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100 Delicious Holiday Recipes for the Low-Carb Crowd

The holidays are known for being times of giving gifts, seeing loved ones and, of course, stuffing yourself with loads of unhealthy foods. Yet holiday eating need not be a calorie-laden, carb-tastic time of year and it is entirely possible, through the sheer power of good planning and self-control, to actually eat pretty healthy over the holidays. If you’re following a low-carb diet and don’t want to fall off the bandwagon over the next few months, check out some of these low-carb recipes that help you cut down on the stuff you don’t want to eat and maintain your health without sacrificing on taste.


Start your holiday meals off right with these low-carb dishes.

  1. Roasted Asparagus Wrapped in Ham: This simple recipe makes for healthy and delicious finger food.
  2. Creamy Pumpkin Dip: Guests will love dipping veggies into this tasty and seasonally appropriate dip.
  3. Crabby Mushrooms: Give mushrooms a little kick with this recipe that stuffs them with crabmeat.
  4. Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes: These stuffed tomatoes not only look adorable, they taste great too.
  5. Bacon-Wrapped Scallops: Everything is better wrapped in bacon, including these delectable scallops.
  6. Antipasto Tray: If you want to go simple and low-carb, pull together a great antipasto tray like this one.
  7. Swedish Meatballs: A holiday classic, these spherical meats are sure to please guests of all ages.
  8. Crabmeat Dip: Put a little protein in your holiday dip by whipping up a batch of this tasty crab dip.
  9. Almond Cheese Spread: You’ll love putting this spread on just about everything.
  10. Apple-Nut Blue Cheese Tartlets Recipe: These tartlets aren’t carb-less, but they’re so small it’s ok to enjoy a few without worrying about going overboard.
  11. BLT Bites: Bring the tastes of a BLT into one small, delicious package using this recipe.

Soups and Salads

Whether you’re serving them as a first course or a meal, these recipes are sure to please even those who love their carbs.

  1. Pepperoncini Chopped Salad with Romaine, Red Bell Pepper, and Feta: If you want to give your holiday salad a little kick, add the pepperoncini this recipe suggests.
  2. Arugula Chickpea Salad with Feta and Balsamic-Tahini Vinaigrette: This salad works great as a side dish or stands out on its own as well.
  3. Low-Carb Lobster Bisque: You’ll impress guests and yourself with how easy and delicious this fancy dish is to make.
  4. Curried Carrot and Parsnip Soup: Work with the flavors and colors of the season by making this tasty curried soup.
  5. Tomato Basil Soup: A classic, this soup will warm you up without ruining your diet.
  6. Butternut Squash Soup: Embrace this seasonal squash by bringing it to your holiday table in this flavorful soup.
  7. Creamy Spicy Pumpkin Soup: With few carbs and great taste, you’ll make this soup a thanksgiving staple.
  8. Spinach Orange Salad: They might not sound like a match made in heaven, but this salad pairing is actually quite tasty.
  9. Chicken Apple Arugula Goat Cheese Salad: Start out your meal with an amazing salad you’ll want to make again after the holidays are over.
  10. Cobb Salad: If you want to go the classic route, Cobb salad is an easy, low-carb way to do it.
  11. Crab Salad with Pear and Hazelnuts: This recipe makes for a great appetizer, and one that’s fancy enough to really impress guests.

Reinvented Classics

Don’t miss out on holiday favorites just because you’re eating low-carb. Try these alternative recipes instead.

  1. Mashed Cauliflower: Instead of serving up carb-filled potatoes, try this cauliflower-based alternative instead.
  2. Low-Carb Cranberry Sauce: Skip the sugar when it comes to cranberry sauce and try out this recipe for a tastier, healthier version.
  3. Candied Yams: The word candied doesn’t scream low-carb, but this recipe will show you otherwise.
  4. Spinach Casserole: Enjoy the deliciousness of casserole without worrying about carbs by using this recipe.
  5. Low-Carb Green Bean Casserole: A Thanksgiving and Christmas classic, you can make this casserole a bit healthier with help found here.
  6. Low-Carb Biscuits: Who says you can’t enjoy biscuits when you’re on Atkins? Try out this recipe for low-carb baked goods this year.
  7. Sweet Potato Casserole: Using this recipe, you’ll be able to cook up some delicious sweet potatoes that won’t sabotage your diet.
  8. Twice-Baked Yams: This recipe proves that a low-carb Thanksgiving really can be delicious if you know how to do it right.
  9. Sugar Free Cranberry Chutney: In lieu of the traditional cranberry sauce, try out this recipe for a sugarless chutney.
  10. Mock Garlic Mashed Potatoes: If your mouth waters at the thought of garlic mashed potatoes, but you’re not eating carbs, then try this recipe from low-carb chef George Stella.
  11. Cranberry Relish: This cranberry relish won’t give you anything to miss about the old-fashioned, higher-carb kind.

Stuffing and Gravy

Outfit your holiday main course with all the appropriate low-carb accoutrements with the help of these recipes.

  1. Sage-Onion Stuffing: This stuffing is low-carb and gluten-free, but with sage, pecans, thyme and parsley, it tastes just as good at the classic.
  2. Baked Outside the Bird Stuffing: By cooking this outside the bird, you’ll save time and get more flexibility in the ingredients.
  3. Sausage and Herb Stuffing: Replace that bread with sausage using this great recipe.
  4. Low-Carb Gravy: Make your gravy this year a little more carb-friendly by trying out this simple recipe.
  5. Wild Mushroom Turkey Gravy: This gravy is so delicious you won’t believe it’s low in carbs.
  6. Low-carb Stuffing Bread: Here’s a great recipe you can use to bake low-carb bread to use in stuffing.
  7. Wild Rice and Cous Cous Stuffing: Another alternative to bread, this recipe uses wild rice and cous cous.
  8. Brown Gravy: Here you’ll find a basic, Atkins-approved recipe for gravy.
  9. Pork Roast Gravy: If you’re cooking up a roast this holiday season, top it with this gravy.
  10. Gluten-Free Stuffing: Whether you can’t have gluten or just want fewer carbs, this recipe is a great alternative way to enjoy this holiday staple.

Veggies and Sides

These side dishes are so good you won’t even notice they’re low-carb.

  1. Green Beans with Almonds: Adding almonds to some basic green beans gives them flavor and protein without any extra carbs.
  2. Melting Tuscan Kale: Guests young and old will be eating their greens with this recipe that tops kale with cheese.
  3. Roasted Eggplant with Red Peppers and Olives: Whether at the holidays or any other time of the year, this recipe is a great, hearty side.
  4. Sauteed Baby Artichokes: Cook up some tiny artichokes for a rich and delicious accompaniment to your holiday meal.
  5. Collards, Roasted Peppers and Artichoke Saute: If you don’t want to go for artichokes alone, this recipe pairs them with some great complimentary foods.
  6. Brussels Sprouts and Bacon: It’s hard to hate Brussels sprouts when they’re matched up with bacon like in this recipe.
  7. Spaghetti Squash Alfredo: Use this seasonably available squash to make a delicious pasta alternative.
  8. Simple Squash and Basil Saute: Cut your holiday prep time down by using this simple recipe.
  9. Baked Spaghetti Squash: Try an alternate preparation of this stringy, but delicious, squash this year.
  10. Saucy Skillet Mushrooms: If you’re a fungi fan, this recipe will make you smile and help keep your low-carb eating on track.
  11. Manhattan Creamed Spinach: It sounds too rich to be low-carb, but this recipe really is something you can eat.
  12. Asparagus and Cheese Souffle: Get fancy with your holiday cooking by whipping up one of these impressive souffles.
  13. Roasted Carrots and Mushrooms with Thyme: This dish is basic and a home-cooking classic, so try it out with your holiday meal.
  14. Soy-Glazed Sweet Potatoes with Sesame Seeds: You’ll forget all about the marshmallow or brown sugar toppings for sweet potatoes once you try this recipe.
  15. Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms: Add a little variety to your table with this hearty wild rice recipe.

Main Courses

Luckily, most holiday main courses are already low-carb. Here are some recipes to try to cook up something special this year.

  1. Brined Turkey: By brining the turkey, you’ll create a juicier, more flavorful bird.
  2. Roasted Rib Eye: Looking for an alternative to turkey or ham? This recipe could suit your holiday needs perfectly.
  3. Maple-Mustard Glazed Baked Ham: This ham will be a beautiful and tasty addition to any holiday table.
  4. Roast Turkey with Sage Butter: Enjoy eating low-carb with this luxurious turkey recipe.
  5. Good Eats Roast Turkey: Chef Alton Brown explains how to prepare the perfect turkey in this recipe.
  6. Dr. Atkins’ Original Roast Turkey: Hear about low-carb preparations straight from the source with this Atkins-approved recipe.
  7. Spiced Cranberry Glazed Ham: Give your ham a little extra holiday feeling by adding cranberries.
  8. Roasted Leg of Lamb: For some, lamb is the traditionally holiday fare, and this recipe will explain how to properly prepare it.
  9. Rubbed Turkey: If you don’t want to brine your turkey, why not give it a nice dry rub?
  10. Baked Ham with Low-carb Maple Bourbon Glaze: You won’t believe the glaze on this holiday ham is low-carb — but it is.
  11. Roasted Pecan and Herb-Crusted Salmon: If you’re looking to go super healthy for holiday eating, cooking up some salmon like the one in this recipe is a great idea.


Desserts are often pretty carb-loaded, but these tasty treats are a great way to finish off your meal without going carb crazy.

  1. Pumpkin Cheesecake: Low-carb cheesecake? Impossible! This recipe proves otherwise, in the most delicious way imaginable.
  2. Primal Apple Pie: Primal living enthusiast Mark offers up this recipe for low-carb apple pie.
  3. Ricotta Cranberry Cream Pie: This dish looks amazing and is well within your diet regulations.
  4. Mini Pecan Pies: You may not be able to indulge in traditional pecan pie, but you can get a taste of them in these tiny, low-carb alternatives.
  5. Stevia Pumpkin Pie: This recipe replaces the sugar in pumpkin pie with Stevia, making it low-carb friendly.
  6. Butter Pecan Ice Cream: Learn how to make amazing low-carb ice cream from this recipe.
  7. Berry Plate Dessert: Go simple and healthy with your desserts using this recipe.
  8. Low-carb Praline Pumpkin Pie: Spice up and de-carb your pumpkin pie this year by making this chef-approved concoction.
  9. Low-Carb Double Chocolate Walnut Brownies: Didn’t think you could enjoy brownies while on a low-carb diet? Think again.
  10. Low-Carb Quick Chocolate Almond Ice Cream: Chef George Stella offers up this recipe for unbelievable chocolate ice cream without all that sugar and fat.
  11. Apple Walnut Bread Pudding: If bread pudding is a holiday favorite, then don’t skip out. Simply use this recipe to create a lower-carb version.
  12. Decadent Chocolate Cake: You can have your cake and eat it too when you use this recipe.

Treats and Baked Goods

From low-carb muffins to delicious snacks, these recipes have you covered for holiday eats.

  1. Roasted Figs with Goat Cheese and Balsamic-Agave Glaze: A traditional holiday food since ancient times, enjoy this modern, low-carb recipe for figs.
  2. Shrimp and Cocktail Sauce: This traditional classic is a perfect way to have fun with low-carb dishes throughout the holiday season.
  3. Carrot-Nut Muffins: These muffins are not only healthy and loaded with carrots and nuts, but also surprisingly low-carb.
  4. Cinnamon Roasted Almonds: Replace the sugar with Splenda and double the cinnamon and you’ve got a tasty seasonal treat in these nuts.
  5. Pumpkin Pound Cake: Create a pound cake that will fit your dietary needs and still be seasonally delicious.
  6. Low-carb Blueberry Muffins: Whether for breakfast or for a late night snack, these muffins won’t make you miss those carbs one bit.
  7. Low-carb "Mock" Raisinettes: Guests will love snacking on these low-carb alternatives to chocolate covered raisins.
  8. Orange-Nut Muffins: Give muffins a makeover with this recipe for a particularly tasty low-carb version.
  9. Low-carb Popovers: These popovers are perfect with just about any holiday meal.
  10. 1970’s Gluten Bread: While not friendly to the gluten-free crowd, this bread is low in carbs.
  11. Herb ‘n Garlic Cheese Biscuits: Your family and friends will fawn over these biscuits, and simply won’t believe they aren’t a standard recipe.

Holiday Drinks

Alcohol, by nature, isn’t particularly low-carb. Yet if you want to indulge at the holidays, choose from one of these lower-carb options.

  1. Low-Carb Sangria: Enjoy this refreshing drink using the traditional ingredients, or add some mulling spices to make it more seasonal.
  2. Low-Carb Eggnog: For some people, it just wouldn’t be the holidays without eggnog. Luckily, there’s a great low-carb recipe to be found here.
  3. Irish Coffee: Enjoy this rich drink without worrying about the carbs when you use this recipe.
  4. Low-Carb White Russian: Learn how to make a White Russian that’s South Beach-appropriate with this recipe.
  5. Vodka Collins: This twist on a classic will help you celebrate the holidays without all the carbs.
  6. Low-Carb Cosmo: This popular and seasonally appropriate drink gets a makeover using this recipe that cuts out some of the carbs.
  7. Rum and Diet: There is no way to cut all the carbs from alcohol, but this drink is about as close as you can get.
  8. Bloody Mary: Try out this alternative recipe for a spicy classic this holiday season.

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