Thanksgiving is a day when you’re practically encouraged to break out some elastic waistband pants, gorge yourself on high-calorie foods, and then lounge on the couch until it’s time to dig into leftovers. And while some embrace this as the perfect excuse for a massive cheat meal, others find these temptations nearly as stressful as their in-laws.
Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be that way. With some simple tricks for cutting calorie corners, you can still serve versions of the traditional menu items you and your loved ones crave — and these lighter recipes are so darn tasty, even your pickiest family members won’t complain.
“There’s no doubt that the scents and tastes of certain foods can conjure up mouthwatering memories of holidays gone by,” says Dr. Jacquie Lavin, head of nutrition and research at Slimming World, the U.K. and Ireland’s leading independent slimming organization. “The great news is that you don’t have to give up those foods if you’re trying to keep an eye on your waistline. Lighter versions of your favorite turkey, sweet potato, cranberry sauce, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie recipes can all be on the menu — it’s important to never feel deprived.”
After all, knowing that you’re not only eating healthier yourself but also helping your family to be healthier will give everyone even more to be thankful for this holiday season.