Let’s be real.
When it’s the Holidays, I wanna eat.
I’m not interested in considering how much fiber I’m getting and whether I have enough greens or if there is too much sugar or any other frigging calculations.
I’m interested in all the smells, colors, textures and how it’s gonna taste! I love a good feast and the Holidays is where food gets to shine.
Front and center.
Central to all happy beginnings and endings. Bringing family and friends together over a feast is absolute joy for me.
But you know what’s not so joyful?
Being full, stuffed and miserable.
Because you overdid it and are experiencing carb, dairy, sugar, gluten overload.
However I don’t think you need to get rid of all your favorites. I just think that applying a bit of mindfulness to your meals is key to keeping things balanced, joyful and tasty.
Speaking of keeping things tasty, here are three delicious side dishes you can try this holiday season.
Let me introduce you to this macaroni and cheese that actually doesn’t have cheese. Instead it has a rich, creamy, cheese-ey tasting cashew base that will make your tastebuds swoon. Wanna see how it’s made, click here for the video or the photo below for recipe.
Next are these amazing Jalapeño Corn Fritters.
If you feel like no spread is complete without bread, then you need to try this. I was never a fan of the yeasty white rolls. They were flimsy and always deflated if you pressed to hard. They definitely couldn’t hold up to real butter, as they would tear if you try to spread it and would fall under pressure.
Growing up at my Holiday table, we always had cornbread or biscuits made from scratch and baked in a cast-iron skillet. It would be come out the oven with a slight dome and smell up the entire house! Once served, it knew how to hold the butter in every single crevice so that when you bit into it all you got was a warm, buttery, doughy hug.
But over the years, too much dough overwhelms my mid-section, so I started looking for a new bread for the Holiday spread! And lo and behold I came across these Jalapeño Corn Fritters which I veganized. These taste like hush puppies, fritters and corn bread had a baby and I serve these every year!
Last but not least are the greens!
I’m not talking about collard greens nor kale. I think that’s standard and should definitely grace any feast with its presence. Instead, I’m talking about salad.
In the past, I would reserve a little space on my plate for some collard greens or green beans and the rest would be for all the starchirific sides like yams, Mac n cheese, mashed potatoes, cornbread, etc. But the game changed once I started praying into these greens and serving this Autumn Salad made with kale, roasted butternut squash, pomegranate, avocado and pumpkin seeds.
I know it’s not really a fan favorite to eat salad at Thanksgiving, but that’s because you never made this Kale Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Apple Cider Honey Vinaigrette!
First off it’s beautiful! All those Autumn colors decorating your plate and the bounty of sweet, savory and tangy flavors dancing in your mouth. This salad really is a dream and I promise you folks will be coming back for seconds!
If you make this salad as appetizing as everything else, it will be invited to take up more space on your plate for fiber and less for carbs and it won’t feel like you are are sacrificing anything you love to eat but rather adding something that brings joy and goodness to your plate!
If you want to see how all this comes together, check out my YouTube video.