Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, but several years ago, I started eating gluten free to help support my gut and to alleviate some autoimmune symptoms I was experiencing. So you can imagine how my decision drastically reduced the foods I could eat at Thanksgiving.
Recently, though, I discovered some really delicious ways to make gluten-free alternatives to my favorite Thanksgiving dishes. The flavors are exactly the same (if not better) and I don’t feel any inflammation from all that gluten. Check out some of my favorites below.
First, what exactly is gluten?
Gluten is a protein found in wheat that is difficult to digest. Everyone has some level of gluten sensitivity; the severity just varies per individual.
There is also a big difference between a gluten allergy and a gluten intolerance. For people with a gluten allergy (like Celiac), any contact with gluten can be dangerous. A gluten intolerance (thankfully) is less urgent, but still can cause discomfort ranging from digestive issues to swollen or achy joints. For this reason, if someone tells you that they are intolerant or sensitive to gluten, the correct response would not be to say, “just a little bit won’t hurt you.” Because truthfully, you don’t know if that is true.
Luckily, though, GF ingredients have never been easier to find (and the amount of GF recipes on the internet will astound you). I promise — you won’t even know it’s gone.
Top 3 gluten free Thanksgiving dinner recipes
Before we dive into these delicious GF recipes, I would like to point out that there are Thanksgiving staples that are already gluten free. Turkey and cranberry sauce (canned or homemade) are both gluten-free. Your gravy is gluten free as long as it isn’t made with traditional flour. All fruits and veggies are GF, too. So why not try these three recipes, too, which can help you round out the most delicious Thanksgiving meal?
Easy Gluten-Free Stuffing. No Thanksgiving table is complete without stuffing! Traditional stuffing uses wheat (or white) bread or breadcrumbs. The major swap with this recipe is using gluten-free bread instead. And I promise, with all of the other many flavors in the pan, you’ll never know the gluten is gone.
*Pro-tip from this recipe: toast the bread slices before adding them to the mixture for more flavor and texture!
Paleo Sweet Potato Casserole. Traditionally, sweet potato casserole is gluten-free, but it is also loaded with sugar (from marshmallows and sweeteners). This take on sweet potato casserole is free of gluten, dairy, and refined sugar. Feel good while eating it!
*Pro-tip from this recipe: coconut flour is extra-absorbent. Make sure to measure out the wet ingredients correctly to avoid a dry casserole.
Gluten-Free Green Bean Casserole. Beans are a staple on many Thanksgiving tables, especially where I grew up in the North East. With this recipe, you can get all the delicious flavors of comfort food without sacrificing your health!
*Pro-tip from this recipe: take the extra time to make your own mushroom soup. Condensed soup just can’t compete with the real thing.
We can’t forget about dessert!
You didn’t think I’d forgotten about desserts, did you?! Sure, the main Thanksgiving meal, itself, is easy to make gluten-free, but dessert is known for its decadency, right? Believe it or not, there are some really sweet ways to recreate some staple Thanksgiving desserts sans gluten.
Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler. Combining two of the best pies there are — pecan and pumpkin pie — into a crustless option? Yes, please. This recipe also happens to be dairy free for any lactose-intolerant guests at your table. Feel free to add whipped cream, though!
Quinoa Almond Flour Apple Crisp. Okay hear me out, it may seem weird, but just read the recipe and tell me that it doesn’t sound delicious!
Wishing you the warmest holiday season
No matter what you put on your Thanksgiving table this season, I hope you enjoy the time spent with family, friends, and whoever else you’re with! Don’t forget to check out these delicious Thanksgiving-inspired mocktail recipes, and get some movement in on Friday.