Thanksgiving Healthy Alternatives

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Ryan Leckey visits the University of Scranton's Dr. Jessica Bachman, PhD,  for some healthy recipes for your Thanksgiving meal.

Pita Bread Christmas Tree, by Brett Nance, Class of 2015

1 bag of Whole Wheat Pita Bread

1 Avocado

1 box of hummus

1 Roasted Red Pepper or Tomato

1 bag of pretzel sticks

Step 1: Cut up Pita Bread into triangles, making them look like a Christmas tree

Step 2: Cut up avocado and mash until it has formed into a creamy spread. Mix the avocado into the hummus for green coloring.

Step 3: Spread the hummus mixture onto the pita bread and sprinkle vegetables on top. Add pretzel stick on bottom to look like the bark of the Christmas tree.

Recipe from

Gluten Free Spinach Quiche, by Katelyn O’Neill, Class of 2014

1 package of gluten free pie crust

1 box (9 oz.) of frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed to drain

1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese

½ cup of fat free half and half

3 medium green onions, chopped

½ teaspoon of garlic salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

2 eggs

Step 1: Heat over to 425. Knead dough until softened. Spread out 1 teaspoon of dough into the bottom and up the side of each of 24 ungreased mini muffin cups, extending dough ¼ inch above edge of cup.

Step 2: In medium size bowl beat eggs. Stir in half and half, cheese, garlic salt, and pepper. Stir in drained spinach and green onion. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of mixture into each crust-lined cup.

Step 3: Bake 16-18 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Cool 5 minutes before removing from pan to cooling rake. Serve warm or cool. Store covered in refrigerator.

Recipe courtesy of

7 ways to make Thanksgiving dinner healthier!

 1. Eat white/breast meat instead of dark meat

    -Dark meat packs twice as much saturated fat

 2. Substitute cranberry sauce with fresh cranberries

    - The sauce has a candy bar's worth of sugar per 1/2 cup

 3. Swap out unhealthy meats such as sausage in stuffing and add alternatives such as apples, pecans and mushrooms

 4. Start your meal off with a plate of greens.

    - They will fill you up so you have less room for all the carbs that come with a thanksgiving dinner

 5. Choose sweet potatoes instead of regular white

    - Watch out for candied ones, they just add extra sugar!

 6. Sauté green beans in olive oil instead of green bean casserole

    - Sautéing locks in those nutrients unlike boiling

 7. If you're doing dessert, pumpkin pie is the lowest calorie pie with about 316 calories/slice

    - Don't be afraid of a little whipped cream, Reddi-Whip is only about 15 calories/2 tablespoons