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Kidney-Friendly Thanksgiving Meal

Article originally posted on

On the fourth Thursday of every November, Americans around the country get together with family and friends and give thanks for all that’s good in their lives -- including health. Thanksgiving Day is also a day full of food. From stuffing to turkey to potatoes, the holiday fare can be full of sodium and off limits to kidney patients. In honor of Turkey Day, the Kidney Kitchen is offering recipes for the entire holiday party so that those following the kidney-friendly diet can join the celebration.

Roast Turkey with Fresh Sage

Appropriate for CKD, Dialysis, Diabetes

1 teaspoon canola oil 1-12 pound fresh turkey ½ yellow onion diced 1 bunch fresh sage (.75 oz) 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning

Remove giblets and turkey neck from the cavity. Wash the turkey inside and out; pat dry. Remove any pinfeathers from the skin. Sprinkle the cavity with poultry seasoning and place the diced onion and fresh sage in the cavity. Oil the bottom of the roasting pan and place the turkey inside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 2.5 to 3 hours; the juices should run clear when you stick your fork between the drumstick and thigh bone. Remove from the heat, cover with foil and let rest 20 minutes before serving.

Analysis 3 oz serving of white meat without the skin, calories 134, total fat 2.8 g, saturated fat 0.9 g, monounsaturated fat 0.5 g, polyunsaturated fat 0.7 g, cholesterol 59 mg, calcium 16 mg, sodium 54 mg, phosphorus 186 mg, potassium 259 mg, total carbohydrates 0.0 g, dietary fiber 0.0 g, sugar 0.0 g, protein 25 g

Poultry Gravy

Appropriate for CKD, Diabetes

½ teaspoon canola oil 1 ¼ cups (4 oz) ¾ inch diced onion 1 cups (4 oz) ¾ inch diced celery 1½ # chicken wings 4 cups water ¾ teaspoon poultry seasoning 1/4 teaspoon sage 1/4 teaspoon white pepper 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon ¼ cup cornstarch ½ cup water

In a heavy bottom or large stock pot, add vegetable oil, onions and celery and cook over medium heat until onions are translucent. Add chicken wings, water, poultry seasoning and sage. Simmer for 1 ½ hours. Strain and save the liquid. Refrigerate over night. Remove from the refrigerator, scrape any solidified fat off the top and heat the liquid to a boil. Add white pepper and bouillon. Mix cornstarch and water to form a thickened mixture, also known as a slurry. Slowly whisk the slurry into the simmering liquid. It will thicken very quickly and keep stirring until you have reached your desired thickness. Remove from the heat and serve.

Analysis 8 - ½ cup servings, calories 113, total fat 6 g, saturated fat 1 g, monounsaturated fat 2 g, polyunsaturated fat 3 g, cholesterol 72 mg, calcium 26 mg, sodium 199 mg, phosphorus 138 mg, potassium 221 mg, total carbohydrates 6 g, dietary fiber 0.5 g, sugar 0.8 g, protein 5g

Please note that there may be small amounts of fat still in the gravy after you scrape the solidified fat off the top. The nutritional analysis of the fat content does not include this since it cannot be measured.

Braised Red Cabbage

Appropriate for CKD, Diabetes

½ teaspoon canola oil 6 ½ cups (1 #) red cabbage, washed, cored and shredded ½ (1/5 oz) Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced 1/3 cup cider vinegar 1/3 cup Splenda White pepper to taste

In a non-stick fry pan; add oil, cabbage, diced apple and vinegar. Cover and cook over medium heat until cabbage is wilted. Add Splenda and white pepper to taste before serving.

Analysis 4 - 1 cup, servings per recipe, calories 51, total fat 0.8 g, saturated fat 0.1 g, monounsaturated fat 0.4 g, polyunsaturated fat 0.3 g, cholesterol 0.0 mg, calcium 53.5 mg, sodium 31 mg, phosphorus 37.3 mg, potassium 309 mg, total carbohydrates 13.7 g, dietary fiber 2.3 g, sugar 6.1 g, protein 1.7 g