Holidays can be tough when you and your extended family have different ideas about food. Having been through multiple holiday seasons being paleo, I think that we have a good balance figured out, so I thought I'd share it with you. Note that this is what works for us and that things are a little different on the years that we are hosting. Honestly it's easier to stay paleo when we do host, but here are my tips for a healthy, paleo Thanksgiving.
1 - Bring your own dishes
When we are going to another family member's home, this is sides and a small dessert. Bonus points if you get to bring the turkey! We take two side dishes that we like and are also crowd pleasers and if we want it, some cranberry relish.
Here are some of my favorites:
Brussels sprouts with bacon (I add dried cranberries)
Cranberry orange relish (so much better than canned cranberry sauce!)
Skillet apple pie from this book - a favorite!
It is definitely more work to make a few of your own sides or rolls, but we leave our extras at home and eat them over the weekend! You can find some of my favorite paleo holiday recipes here.
2 - Plan ahead
We go in knowing that our meat is going to be cooked in less than ideal ingredients and isn't going to be the best quality. This is just a concession that we make. We don't partake in the Honeybaked ham/turkey since they are laden with sugar and additives, but will definitely eat an oven-roasted variety. If we are going somewhere that we know there won't be anything we would eat, we eat at home beforehand and have a cup of coffee or cider at the gathering.
We also talk about what, if any, things we want to eat that are not paleo, and limit ourselves to one thing.
3 - Take a walk
It feels so wonderful to get outside and move around, especially after a day of indulging, sitting and chatting with family and watching football. Even if you don't feel like it and even if it's just for a ten minutes, go outside and take a walk. You will feel so much better!
Happy Thanksgiving week! Wishing you a wonderful week and a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!