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Keto Holiday Recipes: 10 Mouth-Watering Dishes to Brighten the Season

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Keto Holiday Recipes

keto-holiday-recipes

 

The holidays are generally known to be a time of indulgence, but it doesn’t have to be. With modern adaptations to classic holiday recipes, you can stick to a generally low-carb meal plan and still stick to your health and wellness goals.

Diet Variation

It’s worth noting that occasional ‘indulgences’ are not a bad thing. Long term strict ketosis is not actually beneficial to most people. When we restrict carbohydrates chronically over a long time, the body can actually adapt by down-regulating the metabolism.

By incorporating variation in your diet, you can actually keep your metabolism firing. This is a similar concept to cross-training in the gym instead of sticking to only cardio or weight training. Throwing in high-carb days reassures the body that ample fuel is coming its way and can continue to burn fat for fuel.

That being said, the holiday period often extends itself for a couple of weeks, with many indulgence opportunities. The key to ‘diet variation’ is keeping a general low-carb, keto-style diet with occasional high-carb days and occasional complete fasting days.

Knowing that food choices can often be out of your control (lunch at an aunty’s or dinner at a friend's house), it is best to stick to keto when you can. Pair that with a fasting day here and there, and you can slide through the holidays without feeling sluggish or off-track from your health goals!

 

10 Keto Holiday Dinner Recipes

Crispy Goat Cheese Balls

Ingredients

  • 2 logs of goats cheese (1bout 16 oz)
  • 2 pastured eggs
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup walnuts or pecans
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • ¼ cup coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp flax meal
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450F
  2. Line a baking sheet with baking paper and spray olive oil all over it, or drizzle 2 tbsp and make sure it covers the whole tray base.
  3. In a food processor, blend the almond flour, coconut flour, flax meal, salt, garlic, and onion powders until fine.
  4. Add in the walnuts and pulse a few times until they are roughly chopped (small but not totally pulverized).
  5. Whisk the eggs in a bowl and set aside.
  6. Roll out small balls of the goat cheese (16 oz should make about 20 balls).
  7. Dip each ball in the egg, and then roll them in the no-bread crumb mixture.
  8. Place the balls onto the baking tray (that should be lined with baking paper and olive oil by now).
  9. Bake for about 8 minutes until golden brown.
  10. Carefully remove from the tray with a spatula as soon as they come out of the oven to prevent them from melting and losing their shape.

Mashed Cauliflower

Ingredients

  • 1 whole large cauliflower
  • 4 tablespoons grass-fed butter or olive oil
  • ⅓ cup heavy cream (optional, makes for a more decadent mash)
  • ⅓ cup parmesan cheese or savory yeast flakes (vegan option)
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1.5 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut the cauliflower into florets and steam for about 12 minutes, until tender. Strain and set aside.
  2. Mince the garlic and brown it for a couple of minutes in a pan over medium heat using the olive oil or butter and the herbs (rosemary and thyme).
  3. Add the cauliflower, the garlic mixture, and the salt and pepper into a food processor and blend using the ‘S’ blade until smooth.
  4. Add in the parmesan (or savory yeast), as well as the optional heavy cream, and blend again until smooth.

Cheesy Broccoli Gratin

Ingredients

  • 1 head of broccoli
  • 2 cups of your favorite cheese (or cheese blend), shredded. We recommend a combo of sharp white cheddar and gruyere!
  • 3 tbsp olive oil or grass-fed butter
  • 1 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F
  2. Cut your broccoli into small florets
  3. Steam the broccoli until slightly tender but still crispy, about 5 minutes.
  4. In a bowl, toss the broccoli in olive oil, making sure it is well coated. Add in salt and pepper(s) and toss again.
  5. Place in a baking dish that fits the broccoli together snug in the dish.
  6. Pour the cream all over the broccoli, and sprinkle the cheeses all over the top.
  7. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until the top becomes golden brown.

Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus

Ingredients

  • 20 (or so) asparagus spears
  • 8 strips of pasture-raised, nitrate-free bacon
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Black pepper (to taste)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F
  2. Trim the base of the asparagus to remove the hard part
  3. In a bowl, toss the asparagus in olive oil and use your hands to make sure they are completely coated.
  4. Cut the bacon strips into thirds, and wrap the bacon around the center part of each asparagus spear.
  5. Place the spears on a baking tray lined with baking paper, making sure to leave space between each asparagus so that there is no overlap.
  6. Crack fresh black pepper all over (to taste).
  7. Bake until the bacon is cooked through, about 35 minutes, flipping halfway.

Charred Garlic Brussel Sprouts

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Brussel sprouts
  • 3-4 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F
  2. Cut sprouts in halves or quarters, depending on their size. If they are big, opt for quarters. You can also do a mix of the two.
  3. In a bowl, toss all the sprouts in olive oil and add in the garlic powder, sea salt, and black pepper.
  4. On a baking tray lined with baking paper, spread out the sprouts so that there is no overlapping.
  5. Bake for about 40 minutes, flipping them (give the tray a good shake) halfway through or until they begin to become a crispy golden brown.

Cauliflower Paleo Stuffing

The key for stuffing is actually not to stuff the turkey at all. Bake the stuffing as a side dish and serve it, but fill the actual turkey with aromatics like lemon and herbs. You can also drizzle some of the turkey drippings into the stuffing and toss it before serving, but by not stuffing the stuffing into the bird, you avoid it becoming a pile of mush.

Ingredients

  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • 1 large onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • ½ cup celery
  • ½ cup carrot
  • ½ cup your favorite nuts (like pecans or almonds)
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 handful of fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F
  2. Chop the cauliflower, onion, celery, carrots, and parsley roughly
  3. Place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend on high until all the ingredients form a crumbly mixture
  4. Spread the stuffing well spaced out on a baking tray and bake for 25 minutes.

 

Roast Turkey

A perfectly cooked turkey doesn’t have to be complicated. A few tips include:

  1. Opt for a high-quality turkey, which means raised ethically, and fed a natural organic diet.
  2. The rule of thumb is to buy about 1.5 pounds of turkey per person so that an eight-person dinner would call for a 12-pound turkey. This will factor in for some leftovers!
  3. If you’re buying a frozen turkey, it needs at least an entire day in the fridge to thaw (even for a 4-pound turkey), so consider thawing it two days in advance just to be safe.
  4. Don’t baste the turkey, which helps keep heat in the oven, ensures an even cook (and can avoid it from needing to cook it longer and drying it out).
  5. The general rule is 20 minutes in the oven per pound (so 4-hours for that 12-pound turkey), but use a thermometer to check when it is finished. It is cooked at 165 degrees F, and you can measure the temp by leaving the turkey in the oven and poking it deeply with a food thermometer. Once it reads 160F, remove it from the oven and let it rest outside of the oven covered in foil for the last 5 degrees. Make sure to let it rest for 15-30 minutes before serving.

Ingredients

For Turkey:

  • Wild and organic turkey (1.5 pounds per person eating)
  • 1-2 granny smith apples
  • ½ cup of cranberries (dried or fresh)
  • 1 large onion
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 4 or 5 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of grass-finished butter (or olive oil)

 

For Butter Sauce:

  • ⅓ cup of grass-fed butter (or olive oil)
  • 3 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F/ 165°C (for standard ovens), or 300°F/ 150°C (fan-forced).
  2. Pat down the turkey with a paper towel.
  3. Seed the apples, and chop the apples, onion, garlic, and lemons into quarters.
  4. Stuff the cavity with lemon, onion, garlic, apple, cranberries, fresh thyme, fresh rosemary, a few cracks of salt, and pepper.
  5. Using your fingers, tuck a few pats of butter or a good drizzle of olive oil under the skin of the bird, just above the cavity (on the top side of the turkey).
  6. Make a butter (or olive oil) sauce to coat the outside of the bird by melting the butter with the dried thyme and rosemary, and painting it on the entire exterior of the bird (wings and all), using a brush. Make sure it’s well coated.
  7. Place the turkey in the center of the oven, uncovered, cook for about 20 minutes per pound (but use a thermometer as your actual gauge for when to take it out).
  8. The turkey is done once the food thermometer reads 160F, but keep an eye on the turkey as it cooks since every oven is slightly different. Once the bird is well golden, if the reading doesn’t hit 160F, cover it with foil to prevent it from getting any browner.
  9. Let the turkey rest for 15-30 minutes before serving.

 

Candy Cane Trifle

Note that trifles have many components, and this healthy keto version requires making your own jelly, sponge cake, and cream– which ideally takes 2 days. So you may want to prepare the jelly and sponge the day prior and then assemble it the day of.

Ingredients

For the Sponge Cake:

  • 4 whole eggs, separated
  • 4 extra egg whites (use the one's leftover from the custard recipe)
  • 2 cups ricotta
  • ⅔ cup monk fruit sweetener
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cups almond flour
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp salt

For the Custard:

  1. 2 cups heavy cream
  2. 6 egg yolks
  3. 2.5 tbsp monk fruit sweetener
  4. 2 tsp vanilla bean powder or extract
  5. 1 tsp cinnamon
  6. ½ tsp nutmeg
  7. 1/2 tsp sea salt

For the Jelly:

  • 1 cup organic raspberries (one 6oz. clamshell pack) or frozen raspberries
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice (1-2 lemons)
  • ¼ cup cherry juice
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup unflavored grass-fed gelatin
  • 10-12 drops stevia extract

For the topping:

  • 1.5 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp monk fruit sweetener
  • 1 punnet of fresh strawberries
  • ⅓ cup toasted almond slivers
  • 1 sugar-free candy cane

Instructions

For the Sponge Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F
  2. Melt the butter and set aside to cool.
  3. Whisk together all the egg whites and cream of tartar using a hand blender until very fluffy
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, vanilla, ricotta, and lemon juice until smooth.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix all the dry ingredients.
  6. Combine the two bowls of the egg mix and dry ingredients and whisk until smooth.
  7. Fold in the egg whites slowly into the mixture.
  8. Drizzle the cooled butter into the mixture and slowly fold it in as well.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes in an 8-inch pan, or until the top is golden brown.
  10. Cool completely in the fridge until ready to use for the trifle.

For the Custard:

  1. Bring the cream to a boil in a pot with the salt, vanilla bean, cinnamon, and nutmeg, and then remove from heat.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk egg yolks and monk fruit until smooth.
  3. Add the egg mixture into the pan and whisk over low/ medium heat until well combined and thick (3-5 minutes).

For the Jelly:

  1. Place the raspberries, lemon juice, cherry juice, and water in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Transfer the raspberry-lemon mixture to a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
  3. While the mixture warms, quickly whisk in the gelatin.
  4. Whisk until the gelatin is well incorporated, and the mixture is thickened.
  5. Pour the mixture back into the blender and blend for about 10 seconds.
  6. Add the stevia, taste, and then add more if desired.
  7. Pour the mixture into a 6 x 9 in. glass or ceramic baking dish.
  8. Place in the refrigerator until completely chilled and set, about 3 hours or overnight until ready for use in the trifle.
  9. Cut the jelly into 1inch squares to use in the trifle.

To Assemble:

  1. In a medium to a large clear glass bowl, you will layer the sponge cake, jelly, and custard, aiming to make 3 layers. So use up about ⅓ of each for each layer. You don’t have to totally cover the base of the bowl with any of the ingredients. or make it “perfect.” Simply break off a few pieces of the sponge cake to layer the bottom, add in a layer of gummy, and then a layer of custard, and repeat.
  2. Whip your 1.5 cups of heavy cream with the 2tbsp of erythritol until it forms a whipped cream; serve it on top of the trifle with sliced strawberries, toasted almonds, and crushed candy cane.

Shortbread Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3 ¾ cups blanched almond flour
  • ½ cup + 1 tbsp slightly softened salted butter (take out of the fridge and leave at room temperature for 10 minutes before creaming)
  • ¾ cup monk fruit sweetener
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla bean powder
  • If using unsalted butter, add 1/ 2 tsp of sea or Himalayan salt

Instructions

  1. Using a hand mixer, beat together the erythritol and butter until it becomes light, fluffy, and creamy. Start slowly to make sure the mixture doesn’t go all over the place– and work your way up until it’s creamed. This process should take 5 minutes on the nose (too little or too creamed will lead to crumbly cookies)
  2. Slowly add in the vanilla and almond flour, continuing to beat it with the hand mixer until your batter is formed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as you go to make sure all the ingredients mix.
  3. Form 1 inch balls and flatten them slightly with the palm of your hand on a cookie tray lined with parchment paper. The dough will be crumbly but should form well when molded with your hands.
  4. Keep an eye on your cookies from 10 minutes onwards since they can burn very quickly (it all depends on how hot your oven gets); total bake time varies from 10-12 minutes until lightly golden brown.
  5. Let the cookies cool *completely* until consuming; this is very important because the cookies become a shortbread texture only once cooled.

Eggnog

Ingredients

  • 3 cups almond, cashew, or coconut milk (unsweetened)
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 1.5 tsp cinnamon powder (plus more to top)
  • 1.5 tsp nutmeg powder
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cinnamon whole quill
  • ½ cup monk fruit sweetener
  • ½ cup dark rum (optional)

Instructions

  1. Whisk the egg yolk and sweetener (monk fruit or erythritol) until creamy/ frothy and set aside.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the nut milk and cream, and stir in the cinnamon (powder and quill) and nutmeg.
  3. Bring to a boil and then take the nut milk and spices off the heat.
  4. Straight away, start ladling in the hot mixture into the egg mixture, whisking continuously. Do not stop whisking, or the mixture will curdle.
  5.  Once fully incorporated, add the mixture back into the saucepan and whisk on medium heat for 5 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and strain into a bowl.
  7. Stir in the rum (optional) and vanilla
  8. Set in the fridge (takes about 3 hours), and serve with a dash of cinnamon on top!
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