the mornings, then I better have quite a few “grab-n-go” breakfasts in my arsenal because I doubt she will be sitting with us at the breakfast table very much.
I love having homemade breakfast cereal bars, and fruits like bananas and apples on hand for quick grabbing, but sometimes a girl just needs a smoothie to start her day off right. This smoothie is packed with vitamins, minerals, and protein; it will stay with her until time for lunch and she won’t come crashing down from the high of sugar coated cereals and store-bought breakfast bars. Besides tasting really good together I chose these ingredients specifically for what each of them has to offer Eliza.
- Almond milk: Aside from offering lots of protein and vitamins, almond milk is rich in manganese, copper and riboflavin. These nutrients play an important role in energy production.
- Bananas: High in potassium and low in salt, they are officially recognized by the FDA as being able to lower blood pressure and protect against heart attack and stroke. Rich in pectin, bananas aid digestion and are a great natural energy booster due to all of that potassium.
- Strawberries: One cup of strawberries contains a whopping 136% of the RDA of vitamin C, can help lower blood pressure and ensure a healthy immune system. Like almond milk, strawberries are also rich in manganese which is great for the bones too.
- Gluten-free oats: Provide high levels of fiber, low levels of fat, and high levels of protein. Oats also are known to remove the bad cholesterol in your body without affecting your good cholesterol. All of that being said; they stick with you longer than other foods so I can rest assured that she will stay satisfied until lunchtime and can concentrate on learning rather than hunger pains.
Other Smoothie Recipes & Tips:
- Juices and Smoothies on a Busy Schedule
- Tips for Making Easy and Delicious Non-Dairy Smoothies
- Mango Chai Breakfast Shake
Strawberry Banana Oat Smoothie
Makes 1 large smoothie
- 1 1/2 cups almond milk, preferably homemade
- 2 frozen bananas, broken into 3-4 pieces each
- 4 large frozen organic strawberries
- 1/4 cup gluten-free oats
- Combine all of the ingredients in the order listed in a high speed blender and blend until smooth.
- If the mixture seems too thick, add more almond milk 1-2 tablespoons at a time.
Meg is the blogger, photographer, and recipe developer behind Beard & Bonnet, a gluten-free vegetarian blog that celebrates style, design, food, and family. Along with her husband, she’s also one half of the duo behind award-winning eco-design studio Union Eighteen whose recycled rugs have garnered international acclaim. Her goal is to show others that gluten-free, vegetarian living can be easy and fulfilling, not to mention delicious! You can also find Meg on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!
Read all of her posts here.
July has come to an end. It seems as if the summer is passing all too quickly. This past month, we had some tremendous recipes full of summer flavor here at The Balanced Platter. In case you were busy having fun in the sun and missed a post or two, here’s what we had from our wonderful contributors in July:
Appetizers & Beverages
- Chocolate Protein “Frosty” (shown above)
- Dip into Summer
- Is Your Non-Dairy Milk Safe?
- Quinoa Stuffed Zucchini Bites
- Beat the Heat with 20 Frozen Treats
- Coconut Water and Fruit Popsicles
- Gluten-Free Ice Cream Sandwiches (shown above, photo by Knoxy)
- Raw Cherry Cream Cups
- Blueberry Quinoa Salad (shown above)
- Grilled Mexican Street Corn Salad (shown above)
- Southwestern Cauliflower-Rice Salad
Have you tried any of the recipes from TBP this month? Have a favorite?
I’m generally a fan of obtaining protein from natural, whole foods sources. After all, that’s what our body will recognize as food, right? But sometimes, we fall into a rut, and the same old protein options seem…boring. Personally, as much I love eggs, or tuna, or chicken, there are times I just cannot get excited about another hard-boiled egg for breakfast.
This is when I start to get creative. After all, there are healthy protein sources out there that aren’t just meat, eggs, or dairy – we just don’t always think about them. Some great sources of protein include:
- Nut butters, such as peanut or almond butter - around 8 grams of protein per serving.
- Greens, such as spinach or kale – 5-7 grams per cup of cooked greens.
- Quinoa - 9 grams per cup.
- Beans and lentils – depending on the variety, between 13 and 18 grams per cup.
- Protein powders – if you shop around, many of the brands out there carry a respectable ingredient list. (Some are highly processed and have somewhat skeptical ingredients.) My favorites are Vega, Plant Fusion, and Sunwarrior. They are all gluten-free and taste pretty good. While I prefer getting most of my protein from whole foods, I feel these protein powders are a good way to keep the variety.
In fact, if you’re craving sweets on a hot day, this protein “frosty” might be just the change of pace you need. It’s a cinch to whip up in the blender, and really satisfies the urge for a cool, creamy, frosty treat. In fact, I might consider making this my new favorite post-workout “snack”!