Hosting Thanksgiving this year, or stuck with the task of bringing a few dishes to the party? With this list of 31 Paleo-friendly Thanksgiving side dishes, we promise that you can’t go wrong this November.
Lots of people have difficulty sticking to the Paleo diet during Thanksgiving. That’s because so many of the traditional Thanksgiving dishes are heavy in carbs and loaded with cream. No wonder we get so tired after a big, starchy meal!
Luckily, a few easy swaps can make this Thanksgiving feast not only delicious but extremely healthy, too. Whip up meaty, grain-free stuffing and mash up parsnips instead of potatoes. If you’re craving your carb-heavy favorites, bake up some cornbread or Paleo biscuits made with coconut flour!
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Thanksgiving is never complete without lots of Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, butternut squash dishes and cranberry dishes, and these recipes let the original ingredients shine without any added sugar, grains or dairy.
Whatever your holiday must-haves, we’ve got all your basics covered – plus a few unique Thanksgiving side dishes that we’re sure you’ll welcome to the table again and again.
Paleo Grain-Free Stuffing
Made with toasted almonds, sweet apples, earthy mushrooms, fatty meats and warm sage, this stuffing is so packed with familiar autumn flavors that you won’t even miss the bread.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Paleo Grain-Free Stuffing
Maple Brussels Sprouts
This simple, five-ingredient recipe is the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving table. With salty bacon fat and sweet maple syrup, these tender sprouts are suitable even for the pickiest eaters.
Recipe: Paleo Porn | Maple Brussels Sprouts
Tart Cranberry Sauce
Cook down fresh cranberries with a little orange juice and stevia extract until it’s the thick sauce we all know and love on Thanksgiving.
Recipe: Primal Palate | Tart Cranberry Sauce
Paleo Creamed Spinach
With full-fat coconut cream instead of heavy cream, this Paleo-friendly take on a classic is also Low FODMAP-friendly with a few extra swap suggestions.
Recipe: Fed and Fit | Paleo Creamed Spinach
Roasted Garlic Autumn Mash
Swap your boring mashed potatoes for this colorful stunner. With parsnips, carrots, lots of roasted garlic and a little homemade bone broth, you’ll be hard pressed to find a tastier mash for your Thanksgiving crowd.
Recipe: Nom Nom Paleo | Roasted Garlic Autumn Mash
Maple Rosemary Whipped Yams
In case this sweet and savory dish didn’t sound delish enough, it’s topped with a batch of homemade cinnamon candied pecans for an autumn dish that can’t be missed.
Recipe: PaleOMG | Maple Rosemary Whipped Yams
Grain-Free Dinner Rolls
Pass the rolls, please? This grain-free version of a Thanksgiving staple, made with coconut flour and tapioca starch, bakes up in about a half an hour.
Recipe: The Preppy Paleo | Grain-Free Dinner Rolls
Sweet Potato Soufflé
The difference between a good soufflé and an amazing one lies in the thickness of the whipped egg whites. Master this technique and you’ll have a sweet, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth side dish that no one can refuse.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Sweet Potato Soufflé
Easy Paleo Gravy
Drizzle everything on your plate with a little of this Paleo-friendly gravy, thickened with cauliflower instead of the traditional flour-based roux.
Recipe: Cook Eat Paleo | Easy Paleo Gravy
Coconut flour helps give this “cornbread” the mealy texture it needs, while a touch of honey adds a little sweetness!
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Paleo Cornbread
Bacon and Chive Sweet Potato Biscuits
This Paleo take on cheddar biscuits is made with strips of salty bacon and its rendered fat, ensuring lots of porky flavor in every bite.
Recipe: PaleOMG | Bacon and Chive Sweet Potato Biscuits
Sweet Potatoes Coconut Cream Au Gratin
Dig into this creamy version of a classic, made with only a handful of ingredients and a few Thanksgiving-forward dried herbs.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Sweet Potatoes Coconut Cream Au Gratin
Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Bacon
This simple and delicious dish speaks for itself, and you can pull it together in under 30 minutes flat.
Recipe: A Healthy Life for Me | Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Bacon
Roasted Turmeric Cauliflower
This warm, anti-inflammatory dish will add a bit of colorful health to your plate. Try drizzling with a little tahini or lemon juice for a nice creamy element.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Roasted Turmeric Cauliflower
Garlic Maple Sweet Potato Casserole
The secret to this tangy, sweet-savory casserole must-have is the dairy-free yogurt, which mixes with roasted sweet potatoes and chopped fresh ginger for an unforgettable flavor combination.
Recipe: Healthful Pursuit | Garlic Maple Sweet Potato Casserole
Roasted Butternut Squash with Duck Fat, Garlic and Rosemary
Everything tastes better cooked in duck fat, and this savory butternut squash dish is no exception.
Recipe: Cook Eat Paleo | Roasted Butternut Squash with Duck Fat, Garlic and Rosemary
Roasted Honey Glazed Carrots
What’s Thanksgiving without this sweet veggie? Honey and olive oil give these beauties their sheen, and a little chopped parsley adds a pop of color.
Recipe: Delicious Meets Healthy | Roasted Honey Glazed Carrots
Healthy Cauliflower “Mac and Cheese”
Bite-sized pieces of cauliflower act as the vehicle for the creamy homemade “cheese” sauce in this recipe, made with cashews, nutritional yeast, almond milk and mustard.
Recipe: PaleoHacks | Healthy Cauliflower “Mac and Cheese”
Roasted Mushrooms in a Browned Butter, Garlic and Thyme Sauce
These buttery mushrooms are exactly why people say beige food tastes the best! Use your favorite fungal variety for this quick, easy recipe that only takes 30 minutes.
Recipe: Closet Cooking | Roasted Mushrooms in a Browned Butter, Garlic and Thyme Sauce
Thanksgiving Savory Bacon Butternut Squash Soufflé
These individual ramekins of holiday goodness are perfect for impressing your dinner guests – but only if you’re sure about your final head count!
Recipe: PaleOMG | Thanksgiving Savory Bacon Butternut Squash Soufflé
Acorn Squash Rings with Walnuts and Dried Apricots
Give acorn squash a little time in the limelight with these gorgeous, roasted squash rings stuffed with garam masala-seasoned walnuts.
Recipe: The Healthy Family and Home | Acorn Squash Rings with Walnuts and Dried Apricots
Paleo Bacon and Sage Roasted Winter Squash Seeds
We know you’re planning to make at least some kind of squash for Thanksgiving. Save the seeds of your favorite variety and roast them with a little bacon and sage for a surprisingly tasty and classy Thanksgiving snack.
Recipe: The Bacon Princess | Paleo Bacon and Sage Roasted Winter Squash Seeds
Crispy Roasted Rosemary Sweet Potatoes
Few dishes are as appealing as super thin, coin-like slices of colorful sweet potatoes. Use a mandolin to get these slices even and uniformly cooked.
Recipe: The Comfort of Cooking | Crispy Roasted Rosemary Sweet Potatoes
Balsamic Rosemary Roasted Vegetables
This medley of squash, broccoli, zucchini, bell peppers and garlic are flavored with rosemary and balsamic vinegar to give a little extra autumn flair to your everyday roasted veggies.
Recipe: Oatmeal with a Fork | Balsamic Rosemary Roasted Vegetables
BBQ Bacon Onion Bombs
Bacon-wrapped onions stuffed with beef sound amazing all on their own, but the real star of this dish is the homemade Paleo barbeque sauce, which we fully expect you to be extra liberal with.
Recipe: Fed and Fit | BBQ Bacon Onion Bombs
Roasted Radishes with Fresh Herbs
Radishes aren’t just for salads anymore. Try coaxing out its flavors in this low-carb, keto-friendly version of roasted red potatoes.
Recipe: Healthful Pursuit | Roasted Radishes with Fresh Herbs
Paleo Garlic Mashed Parsnips
Swap your high-calorie mashed potatoes recipe for this healthy parsnip version, tenderized in a slow cooker.
Recipe: Paleoaholic | Paleo Garlic Mashed Parsnips
Grain-Free Cranberry Pecan Pilaf
Loaded with kale, butternut squash and cauliflower florets, this super healthy take on a classic will delight vegans at your table, too.
Recipe: Healthful Pursuit | Grain-Free Cranberry Pecan Pilaf
Baked Eggplant Fries with Rosemary and Thyme
Need a little crunch to counterbalance those soft foods? Try these crispy eggplant fries, dressed with the necessary warm herbs for the season.
Recipe: Paleo Grubs | Baked Eggplant Fries with Rosemary and Thyme
Paleo Loaded Mashed Potato Bake
If you’re tasked with bringing the potatoes this year, why not pull out all the stops and make this epic casserole loaded with bacon, chives and garlic? White sweet potatoes help maintain the integrity of the dish while staying completely Paleo.
Recipe: Plaid and Paleo | Paleo Loaded Mashed Potato Bake
Pumpkin-Stuffed Bacon-Wrapped Dates
This autumn version of devils on horseback includes pumpkin pie spices with the pumpkin purée, which are carefully piped into each Medjool date. Sure it might be a little fussy, but it’s worth it for the best, sweet-salty starter your Thanksgiving table has ever seen.
Recipe: Civilized Caveman Cooking | Pumpkin-Stuffed Bacon-Wrapped Dates
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