Alas, the final day of #FriendsgivingInTheForest has arrived! If you’ve been reading along, this week w’ve made recipes for Healthy Mini Bundt Stuffing, Pomegranate Butternut Squash Quinoa Salad, Rosemary Pear Shortcake, and Pear Infused Sparkling Water! It’s a sad day indeed, because this Thanksgiving feast has been so much fun to make, eat, and photograph. However, it’s a great day as well because today we’re featuring the star of the show….the main dish!
While turkey is traditional, there are so many options out there for the center of your Thanksgiving meal. In this case, we actually used a small chicken! I love turkey, but we only had 5 guests total soooooo…..an entire turkey was a little much. How big is your Thanksgiving feast? Knowing how many you will need to serve can help you decide what bird to choose!
Shoutout to Cody’s grandmother (hey, Grammy!) for showing me how to roast a bird and letting me borrow her roaster for this post! Before I made this small chicken, she showed me how to roast a turkey. It was the biggest ordeal. Before that, I had really only dealt with chicken breasts…this was way more complicated! Especially since the “practice turkey” was huge. Growing up, we always had Thanksgiving at our extended family’s homes. So I was never really around for this part of the Thanksgiving meal prep! And since I was typically only in charge of making pie (like these Cranberry Mini Pies), I was surprised to find out about everything that comes inside of a turkey. I won’t go into details, but you can imagine that I freaked out and couldn’t bring myself to take that stuff out. Thank you, Cody and Grammy, for saving the day.
In addition to that, we found the neck of the bird stuffed inside the turkey AFTER we cooked it. WHAAAAAAAAA?????? So. Gross. I flipped. Grammy took it out and I quote “Oh, look at that! There’s the neck!”. First time turkey roasters, beware! Some of you are laughing with me because you can relate, and some of you are laughing at me for being afraid of a turkey. I’m ok with that. Despite everything I discovered my first time roasting a turkey, I will say that the end result was beautiful and delicious! I can also say that after that experience, this small chicken was pleasant and easy to deal with 🙂 Oh, and by the way, this roaster is the BEST for roasting your Thanksgiving meal!
Chicken w/ Cranberry Orange Sauce:
Whole Chicken or Turkey
3/4 Fresh Cranberries
2 Small Oranges
1/4 Cup Honey
Roast the chicken or turkey. Meanwhile, in a sauce pan, heat the cranberries over medium-high heat for about 7 minutes. Add in the orange slices and honey, then continue to heat until the cranberries start popping (mixing often). Remove from heat, let cool, and store in the refrigerator (if not serving immediately). Pour over the center of the bird and serve!
This sauce makes about 6 servings at about 60 calories a serving!
Ok, these carrots.
This recipe is SO easy! After I took the chicken out of the oven, I sprinkled a bunch of rosemary and poured honey over these carrots, threw them in the oven for about 30 minutes, and they were perfect! If you’ve never had tri-colored carrots, don’t be alarmed. They all taste like regular carrots, but make the dish look extra pretty! I definitely recommend using them if you can, and if not, the dish will still be great!
Honey Roasted Rosemary Carrots:
1/4 Cup Honey
3-4 Tbsp Chopped Rosemary
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and place whole carrots on a baking sheet. Drizzle honey over them, then sprinkle the chopped rosemary on top. Roast for about 30-35 minutes and serve hot!
The nutrition facts depend on how many carrots you roast, but in my case we made about 6-8 servings at about 60-80 calories a serving!
Wondering what we sat on while out in the forest? Check out Cari’s floor pillow DIY and tips on how to decorate a Thanksgiving table!
Ok friends, that concludes our Friendsgiving In The Forest series! Thanks for tuning in this week!
We hope you’re inspired, ready, and excited about creating a healthy and beautiful Thanksgiving dinner! Cheers to family, friends, the holidays, and a grateful heart!