Thanksgiving is one of my favourite holidays because it’s really all about the food. Sharing food with friends and family while also sharing gratitude is the best feeling. Gary and I love entertaining and for Thanksgiving we generally host a pretty big group, sometimes up to 10, with family from both mine and Gary’s sides. It’s a lot of preparation and cooking but so enjoyable to spend the day in the kitchen while the boys pop in and out for taste tests! Food is most definitely one of my love languages and hosting gives me the chance to really pull out all the stops, both with food, table settings and seasonal decor. If you haven’t yet, check out my Living Room refresh – I love some of the new accessories I got just in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Fraîche Living is always my first stop for great recipes I know my family will love. I love browsing the website as well as Tori and Jillian’s cookbook, Fraîche Food, Full Hearts, and putting a Thanksgiving menu together that I know will leave everyone satisfied and happy! Here are a few of my favourites recipes I’m planning to make for Thanksgiving dinner.
I love having something super colourful and fresh on the table to start dinner off and this kale salad is both! The ingredients also pack a super healthy punch with tons of vitamins and healthy fats. Can we talk about pomegranates for a second? Super rich in antioxidants and flavonoids, high in fibre, low in calories and downright delicious. The boys love popping them in their mouths! The Confetti Kale Salad isn’t the quickest salad to make as the squash has to be roasted but believe me, it’s worth it, especially for Thanksgiving. Sweet, salty with the right amount of crunch, it’s a definite crowd pleaser.
Brussel sprouts have had such a rebrand over the last 5-10 years and I’m here for it! I can’t believe I didn’t used to like these guys! I guess adding beautiful olive oils, salt and fresh parmesan cheese doesn’t hurt! These Parmesan Lemon Roasted Brussels Sprouts make such a great Thanksgiving side. They’re super easy and quick to get in the oven. Another thing I love is they’re easy to serve. Presentation doesn’t really matter with this dish so as things are getting hectic right before serving, I always appreciate having some easy sides I can just throw in a dish!
These are a family-favourite! Pierce is a pretty big fan of carrots and these are soft enough to mush up for Bence so carrots are a winner at our table. Honey roasted carrots is another pretty easy side dish that goes a long way and is usually fairly quick to prep. Carrots are super high in fibre which can help keep blood sugar levels down and, as well, they’re loaded with vitamin A so I love that the boys love them. I always double this recipe as I find these carrots are really good in Thanksgiving leftovers! And as Tori suggests, I always add caramelized honey and fresh thyme. Yum!
I know, I know, Thanksgiving is for turkey. Don’t get me wrong, I love turkey and I always ensure all the traditional dishes, and the bird himself, are at my Thanksgiving dinner. But! There’s always someone who either doesn’t like turkey or who is plant based so it’s good to have delicious options. Plant based guests go wild for this Vegan Mushroom Wellington. The pastry just melts in your mouth and the Becel Vegan makes it so light and tasty. The garlic, onions and mushrooms are on hand for other Thanksgiving dishes so putting this together isn’t too much work, assuming the pastry part cooperates! I also generally cook with red wine so it’s nice to have a recipe that uses some too! LOL! If you want to switch the turkey up this year, trust me, this is a great option, especially if it’s a smaller group as this recipe serves 6.
The Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes are ALWAYS a hit! They’re so delicious and perfect for Thanksgiving. They’re also easy to make ahead of time which is wonderful when you’re hosting people but mini pumpkin cheesecakes travel well if you’re a guest for Thanksgiving dinner. Either way, it’s one less thing you have to worry about as the company comes in the door. These Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes are also dairy free which makes them a lighter choice at the end of a big meal.
Some of my tips: Double the below recipe and freeze the leftovers to pull out and heat when you have friends over for coffee! Also, I let the boys “decorate” their cheesecake with cream (this adds dairy of course) and fresh berries which they love!
Fraîche Living has so many incredible recipes for both entertaining, holidays and everyday meals. If you haven’t yet, check out the The Fraîche Table Meal Plan. Tori has curated recipes for every season, meal, palette and nutritional consideration. Especially for busy families, Fraîch Table planning tools take the stress out of snacks, meals, entertaining options and more with Dietitian approved wholesome and delicious meal plans. As part of membership you also get a ton of resources like the kitchen and pantry guide, interactive grocery lists to save time and money and I love her tips for managing food waste. She also offers tips for picky eaters, which any Mom knows, is super helpful.
Tori is offering my readers a discount to get started and get organized. Use the code NATALIE for a $99 annual plan. Meals and snacks are one of those relentless things, it never ends so I’ll take any help I can get!
There is so much to be grateful for this year. I hope you’re all spending the holiday with loved ones. What are your Thanksgiving recipes family favourites? Who’s hosting this year? I’d love to hear your Thanksgiving hosting tips and any of your favourite dishes!
Images courtesy of Fraiche Living
This post is in partnership with Fraiche Living. All thoughts and opinions are my own.