It's Almost Thanksgiving! But Until Then…You Still Have to Eat

Here's what to eat in the days leading up to the big holiday feast.
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Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Matt Armendariz, 2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Thanksgiving is the holiday we train for — running through menu combinations, debating wet and dry turkey-brining options and even test-driving stuffing recipes in the weeks beforehand. But now that the big day is almost here, don’t overlook one simple task: feeding yourself in the days leading up to turkey day. Here’s how to eat strategically as you count down the days to Thursday’s feast.

Let’s face it: The usual Thanksgiving menu doesn’t include much green. In fact, most traditional fare is somewhere on the white-to-brown color spectrum. So get some roughage into your diet with a crisp Kale and Apple Salad (pictured above), made with raw kale and crisp apple slices and dressed in a lemony vinaigrette. 

If you’re worried you won’t get enough white meat at your Thanksgiving feast, take the precautionary measure of cooking up Ina Garten’s Roast Turkey Breast with Gravy. Roasting just the breast is so much lower-maintenance than cooking a whole bird and gives you endless options for delicious leftovers.

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Food Stylist: Maggie Ruggiero Prop Stylist: Michelle Wong ,Food Stylist: Maggie Ruggiero Prop Stylist: Michelle Wong

Photo by: Yunhee Kim

Yunhee Kim

Make a batch of Bobby Flay’s Minestrone with Parmigiano-Reggiano, enjoy some now and keep the rest on hand for a quick heat-and-serve lunch (or dinner for when you get home from fighting for the last can of pumpkin puree at the grocery store and are too tired to cook!).

Food Network Kitchen's Avocado Toast Breakfast Salad, as seen on Food Network.

Photo by: Stephen Johnson ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Stephen Johnson, 2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

If you haven’t already jumped on the breakfast salad bandwagon, now’s the time. Our Avocado-Toast Breakfast Salad is creamy from mashed avocado, peppery from baby arugula and sliced radishes, and satisfying without weighing you down.

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WU0308H_simple-perfect-enchiladas

Craving something that’s a total departure from the usual turkey-day fare? Roll up a pan of Ree Drummond’s Simple Perfect Enchiladas made with ground beef and plenty of cheese in lots of tangy enchilada sauce.

Even before you get the turkey in the oven Thanksgiving morning, make time for a quick, healthy breakfast like a Mixed Berries and Banana Smoothie. It calls for just five ingredients and takes five minutes to make. Sip and strategize your remaining Thanksgiving dinner prep. You’ve got this.

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