Experience Life Magazine

Healthy Holiday Recipes

We dug through our archives to gather some of our favorite seasonal recipes for you and yours to enjoy this holiday season.

  • Grilled Sweet-Potato Rounds With Chorizo

    Grilled Sweet-Potato Rounds With Chorizo

    Substitute tempeh for the chorizo to make the perfect vegetarian bite. Get the recipe at “Celebrate! A Holiday Party Menu.”

  • Zucchini-Ricotta Pinwheels

    Zucchini-Ricotta Pinwheels

    Not a zucchini fan? Try skinny Japanese eggplant instead. Get the recipe at “Celebrate! A Holiday Party Menu.”

  • Bacon-Wrapped Dates

    Bacon-Wrapped Dates

    You may also want to try these succulent little bites with dried figs instead of dates. Get the recipe at “Celebrate! A Holiday Party Menu.”

  • Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus

    Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus

    For a sweeter taste, try wrapping prosciutto around melon or even pear slices. Get the recipe at “Celebrate! A Holiday Party Menu.”

  • Tofu and Napa Cabbage Rolls

    Tofu and Napa Cabbage Rolls

    Pairing tofu with sweet napa cabbage makes a wonderful and elegant vegetarian appetizer or entrée. Feel free to omit the tofu altogether and just go with the veggies.

    Get the Tofu and Napa Cabbage Rolls With Dipping Sauce Recipe

  • White Bean and Roasted Garlic Paté

    White Bean and Roasted Garlic Paté

    Pair this dip with whole-grain crusty bread or vegetable crudité.

    Get the White Bean and Roasted Garlic Paté Recipe

  • Raw Kale Salad

    Raw Kale Salad

    Combining finely chopped kale with lemon and olive oil — then gently massaging them together — breaks down kale’s stiffness and bitterness, leaving you with tender greens bursting with flavor.

    Get the Raw Kale Salad Recipe

  • Wild-Style Salad

    Wild-Style Salad

    Featured in Terry Bryant and Anna Lappé’s cookbook, Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen (Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin, 2006), this salad combines flavor, style and whole foods for a delicious effect.

    Get the Wild-Style Salad Recipe

  • Winter Citrus Salad

    Winter Citrus Salad

    This salad from Myra Kornfeld’s The Healthy Hedonist Holidays (Simon & Schuster, 2007) combines parsley, fennel, naval oranges and walnuts for a healthy and flavorful start to your meal.

    Get the Winter Citrus Salad Recipe

  • Sweet Potato and Collard Greens Salad

    Sweet Potato and Collard Greens Salad

    Quick to prepare, this combination of superfoods makes a colorful side dish. You can substitute Swiss chard, spinach or kale for the collards.

    Get the Sweet Potato and Collard Greens Salad Recipe

  • Warm Citrus Black Lentil & Quinoa Salad

    Warm Citrus Black Lentil & Quinoa Salad

    Black beluga lentils are a perfect base for a quick, light salad. As an alternative to citrus, you can try other fruits, such as unsweetened dried apricots, raisins or dates.

    Get the Warm Citrus Black Lentil and Quinoa Salad Recipe

  • Chopped Vegetable and Bean Salad

    Chopped Vegetable and Bean Salad

    This simple salads is a tasty way to get more vegetables into your meal.

    Get the Chopped Vegetable and Bean Salad Recipe

  • Mixed Winter Salad

    Mixed Winter Salad

    A refreshing blend of orange and basil brings out the natural flavors of the grilled beef in this salad (this would also be great with grilled chicken breast). For a vegetarian option, replace beef with tempeh. Marinate the tempeh in one-fourth of this dressing, then grill.

    Get the Mixed Winter Salad Recipe

  • Winter Salad

    Winter Salad

    Served over supergreens like baby kale, spinach and beet greens, this hearty salad makes a fresh and flavorful meal. Try dried cherries, blueberries or diced dried apricots in place of the cranberries; substitute toasted pecans, almonds or walnuts for the pumpkin seeds. Get the recipe at “Quinoa: The Super Seed.”

  • Classic Roast Turkey

    Classic Roast Turkey

    There’s nothing quite like a classic Thanksgiving meal of turkey, stuffing and gravy. In this case, we recommend choosing a free-range heritage turkey for richer flavor and better nutrition.

    Get the Turkey, Stuffing and Gravy Recipes

  • Veggie-Stuffed Chicken Breast

    Veggie-Stuffed Chicken Breast

    This hearty chicken dish is a nice alternative to turkey if you’re looking to mix up your holiday menu. This recipe calls for spinach, mushrooms and Parmesan, but you can always sub your favorites.

    Get the Stuffed Chicken Breast With Spinach, Mushrooms and Parmesan Cheese Recipe

  • Roast Carrots

    Roast Carrots

    Roasting is a quick and easy way to bring out the flavor and sweetness of carrots. You an also try steaming or glazing them.

    Get the Roast Carrots Recipe

  • Molasses, Miso & Maple Candied Sweet Potatoes

    Molasses, Miso & Maple Candied Sweet Potatoes

    Miso gives this dish earthy, savory saltiness, putting a twist on the traditional candied sweet potatoes. A little maple syrup adds a bit of sweetness.

    Get the Molasses, Miso and Maple Candied Sweet Potatoes Recipe

  • Black Bean and Squash Chili With Tempeh

    Black Bean and Squash Chili With Tempeh

    Nothing beats vegetarian chili for a protein-packed dinner. This colorful version includes lots of veggies to round out the beans. Get the recipe at “The Hearty Vegetarian.”

  • Braised Baby Bok Choy With Pancetta, Garlic and Sherry

    Braised Baby Bok Choy With Pancetta, Garlic and Sherry

    Although bok choy is typically paired with Asian flavors, this recipe shows its versatility. Serve with roasted or grilled meat or seafood. For a vegetarian option, use toasted walnuts instead of pancetta for a rich flavor with some crunch, and a dash of Spanish paprika for a smoky hit. Get the recipe at “Bok Choy.”

  • Bacon-Braised Brussels Sprouts

    Bacon-Braised Brussels Sprouts

    Bacon and Brussels sprouts is a natural pairing, but if you are a vegetarian, try a vegetarian tempeh bacon or just add a little smoked Spanish paprika. Get the recipe at “Brussels Sprouts: Autumn Jewels.”

  • Autumn Vegetable Gratin

    Autumn Vegetable Gratin

    This creamy gratin is filled with colorful seasonal veggies. For a nice crunch, top with chopped toasted walnuts before serving. Get the recipe at “Brussels Sprouts: Autumn Jewels.”

  • Pumpkin Gratin With Pistachios

    Pumpkin Gratin With Pistachios

    Food critic and cookbook author Patricia Wells adds a new twist to a staple winter vegetable in her cookbook Vegetable Harvest: Vegetables at the Center of the Plate (William Morrow Cookbooks, 2007).

    Get the Pumpkin Gratin With Pistachios Recipe

  • Delicata Squash, Dino Kale & Cranberries

    Delicata Squash, Dino Kale & Cranberries

    This beautiful dish from Deborah Madison’s One Bite at a Time: Nourishing Recipes for Cancer Survivors and Their Friends (Celestial Arts, 2004) is a combination of flavors — a little bit sweet, a little bit astringent.

    Get the Delicata Squash With Dino Kale and Cranberries Recipe

  • Italian Roasted Asparagus With Walnuts and Parmesan Cheese

    Italian Roasted Asparagus With Walnuts and Parmesan Cheese

    A quick side dish that can be adapted in so many ways. Try a different combination of citrus, nuts and cheese, such as orange zest, pistachio and Pecorino. For a cheeseless version, try lime zest, almonds and fine shredded coconut. Get the recipe at “Asparagus: A Spring Classic.”

  • Sautéed Beet Greens With Smoked Sausage

    Sautéed Beet Greens With Smoked Sausage

    To turn this hearty main dish into a side dish, cut out the sausage completely or include only half the amount. Get the recipe at “Sweet Beets.”

  • Kale, Bell Peppers and Pine Nuts

    Kale, Bell Peppers and Pine Nuts

    This simple-to-make side can become a main dish by adding kidney beans after sautéing the kale. Top with a shaving of Pecorino Romano cheese.

    Get the Kale, Bell Peppers and Pine Nuts Recipe

  • Brussels Sprouts Kimchi With Peppers and Carrots

    Brussels Sprouts Kimchi With Peppers and Carrots

    Traditionally made with cabbage or bok choy, the Korean dish kimchi is also a great vehicle for Brussels sprouts. This recipe take a little time but is well worth the effort. Kimchi is wonderful served with meat, eggs, vegetables and rice. Get the recipe at “Brussels Sprouts: Autumn Jewels.”

  • Slow-Roasted Lamb Shoulder

    Slow-Roasted Lamb Shoulder

    Enjoy this delectable lamb shoulder as an alternative to other meats for the holidays. If you can’t get lamb shoulder, leg of lamb will work nicely; just cook it a little longer. Get the recipe at “Hero Foods.”

  • Black Bean Pasta With Pesto and Roasted Cauliflower

    Black Bean Pasta With Pesto and Roasted Cauliflower

    Traditional pasta can be used in this recipe, but now there’s a particularly tasty bean-based, gluten-free pasta on the market that’s lower in carbs and higher in protein. Get the recipe at “The Hearty Vegetarian.”

  • Braised Green Beans

    Braised Green Beans

    Chef Nate Appleman features this delicious southern-Italian side dish of green beans with pork and soffrito in his cookbook A16: Food + Wine (Ten Speed Press, 2008).

    Get the Braised Green Beans With Pork and Soffrito Recipe

  • Beets and Their Greens

    Beets and Their Greens

    Chef and author Deborah Madison’s beautiful and delicious recipe for this root vegetable is featured in her cookbook Local Flavors: Cooking and Eating From America’s Farmers’ Markets (Broadway Books, 2008).

    Get the Beets and Their Greens With Marjoram and Pine Nuts Recipe

  • Baked Italian Acorn Squash

    Baked Italian Acorn Squash

    Sweet and slightly caramelized baked squash is a real treat. Try topping it with fresh herbs and olive oil, or drizzle with cinnamon and maple syrup.

    Get the Baked Acorn Squash Recipe

  • Baked Squash and Apples

    Baked Squash and Apples

    This simple and elegant side dish brings out the best and brightest in both the sweet potatoes and apples. Top with chopped pecans for crunch.

    Get the Baked Squash and Apples With Ginger and Pecans Recipe

  • Sweet Potato Mousse

    Sweet Potato Mousse

    While naturally sweet, this rich and creamy dessert contains surprisingly little sugar — and can be enjoyed warm or cold. Top with maple vanilla yogurt and walnuts.

    Get the Sweet Potato Mousse With Maple Vanilla Yogurt and Walnuts Recipe

  • Honey & Vanilla Bean Crème Caramel

    Honey & Vanilla Bean Crème Caramel

    Fresh vanilla bean gives this crème caramel an exceptional aroma. Serve with caramelized pear slices on the side, or simply add some fresh berries.

    Get the Honey & Vanilla Bean Crème Caramel Recipe

  • Spiced Caramel Corn

    Spiced Caramel Corn

    This recipe from Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Cooking cookbook (Celestial Arts, 2007) makes a fresh, crunchy, family-pleasing treat that kids can help prepare.

    Get the Spiced Caramel Corn Recipe

  • Blackberry and Almond Crumble

    Blackberry and Almond Crumble

    Chopped almonds give the topping a great little crunch and, along with the berries, offset the pro-inflammatory effects of the sugar. Get the recipe at “Hero Foods.”

  • Chocolate Mousse

    Chocolate Mousse

    A small portion of this rich indulgence is just right. The traditional French method calls for raw eggs, so make sure you use fresh, organic, pastured eggs. Get the recipe at “Redefining Decadence With Gluten-Free Desserts.”

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