When you’re on the keto diet, the holidays can be tough to navigate (pie, boozy punch, and stuffing, I’m looking at you). But with a few creative touches, you can have a serious feast.
Let’s get this out of the way first: If you’re going to a loved one’s house for Thanksgiving, you’ll probably only be able to eat the turkey. Womp, womp. Many seemingly low-carb dishes like green bean casserole or gravy are made with flour, which adds too many carbs for the keto diet.
Your fix: BYO. Make a couple dishes at home to take with you or go all out and host a keto Thanksgiving on your own (a la Jenna Jameson). You can make all the traditional dishes, from apps to desserts, but with keto-compliant ingredients, says Los Angeles-area dietitian Sarah Jadin, R.D., of Keto Consulting, LLC. (She’s crafted a full keto Thanksgiving meal for under 20 grams of carbs!) “There’s a substitute for everything,” she says.
A few general tips for making your Thanksgiving keto-friendly: Swap out mashed potatoes for mashed cauliflower, nix adding any flour to thicken recipes like green bean casserole or creamed spinach, and load up on the low-carb veggies like Brussels sprouts, spaghetti squash, and mushrooms.
Oh, and a word on booze. Jadin says if you do opt for an alcoholic drink, go for a pure distilled spirit (plain vodka, for instance) mixed with a splash of diet soda or tonic. A dry wine is another option. And, stick to a glass or two—max. “Alcohol tends to affect people on a keto diet sooner and harder compared to people eating a general diet,” she says.
And you didn’t think you’d have to start from scratch, did you? Here are 19 keto Thanksgiving recipes to put on your menu.
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It’s cauliflower and a whole lot of butter—what could be bad about that? A whole lot of nothing.
Per serving: 151 calories, 14 g fat (9 g saturated), 6 g carbs, 3 g sugar, 418 mg sodium, 3 g fiber, 2 g protein.
Easy Low-Carb Pumpkin Cheesecake
With an almond flour crust and a pumpkin cream cheese filling, it’s almost like eating the original.
Per serving: 460 calories, 44 g fat (19 g saturated), 9 g carbs, 3 g sugar, 301 mg sodium, 3 g fiber, 10 g protein.
Supreme Green Bean Casserole
Put this out on any T-giving table, and your loved ones will happily dig in—and they won’t be mad about the creamy cheese sauce one bit.
Per serving: 300 calories, 25 g fat (12 g saturated), 6 g carbs, 776 mg sodium, 2 g fiber, 12 g protein.
Sugar-Free Cranberry Sauce
Yes, even cranberry sauce can have a place next to your turkey. In this keto-friendly recipe, cranberries are sweetened with the sugar alcohol erythritol.
Per serving: 20 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated), 6 g carbs, 2 g sugar, 0 mg sodium, 2 g fiber.
Keto Turkey Gravy
Turkey broth and butter and seasonings make this something you’ll want to douse your meat in.
Per serving: 99 calories, 9 g fat, 4 g carbs, 1 g sugar, 116 mg sodium, 0 g fiber, 2 g protein.
Maple Pecan Pie
An almond and coconut flour crust and ooey gooey pecan caramel center makes this a satisfying keto dessert. Don’t forget to add a generous dollop of homemade whipped cream on top.
Per serving: 430 calories, 39 g fat (8 g saturated), 13 g carbs, 198 mg sodium, 5 g fiber, 7 g protein.
Oven Roasted Turkey Legs
You can cook a whole bird, but when you’re keto, you’ll want to focus on the dark meat, which is higher in fat.
Per serving: 382 calories, 22.5 g fat, 1 g carbs, 0 g fiber, 44 g protein.
Low-Carb Paleo Cauliflower Stuffing
Cauliflower wins again—this time it’s transformed with all the flavors of traditional stuffing.
Per serving: 95 calories, 7 g fat, 7 g carbs, 3 g sugar, 3 g fiber, 2 g protein.
Need to bring an app? Look no further. These have 12 variations to choose from, including avocado and bacon and cheese.
Per serving: 135 calories, 10 g fat (3 g saturated), 1 g carbs, 1 g sugar, 461 mg sodium, 7 g protein.
Fresh Green Beans With Bacon, Mushrooms, And Herbs
Bacon makes everything taste better. Bacon on green beans with mushrooms, sage, and thyme is straight up next-level.
Per serving: 119 calories, 7 g fat, 11 g carbs, 6 g protein.
Brined Bacon-Wrapped Turkey With Gravy
After this, you’ll want to wrap your turkey in bacon every year.
Per serving: 728 calories, 38 g fat, 2 g carbs, 0 g fiber, 87 g protein.
Brown Butter Spaghetti Squash With Pine Nuts And Sage
No, Italian food (er, faux-Italian food) isn’t necessarily a Thanksgiving staple, but with pine nuts and sage, it definitely deserves a place on the table.
Per serving: 305 calories, 26 g fat, 11 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 3 g protein.
Cranberry Corn Bread Muffins
Grab some of those cranberry extras from your cranberry sauce and add them to these quick and easy corn bread muffins.
Per serving: 102 calories, 9 g fat, 4 g carbs, 7 g protein.
Sure, you could have creamed spinach—or you could have this super-healthy, keto-friendly take and opt for creamed kale. Bonus: You still get a crunchy, crumbly topping from almond flour.
Per serving: 227 calories, 21 g fat, 6 g carbs, 23 g fiber, 5 g protein.
Keto Sausage Stuffing
This stuffing is made from low-carb cheesy skillet bread and sausage—and it’s about to become a keto staple on every holiday menu.
Per serving: 311 calories, 26 g fat, 6 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 11 g protein.
Lemon Brussels Sprouts
Once upon a time, Brussels sprouts were veggies that doubled as a form of edible torture. Now, they’re a tasty savory side dish thanks to recipes like this one.
Per serving: 110 calories, 9 g fat, 4 g carbs, 3 g protein.
Cauliflower Mac & Cheese
Honestly, the macaroni in macaroni and cheese is just a vehicle for the cheesy goodness itself—go ahead and swap cauliflower in for a keto-friendly dish.
Per serving: 294 calories, 25 g fat, 8 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 11 g protein.
Pumpkin Crumble Bars
Stevia gives these bars sweetness, while almond meal helps add a little crunch.
Per serving: 132 calories, 10 g fat, 5 g carbs, 3 g protein.
Pumpkin Muffins With Cranberries And Pecans
Every Thanksgiving dinner needs a sweet side dish—and these pumpkin muffins with cranberries and pecans fit the bill.
Per serving: 237 calories, 21 g fat (10 g sat), 87 mg sodium, 10 g carbs, 5 g fiber, 2 g sugar, 5 g protein.
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