2 Classic Thanksgiving Sides Made Healthier and Gluten-Free
Indulge or go healthy.
Many holiday side dish staples are not an option for guests avoiding certain ingredients. This year, bring a dish everyone can enjoy. Whether lightened up or decadent, each recipe is safe for gluten-free guests, and one is vegan, too.
By Caitlyn Diimig, RD
Green Bean Casserole
Indulge: Indulgent Green Bean Casserole
"I added 1/4 cup of white wine with the half-and-half. It turned out delicious, and everyone loved it. If you want the sauce thicker, just add a bit of cornstarch." – Jennifer Pershing Neu
Go Healthy: Healthier Homemade Green Bean Casserole
"Almond milk and dry white wine combine to make a lighter sauce for this homemade green bean casserole featuring mushrooms, shallots, garlic, and thyme." — coweed
Healthy Tricks for Green Bean Casserole:
The Healthier Green Bean Casserole has 80 percent less saturated fat and 50 percent less fat than the Indulgent Green Bean Casserole. Here's why:
- Replacing the bacon topper with sweet-and-salty almonds adds crunch without saturated fat. While almonds do have some fat, it's the heart-healthy kind. Substituting unsweetened almond milk for the half-and-half keeps fat and calories in check and makes this dish suitable for vegans.
- Substituting unsweetened almond milk for the half-and-half keeps fat and calories in check and makes this dish suitable for vegans.
- Both casseroles are gluten-free. In the indulgent version, half-and-half and Parmesan cheese thicken the sauce without the need for flour. In the healthier casserole, a little gluten-free cornstarch thickens the almond milk mixture.
Indulge: Jen's Creamy Mashed Potatoes
"I made these the day before Thanksgiving. To reheat, I put them in the slow cooker on low for about three hours before dinner." – Jennifer
Go Healthy: Garlic Mashed Cauliflower
"This recipe is so easy and healthy. I love mashed potatoes, and when I started the South Beach Diet® and couldn't have them, I had to find an alternative. This is an awesome alternative, and people who hate vegetables love it. I do recommend using a large food processor for this recipe."— Andie
Healthy Tricks for Mashed Potatoes:
The Garlic Mashed Cauliflower has 136 calories, 9 grams of fat, and 16 grams of carbs less than Jen's Creamy Mashed Potatoes. Here are the tricks:
- Cauliflower has fewer calories and carbs than potatoes. While potatoes are a great source of potassium, cauliflower is a decent source, too. And cauliflower is packed with vitamin C.
- Swapping in Parmesan, olive oil, and reduced-fat cream cheese for fat-laden sour cream, butter, and cream cheese helps keep saturated fats down, while still keeping the dish creamy.
- Some shredded and grated cheese may have gluten-containing fillers. Always check the ingredients list on products. When in doubt, grate your own.
This article originally appeared in the October/November 2019 issue of Allrecipes Magazine.