There is no need to let go of your healthy eating habits or to feel deprived this Thanksgiving! There are ways to enjoy your holiday favorites and not have guilt or bloat from doing so.

Here are some creative and festive, revised recipes for two of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes.

Pear, Prosciutto, and Hazelnut Stuffing


3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

4 ounces prosciutto, thinly sliced, cut into ribbons

2 cups onion, chopped

2 cups diced fennel bulb

1/4 cup minced shallot

2 teaspoons minced fresh sage

2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme

1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary

8 cups stale baguette, preferably multi-grain (not sourdough), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 Bosc pears, ripe but firm, chopped

1/3 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts, toasted

1 14-ounce can reduced sodium chicken broth

1/4 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

(Optional) dried cranberries on top


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet oven medium heat. Add prosciutto; cook, stirring, until crispy, about 5 minutes. Drain on a paper towel.
  3. Wipe out the pan and heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, fennel and shallot and cook, stirring, until softened and beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add sage, thyme and rosemary and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Transfer everything to a large bowl and gently stir in bread, pears, parsley, hazelnuts and the prosciutto. Add broth; toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon the stuffing into the prepared baking dish; cover with foil.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes; remove the foil and bake until the top is beginning to crisp, 25 to 30 minutes more.

Maple-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces (about 8 cups)

1/3 cup pure maple syrup

2 tablespoons butter, melted

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Arrange sweet potatoes in an even layer in a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish. Combine maple syrup, butter, lemon juice, salt and pepper in small bowl. Pour the mixture over the sweet potatoes; toss to coat.
  3. Cover and bake the sweet potatoes for 15 minutes. Uncover, stir and cook, stirring every 15 minutes, until tender and starting to brown, 45 to 50 minutes more.

-Emily Freeman


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