Canadian Wheat Belly-ers: Some Thanksgiving Recipes!

I almost forgot that Thanksgiving is celebrated early in Canada! While I will be putting out more Wheat Belly-friendly Thanksgiving recipes in the coming weeks, let me re-post the recipes that I posted last year to help any Canadians wondering how to navigate their holiday without the Evil Grain!

Let’s start with a recipe for wheat-free Thanksgiving dressing, followed by a method of making gravy without wheat flour using coconut milk and coconut flour.






Wheat-free Cauliflower Mushroom Dressing

This dressing is heavier than the usual bread-based dressing or stuffing. Because it contains meat, it should not be stuffed into the turkey to cook, as this will not ensure a sufficiently high temperature. While this works best as a two-step process–stove top to oven–if time-pressed, you could just cook on the stove top a bit longer.

1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
1 pound pork sausage, preferably loose ground
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 medium onion, diced
8 ounces Portabella mushrooms, sliced
1 head cauliflower
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 green pepper, chopped
4 ounce can/jar roasted red peppers
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1 teaspoon ground sage
1 teaspoon ground thyme
1 teaspoon ground tarragon
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Bring approximately 12 ounces water to a boil in sauce pan. Toss in porcini mushrooms and turn heat down to maintain below boiling. Stir every couple of minutes for 20 minutes.

In deep sauce pan, saute sausage (if encased, remove from casing) in 1 tablespoon olive oil, along with celery and onions, until sausage cooked. Drain excess oil. Place sauce pan back on low heat. Break cauliflower into small florets and add to sausage mix. Toss in drained porcini mushrooms along with approximately 4 ounces of the porcini broth (save remainder of broth to make gravy; below), remainder of olive oil, green pepper, roasted red pepper, Portabella mushrooms, flaxseed. Add onion powder, sage, thyme, tarragon, salt and black pepper and stir.

Transfer to baking dish and place in oven. Bake for 45 minutes.


Wheat-free gravy
Without wheat flour or cornstarch to thicken our gravies, surely the taste of gravy suffers–but it does not! Without the usual unhealthy ingredients, this Wheat-free Gravy is actually tastier than conventional gravy while presenting no health downside.

If you follow the recipe for Wheat-free Cauliflower Mushroom Dressing (above), you should have around 8 ounces of porcini mushroom broth left over. This adds a wonderful mushroomy-meaty flavor to the gravy, a deeper character not usually found in standard gravies. Thickness is obtained without wheat, cornstarch, or other carbohydrate-rich thickener by use of coconut flour and coconut milk.

Because the quantity of drippings obtained will vary widely, depending on the size of your turkey, ingredient quantities are not specified. Rely on taste as you prepare your gravy to gauge ingredient quantity.

Turkey drippings
Coconut milk
Coconut flour
Onion powder
Garlic powder
Sea salt

Heat drippings in the roasting pan or poured into a sauce pan on stove at low-heat. Pour in coconut milk slowly, stirring, until desired color is achieved. Gravy should be opaque, rather than translucent. Stir in coconut powder, 1 teaspoon at a time, waiting at least one minute before adding another teaspoon, until desired thickness is achieved.

Add onion powder, garlic powder, and sea salt to taste.

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Comments & Feedback...

  1. Anne Lawless

    Thanks Dr. D.,for thinking of us Canadians! We had the whole family over this year…..we are out in the country so they all enjoyed the colours of autumn on their drive here. We decided to forgo the turkey this year and had roasted pig on a spit and lots of veggies. My niece brought “gluten-free” cupcakes; I was polite and had one – it’s the thought that counts but I will be educating her on nut flours! Anne

  2. AllisonK

    So, it’s been tricky eating properly for thanksgiving….and usually I end up indulging slightly, but not this year. We celebrated yesterday, and I avoided the cake and bread stuffing and any other bread items. I actually felt great after, while everybody else was ready for a nap. My question for you now is how contaminated does the turkey and gravy get if it’s cooked with bread stuffing inside? I felt great after, so I’m thinking it’s not much. Though I didn’t have any gravy because it was made with flour and chicken oxo.

    • Lori

      I asked this question last year and Dr Davis advised that unless you have celiac disease, you don’t really have to worry about this potential cross contamination. Happy Thanksgiving from Winnipeg!

  3. We celebrated our big Thanksgiving yesterday. We had turkey, prime rib roast, roasted root vegetables and my mom’s special mashed potatoes with cream cheese & sour cream (not the best option I know but I had a small spoonful – under 1/2 cup). Yes, there were gravy and dinner rolls but I stayed away from those. We also had a cheesecake for dessert. I got on the scale this morning fearing a small gain and – low and behold – I lost 0.4 pounds since yesterday!! Love this diet :)

  4. Nivek

    Thankyou so much! I will put these recipes to use tommorow! I am currently in the process of reading your book and was curious… would it be okay to eat Einkorn wheat? Is wheat (whatever kind) in general bad? Or is there not enough information available to deternmine if Einkorn is safe?

  5. Thank you from Canada!

    We just arrived home from my mom’s Thanksgiving meal – smoked pork chops (not ideal, but delicious on the bbq), bread/potato stuffing (didn’t touch), white dinner rolls (nope), bruschetta (nope again), mashed potatoes (no no), squash in maple syrup sauce (had a small helping), apple sauce and cranberry sauce (small helpings of both despite refined sugar). I also drank a couple of glasses of red wine. Overall, not great, but SO much better than any point in the past. For dessert, I came prepared with the Wheatbelly Carrot Cake…

    Unfortunately, my family will continue to think this is just a phase…

    • Dr. Davis

      Remain strong, Anne! And you will be rewarded.

      Ah, the Carrot Cake recipe: I should repost this, as well. It’s one I am especially proud of!

      • MariL

        Yes, please repost. I’m new to this new lifestyle ( I refuse to call it a diet, I won’t be going back to eating wheat) and I adore carrot cake.
        After only 5 days, I was able to fit into jeans I hadn’t worn since before I had my son.

  6. Pat

    I have had good success, in making gravy, by sprinkling Xanthan Gum on meat juices, such as with a beef roast, and stirring until thick.

  7. Good Morning Dr. Davis — Thanks for your nice comment on my blog. I hope to have some bloodwork results to share with you later this week. I am down 35 pounds as of this morning (12 weeks). It’s amazing. Thanks!

  8. Hi GourmetGirl :)

    I’m new to the wheat free lifestyle and I’ve been very inspired by your blog. I’ve started a blog as well (seems the thing to do:) and included your blog as one of my favourites…I tried the Hungarian Paprika Chicken the other night and it was delicious – didn’t thicken up the way it should have, though. We’ve got all the ingredients on hand for your moussaka as well.

    Congratulations on your success!

    From Canada…

  9. Kristine

    Thanks for the Thanksgiving recipes, Dr.D. I thoroughly enjoyed my Thanksgiving dinner as always; the notable exception this year, however, was that it was the first time I enjoyed my meal and didn’t end up getting uncomfortably stuffed at the end of it. It was a great way to end the day, rather than sitting on the couch with my belt loosened like I did most years!

    • Dr. Davis

      Well, happy wheat-free Thanksgiving, Kristine!

      I predict that you will have many healthier, happier wheat-free holidays ahead!

      • Again, not sure where to post this…

        Thanksgiving went ok, even though having someone else in charge of what we ate made me fairly anxious. Frankly, I’m glad it’s over. The eating, not the holiday.

        I had an interesting moment a while ago. I panicked when I didn’t immediately know what we were going to have for lunch – not out of hunger, but practicality (and maybe the old feeling of worrying about getting hungry). Confession time: I immediately reached for the pot and the package of quinoa. I think shifting my mindset away from grains as the staple at mealtimes is going to be more difficult than I anticipated. It turned out fine – quinoa was used in very small portions on top of big salad (turns out if you rummage through your market findings, it’s not hard to throw together a salad).

        I’m definitely still at the beginning of my journey…

        Blogged about it here:

  10. david

    Canadian Thanksgiving Debrief:
    Hello all,
    I have been on the wheat free program for two weeks now. I am 20lbs overweight and am losing around 3lbs per week without changing anything else. Thanksgiving posed a real test for me. In prior years, I usually pack on 5lbs over the weekend and feel pretty sluggish (poisoned ?) for several days after the feast. This year, I avoided most of the wheat items. While I didn’t have any urge to eat the stuffing or gravy, I did indulge a bit to conform to social norms (“the compromise”.) I changed nothing else in my diet and consumed my usual ration of vino. I weighed myself on Tuesday and am down 0.5lbs from the start of the weekend! I also felt energetic both after the meal and when going back into work.

    Several months ago I had a perforated appendix that was treated with IV and antibiotics (no surgery.) Since then, on occassion, I have noticed “sensations” over my McBurney’s point. When I went wheat free, these low level pain sensations disappeared. However, on the night of Thansgiving dinner, when I consumed the small amount of wheat items, the lower quadrant sensations cameback but have since gone upon resuming my strict wheat free observance. Just an observation….

    • Dr. Davis

      There seem to be no end to such unique and fascinating observations. So keep them coming, David!

      Imagine: Healthy, pain-free holidays. Gotta wonder how many family squabbles that break out over the holidays are really nothing more than another common form of wheat intolerance?

  11. Jo

    has anyone perfected a recipe for yorkshire pudding to go with prime rib dinner if you are not having the turkey ?? I usually use my muffin tins for my yorkshire, but possibly this could be done in a muffin top pan ?? I would think there should be a recipe with almond or coconut flour and I love the porcini mushroom gravy !! I am so excited that everything bad can be made wheat belly ! Thank You, Thank You, Thank You

    • Dr. Davis

      Oh, boy, Jo: Got me on that one.

      Never made Yorkshire pudding, so no experience nor any attempt. Should you figure it out, please come back and enlighten us!

      • Hi Dr Davis, Jo asked for a yorkshire pudding recipee, in the book Cooking with coconut flour by Bruce Fife, ND, there is one. I havent tried it yet, but here it is anyway.
        1/2 CUP COCONUT MILK
        1/4 tsp salt
        2tbsp sifted coconut flour
        3tbsp corn starch (or arrowroot pwdr)
        with eletric beater blend all ingrediants till smooth. Pour batter into greased 11 x 7 x 2 in baking pan. Bake at 425f or 225c for 25 min. Remove from oven, cut into 6 equal size pcs and serve.

        Happy thansgiving!

        • Dr. Davis

          Thanks, Kelly!

          I’m wondering how important the cornstarch is. Perhaps just a bit more coconut flour, instead?

  12. Kathy from Maine

    At long last I’ve found your recipes. I kept clicking the link for Recipes in the top bar, but always got a “web page not found” message. So I typed Recipes into the search bar, and voila! I wonder if others are having a hard time finding your recipes.

  13. Holly

    Made the dressing today. Taste great but doesn’t bake up like a typical dressing. Is there some type of flour like almond or coconut missing from the recipe? I yhink I may try making my usual dressing recipe but instead of cornbread, I’ll use your focaccia bread. That focaccia bread is excellent.

    • Dr. Davis

      No, it is just different, Holly.

      See Gourmet Girl’s blog for another way to make stuffing/dressing but with cubed flatbread.

  14. Joanne

    Dr. Davis, I am very interested in trying your grain free diet but I am a vegan and I find there seems to be a lot of items included in your recipes that are not suitable for vegans. Can you tell me if this diet can be converted to vegan. Many thanks for all the wonderful results so many people are having with your way of eating. I’m truly hoping that I can include myself in enjoying all the benefits of eating wheat free. But being vegan is very important to me. Joanne

    • Dr. Davis

      Yes, you can indeed remain vegan, Joanne.

      There will be compromises, however, such as including more legumes, some (non-GM) organic soy, more seeds and nuts, more oils. You may also need to, as with any vegan or vegetarian approach, address the several nutritional deficiencies that develop with your dietary philosophy.

      I am a former vegetarian. I stopped when I became diabetic. I am no longer diabetic.

      • Loekie

        I follow a glutenfree diet and I eat fish, no meat. Sometimes chicken from biological agriculture. It is not necessary to eat meat, and certainly not lots of meat. This diet works for me. I could not walk properly a year due to pain in my right leg. The pain disappeared immediatly after going glutenfree and the discomfort in my leg is almost gone. My acne has disappeared, mood is improved etc etc.