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Fall Nutrition – Healthy, Fresh, Seasonal, and Delicious Thanksgiving Recipes

Fall nutrition with healthy Thanksgiving recipes

With Thanksgiving and the festive season soon approaching, it is time for family dinners and cooking wholesome dishes. Making it healthier and more delicious will only add to the guilt-free enjoyable factor.

November is a great time to consume fresh seasonal rainbow-colored vegetables and fruits. While pumpkins, Brussels sprouts, sweet peas and cucumbers, and squashes are common in November, it is also the time when sweet potatoes are at their peak. The fall’s fruit harvest includes winter citruses like kumquats, grapefruit, and clementines, along with fresh cranberries, apples, and pears.

Thanksgiving dinners are all about classic dishes, huge quantities, and relishing the leftovers later. By using fresh seasonal produce and cooking it the right way, the festive dishes will not derail your healthy eating goals. 

Here are two simple, delicious, and healthy recipes – one savory and one dessert, using the fresh Fall seasonal produce.

Butternut Squash Salad

Eating adequate amounts of vegetables and fruits can be boring. For those with a real struggle to eat healthily, salads are a great option. They can be satiating as they are rich in fiber, helping with weight loss issues, regulating blood glucose and cholesterol levels, and reducing the risk of acquiring cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. With butternut squash and cranberries in season, this salad is a great way of including fresh seasonal produce for your Thanksgiving dinner menu. Also, November is observed as Spinach and Squash Month, so what a great way of celebrating the fresh produce.


  • Butternut squash – 1
  • Chopped red onion – 1 cup 
  • Olive oil – 2 tbsp
  • Fresh spinach – 3 ounces, stems removed and leaves torn into bite-size pieces
  • Cranberries – ⅓ cup (fresh, dried, or sweetened) 
  • Chopped pecans – ⅓ cup (Optional)


  • Preheat the oven to 230 degrees C (450 degrees F).
  • Clean the butternut squash and cut it into 1-inch cubes.
  • Combine the squash cubes, olive oil, and onion in a bowl. Add salt and pepper if needed.
  • Layer them on a greased baking sheet.
  • Roast for around 25 – 30 minutes until the squash is tender and starts to brown.
  • In a serving bowl, combine the squash mixture, spinach, cranberries, and pecans, and toss well.
  • Serve warm.


  • If needed, add some dijon mustard, honey, or balsamic vinegar for taste.
  • Top it with crumbled feta cheese and other nuts like almonds or walnuts.

This recipe makes 6 servings.

Nutritional Facts: (for 1 serving)

  • Calories – 198
  • Protein – 3 g
  • Carbohydrates – 30 g
  • Fat – 10 g
  • Dietary Fiber – 5 g

Sweet Potato Casserole

Healthy casserole dishes are a great way of cooking larger quantities of food for your guests. Sweet potatoes are versatile vegetables. While they make great savory dishes, they also make delicious desserts. With November observed as Sweet Potato Awareness Month, here is a quick sweet potato casserole dessert with a pecan topping that can be cooked in 45 minutes and will be the best way to complete your table and the Thanksgiving dinner.


  • Sweet potatoes – 4 cups peeled, cubed 
  • Eggs – 2 large, beaten
  • White sugar – ½ cup
  • Milk – ½ cup
  • Butter – 4 tbsp, softened
  • Vanilla extract – ½ tsp
  • Salt – ½ tsp

For the topping:

  • Brown sugar – ½ cup
  • All-purpose flour – ⅓ cup
  • Butter – 3 tbsp, softened
  • Chopped pecans – ½ cup


Preheat the oven to 165 degrees C (325 degrees F).

Preparing the Sweet Potatoes:

  • Take a medium saucepan. Add the sweet potatoes to it and cover it with water.
  • Cook until tender.
  • Drain the water and transfer the cooked sweet potatoes to another bowl.
  • Mash them with a fork.
  • Add the eggs and combine well.
  • Add the milk, butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Mix well.
  • Transfer the mix to a greased baking dish.

For the topping:

  • Take a medium bowl and combine the brown sugar and flour well.
  • Add pieces of butter and mix until it is all coarse and slightly held together. Do not overmix.
  • Add the pecans and combine well.
  • Sprinkle the pecan mix over the sweet potato.
  • Bake in the oven for around 30 minutes or until the top layer is light brown.


  • The sweet potato mix and topping mix can be made separately and stored for almost 2 days without cooking. On the big day, layer the mix in the baking tray and bake it until cooked.
  • Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 – 5 days. Reheat when needed by covering the casserole with foil.
  • The sweet potatoes can also be roasted until caramelized and then mashed smoothly without boiling them.
  • Spices like nutmeg and cinnamon will add an extra flavor to the wholesome dish.

This recipe makes 12 servings.

Nutritional Facts: (for 1 serving)

  • Calories – 226
  • Protein – 3 g
  • Carbohydrates – 30 g
  • Fat – 11 g
  • Dietary Fiber – 2 g

Images – for representative purposes only

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Post Author: Admin