There are some that manage to eat small, tame portions of their Thanksgiving meals and then there's the rest of us who show up in comfy pants with stretchy waistbands and who fully plan on napping before heading home. If you're stuffed to the gills and need a meal or two off before you dig into leftovers, here are some recipes to help aid you in that quest. Don't worry, you can still have a turkey sandwich (or three) after.
1. Grilled Cabbage Wedges with Spicy Lime Dressing: If there isn't quite snow on the ground in your area, there's still room to grill. This salad is light, bright and a snap to throw together.
2. Rosemary-Lemon Kebabs with Flatbread: It doesn't matter if you can grill outdoors or not, kebabs can always be made indoors. In combination with fresh vegetables and tender flat bread, you'll forget all about the ladels of gravy from the day before.
3. Linguine with Walnut Pesto: Although pasta isn't always light, this version only has a few simple ingredients and is better than your third serving of mashed potatoes.
4. Kale Salad with Apricots, Avocado & Parmesan: Everyone wants to eat kale these days and if you have family in town who hasn't tried it, this is a great recipe to start them out on. Kale is filling and has great texture while the avocado and apricots are playful and extra tasty.
5. Chili, Lemon, and Basil Shrimp with Israeli Couscous: Shrimp is as far away from turkey as you can get and it's a quick dinner for one, two or a crowd.
6. Zucchini Stuffed with Sausage, Mushrooms & Sage: Anything served in a vegetable is automatically light eating right? You could possibly make this recipe with leftover Turkey Day meats, or follow it as is.
7. Bánh Mì with Lemongrass Tofu: Bahn Mi might be a humble sandwich, but it's big on flavor without leaving you feel overly stuffed. Perfect for shopping and hanging out with friends.
8. Roasted Chicken Thighs with Fennel & Lemon: The good thing about chicken thighs is that when they're cooked properly they pull apart and can be used in a million different ways. Try them on a sandwich, tossed in a pasta, or on your eggs at breakfast.
9. Halibut, Spinach, and Tomatoes in Foil Packets: This method of cooking is one of the most fool proof. It steams things without worry of burning or sticking to a pan, plus it's perfect if you're feeding a crowd without consuming another casserole.
10. Thin-Sliced Roasted Pork with Southwestern Spices: Sometimes a little spice is the key to satisfying your tastebuds without feeling the need to consume extra food. This sandwich hits the spot without being a mouthful (well unless you take big bites).
(Image: See links above for full image credits)