30+ Recipes for Celebrating a Nourishing Real Food Thanksgiving

30+ Recipes for Celebrating a Nourishing Real Food Thanksgiving- www.modernalternativemama.com

Thanksgiving is all about traditions. There’s the turkey, rolls, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie; I could go but you get the picture. Thanksgiving is a time for family, friends, thankfulness and food. Loved ones gathering around the table to enjoy one another’s company is near to my heart.

It is a hard time to be a real foodie. It’s easy to want to just go for it and dig in since it’s one time a year. At the same time there is something that screams in my body,  “This is NOT what food is supposed to be like!”

Have you been there? Rest assured that many of us have. Are you feeling a bit overwhelmed with learning how to recreate your family’s tried and true favourites to be real food that nourishes the body? There are so many real foodies out there that have paved the way for you! Find links to all the recipes at Modern Alternative Mama!

Simple Apple Cider Syrup

Apple Cider Syrup aka Apple Cider Concentrate

Looking for a fun way to give your pancakes or coffee a fall twist? Then apple cider syrup is your answer. It is one of the easiest things I have ever made. It has 1 ingredient, apple cider. It can’t get easier than that right?

I wish I could take credit for this awesome syrup but really it was inspired by a dear friend of mine when we were living in Mexico. She made pumpkin pancakes drizzled with apple cider syrup for the kids one year. They were so amazing that I still remember how they tasted almost 10 years later!

This simple apple cider syrup is straight apple cider simmered for about two hours until it has reduced in size forming a concentrate. It is wonderful syrup but it is also a handy way to keep apple cider in the fridge when you don’t have a lot of shelf space. When you want a cup of cider you simply add 1 to 2 tablespoons of the syrup to a glass of water and there you go, apple cider! You can always add a dash of cinnamon for an extra special fall treat.

Apple Cider Syrup- www.nourishingsimplicity.org

Simple Apple Cider Syrup
  • 2 quarts apple cider
  1. In a medium-sized pot simmer the apple cider until it has reduced in size to 1½- 2 cups. Stir occasionally.
  2. Strain and save in a glass jar.
  3. It will stay fresh in the fridge for at least 1 month.
  4. Use on top of pumpkin pancakes, in coffee or to make apple cider/juice.
  5. To make apple cider stir 1-3 tablespoons of the syrup into 1 8oz glass of water.


How To Stretch A Chicken Into 6 Meals

How to Stretch 1 Chicken for 6 Meals- www.nourishingsimplicity.org

The iconic roasted “Sunday Chicken”, there is little that tastes better than a savoury piece of chicken with crispy skin and spices. When served with some potatoes and a vegetables, you have a meal that is satisfying and delicious.

Unfortunately if you are buying a pastured chicken or even a regular organic chicken you might be paying $10-15 per chicken. All the more reason to raise your own if you ask me. Many of us including me at the moment don’t have that option. (Someday though, I’ll be raising chickens again.)

With prices that high per chicken many of us can’t afford to have a chicken last for just one or two meals. We need ways to make the chicken stretch for a few extra meals. Over the years I have learned to get the most I can out of my chickens.

These suggestions are for made with a family of four in mind. Every family is a different, so feel free to take these suggestions and run with them! As glad as I am that I know how to stretch 1 chicken for 6 meals there are times when I have served the whole bird and just made soup with the leftovers. There’s no shame in throughly enjoying a whole bird now and again.

1. Roasted Chicken

I love to make roasted chicken. It is one of the easiest “fancy” dishes to learn to fix. It is sure to impress oh so tasty!

Cut off the legs and thighs to feed your family that night. Leave the rest of the chicken on the counter so no one is tempted to gobble up the whole thing. So that no one feels like they aren’t having a filling meal serve the chicken with a couple tasty sides like mashed potatoes, rice pilaf, roasted vegetables or fresh soaked whole wheat bread.

I am a huge fan of chicken wings. They aren’t always easy to find so when I am prepping a chicken to roast I normally cut off the wings and place them in a freezer bag. Once I save enough wings for a meal I pull the bag out and make my favourite teriyaki wings.

2. Pick the Chicken Clean

Cut off the breast meat. Slice into bite size pieces. You can add to yellow curry, Thai Curry Noodle Soup, or a stir-fry.

Sometimes I will cut off the breasts before I roast the chicken and save them to make a “Chick-fil-A” nuggets or a tandoori chicken sandwich.

Pick any other meat left on the bones to save for meal #6.

Nourishing Homemade Chick-fil-A Nuggets

3. Bone Broth

There are few things better for you than bone broth. I like to use my bones to make batches of broth. For added flavour and nutrition I like to add one or two chicken feet when I have them on hand. The first broth tends to be more rich and savoury. I’ll use it for soups where the broth is the star like Nourishing Thai Noodle Soup or Knefla (German Dumpling Stew).

My second batch or broth is used to for soups where many other ingredients are added such as my green tortilla soup, roasted tomato tortilla soup or to make rice pilaf.

4. Giblet Broth

The giblets are what my Grandma Burnett always went for. When I was little I thought she was crazy. Looking back I see what a smart woman she actually was. I like to set the “offal” as it is also called aside to make crazy good for you broth. I add chicken feet to the broth as well. Like my second batch of bone broth I tend to use giblet broth for making rice and soups with lots of add ins. Don’t throw the offal away, set it aside for a nutritious boost to another meal.

Giblet Broth
  • 2 quarts of water
  • Chicken Neck
  • Giblets
  • 2 Chicken Feet (optional)
  • 1 tsp salt
  1. Simmer for up to 24 hours. Strain the broth throw a fine mesh strainer or a cloth. Disarcd the bones and set the giblets aside for another meal.


5. Organ Meats

I like to use the offal left from making the giblet broth mixed into soups like chile or chopped up in meatloaf or meat balls. There is so little that it is impossible to detect it. You get the nourishing benefits from the offal and you aren’t letting them go to waste!

6. Bit and Pieces

Whatever bits and pieces that may be left are perfect to add to a salad, fried rice or another pot of soup, such as Simple Chicken and Rice Soup.  (Can you tell I like soup?)

Another perk to having your own chickens is that you get to take awesome pictures like these!

Chicken Love 2What are you best tips for stretching a chicken for more than one meal?


How to Cook Real Food without a Real Kitchen


Have a tiny kitchen? Ya, me too… Actually right now I have no kitchen of my own but that’s another story. Most of you know that until recently I was living in Mexico. I had a “kitchen” but it was not that fancy of one, it consisted of a few odds and end thrown together to forming a make-shift kitchen.

When I was little I thought the Box Car Children and Ma from “Little House” were pretty awesome. Cooking with whatever you could find and washing dishes in a stream with sand, well I digress a bit. Hands down I am a HUGE fan of Ma, I am in awe of all the real nourishing foods that she made. Back then real food and tiny kitchens were a way of life.

In modern, 1st world areas many of us have a hard time imagining preparing real food in a tiny kitchen. I get you, belive me I do. It’s not easy or ideal. I’ve teamed up with a few of my favourite gals online to share our humble real food kitchens with you. No they aren’t pretty, and yes most (if not all of us) want something nicer and bigger but we make do. I know that a lot of you do as well.

Consider these tours and encouragement for those days when you are frustrated with how in the world you can prepare and store your real food while nourishing your family and staying sane at the same time. :)

I posted my “real food kitchen tour” earlier this year but decided to share it again. Be encouraged, not all bloggers have big, fancy, spotless kitchens. I’d love to know what your real food kitchen looks like as well. Feel free to share photos of your kitchen on facebook for the Nourishing Simplicity community to see. We are all doing the best with what we have!

This little kitchen is also the space where most of the recipes in my ebooks Steeped: Nourishing Teas and Treats and The Frgual Secrets of Real Foodies were created. Don’t let a tiny kitchen hold you back!



Easy Foods

Elsie from RichlyRooted.com shows how she organizes her tiny cabin kitchen…with no kitchen drawers!

Danille from More Than Four Walls shares  how she continue their real food philosophy while living in a camper.

AlinaJoy at GoodOldDaysFarm.com shares how she juggles cooking, eating, homeschooling and long term food storage in a small 1930’s farmhouse kitchen.

Jaimie E Ramsey shares how she she organizes, creates new recipes, and entertains in her small apartment kitchen.

Rachel at Mason Jar Values (rachelzupke.com) shows how you can make a kitchen work as big as it seems…even if it’s not!

Jennifer from GrowingUpTriplets.com shares a video of how she manages real food prep

Do you have a tiny kitchen? What do you have in your real food kitchen?

Saturday Bargins 11/8/14

saturday bargains 1

Guess what? Today is Saturday, which means Saturday Bargains is actually on the right day, instead of Monday like last time…

In case you are new, this is how it works. Sarah of Simple Life Abundant Life and I search the internet for the best deals in faith, family and natural living. All the prices are good at the time of posting but they can change so be sure you double-check them before you make your purchase. Many off the links are affiliate links which means this site gets a small percentage of the sales. Just so you know we don’t share anything that we wouldn’t consider using ourselves.



I love my immersion blender! It is one of my favourite kitchen tools. I got mine for $1 at a yard sale but it’s not nearly as nice as this one. Once mine bites the dust (which may be soon) I’m thinking of getting this one. It’s $34.95 right now, which is 46% off. It is great for making soaps, lotions and so much more!

I keep eying this beauty on Amazon. I’m nor gluten-free/grain-free by any means but I do like the idea of using veggie “noodles” in place of regular pasta sometimes. It is 68% off right now!

Okay, so I’ve become quite the coffee fan over the past 5 years. If you are as well then you are sure to like these next few deals.

$19.95 is not bad for 2 pounds of organic coffee. I’ve tried this brand before and been very happy with it. Plus it’s from Mexico, so how could I not love it?

My french press is my best friend, just kidding but I really do like it a LOT! This one is 52% off, I doubt you will find a better price than $32.95.

At $18.70 this stainless-steel thermos is a great way to take your coffee (or tea) on the road with you as the holidays approach. Plus it’s saves you from making too many Starbucks stops along the way. I like to fill mine with a peppermint mocha. Hey, it is about the same price as three mochas from a coffee shop, what’s not to love?


I love using essential oils! Not only is defusing them good for your health, it is also an easy and safe way to fill your house with amazing holiday scents! This diffuser is only $34.27 right now making it 24% off!

It is a great way to make smoothies, make salsa or small batches of other things. Plus it’s small enough that it can travel with you! This high-speed blender is currently on sale for $79.oo, 34% off!


I have to say the first time I saw one of these I found it really odd. The more I’ve read about it makes me condier getting this natural air purifier for my own some. It is 50% off right now!

Did someone say apple pie? I LOVE pie, it’s so much better than cake. Think off how much easier it would be to make pie if you had one of these! It would be great for prepping apples for muffins as well. It’s a top seller on Amazon and on sale for just under $20.

My crock-pot is a life savers. I honestly don’t think food would get on the table some days if I didn’t have one. Do you see the cool clamps on it? That means you can bring it to potlucks and not worry about it tipping over and slipping all over your car! It’s only $29.99. If you don’t have one, it’s a must it my book! ;)


At $2.79 this tea ball is perfect for your loose leaf tea!

I use strainers all the time for my water kefir, dairy kefir, bone-broth, tinctures and so much more. I love that this set has three different sizes! It’s 60% off right now.


Be prepared to laugh! This was one of my favourite feel good movies of the year. Now you just need a “night off” to watch it! ;) $11.95 is a great price for this delightful movie.


If you don’t have cast-iron cookware, now if your chance! You get all of this for $63.99, that’s 57% off! I cook with cast-iron every day and love it.


This seems like a sweet holiday classic for the whole family to enjoy for $8.73.