A Healthy And Delicious Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is almost upon us! This year for the first time I'm HOSTING. I'm a leeeeettle bit nervous about messing up the turkey, but mostly I'm excited to spend time in my own home with those I love most in the world. I'll be serving 7 adults in total...not too crazy! This is one of my favorite holidays. It's a time of reflection for me, and a day to truly appreciate my blessings.

Over the past two weeks or so I've been having fun scouring my cookbooks and online sources for recipes and inspiration. I think I've finally got my plan all set! I'm going to make some clean recipes and some more traditional.

For me, this Thanksgiving will be all about putting the 80/20 rule into effect. I plan to fully enjoy my favorites, but you'd better believe you'll be seeing my workout selfie Thursday morning! I will be having my usual amount of what's known in the 21 Day Fix world as "yellows and blues"...in other words, carbs, and fats. Enough to enjoy, but not so much that I feel sick for the rest of the weekend. I will NOT be fasting all day so that I can gorge myself at dinner. This is not the way I eat and I'd much rather go with the usual flow then feel like a mess by 5PM on Thanksgiving day.

I thought I'd post my game plan here in case you need some inspiration! Check back next week for more posts and also via my Instagram and Facebook feeds for real-time posts!

The Calm Before the Storm (and my “office”).

The Calm Before the Storm (and my “office”).

Preparation starts next week. This schedule is a little rough. I've never done this before and I expect to make some changes on the fly, but you'll get the idea!


  • Free range turkey is ordered, and I'll pick it up Monday. How I'm going to find room in my fridge is another story.
  • Tablecloth and napkins ironed, table set, plates (finally I'm using my china!) and silver out
  • Last minute grocery shopping


  • Print out recipes, review Wednesday and Thursday plan for food preparation
  • All serving dishes and utensils out and labeled


  • Make cranberry sauce
  • Prepare turkey dry brine
  • Prep salad ingredients
  • Make compound butter for turkey


  • Early AM: Take turkey out of fridge, Brine
  • AM: Make potatoes (both), and stuffing
  • Noon: Salad assembled, Turkey in oven
  • 2PM Guests arrive. Husband handles alcohol, beverages
  • 2-3 PM Potatoes in oven for warming, warm stuffing, make gravy
  • 3-3:30PM - Last minute table setting, all food out, carve turkey
  • 4PM EAT

I'm listing out my recipe inspiration below. I will likely make changes to some of these, and will absolutely post modifications for you if I do! In the meantime these are all tried and true sources and I can't wait to try out the recipes.

Turkey: http://whatsgabycooking.com/herb-roasted-turkey/

Gravy: http://whatsgabycooking.com/homemade-turkey-gravy/

Traditional Mashed Potatoes: http://whatsgabycooking.com/the-best-mashed-potatoes/

Sweet Potatoes: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2013/11/slow-cooker-garlic-sweet-potato-mash.html

Cranberry Sauce: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2011/11/cranberry-pear-sauce.html

Salad: http://whatsgabycooking.com/fall-harvest-salad/

Stuffing: I'm going to wing this one, stay tuned!

Bread/Rolls: Store Bought

Apps: Thanks Mom!

Dessert: Thanks to my in-laws!

Finally, a reminder. I'll be kicking off a 3 Day Refresh group the week after Thanksgiving. If you DO end up going a little overboard on Thursday or just want a reboot before December, I've got you covered. Order it now so that you are all set to join me for this gentle, healthy cleanse. You can read more about it here.