10 Thanksgiving Plant-Based Recipes to Bring Everyone Together

Here are 10 Blue Zones approved plant-based recipes to share with your loved-ones.

1. Coconut Mashed Sweet Potatoes from our Blue Zones Recipes

Sweet potatoes are a classic Thanksgiving side, but skip the sweet potato casserole and pair your sweet potatoes with coconut milk.

The fat from the coconut milk will aid in your body’s ability to use the immune-boosting, anti-cancer beta-carotene.

2. Ikarian Style Sourdough from our Blue Zones Recipes

Sourdough Bread

Break some bread with your family this Thanksgiving. Ikarian sourdough bread actually lowers your glycemic load, keeping your blood sugar consistent for a day full of food.

3. Savory Roasted Chickpeas from our Blue Zones Recipes

These savory chickpeas make a great appetizer for your guests while you whip up the main course.


Although chickpeas are high in fat, it’s all unsaturated making it a healthy choice that avoids the sugar rush high carbohydrate snacks cause. Chickpeas are also known to have beneficial effects on decreasing the risk of digestive diseases and some cancers.

4. Lentil Walnut Loaf from Gena Hamshaw at Food52

This plant-based spinoff of a holiday meatloaf rivals the texture of traditional meatloaf, but with the added benefits of lentils and walnuts.

Beans, such as lentils, are the cornerstone of most centenarian diets. Many centenarians eat about a cup of beans a day. Nuts play a big role in the Adventist centenarian diet and are packed with omega-3 fatty acids to boost brainpower and protect against Alzheimer’s and other inflammatory illnesses.

5. Pumpkin Pie from Plant Powered Kitchen

What is Thanksgiving without pumpkin pie?


Popular in Okinawa and Nicoya, squash, like pumpkin, is full of carotenoids. Results of epidemiological studies suggest that diets high in carotenoid-rich fruits and vegetables are associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and some cancers.

6. Cranberry Sauce with Ginger and Maple from The Roasted Root

This Thanksgiving treat is sweetened with maple syrup rather than high-fructose corn syrup or conventional sugar, like those you’d find in a can.

Compounds in cranberries fight against inflammation, which is known as the root of all age-related diseases.

7. Acorn Squash Stuffed with Pumpkin Seed and Cherry Quinoa Pilaf from The Spicy RD

This stuffed acorn squash can take the place of your main course if you plan to pass on the turkey.

The quinoa provides all nine essential amino acids and can lower the risk of various diseases, and pumpkin seeds add protein, fiber, zinc, and a little crunch to the quinoa pilaf. The extra quinoa can be served as a delicious cold salad with your other Thanksgiving leftovers.

8. Chickpea and Mushroom Turnovers from Holy Cow! Vegan

Mushrooms, chickpeas, and a little bit of spice all wrapped up in a crisp, flaky tart. Your moai will love sharing Thanksgiving stories over these enticing appetizers. Add any assorted roasted vegetables to make it your own.

Crimini mushrooms contain conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA. This fatty acid, when isolated, has been shown to possibly reduce the risk of breast cancer. Some studies also indicate crimini mushrooms hold powerful anti-inflammatory benefits.

9. Carrot Soup with Tahini and Crisped Chickpeas from Smitten Kitchen

Carrots pack this dish full of vitamin A, vitamin K, and fiber, aiding in immune function, digestion, and eye health.

Ikarians use chickpeas in many traditional soups and stews because they add protein and give the soup a more complex flavor dimension.

10. Chia Caramel Pecan Pie with Cinnamon from This Rawsome Vegan Life

If pecan pie is the star of your Thanksgiving table, try this raw, plant-based variation.

Chia seeds boost the fiber in this dish and the fatty acids can lower risk for cardiovascular diseases and diabetes.

These plant-based recipes will impress your guests and have them heading straight for seconds. Although these recipes provide some plant-based inspiration for your Thanksgiving dinner, celebration is a part of life especially in the blue zones. So don’t worry so much about what is ON your table, but instead think of those AROUND the table—celebrate and enjoy. This day is about food, family, and thanks. Celebrate your elders – ancestors and neighbors alike. Put them at the head of the table where they can share the joy and wisdom of a long life. Be thankful for a bountiful meal, a day of grace, good wine, and a strong social circle.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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