65 Paleo Thanksgiving Recipes


Thanksgiving is a time of year where we come together with family and friends and celebrate the things that we are grateful for. But it is also, of course, about the food that we eat, and if you’re following a Paleo diet, holidays may feel extra restricting. But I’ve rounded up 65 of the best Paleo Thanksgiving recipes that exist, and frankly, are every bit as delicious as their gluten and dairy-filled counterparts.

I hosted an all-Paleo Thanksgiving a few years back, and while I eat Paleo as a necessity for several food allergies and autoimmune disorders, many of them aren’t Paleo eaters and are, in fact, very choosy about their holiday food. But to this day, I still get compliments on that meal, proving that you don’t have to sacrifice taste at all even if you’re on an allergy-friendly, Paleo diet.

I’ve broken the recipes down into categories so that you can easily sift through the list and find that perfect one you’re looking for to make your Paleo Thanksgiving a smashing success. I know that the turkey, and the mashed potatoes, and the gravy, and the pumpkin stuff are the collective stars of Thanksgiving day. But really, this list contains so many classic (and delicious!) dishes that will add color and extra pops of flavor to your feast, and with Paleo options for all of them, why not take your Thanksgiving meal to the next level? I don’t know about you, but I’m going to have a hard time choosing just a few of these.

Paleo Turkey Recipes

Whole Citrus Roasted Turkey


Recipe from PaleoPlan

If you want a fresh twist on the Thanksgiving bird, then throwing in the zesty, juicy surprise of citrus is an excellent option. While most wouldn’t pair citrus flavors with savory turkey, the results of this recipe yield an extra juicy, extra bold turkey flavor that will have your Thanksgiving guests coming back for seconds (and thirds).

Free-Range Pastured Whole Turkey


Recipe from PaleoPlan

The turkey is always the “big deal” of the Thanksgiving feast, yet many worry that it’s too hard to roast their own whole turkey. This Free-Range Pastured Whole Turkey recipe yields delicious, juicy results without a ton of headache. Pastured turkeys are generally smaller in size, but this whole turkey recipe also works with free-range, organic, or conventional turkey just as well. You’ll be sure to delight the palates of your guests with this exceptionally mouth-watering bird that is anything but dry. You may want to brine your turkey overnight or for a few hours before popping it in the oven, to help retain moisture in the meat during cooking.

Maple Glazed Spicy Apple Roasted Turkey


Recipe from The Healthy Foodie

If you want a turkey that’s going to have some extra kick to it (after all, turkey can tend to be a little on the tame side), this recipe pairs star anise with cinnamon and maple syrup to bring out whole new levels of flavor that will be anything but bland, dry, or boring.

Turmeric and Honey Roast Turkey


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Up your turkey game by adding turmeric, everyone’s favorite anti-inflammatory superfood. Not only will you be indulging in Thanksgiving’s most famous dish, but you’ll be partaking of a dish with nourishing benefits that keep on giving. Plus, you won’t have to worry about a bland or boring turkey. This one is sweet and spicy, and juicy in all the right places.

Dry-Brined Turkey


Recipe from Food52

If you’re not a fan of going through the process of brining a turkey, try this dry brining method that will yield some insanely flavorful results. You can totally customize it with your own herb and seasoning preferences, too. Frankly, I am a fan of the orange zest.

Bacon Wrapped Turkey


Recipe from Kitchn

A bacon-wrapped turkey? Does it get more Paleo than that? The recipe includes a super helpful tutorial slideshow in case it’s your first time making a bacon sweater for the Thanksgiving bird. The results of this show-stealing turkey? You’ll probably be asked to bring it every year.

Turkey Brine


Recipe from PaleoPlan

Turkey brine adds flavor and moisture to your Thanksgiving turkey, making you less likely to end up with dry turkey meat. This Paleo turkey brine recipe makes enough to brine up to an 18 pound turkey. If you have a very large turkey, add ½ cup sea salt for every additional gallon of water needed to fully submerge your bird. To save room in your refrigerator, you can brine your turkey in doubled up turkey size oven bags or brining bags. You’ll probably require less brine for this as tying the bags tightly around the turkey brings less brine in contact with more bird.

Paleo Gravy Recipes

Garlic Apple Turkey Gravy


Recipe from PaleoPlan

This Garlic Apple Turkey Gravy recipe is a delicious topping for mashed potatoesThanksgiving turkey, or just about any other food that would taste better smothered in gravy! Unlike traditional gravy recipes, this Paleo Garlic Apple Turkey Gravy is actually healthy with good fats that come from the turkey drippings. This gluten-free gravy is thickened with arrowroot or tapioca powder (flour), but potato starch or cassava flour and other Paleo-friendly thickeners would work just as well.

How to Make the Best Gravy


Recipe from PaleoHacks

This Paleo, grain-free, gluten-free gravy is as simple as it is delish! With just a few simple ingredients, you can be on your way to the savoriest Thanksgiving gravy you’ve ever had. And no, you don’t need turkey drippings, any stock will do!

Paleo Turkey Gravy


Recipe from PaleoPlan

You just can’t have turkey without gravy! Well you can, but why would you when you can have this delicious, creamy, slightly sweet and very savory Paleo turkey gravy? It’s painless to make, and tastes delicious with the turkey and the rolls, and pretty much everything else on your Thanksgiving plate.

Paleo Cranberry Sauce Recipes

Tart Cranberry Sauce


Recipe from PrimalPalate

This beloved Thanksgiving staple is jazzed up in this recipe with the addition of orange juice, making it more palatable for those who aren’t a fan of cranberries on their own.

Cranberry Sauce Two Ways


Recipe from Predominantly Paleo

Whether you prefer jellied cranberry sauce, or whole cranberries, you can have your sauce and eat it too with this double whammy of cranberry goodness. Make the one that suits your preferences, or make both to appeal to both cranberry sauce camps.

SCD and Paleo Cranberry Sauce


Recipe from Against All Grain

This twist on traditional cranberry sauce includes warming nutmeg and cinnamon, with some orange zest and honey.

Paleo Mashed Potato Recipes

Traditional Paleo Mashed Potatoes


Recipe from PaleoPlan

Since real potatoes are Paleo, why not enjoy this traditional Thanksgiving staple? This Traditional Mashed Potatoes recipe prepares them without milk, yet still gives them a creamy texture that will have dinner guests going back for seconds (and thirds!). Top them with gravy, or enjoy them on their own for a rich, filling comfort food that you’ll want to enjoy all winter long!

Garlic Mashed Parsnips


Recipe from Paleoaholic

Need to avoid nightshades or potatoes for different reasons? Try parsnips! Their mild taste is easily mistaken for the real thing, and when combined with garlic and creamy coconut milk, you’ll have trouble making sure there’s enough to go around for everyone.

Cauliflower Mashers


Recipe from PaleoPlan

Can’t do potatoes or other nightshades? Cauliflower to the rescue! And the way that this dish is prepped will fool even your pickiest of potato fans into believing that it’s a spud-worthy dish. For another twist, try combining half cauliflower with half potatoes.

Duck Fat Roasted Garlic Sweet Potatoes


Recipe from Sarah Fragoso

This dish uses white sweet potatoes to achieve the classic look of mashed potatoes but it has a hidden, gold-star ingredient: duck fat. Okay, it’s not really hidden when it’s in the title of the recipe, but when your guests see this dish, they’ll think “delicious mashed potatoes.” When they taste it, however, their mouths will explode with a symphony of rich, savory, and melt-in-the-mouth perfection. It doesn’t get more Thanksgiving than that.

Pureed Parsnips


Recipe from Martha Stewart

Four ingredients and 10 minutes is all that stands between you and these creamy, Paleo-friendly parsnips. With fewer carbs than potatoes, they’re the perfect low-carb Thanksgiving menu item.

Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Coconut Milk and Vanilla Bean


Recipe from Kitchn

If you’re used to eating sweet potatoes with marshmallows, then this dish will give you the same decadent flavors in a Paleo-friendly way. Swap the brown sugar in this recipe for coconut sugar to have a completely Paleo dish.

Mashed Cauliflower


Recipe from Elana’s Pantry

It doesn’t get easier than three-ingredient mashed cauliflower. This classic recipe has been around for years. If you want to add some pizzazz, customize it with your favorite herbs or seasonings!

Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Celery Root Mash


Recipe by Cook Eat Paleo

Not a fan of plain mashed cauliflower? This recipe pairs it with garlic, celery root, and ghee to produce an over the top creamy dish that will make you say, “Potatoes who?”

Coconut Cardamom Sweet Potatoes


Recipe from Clean Eating Magazine

If you’re straying from white potatoes this year, or you want a sweet potato dish in addition, this fresh take on mashed, savory, and warming sweet potatoes is sure to be a winner.

Paleo Thanksgiving Side Recipes

Cranberry Stuffed Acorn Squash

cranberry stuffed squash

Recipe from PaleoHacks

Dessert or side dish—or both? This perfect autumnal dish pairs fall ingredients with favorite warming spices that will be sure to please both seasoned and picky palates.

Green Bean Casserole


Recipe from PaleoPlan

Some would argue (me!) that it isn’t Thanksgiving unless you have the green bean casserole. Frankly, I can go back for seconds and thirds of this just as much as I can for potatoes and turkey. While the Paleo diet doesn’t allow for the use of traditional canned cream of mushroom soup, this does not mean that you have to miss out on this classic dish during the holidays! Every element of the classic green bean casserole is here, Paleo-styled, since I know your meal wouldn’t be complete without the creamy, comforting goodness of this casserole dish.

Roasted Green Beans


Recipe from PaleoPlan

Maybe green bean casserole isn’t your thing, but you want to include the traditional element of green beans anyway. This simple, three-ingredient roasted dish is the perfect compromise, and it might even have your guests asking, “what casserole?”

Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Pomegranate


Recipe from PaleoPlan

This is, hands down, one of my favorite holiday-themed dishes. The red and green play nicely off each other, but more importantly, the delightful bitterness of the Brussels sprouts soars to new heights with the addition of pomegranate. Not only does it look pretty, it’s also a superfood dish—why not give your Thanksgiving meal a hefty boost of antioxidants and vitamins?

Apple Coleslaw


Recipe from PaleoPlan

Coleslaw brings about reminiscent feelings of Grandma’s kitchen and that perfect home cooked meal. This apple slaw has the perfect blend of sweet and tangy, and pairs perfectly with the classic turkey day dishes. Plus, it’s quick and easy to make, cutting down on your cook time for the big day.

Brown Butter and Herb Skillet Potatoes


Recipe from PaleOMG

Juli Bauer has outdone herself with this recipe, and I’m pretty sure this is going to become my go to potato recipe, Thanksgiving or not. Not quite Hasselback, and super easy, these potatoes are thinly sliced and roasted to buttery perfection. You might actually cry if you don’t try this recipe.

Maple Cranberry Brussels Sprouts


Recipe from Autoimmune Paleo

Brighten up your Thanksgiving spread with this beautiful, colorful dish that gives you a secondary use for cranberries. Even if you’re not a fan of the cranberry sauce, you’re not going to want to miss this tart and savory side dish. Bonus: it’s AIP.

Honey Maple Glazed Carrots

honey maple glazed carrots

Recipe from PaleoHacks

If you’re all about keeping things simple for the holidays, you really can’t get simpler or more elegant than this. Carrots pair naturally with turkey, potatoes, and stuffing, and complement pumpkin pie well, too. Plus, their stunning presence on your dinner table will probably send your dinner guests into a pre-meal Instagram frenzy. Hashtag awesome.

Creamed Collard Greens


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Win anyone’s grandma over with this nod to the green vegetable that many Millenials have long forgotten. It’s creamy (and still dairy free!), and with the added bacon, no one will realize they’re eating a nutritional superfood. If you’re not a fan of green bean casserole, or simply want an alternative, then this green dish will easily take the cake.

Vegetable Trinity


Recipe from PaleoPlan

No potatoes here! Our Vegetable Trinity recipe is an elegant and impressive side dish to serve your guests when you need to impress. This winter-root inspired dish is a stunning accompaniment to any holiday meal. Dazzle your guests with this festive medley of seasonal vegetables—including cauliflower, celeriac, yam, and beets—each imparting a unique flavor that perfectly complements one another. Serve this beautiful side dish in a martini glass or get creative with the presentation to accentuate the delicious trinity of colors.

Roasted Radishes with Fresh Herbs


Recipe by Healthful Pursuit

While radishes may not be a typical Thanksgiving side, these are roasted with sea salt, tallow, and herbs, and their colorful presentation will look right at home amid the other meal favorites.

Rosemary Delicata Squash with Maple Cream Drizzle


Recipe from Autoimmune Paleo

Dazzle your guests with this unique, gorgeous side dish that pairs the mild flavor of squash with the sweet and creamy blend of coconut and maple.

Herbed New Potatoes


Recipe from Clean Eating Magazine

Who says you can’t have potatoes two ways for Thanksgiving? Throw these out for a side along with the more traditional mashed potatoes, and I am fairy certain no one will complain. Or, if you’re feeling especially trend setting, do these instead of the mash.

Caramelized Baked Butternut Squash

baked butternut squash

Recipe from PaleoHacks

If you want a unique Thanksgiving side dish that still melds well with the autumnal flavors, then give squash a try. But this isn’t just any old squash—it’s baked with chili flakes, giving a punch of warmth and spice to the earthy texture.

Paleo Stuffing Recipes

Coconut Bread Stuffing


Recipe from PaleoPlan

What is a Thanksgiving meal without stuffing? Have no fear, devoted grain-free eaters. You can still enjoy delicious bread stuffing on the holidays (or anytime of year that you want!) by using this easy Paleo Coconut Bread Stuffing recipe.

Paleo Bread Stuffing


Recipe from Predominantly Paleo

This sage and thyme flavored Paleo stuffing just might become your new favorite way to eat bread, Thanksgiving or not!

Grain Free Traditional Stuffing


Recipe from Plaid and Paleo

Butter, celery, onion, stock—and Paleo bread, of course. This stuffing recipe is simple and delicious, and can be cooked by stuffing it in the actual bird, or by baking in a casserole dish.

Apple-Cranberry Holiday Stuffing


Recipe from Autoimmune Paleo

Need an AIP stuffing recipe? This one is not only pro gut health and anti-inflammatory, but it includes bacon and bone broth—two popular Paleo ingredients that are sure to convert even stuffing haters.

Paleo Bread and Roll Recipes

Plantain Bread


Recipe from PaleoHacks

One of the things I love the most about Paleo eating is that it can be inclusive for almost everyone. This bread recipe is not only grain free, but is also free from almonds and other nuts that can sometimes be problematic. With only five ingredients, this bread recipe is tasty and friendly for even the most food-allergy plagued diners at your Thanksgiving meal.

Baked Paleo Dinner Rolls


Recipe from PaleoHacks

These rolls can be prepped and baked from start to finish in just 30 minutes, meaning it’s truly possible to have fresh from the oven rolls on your Thanksgiving table! Utilizing coconut flour and tapioca, they have that real bread texture that is easy to miss on a grain-free diet.

Paleo Pumpkin Dinner Rolls


Recipe from Ultimate Paleo Guide

These soft and moist dinner rolls pair the comfort of dinner rolls with the subtle pumpkin flavor that we all associate with Thanksgiving.

Paleo Dinner Rolls


Recipe from Paleo Spirit

Crusty on the outside, soft and doughy on the inside—these rolls are everything you would want (and more!) for your Thanksgiving bread.

Paleo Pumpkin Cornbread


Recipe from PaleoHacks

While this recipe doesn’t actually contain corn (because corn isn’t Paleo), it perfectly mimics that satisfying, bready texture of legitimate cornbread. Since Thanksgiving is big on images of ears of corn, this might round out your perfect turkey day feast, without compromising your grain-free diet.

Paleo Pumpkin Recipes

Paleo Pumpkin Pie Bars


Recipe from PaleoPlan

This Paleo pumpkin pie bar recipe is a fabulous Paleo-friendly replacement for traditional
pumpkin pie recipes. Top these pumpkin pie bars with a dollop of coconut whipped cream to create the perfect end to Thanksgiving dinner that everyone will enjoy, even without the crust! If  you’re eating low-carb or are otherwise trying to cut down on the amount of sweetener in your life, you can easily exclude or reduce the sweetener in this recipe.

Pumpkin Custard


Recipe from PaleoPlan

If you want to embrace the pumpkiny nature of Thanksgiving, but making a pie seems too daunting, then this pumpkin custard recipe is the perfect easy dessert that will delight your diners with both presentation and flavor! It can be prepared in individual serving glasses, or in one large glass dish, with the same, festive results.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Miss dairy on the Paleo diet? You won’t with this dairy-free recipe that pairs pumpkin with the addictively popular cheesecake concept. Prep this dessert the day before to save time, although I have serious doubts that you’ll be able to keep your hands off of it before the big meal.

Mini Stuffed Pumpkins with Caramelized Cinnamon Apples


Recipe from PaleoHacks

You don’t see stuffed pumpkins at every Thanksgiving, but these will certainly be the talk of the dessert table. Pairing pumpkins with apples and cinnamon is a trifecta of Thanksgiving perfection. Add a dollop of coconut whipped cream, and you’re going to be in a Paleo dreamland.

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Gingersnap Crust


Recipe from Autoimmune Paleo

In less than an hour you could have this delicious, AIP-friendly pumpkin pie (with frosting!) on your Thanksgiving table. Folks who don’t need allergy-friendly diets won’t even know how good-for-them it is, and there’s no need to tell! Unless, of course, you want to save more for yourself.

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream


Recipe from Elana’s Pantry

Bring the classic flavor of pumpkin pie into everyone’s favorite cool dessert! This is perfect if you live in a warmer climate for Thanksgiving, or if you just want the world’s best way to top off a classic pumpkin pie. Either way, you can’t go wrong with pumpkin pie ice cream.

Grain Free Pumpkin Pie


Recipe from PaleoHacks

If you can’t imagine Thanksgiving without real pumpkin pie, then fear not! This completely Paleo but completely delicious recipe will convert all classic pumpkin pie lovers. In fact, I’m pretty sure that if you don’t tell anyone that it’s grain-free, then they probably won’t be asking—unless, of course, they’re asking for seconds.

Paleo Pumpkin Empanadas with Salted Caramel Drizzle


Recipe from Predominantly Paleo

I don’t know about you, but these had me at “salted caramel.” Seriously: does it get any better than this?

Pumpkin Bars with Coconut Buttercream Frosting

pumpkin bars

Recipe from PaleoHacks

Want that pumpkin feel, but simpler? These pumpkin bars will be a hit with kids, and are perfect for before and after dinner grazing. You don’t even need a fork!

Pumpkin Pudding


Recipe from Against All Grain

If you want something easier than pie, or especially friendly for the kids at your dinner, then this pumpkin pudding is about as perfect as it gets.

Chocolate Pumpkin Chiffon Pudding


Recipe from Elana’s Pantry

For the chocolate lovers among you, there is always a place for it—even on Thanksgiving Day. Especially when it’s paired with pumpkin and whipped into creamy perfection.

No Bake Pumpkin Tarts


Recipe from Detoxinista

Have some vegan friends or relatives coming to your turkey day shindig? These pumpkin tarts are Paleo and vegan, and since they’re no bake, well, they’re also as simple as can be. You might want to whip up a batch of these to enjoy while you’re slaving over that turkey.

Paleo Thanksgiving Dessert Recipes

The Best (and Prettiest) Apple Crumble


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Apples are some of autumn’s best offerings, and no Thanksgiving could be complete without a dessert featuring their sweet aroma and melt-in-your-mouth goodness.

Paleo Fried Apple Pies


Recipe from Predominantly Paleo

I know “Paleo” and “fried” don’t often go in the same sentence, but when you combine the perfection of apple pies fried in avocado oil (which is heart healthy and stands up to the high cooking temp), you really can’t lose. The only way you can be winning more is if you pair this with some kind of Paleo ice cream perfection. You’re welcome.

Maple Roasted Walnuts


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Part appetizer, part dessert that appeals to the weird ones who don’t like apples or pumpkins, these roasted walnuts can be served on their own, or can be added as topping for carrot cake, spice cake, pumpkin pie, or any apple dessert.

Paleo Carrot Cake


Recipe from Guilty Kitchen

Carrot cake is evocative of warm, autumnal flavors, so why on earth shouldn’t it be included in your Thanksgiving Day smorgasbord? Both cake and frosting are completely Paleo, which means grain and dairy free, but no one will be able to tell that this cake as allergy-friendly and anti-inflammatory. That’s a win/win.

Paleo Pecan Pie


Recipe from Bakerita

Pecan pie is one of those desserts that seems to show up right around Thanksgiving, and there’s no need to skip it even if you’re Paleo. This recipe is a nice complement to any dessert table that also includes pumpkin, apple, and all things cinnamon.

Hasselback Apples


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Okay, seriously: have you indulged in the Hasselback food phenomenon yet? The internet proves that you can Hasselback anything, but this is hands down my favorite.

Mini Paleo Apple Pies


Recipe from PaleoHacks

Miniature pies are not only adorable, but they’re easier to pull off if you happen to have hands that ruin every pie crust they touch (I do). The only downside to these is that you won’t be able to stop with just one, but really, is that a problem?

Honey Apple Tartlets


Recipe from Predominantly Paleo

Again with the miniature apple desserts! But really, who could go wrong with such a delicious (and did I mention easy) concept? These are done in less than 20 minutes, making them the perfect finale to your Paleo Thanksgiving meal.

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