Entertaining on a Diet – Thanksgiving


Thanksgiving is coming up pretty soon.  We’re hosting my family (all nine of us!) here at my place.  (It’s a far cry from the times that we’ve hosted twenty or more for a sit-down meal, or worked on SCA feasts for 100+!)

I’m also trying to come up with a menu that balances my family’s traditional foods with something diet-friendly for DH and I.  Oh, yeah…and keep it easy!

The family will be coming over at 3:30, and I’m hoping to have dinner around 5:00.  This is what I’ve got, so far:


Appetizers: (Sorry, Dad, you’re not getting vast quantities of potato chips or bacon-wrapped pineapple this time.)

  • Salsa and mini multigrain tortilla chips (16 to a SmartCarb)
  • Chicken, mango and veggies in rice paper wraps with Dipping Sauce. I’ll post the recipe with the nutritional information soon, but right now I’l calculating roughly 1 PowerFuel, 1 SmartCarb and 1 extra (dipping sauce) per roll, which I’ll cut into about 4 pieces)



  • Green Salad (my sister’s bringing this. I’ve asked her to put any extras – cheese, croutons, bacon, dried fruit, dressings etc. on the side so everyone can serve themselves);
  • Green Beans (Mum’s taking care of these – just simple, steamed green beans, with butter on the side, and maybe a bit of garlic for extra flavour);
  • Carrots – probably roasted with nothing more than cooking spray and dried basil;
  • Beets – definitely roasted (also pre-cooked and pre-peeled, bought from Costco);
  • New Potatoes –b oiled, with my Mum’s ‘famous’ sour-cream sauce (made from low fat sour cream) on the side, along with some chives, for extra flavour;
  • Homemade multi-grain baguette;
  • Turkey and stuffing (gotta love those pre-stuffed, cook from frozen turkeys – and my turkey oven, which mean that I have a ‘spare’ oven to use for the veggies!);  
  • Gravy (bought ready-made from the local grocery store);
  • Cranberry sauce; and
  • a pickle plate.  (None of Grandma’s Spiced Crab Apples, unfortunately, as I haven’t been able to find her recipe, but probably some dills, bread & butter pickles, and spiced pickled beets.)



This is what’s giving me the most trouble.  I want to stick to something fairly healthy, but reflective of the season.  I could do a simple batch of pumpkin squares (flat sheet cake), but I’m leaning towards baked peaches ‘stuffed’ with gingersnaps and/or a low sugar apple crisp.


Oh, yeah.  The kicker?  We’re supposed to be out at a friend’s all day the day before, playing board games!

But we’re both off early on the Friday, so we can get some stuff prepped early.  I’m thinking bread, peel the carrots…  You know, maybe this won’t be too bad!

Besides, we’re planning to do our celebrating on Sunday, which means I’ll have Monday off for recovering and – if my feet aren’t too sore – making soup!


Speaking of…Coming Soon:  A Trio of ‘free’ Veggie Soups

Pictures to be added later!

Happy Thanksgiving, folks!

Northern Sunset


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