Gluten Free Thanksgiving.jpg

Whether having a Friendsgiving or traditional Thanksgiving meal, roasted butternut squash will squash the competition on the table. 

Thanksgiving is a holiday that’s become almost entirely dedicated to food. Those with certain intolerances shouldn’t have to miss out on the festivities. These gluten-free recipes will likely be a big hit for anyone celebrating turkey day.

Roasted butternut squash with apple cider vinaigrette

Butternut squash is a healthy and tasty addition to any meal. This is dish every guest at the Thanksgiving table can enjoy that has all the flavors of fall and no gluten.


  • 2 small butternut squashes (about 1 1/2 pounds each), peeled, seeded

  • 1 medium-sized red onion, cut into wedges

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1 cup apple cider

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard

  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

  • 2 tablespoons parsley

Instructions for the squash:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut squash into 1/2-inch thick slices. Toss the squash and onion with two tablespoons of oil on two baking sheets. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, then rotate each pan and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the squash is golden brown. 

Instructions for the Vinaigrette: 

While the squash is in the oven, bring the apple cider to a boil in a small saucepan. Once boiling, reduce to low heat and let it simmer for about 12-15 minutes until the cider has reduced to three tablespoons. In a separate bowl, whisk together the reduced cider, mustard, vinegar and remaining oil. Season with salt, pepper and parsley. 

Drizzle the squash and onions with vinaigrette before serving. Garnish with dried cranberries if desired. 

Gluten-free potato “stuffing

Stuffing has long been a Thanksgiving staple. This “stuffing” is safe for those with gluten-free diets, and the dish is also vegetarian. To make it a heartier dish, add meat, such as sausage, to the vegetables when they’re cooked on the stovetop. 


  • 3 large, grated yukon gold potatoes

  • 1 large, grated sweet potato

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 4 large chopped celery stalks

  • 1 diced onion

  • 3 sliced carrots

  • 8-10 cooked chopped chestnuts

  • 1 diced granny smith apple

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 4 chopped sage leaves

  • Salt to taste

  • 2 cups vegetable broth


Place grated potatoes in a colander over another bowl. Add one teaspoon of salt to the potatoes and toss. Set aside for 20-30 minutes, or let the mixture sit in the fridge overnight to drain some of the moisture. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. 

Heat the olive oil in a large, nonstick skillet. Then add potatoes, celery, onions, chestnuts, garlic, sage and salt. Toss well, and cook over medium heat for 10-12 minutes until vegetables are tender. Transfer them to the prepared baking dish, and pour the vegetable broth over the dish. Bake uncovered for an hour and a half. Then, broil the dish for 2-3 minutes until the top is golden brown. 

Spinach dip

This simple yet addicting appetizer can be made in just a few minutes. It can also be easily made vegan by swapping out dairy ingredients with vegan ingredients, such as non-dairy milk or cheeses. 

Gluten Free Spinach Dip.jpg

This twist on a classic chips and dip combo doesn't include any dairy.


  • 10 ounces frozen spinach, thawed

  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon gluten-free flour

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, vegan if desired 

  • 1/4 cup milk of choice 

  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

  • Salt and pepper


Heat oil in a skillet, and add the garlic and onion. Cook these on medium-high heat, and stir occasionally until golden brown. Add the flour, and stir for one or two minutes. Add cream cheese, and cook until the mixture is completely melted. Add the rest of the ingredients, and cook for two more minutes. Serve immediately in a skillet or bowl with gluten-free bread slices, crackers or chips of choice. 

Flourless chocolate cake

This chocolaty and creamy flourless cake is the perfect way to end a meal. The chocolate glaze topping must set for several hours, so one may want to make this cake the night before the big meal. 

Ingredients for the cake:

  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)

  • 3 large eggs

  • 1/2 cup Dutch-process cocoa powder

Ingredients for the glaze:

  • 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Instructions for the cake:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease an 8-inch round, metal cake pan. Cut a piece of parchment paper, and lay it in the pan. Lightly grease the paper.

Heat the chocolate chips and butter in the microwave or on the stove until the butter is melted and the chocolate is soft. Stir the mixture until the chocolate chips melt, reheating briefly if necessary. Transfer the melted mixture to a mixing bowl. Stir in sugar, salt, espresso powder and vanilla, then add eggs and beat until smooth. Add cocoa powder and mix.

Then, spoon the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes. Remove it from oven and allow to cool in the pan for five minutes. Loosen the cake away from the edges of the pan with a knife or spatula, and turn the cake out onto a serving plate. Allow it to cool completely before glazing. 

Instructions for the glaze: 

Place the chocolate in a heat-safe bowl. Heat cream on the stove until it’s not quite simmering but shows fine bubbles around the edge of the pot. Then, pour the cream over the chocolate, and stir very briefly to combine. Let it rest for five minutes and stir again until the chocolate is completely melted and the glaze is smooth. If any chocolate bits remain, briefly reheat the mixture and stir until smooth. 

Then, spoon the glaze over the cake and leave it to set for several hours before serving it. 

Contact Taylor Sarlo at For more on the culture, arts and lifestyle of the JMU and Harrisonburg communities, follow the culture desk on Twitter @Breeze_Culture.