The holidays are an amazing time of the year for family and for food. Yet, they can also be challenging to a degree for those of us following a specific diet or lifestyle, such as anyone on the Paleo diet.
But, there are solutions, and some awesome ones at that.
In particular, there are some great Paleo holiday recipes out there that are a perfect fit for your family dinner table. These recipes come from food bloggers and range from the simple to the complex, as well as from the traditional to the unusual.
These recipes would also be perfect for any non-Paleo family members as well. In fact, most of them simply seem like yummy variations of traditional holiday fare.
So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the recipes. In most cases, these recipes come from sites that are dedicated to Paleo food. This means that you can follow the link back to their site to find Paleo recipes for any occasion.
Simple Paleo Herb Gravy
Gravy is an essential part of dinner both at Thanksgiving and at Christmas. As such, you need a recipe that consistently produces perfect gravy that is also fairly easy and Paleo. This Herb Gravy is one perfect example. Regardless of your audience, this recipe is sure to please.
While the recipe is for the gravy only, the author also offers a link to the other dish in the image, which is mashed cauliflower. The two pair together naturally, so you might want to make both at the same time.
Perfect Smoked Turkey
Smoked turkey isn’t really the traditional approach for the holidays but this is still one of the great Paleo holiday recipes out there, especially if you’re looking for a something a little different. This Perfect Smoked Turkey is surprisingly easy to make, even if you’ve never thought about smoking a turkey before.
In fact, the recipe provides a decent amount of background information, so that you know exactly what you’re doing throughout the process. There are also some great pictures of the various steps, which are worth checking out.
Best Ever Thanksgiving Stuffing
In keeping with the theme, here’s another critical recipe that you’re going to need. This time it’s for the Best Ever Thanksgiving Stuffing. Now, whether or not this stuffing truly is the best is a topic up for considerable debate. In fact, this isn’t even the only example of thanksgiving stuffing in this list. Nevertheless, there can be no doubt that the stuffing does look amazing.
The recipe is also a meat-based stuffing and that alone would make it a particularly appealing choice for many people. The stuffing would also end up being pretty filling and a great way to get some extra protein.
A second option stuffing is this Thanksgiving Stuffing. Visually it looks quite different and the focus isn’t the same either. In this case, the stuffing is bread-based, taking advantage of a type of Paleo cornbread. This would create a much lighter and more traditional stuffing option.
Honestly though, you could really go with either choice. Some people may prefer the meat-based stuffing, while others may want something that is a little more traditional. Either way, the choice is yours.
Sausage, Cranberry and Apple Stuffing
There was no shortage of great Paleo holiday recipes for stuffing and I found it challenging to narrow them down to just a few for this list. This Sausage, Cranberry and Apple Stuffing is somewhat similar to the first stuffing recipe that I mentioned above, in that the recipe is meat-based rather than bread-based.
Nevertheless, there are also some key differences that make this recipe stand out. I particularly love the combination of flavors that you get from the cranberry and apple. Plus, the final dish ends up looking really amazing as well.
Zesty Paleo Meatloaf
If you’re looking for a meat-based holiday dish, then you can’t go wrong with this Zesty Paleo Meatloaf. As the name suggests, this meatloaf has a slightly unusual flavor profile, so it may not taste exactly as you might expect. This isn’t a bad thing though because meatloaf can get pretty boring sometimes.
Not only does the meatloaf end up looking cool but it seems like it would taste good as well. In fact, the recipe gets a large number of positive reviews, which just reinforces that concept. Even if you aren’t a big fan of meatloaf, this recipe is certainly worth trying out.
Turkey Sweet Potato Casserole
This Turkey Sweet Potato Casserole is one recipe option that would work great for the holidays as well as at other times during the year. The meal is also designed to be good for weight loss and easy to prepare at the same time. It’s easy to see how this dish could be served as part of a Thanksgiving or a Christmas meal if you chose to, especially as it looks so vibrant on the plate.
Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Bacon
Bacon is somewhat debatable when it comes to the Paleo diet, with some people claiming that you can eat it and others saying that you can’t. As such, this Maple Roasted Sweet Potatoes recipe is likely to be somewhat controversial. Nevertheless, if you do happen to include bacon as part of your Paleo diet then this recipe is certainly one that you can’t go past.
If nothing else, the dish does look amazing and who doesn’t love bacon? The flavor profile is also a perfect match to the holiday season, while the recipe is also easy to prepare.
Rosemary Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Onions
While we’re talking about sweet potatoes, this Rosemary Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Onions recipe is another option. The recipe is interesting because it is incredibly simple. In fact, it contains just 6 ingredients and most of those are obvious from the title alone.
Nevertheless, the recipe is still impressive, especially as the flavors tend to work together so well.
Sausage Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
We often turn to traditional dishes for holiday meals but these Sausage Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are a great reminder that there are other options. The flavors here are a good choice for holiday meals and for colder evenings in general. At the same time, the recipe is a perfect choice for anyone on a Paleo diet, either as part of a meal or as a snack.
Baked Stuffed Pumpkin
If you're thinking about something a little bit more unusual, then this Baked Stuffed Pumpkin is a good choice. Personally, I love the color combination and it's nice to see a pumpkin-based dish that stands out on the table. Like the previous recipe, this dish heavily takes advantage of meat, which really does make it perfect for anybody on the Paleo diet.
Pumpkin Bacon and Chive Biscuits
These Pumpkin Bacon and Chive Biscuits are a interesting holiday choice if you’re a little bit sick of basic biscuits. At the same time, the flavors chosen work really well together and the ingredients result in biscuits that look fairly cool as well.
Now, the recipe does contain bacon, which is somewhat debatable under Paleo. However, you could probably leave the bacon out entirely and still end up with biscuits that look and taste amazing.
Paleo Cornbread Muffins
These Paleo Cornbread Muffins manage to look similar to what you would normally find on the holiday table but the underlying recipe is certainly Paleo. Needless to say, the muffins aren't actually cornbread but the creator makes it clear that the taste is very similar. A more technically correct name for them would be 'coconut flour muffins' and it sounds like many people call these that instead.
But, regardless of what you call them, the muffins do look amazing.
3-Ingredient Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry sauce is a classic addition to a holiday meal and is too important to miss out on. This 3-Ingredient Cranberry Sauce recipe shows that cranberry sauce is still easy to make even if you are on a Paleo diet. Additionally, the author also offers a few different variations for making your sauce a little bit different.
Asian Green Beans
These Asian Green Beans are another interesting holiday option. They are particularly great because the recipe is on the unusual side and the taste profile isn’t what most people would expect. Additionally, the recipe itself is easy to prepare and would look great on the table.
Soft Ginger Molasses Cookies
We can’t talk about great Paleo holiday recipes without including at least some sweet options. There was no shortage of these online, as we do all tend to love our desserts. Nevertheless, I was particularly taken with these Soft Ginger Molasses Cookies.
In many ways, cookies end up being a holiday staple, even though we vary considerably in the specific recipes and types of cookies that we make. In this case, the cookies are soft, a little chewy and also have a bit of a spicy kick to them. All of those aspects can really make them a good dessert option or even a snack during the week.
Cranberry-Lemon Upside Down Cake
Another sweet option is this Cranberry-Lemon Upside Down Cake. My favorite thing about this recipe is the flavors, as you’d end up with a fairly sharp dish, without the overwhelming sweetness that is present in many upside down cakes.
If you’re following a Paleo diet for weight loss, then you may want to be careful about how much you eat of this dish. Nevertheless, the cake makes for an amazing treat and the flavors are perfectly in line with the season.
Pumpkin Chocolate Cheesecake
This Pumpkin Chocolate Cheesecake is a great reminder that a Paleo diet doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on amazing food. In fact, this cheesecake recipe suits a range of different diet types, as it is also vegan, grain free and gluten free. For that matter, the recipe doesn’t even require any cooking.
Yet, despite all of those aspects, the end product is still a sweet treat that looks and tastes amazing.
Sweet Potato Pecan Pie
Another sweet option for your holidays is this Sweet Potato Pecan Pie, which ends up looking both unusual and appealing at the same time. From start to finish, there is a bit of work in this dish but it isn't a huge amount. Plus, the end product is certainly worth the time that goes into it.
Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
I mentioned molasses cookies earlier and these Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies are a variation on that same theme. One of the biggest differences is that these cookies have a stronger focus on being chewy, although the inclusion of ginger is another appealing aspect.
Honestly, I’m not sure which I prefer out of the two cookie recipes, but they are both great Paleo holiday recipes and are likely to be a popular choice among family and friends.
I’m a big fan of pecan pie, so this Pecan Pie/Tart is one recipe that I particularly like. Now, unlike most other recipes on this list, the author of this one aims to stay as close to Paleo as possible, rather than following the diet strictly. As a result, it’s worth checking the ingredients first to make sure the recipe fits in with your own approach to Paleo.
Honestly, that practice is a good idea for any Paleo recipe, simply because people vary so much in their interpretations of Paleo. Regardless, this dessert is still likely to be a popular option and would also be a great fit for anybody on a low-carb diet.
Paleo Bread Pudding
A bread pudding is one recipe that you wouldn’t expect to find as part of a Paleo diet. But, then again, food bloggers are nothing if not creative. So, this Paleo Bread Pudding offers a perfect way to get the taste and the texture of a bread pudding, while still being entirely Paleo.
The recipe itself is designed so that you make it from basics, so you cook the bread as well. However, there are also specific instructions that detail the steps needed just to create the pudding if you already have Paleo bread at hand. That type of flexibility is always great when you’re looking for recipes.
Paleo and Vegan Apple Crisp
To round off this list of great Paleo holiday recipes, we’re going to finish with this Paleo and Vegan Apple Crisp. This recipe is one of my personal favorites and it is given with two different topping options. Both toppings are Paleo but you might pick one over the other based on personal preference or the ingredients that you have at hand.
Either way, the finished product would be amazing after a holiday dinner or even just as dessert one day in the week.
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Out of all these great Paleo holiday recipes, what caught your eye the most?