Tips For A Gluten-free Thanksgiving Day Meal: People with Celiac Disease Can Enjoy A Wheat-free Holiday Feast

A Thanksgiving meal can seem like a dangerous minefield for someone who has celiac disease. All of those dishes, and various ingredients, could spell disaster if someone else has prepared the meal.

However, one simple solution is for the individual in question to have the meal at her home, and prepare the food herself. Other would-be guests could come and help prepare the given ingredients instead of bringing a dish made without supervision.

If people want to contribute to the meal in a more material way, they could bring over specified ingredients the day before; items such as vegetables, or specific brands of food.

Naturally Gluten-free Thanksgiving Foods

There are several traditional Thanksgiving foods that are naturally gluten-free and can be prepared relatively easily.


For many people, the turkey is the main course of a Thanksgiving meal. Fortunately, a fresh or frozen whole turkey is already gluten-free. As long as any herbs, spices, and oil used on the turkey don’t have any gluten ingredients added to them, the turkey should be safe cooked as is. Problems arise with the stuffing, which will be discussed below.

The gravy is also not a problem. Instead of wheat flour for the thickening, gluten-free cornstarch or gluten-free flour can be used.


Vegetables in their whole state are naturally gluten-free. They can be cooked as they are, and jazzed up with some herbs and oil, free of gluten-containing ingredients. For example, mashed potato with some chives, parsley, and sunflower oil are delicious. Sometimes the amazing taste of a fresh local vegetable by itself is all that is needed.


Fruits are also naturally gluten-free in their whole state. They can be baked into a dessert or served fresh. Most store-bought cranberry sauce is also gluten-free, but the labels always need to be checked.

Gluten-free Stuffing

Stuffing and desserts represent the trickiest parts of a Thanksgiving meal. However, they are very doable. There are many recipes for a gluten-free stuffing. This is a simple example:

In a large mixing bowl, 6 cups gluten-free bread crumbs, 1 cup chopped green onion, 1 cup chopped fresh mushrooms, 1 tsp sage, 1/2 tsp rosemary, and salt and pepper to taste are combined. After these ingredients are combined, 1/2 cup butter is melted and mixed in well. This stuffing can be used to stuff the turkey, or it can be steamed on the side.

Gluten-free Thanksgiving Dessert

As with the stuffing, there are many delicious gluten-free dessert recipes that are easy to prepare. Gluten-free blueberry crisp makes a great finish to the Thanksgiving feast. It can be assembled, and then baked while the main part of the meal is being eaten.

For a great gluten-free pumpkin cheesecake, the following adjustments can be made to this gluten-free bakeapple cheesecake recipe:

  • The crust procedure is followed as it is.
  • 1 cup pumpkin (cooked or canned), 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, and1/4 tsp cloves are added to the filling and the rest of the procedure is followed as is.
  • Gluten-free whipped cream can be substituted for a topping when the cheesecake is served.
  • Steps 1- 4 are followed to assemble the cheesecake.

The original gluten-free bakeapple cheesecake is also a nice make-ahead dessert idea.

A complete gluten-free Thanksgiving Day meal can be accomplished by a person with celiac disease, and still be shared with family and friends.

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