16 Healthy Side Dishes for Thanksgiving

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Last Updated on November 15, 2020 by Chef Mireille

16 Healthy Side Dishes for Thanksgiving – This variety of chilled grain salads, bean salads and warm vegetable dishes with both global and continental inspiration are the perfect accompaniments to your Thanksgiving turkey or any meal!

Thanksgiving is coming up soon. Are you a planner? Already planning your Thanksgiving menu? Instead of the normal sides like candied yams, how about adding some healthy side dishes to the menu so you don’t have to be guilty after indulging in the Thanksgiving feast! Then you can save room for all the delicious Blueberry Pies, Pumpkin Pies and all the other decadent holiday treats!

These side dishes have inspiration from around the world so there is something for everyone on this list – Indian, Middle Eastern, Brazilian, Continental..and more…

There is something for everything in this collection:

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Gluten Free
  • Carb Free
  • High Protein
  • Low Fat

Thanksgiving Healthy Side Dishes

16 Thanksgiving Healthy Side Dishes

From healthy grain salads to warm vegetable dishes, this list of healthy side dishes with global inspiration from around the world has something for everyone! Includes vegan and gluten free options!

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Reader Interactions


  1. Well I think you have something for everyone in this delicious collection of recipes. Thanksgiving is just a “filling” meal, it is nice to have some healthy choices in the mix of all the food.

  2. I’m hosting Thanksgiving this year for the first time and have been debating what to make. Thanks for putting together so many delicious-looking recipes! This is a huge help.

  3. Fennel and ginger cauliflower sounds so yummy! We don’t have Thanksgiving here, but I might need to make my own kind of Thanksgiving anyway because everything looks so delicious.

    • Thanksgiving is more about family and good food than to celebrate any history especially if you understand what atrocities have been done to Native Americans you would prefer not to celebrate the history of the holiday. No matter what country you are in you can always celebrate family and food!

  4. Thank you for sharing this post, I am in the process of planning for Thanksgiving dinner and this list is very much helpful! Especially the balsamic glazed beets recipe.

  5. Superb collection of recipes from global cuisines. This post is a keeper and quick guide for any dinner or lunch party planning . Such a wide variety to choose from.

  6. What a great selection of sides with so many vegetarian options too!! And everything explained so well. The Shri Lankan Green beans is the one I will try as soon as I get some green beans.

  7. Mireille a wonderful selection of vegetarian side dish options not only for Thanksgiving but any festival. Its sometimes frustrating to see that much thought is not given to prepare something different for vegetarians at a party.

  8. Wow you have such a variety of side dishes. Loved the Kashmiri cauliflower with fennel n ginger. These can be used anytime not just thanksgiving…Will definitely try a few

  9. wow … this is not just for thanks giving but for any party / potluck too ! Loved the cabbage foogath and the wheat berry salad (which I think barley can substitute)… great collection, Mir !

  10. Mir! I was constantly thinking of just pumpkin and apple dishes this is a wonderful idea. I love the fact that you have added grain salads too the menu. This is yum and something I will definitely appreciate even in my everyday meal.

    • Like all countries, America is regional and so there are a great variety of recipes that are also considered traditional depending what part of the country you live in. Regardless, Thanksgiving is about much more than apples and pumpkin. Lots of vegetables dishes are also traditional for Thanksgiving like green beans, corn and brussel sprouts.

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