My Thanksgiving Menu – Paleo, Gluten-Free, and Traditional & Food Safety Tips

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First of all I want to wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving with you and your family or friends whoever you chose to spend time with on this special day or if you had to work then I hope you get off early to meet up with folks or if you were unable to travel that you at least had a pleasant day!

I wanted to share my Thanksgiving menu with all of you that included options for Paleo, Gluten-Free, and Traditional plus I wanted to share some food safety tips!

Here is my crazy, confusing, holiday menu this year!  Well not that confusing but  it was a little more demanding because I tried a couple of new recipes but I’m glad I did it! But it was fun to try different foods this year but it’s also important to remember food safety this time of year so many people get sick and don’t even know what hit them and it can even end up with a trip to the hospital….no one wants that over the holidays!

So lets compare menus here is mine:  (Please share your recipes I would love to see them!)
Cheddar and pepper jack cheeses with gluten-free and regular crackers
Homemade Texas Caviar or Black Eyed Pea Salsa and Tortilla chips
Homemade Hummus with celery (I have a blog post on this!)

Steamed Oysters and butter


(Paleo Portion)
Turkey (used the Viking’s Brine Recipe (blog post)
Korean Fried Rice (Blog post 90+ Gluten Free Recipes recently shared)
Roasted Asparagus Drizzled with honey and kosher salt

(Gluten Free Portion)
Homemade Mashed Potatoes
Homemade Gluten Free Gravy
Cranberry Jelly (yes the jiggly store bought stuff) I love it!
All American Sun Oven Apples with Cinnamon
Sweet Potatoes

(The Traditional Portion)
Homemade Lazy Macaroni & Cheese (I have a blog post my son loves it!)
Green Bean Casserole this is for my husband….and he likes the store-bought onions and everything just the way it is (Sigh!)
This year for the first time I bought the guys Stovetop stuffing because I eat gluten-free I can’t taste it and they were okay with it they just didn’t want to do with out it!
Homemade Pumpkin Pie made with our Candy Roaster Pumpkin and fresh whipping cream! YUM!

and drumroll….we ditched the rolls and biscuits this year and I bet no one will notice except maybe my son LOL!  I think it’s a fine menu and too much food for us all to eat so for sure there will be leftovers!

Here are some food safety tips and steps to ensure no one in your family gets sick this holiday season!


Also here is a quick food safety video to take a peek at just to make sure you know where to go to get good reliable food safety information!

Also take a look at some of these leftover guidelines they may be helpful as you are packing your leftovers!

How Many of These Leftover Rules Do You Follow?

  • Leftovers should be refrigerated or frozen in shallow containers. Whole roasts, hams and turkeys should be sliced or cut into smaller pieces or portions before storing them in the refrigerator or freezer. This encourages rapid, even cooling.
  • In general, leftovers stored in the refrigerator should be consumed within 3-4 days. When possible, put a sticky note or other label on your leftovers with the date they were first stored so that you know when to toss them out. A full list of recommended cooling and freezing times is here:
  • Throw away all perishable foods, such as meat, poultry, eggs and casseroles, left out at room temperature for more than two hours. This also includes leftovers you bring home from a Thanksgiving meal at a family or friend’s house. Some exceptions to this rule are foods such as cookies, crackers, bread and whole fruits.
  • Turkeys are smoked for flavor, not so you can keep them around until New Years. Store a commercially smoked turkey in the refrigerator, unopened, no longer than a week. Once the package is opened, use or freeze the bird within 3 to 4 days.
  • Reheat solid leftovers to at least 165 °F, as measured by a food thermometer. Reheat liquid leftovers to a rolling boil. Do not taste leftovers to check and see if they’ve spoiled – bacteria that cause illness do not affect the taste, smell, or appearance of food.
  • Food poisoning is a serious public health threat to our country. CDC estimates that approximately 1 in 6 Americans (or 48 million people) will suffer from food poisoning this year, resulting in roughly 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths.

For more safe food handling info and leftover tips, visit You can also access “Ask Karen,” an online database with 1,500 answers in both English and Spanish to specific questions related to preventing foodborne illnesses. Or, you can also call the USDA Food Safety Hotline at 1-800-535-4555 available from 10am to 4pm Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

I know reviewing safety guidelines isn’t always the most fun of topics but it’s important and I realize we all need review! I was happy to look these items over myself!

What was on your menu this Thanksgiving day?

I wish you a safe and happy holiday!


Karen Lynn

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