Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming soon! And that means that if you’re a more health-conscious eater, the very idea of all the eating outside of your home at relatives, parties, restaurants, etc. might make you want to go into hysterics.
But let me put your mind at ease… go to the parties and eat the food.
Seems like we all tend to get bent out of shape worrying about white sugar around the holidays. Am I telling you to forget about all your healthy eating and just throw caution to the wind? No. I’m telling you to behave and eat well at home and then be thankful for what someone else is serving you. Take care of your family with good, healthy food 80% of the time, and don’t stress about the other 20%. Go ahead and enjoy the holidays!
Also remember that it’s pretty easy to convert your old favorites.
You can use your own cream of chicken soup instead of buying the cans; you can use sucanat instead of brown sugar; you can use coconut oil instead of Crisco. Just convert your favorites to fit your new lifestyle. Sure, there might be some duds – just feed them to the birds and move on!
But since we’re talking about holiday cooking today… if you need a side dish this holiday season that’s good for you, yummy, and full of deliciousness, consider my recipe for Butternut Apple Bake. If you are looking for the perfect side to bring to any holiday potluck – this is the ticket!
Y’all there is nothing that puts me quite in the holiday spirit like the smell of warm cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and apples!
It’s easy to customize this recipe to suit your family’s taste, dietary preferences or allergies! All you need is some spices, butternut squash, apples, and butter! It doesn’t have any eggs, nuts, gluten, soy, sesame – and if you can’t do dairy, just use coconut oil instead of butter! I’ve learned that it’s actually pretty easy to find healthy food that everyone can enjoy and I know they will love. And you can change up the spices to fit your taste preferences – I love cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg but feel free to omit any that you don’t love.
A few notes…
- You don’t have to peel the apples but you HAVE to peel the butternut squash. It’s a non-negotiable people.
- Because it takes the squash longer to cook then the apple, so I like to cut the apples into bigger chunks than the squash.
- When it’s done, the butternut apple bake might look brown and dry, but never fear! The buttery goodness is on the bottom. Stir it up with a big spoon and magic will start to happen.
- Finally, although it does reheat well (no flavor is lost!) the texture changes and it will get a little softer, so keep that in mind.
My Butternut Apple Bake makes a great holiday side dish with the added perk that it makes the house smell divine. And who doesn’t love that?!
Butternut Apple Bake
- 1 whole butternut, cut into chunks
- 4 apples, peeled and cut into chunks
- 3 tablespoons sucanat
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 350.
- In a small bowl, combine the sucanat, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.
- Combine butternut pieces and apple pieces in another bowl. Toss with melted butter.
- Pour spice mixture over squash mixture. Stir well to coat.
- Transfer to a greased casserole dish. Bake for 1 hour. Begin to check after 45 minutes to test for tenderness.
- When dish is done, stir again to coat with butter mixture in the bottom.