Chef Meg's Decadent, Delicious (and Healthy!) Thanksgiving Menus

By , SparkPeople Blogger

An Entire Thanksgiving Meal--for 400 Calories!

As you know, the typical Thanksgiving meal can include more calories than some of us eat in two days (more than 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat, according to the Caloric Control Council)! Two years ago, I created SparkPeople's 500-Calorie Thanksgiving Feast. This year, I did even better. Not only do you get 7 brand-new recipes for Thanksgiving (plus several recipes and ideas from "The SparkPeople Cookbook"), but you get three sample menus. Thanks to my slimmed down but flavor-packed recipes, you can feast even if you aren't willing to blow your calorie budget. Would you believe that you can eat five different dishes, including dessert, for about 400 calories? 

I hope these recipes will soon become family favorites and healthy staples on your Thanksgiving table.

400-Calorie Trim Thanksgiving

500-Calorie Thanksgiving Dinner

600-Calorie Thanksgiving Feast

Want more recipes? Keep reading!


Chef Meg's Roasted Squash Soup 128 calories, 3 g fat, 6 g fiber
Chef Meg's Roasted Vegetable Soup 150 calories, 3 g fat, 7 g fiber
Chef Meg's Pumpkin Soup with Toasted Pumpkin Seeds 88 calories, 4 g fat, 2 g fiber
Chilled Curry-Carrot Soup with Citrus Yogurt* 160 calories, 4 g fat, 6 g fiber

Side dishes: starches and whole grains

Chef Meg's Vegetable and Fruit Stuffing 78 calories, 1 g fat, 2 g fiber
Chef Meg's Roasted Root Vegetables* 82 calories, 2 g fat, 3 g fiber
Chef Meg's Whole Wheat Couscous with Spinach and Squash 228 calories, 2 g fat, 10 g fiber
Chef Meg's Herbed Bulgur and Lentil Salad* 160 calories, 7 g fat, 6 g fiber
Chef Meg's Vegetable Risotto 220 calories, 8 g fat, 4 g fiber
Baked Lemon Spiced Rice* 142 calories, 3 g fat, 2 g fiber
Farro Arugula Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette* 240 calories, 13 g fat, 5 g fiber
Roasted Red Potatoes with Garlic Herb Oil* 94 calories, 4 g fat, 2 g fiber
Wheat Berry and Broccoli Salad* 138 calories, 5 g fat, 5 g fiber
Wild Rice with Roasted Shallots and Garlic* 97 calories, 0 g fat, 2 g fiber

Side dishes: vegetables

NEW: Chef Meg's Carrot-Cranberry Salad 87 calories, 0 g fat, 4 g fiber
Chef Meg's Easy Steamed Vegetable Packets* 54 calories, 0 g fat, 2 g fiber
NEW: Chef Meg's Escarole Salad with Gorgonzola-Walnut Apple Crisps 161 calories, 11 g fat, 2 g fiber
NEW: Chef Meg's Pumpkin Butter Acorn Squash 63 calories, 0 g fat, 3 g fiber
Chef Meg's Roasted Beet Salad 189 calories,  13 g fat, 4 g fiber
NEW: Chef Meg’s Creamy Corn Pudding 157 calories, 4 g fat, 4 g fiber
Braised Spinach with Pine Nuts* 32 calories,  2 g fat, 2 g fiber
Braised Swiss Chard with Beans* 168 calories,  2 g fat, 13 g fiber
Grapefruit-Pear Salad with Fennel* 171 calories,  8 g fat, 6 g fiber
Green Bean Casserole* 96 calories, 1 g fat, 4 g fiber
Roasted Asparagus* 30 calories, 0 g fat, 3 g fiber
Sauteed Cumin Carrots* 75 calories, 3 g fat, 3 g fiber
Lunch Box Carrot Slaw with Apples* 90 calories, 1 g fat, 4 g fiber
Spinach Salad with Cherries and Pomegranate Vinaigrette* 200 calories, 13 g fat, 4 g fiber
Trio of Grilled Vegetables with Balsamic Glaze* 64 calories, 4 g fat, 2 g fiber

Main dishes and accoutrements:

Chef Meg's Herb Roasted Turkey*  167.3 calories, 5.8 g fat
Cornish Hens with Apple-Pecan Stuffing*  252.8 calories, 10.0 g
Chef Meg's Tofu-Squash Stew  296.0 calories, 15.5 g fat
Chef Meg's Apple Cider Gravy  20.0 calories, 0.0 g fat
Chef Meg's Cranberry Relish  42.7 calories, 0.0 g fat
Chef Meg's Caramelized Onions*  26.4 calories, 0.6 g fat
Chef Meg's Herb Roasted Garlic  26.8 calories, 1.6 g fat
NEW: Chef Meg's No Added Sugar Pumpkin-Apple Butter  19.9 calories, 0.2 g fat


NEW: Chef Meg's Cranberry-Orange Creme Brulee  134.2 calories, 6.3 g fat
Chef Meg's Sweet Potato Tarts  151.1 calories, 2.0 g fat
Chef Meg's Mini Apple Tarts*  124.2 calories, 4.1 g fat
NEW: Chef Meg's Nutty Baked Apples with Raisins (Diabetic Friendly)  119.7 calories, 4.5 g fat
Chef Meg's Pumpkin Dip  31.7 calories, 1.7 g fat
Chef Meg's Spice Cookies  61.1 calories, 2.6 g fat
Chef Meg's Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix*  8.9 calories, 0.3 g fat
Chef Meg's 'Seedy' Pumpkin Pie  168.4 calories, 7.2 g fat
Chef Meg's Petite Pecan Tarts  102.7 calories, 5.2 g fat
* recipes available in "The SparkPeople Cookbook: Love Your Food, Lose the Weight"

Which of these recipes will be on your Thanksgiving table this year?
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I will most probably try these recipes after Thanksgiving and Christmas so that I don't suffer the possibility of being killed for tweaking the recipes to ensure they are healthier!!
Thank you for the pictures and the calorie content because that makes it easier for me all around, too.
Happy Thanksgiving Chef Meg!! Report
thanks for the Recipes.. i have no problem staying under 300 calories for Tday dinner.. i dont like mashed potatoes and gravy. i dont eat vegetables.. i dont care for turkey.. so just a few bites and i am good for that. no pumpkin pie.. either.. Holidays are easy for me.. its regular every day life that gets me.
Thanks for all the recipe links. I can't wait to make several of them... It makes it so much easier to put together a gluten-free, corn-free Thanksgiving menu. Does anyone out there in Spark land know of other good gluten free sources? I'm new to this! Report
Thank you for sharing all these wonderful recipes, I am going to try them out. Report
Great blog. I love seeing the nutrition facts for all the recipes at a glance for mix-and-match. Our Thanksgiving was in October and we've been working on slimming down favourite recipes for a couple of years now. Will definitely try some of these for Christmas.. Report
The Canadian Thanksgiving is in October and this year for the first time in many years I was cooking a turkey. I took most of the recipes for the meal from Spark....including garlic mashed potatoes which were very yummy.

And now I am planning a Christmas eve meal using many recipes from Spark..... Report
I hate to cook, so we go out to eat on Turkey Day. LOL Report
Thanks for sharing these with us. I have already made your cranberry-orange creme brulee. It was fantastic! Had it four days in a row!!! Love the warm cranberries. Report
This is awesome!! Report
Wow thank you so much I really needed these recipes to make myself and my family a healthy Thanksgiving dinner..
Huggles Report
Wow! I can't wait to try so many of these out!
THANKS! Report
I use portion control and it works for me! I'm also diabetic so I know what I can eat and what I can't and the wisdom to know the difference! Report
This is awesome. It's a shame I can't try it out. I'd love to lighten up holiday dishes, but my family would likely beat me to death with a frozen turkey if I tried them. Last year I broached the topic of a healthier pumpkin pie with my mom and was told in return: "No, we're not messing with it. I know what I like. Don't screw around with the recipes. I get this once a year and it's being made the way I like it." Same goes with Christmas and Easter. Once again, I'll be fighting the temptation to overeat a host of unhealthy comfort foods when I'm surrounded by family members doing so. *sigh* Report
I love all these recipes. I don't know which recipes I'll use, yet, but I'm sure I'll use several. Report
I love all these recipes. I don't know which recipes I'll use, yet, but I'm sure I'll use several. Report