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9 Nutritious & Delicious Thanksgiving Dishes For Seniors

Check out our list of delicious thanksgiving dishes that will make this year memorable, nutritious and digestible for everyone.

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    Thanksgiving is one of our favorite times of the year. With the change of seasons and the beautiful fall colors, spending time with family and friends around a bountiful table is something we are all grateful for. Opening your home to relatives and hearing laughter echo the halls can be better than any slice of pumpkin pie!

    This year, if you’re still wondering which traditional dishes will be healthy for everyone at the table, this list of delicious thanksgiving dishes will help a lot.


    Foods That Your Seniors Should Avoid

    Components-of-cookies | 9 Nutritious & Delicious Thanksgiving Dishes For Seniors

    As your family members get older, you’ve become more aware of how important their diet is. Researching different foods that can help their memory or heart feels like a natural reflex. These thanksgiving dishes are popular but will do more harm than good for your elderly relatives.



    It’s hard to imagine our thanksgiving meals without butter, but after finding out these side-effects, we’ve banished it from our tables. Linked to raising cholesterol levels and coronary artery disease, it’s easy to make substitutions that don’t sacrifice flavor. You can replace butter in baking with coconut or olive oil.



    Our families are sweet enough that substituting sugar is in everyone’s best interest. Diets high in sugar have been shown to cause many health risks. Diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. An easy sugar substitution is honey. Try adding it into your next smoothie or salad dressing to taste the difference.



    We’ve all heard that diets high in salt can raise blood pressure and impact our hydration levels. Using salt in cooking feels like second nature, and you might not realize how much you use in a regular day. For a healthy replacement, you can increase other seasonings, including garlic, black pepper, or ginger.


    Healthy Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas

    Thanksgiving-day-celebration-dinner-setting-with-traditional-meal-and-food | 9 Nutritious & Delicious Thanksgiving Dishes For Seniors

    Don’t be intimidated by trying these new healthy and fresh thanksgiving dishes. These alternatives might surprise you and become staples for years to follow—all of our substitutions and suggestions prioritize your family’s health without sacrificing flavor.


    1. Roast Turkey

    We understand if you can’t imagine replacing this thanksgiving star dish. Try making herb-crusted stuffed garlic turkey breast this year or simply removing the skin to make it immediately healthier. A 3oz serving of roasted turkey with the skin-on has 6 grams of fat, while a skinless portion only has 2grams. You can also experiment with different proteins and serve chicken or salmon.


    2. Gravy

    A generous serving of gravy over your roasted turkey is a traditional Thanksgiving food. A classic gravy recipe can pack a hidden amount of fat onto your family’s dishes. Consider our dairy and gluten-free gravy recipe, so no one feels left out of the feast.


    3. Superfood Salad

    An easy way to increase the healthy balance of your annual thanksgiving dinner is to prepare a Superfood salad for everyone to enjoy. This salad is colorful and packed full of vitamins and nutrients. With kale as a base, a bowl of this scrumptious compilation can also work to improve cognitive function


    4. Whole Wheat Bread Rolls

    An easy switch on the table this year is white bread rolls to whole wheat. Studies have shown that whole wheat products release B & E vitamins and help prevent dementia and cancer.


    5. Healthy Pumpkin Pie

    We love eating dessert and think you’ll enjoy this healthy pumpkin pie recipe. It uses maple syrup instead of sugar and is delicious from crust to crumb. Pumpkins are a fruit that is an excellent serving of minerals and vitamins.


    Nutritious Thanksgiving Side Dishes

    After cooking new healthy alternatives, these side dishes are still staples for any thanksgiving feast. These all contain a healthy foundation, so we’ve maximized the nutrition potential.


    6. Carrot Soup

    Carrot-soup | 9 Nutritious & Delicious Thanksgiving Dishes For Seniors

    If you like to start your Thanksgiving dinner with soup, try this carrot recipe. Carrots are packed with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. It will make a beautiful addition to your table this year and many to follow with striking color.


    7. Mashed Potatoes

    While potatoes are a starchy vegetable, you can make a similar substitution with cauliflower or sweet potatoes. This classic Thanksgiving recipe will surprise your family with a velvety texture and sneaky nutrition. Cauliflower and sweet potato have very different benefits. Cauliflower helps with digestion, while sweet potatoes have anti-inflammatory properties.


    8. No Sugar Cranberry Sauce

    Many cranberry sauce recipes will add sugar due to these tiny fruits’ tart properties. Instead of adding sugar, our recipe uses dates and apple cider vinegar for a tang of sweetness you won’t forget. Dates are a fantastic punch of protein and antioxidants for everyone around the table to enjoy.


    9. No Butter Green Bean Casserole

    We love getting creative with our thanksgiving dishes, and this no butter recipe still delivers the health benefits of green beans while accompanying your meal. Green beans are excellent for maintaining gut and liver health across all generations.


    What 12 Oaks Is Thankful For

    Smiling-Senior-Friends-Having-Fun | 9 Nutritious & Delicious Thanksgiving Dishes For Seniors

    Outside of these delicious Thanksgiving dishes, the 12 Oaks family of communities has only grown stronger over the past year. As we reflect on the changes we’ve made to improve our communities, we are overwhelmed with gratitude.

    Our family consists of a diverse range of seniors with vibrant life stories. We love hearing their memories and helping them with our Symphony of Life® program to extend their cognitive abilities for years to come.


    If you have questions about Thanksgiving dishes or any topics discussed here, connect with us and learn more. 

    At 12 Oaks, our team of caring professionals is dedicated to keeping residents safe, engaged, and connected to their families and friends while still leading fulfilling lives. 12 Oaks community is an ideal place to enjoy the encore season of life.

    For questions or to book a scheduled personalized tour, don’t hesitate to contact us



    If you are looking for the next stage of life environment, consider joining our family at 12 Oaks Senior Living Community. We’re up to date on the latest news, trends, and research. Our blog is one of the valuable resources we provide for our readers to review – at their convenience. Contact us today to schedule a virtual tour.




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    If you're interested in learning more about 12 Oaks Senior Living, please call 214-871-2155 or click here to schedule a personalized tour.