Holiday Paleo Cheat Sheet

If you’ve recently gone Paleo, you might be worried about navigating the kitchen this holiday season, what with all of the sugar, bread, and other non-Paleo staples of a traditional Thanksgiving dinner floating around.

But do not fear, Paleoistas! I’ve got your wheat-free little backs!

We’ve put together this Paleo swap cheat for you so you know what to use to replace those common holiday ingredients. You don’t have to give up your favorite Thanksgiving dish!


Holiday Paleo Swaps

Flour. Wheat flour is a no-no for Paleo. I’m also not a huge fan of those gluten-free flour blends (most contain potato starch and ingredients that can spike your blood sugar). Luckily, there are alternatives available. Use arrowroot for your thickening needs (be it a pie or a pan of gravy) and coconut flour for baking.

Dairy. Say no to the heavy cream and yes to full-fat coconut milk! And, yes, it has to be the full-fat coconut milk when you’re using it to replace cream in your recipes, or you won’t be happy with the results.

Sugar. Refined sugar is the enemy. And, as a Paleoista, you know that. Replace the sugar in your recipes with honey or xylitol so you can have your Thanksgiving cake and eat it, too.

Vegetable oil. Another big no-no on the Paleo diet is vegetable oil. Actually, nobody should be eating vegetable oil, Paleo or not. Swap out the oil in your dessert recipes for grass-fed butter or ghee. Coconut oil is also great for cooking with, and for greasing those pans.

Bread. Bread is the ultimate no-no for Paleo. When it comes to the coveted leftover turkey sandwich, use lettuce leaves as your “bread” and you can enjoy that sandwich without the bloat!

Potato. No mashed potatoes for the hardcore Paleoista, either. Many of us will have a scoop of mashed potatoes (if they’re organic!) with our Thanksgiving dinner. But, if you’re not allowing any white potatoes on your plate this year, choose sweet potatoes (orange or purple), and you’ll be perfectly happy. Especially if you prepare my famous sweet potato recipe!

There. How simple was that?

Be sure to share this cheat sheet with all of your Paleo friends!

Here’s something that will make you smile–it’s our Paleo Thanksgiving Menu! Below is our Paleo option, and it is yours for FREE! Just click below to get the menus.

Paleo Thanksgiving Menu

10 Responses

  1. Thank you! As I head out to do last minute shopping I’ll keep these in
    mind. One note I want to make re: xylitol– Make sure to check for the
    source. Since it can be made from corn, make sure it’s not from GMO
    corn. Organic or birch sugar only!

    1. Oh darn. I didn’t know that xylitol could be made from GMO corn. I bought some from the Vitamin Shoppe and never even thought to check. I’m out and it’s already mixed up in some toothpaste so will def check on this. Thanks for the info.

  2. Also remember Xylitol is fatal to dogs-not sure about cats. So if you are in the habit no treats for pets if you use this sweetener.

  3. You have to be careful substituting with coconut flour. If you use too much, your fluffy baked goods will come out like a hunk of lead. And if you use xylitol to make lemonade, you might send all your guests home with diarrhea.

    1. No, they are not biologically similar to humans. In this case, a human’s body does not recognize Xylitol as a sugar and thus does not respond by increased insulin in the bloodstream. A dog’s body recognizes Xylitol as a super-sweet sugar–and therefore dumps a massive amount of insulin into the dog’s bloodstream, causing the dog to get severely hypoglycemic in a very short time. A vet visit is essential to save the dog’s life, in this situation.

  4. I have found a white sweet potato at whole foods. It is great to substitute for white potatoes. They are not as sweet.

    1. Yes! They are called Hannah and I am going to try them whipped this year. Will also roast some with garlic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *