Healthy Alternatives for Holiday Meals

Enjoy! Share! and post your favorite recipes to our Facebook page.

Glazed Sweet Potatoes      Vegetarian Cornbread Stuffing    Vegan Pumkpin Cheesecake   Apple-Shallot Turkey


Glazed Sweet Potatoes


  • 5 sweet potatoes or yams (about 3 pounds)
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoon Smart Balance or other light tubbed butter spread
  • 2/3 cup apricot nectar
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts, optional

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and mist a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Put potatoes in a pot with enough water to cover them by 1 to 2 inches. Bring to a boil and cook for 20 to 25 minutes, until tender. When cool enough to handle, peel and cut into 1/2-inch slices and add to the baking dish.
2. Combine remaining ingredients except nuts in a saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring. (Mixture will thicken.) Pour over sweet potatoes and top with nuts, if desired. Bake for 30 minutes.

Recipe: Lauren Schmitt 

Homemade Cornbread Vegetarian Stuffing


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon white truffle oil
  • 2 leeks, diced
  • 8 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 celery root, peeled and diced
  • 3 apples, cored and diced
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup sherry or port, divided
  • 4 cups crumbled gluten-free cornbread
  • 1 large egg, beaten (can omit for vegans)

1. Heat olive and truffle oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add leeks and sauté for 3 minutes, stirring, until slightly golden. Add celery, celery root, and apple one at a time, cooking for 3 minutes after each addition. Add pecans, seasoning, salt, and pepper and sauté for 2 minutes to infuse the flavors. Pour in 2 tablespoons of sherry and cook another minute. Set mixture aside to cool for 10 minutes.
2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place cornbread in a large bowl and mix in veggies, egg, and remaining sherry. Transfer mixture to a glass baking dish, cover, and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover and brown for 10 more minutes.

Recipe Sally Kravich


Vegan Pumpkin Cheese Cake


  • 2 cups walnuts or pecans
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup dried coconut
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt


  • 2 cups cashews, soaked for 4 hours
  • 1 can pureed or 1 1/2 cups raw pureed pumpkin
  • 6 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup agave nectar
  • 3 tablespoons coconut water or coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger

1. In food processor, pulse all crust ingredients together until sticky. Press mixture into a 9-inch springform pan.
2. Blend filling ingredients in a blender until smooth and creamy. If mixture is too thick, add a bit more coconut water. Pour into crust and freeze for 1 to 2 hours, until firm. Slice while frozen and defrost for 1 hour before serving.

Recipe by Melissa Costello


Apple-Shallot Roasted Turkey

Roasting the herb-rubbed turkey with apples and shallots is the secret to flavorful meat. Extra shallots in the give the gravy a rich, caramelized shallot flavor.


  • 1 10- to 12-pound turkey
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, plus 3 sprigs
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, plus 3 sprigs
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, plus 3 sprigs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds shallots, peeled and halved lengthwise, divided
  • 1 tart green apple, quartered
  • 3 cups water, plus more as needed


  1. Position rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 475°F.
  2. Remove giblets and neck from turkey cavities and reserve for making Turkey Giblet Stock. Place the turkey, breast-side up, on a rack in a large roasting pan; pat dry with paper towels.
  3. Combine oil, chopped parsley, sage, thyme, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the herb mixture all over the turkey, under the skin and onto the breast meat. Place herb sprigs, 6 shallot halves and apple in the cavity. Tuck the wing tips under the turkey. Tie the legs together with kitchen string. Add 3 cups water to the pan.
  4. Roast the turkey until the skin is golden brown, 45 minutes. Remove the turkey from the oven. If using a remote digital thermometer, insert it into the deepest part of the thigh, close to the joint. Cover just the breast with a double layer of foil, cutting as necessary to fit. Scatter the remaining shallots in the pan around the turkey. Reduce oven temperature to 350° and continue roasting until the thermometer (or an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh without touching bone) registers 165°F, 1 to 1 3/4 hours more. If the pan dries out, tilt the turkey to let juices run out of the cavity into the pan and add 1 cup water.
  5. Transfer the turkey to a serving platter (reserve pan juices and shallots) and tent with foil. Make Cider Gravy (recipe follows). Let the turkey rest for 20 minutes. Remove the string and carve.