Turkey might be what everybody imagines and counts on having every Thanksgiving, but when we’re all sitting around after the meal and packing away the leftovers, it’s the SIDE DISHES everybody loves and remembers best. Whether you’re dreaming of veggies, potatoes, or a big old basket of bread, you know that the big bird is nothing without its tasty supporting players. This Thanksgiving, why not let them all flap their wings and fly a little by trying some new recipes? This list has everything from tasty twists on tried-and-true favorites to brand-new ideas destined to become family classics. Your guests will never want to go anywhere else for Thanksgiving ever again. Check them out and choose which ones to chow down on this Thanksgiving!
- Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes
It’s just not Thanksgiving without potatoes, particularly the ones of the sweet and orange variety! This recipe ups the delicious factor by making them twice-baked and topping them with honeyed almonds for extra-special fall flavor.
- Candied Sweet Potato Casserole
You didn’t think we could round up Thanksgiving recipes and only include one sweet potato recipe, did you? This casserole is sweet, savory, and side-dish ready.
- “Turkey” Veggie Platter
One of the easiest-to-make ideas on this list lets your vegetarian guests eat some turkey without eating any meat! Plus, it’s the perfect healthy appetizer for all of your guests.
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Apples
Brussels sprouts are no longer the veggie-to-be-avoided. Instead, they’re the star of the Thanksgiving spread, especially when they’re paired with apples and roasted to perfection.
- Stuffing in a Bundt Pan
Adore stuffing but feeling like using the same old boxed kind year after year is getting a little, well, stuffy? Then try transforming it into a gorgeous Bundt . . .
- Deep-Fried Stuffing
. . . or a deep-fried appetizer, with this recipe from Allrecipes . . .
- Stuffing Muffins
. . . or make two-sides-in-one with these warm and delicious muffins from Cooking On The Side.
- Cranberry Sauce
This Thanksgiving, canned cranberry sauce just will not do. Instead, go homemade and try this classic recipe . . .
- Fresh Cranberry Relish
. . . or this more adventurous version that adds oranges, lemon juice and ginger for the perfect balance of sweet and tart.
- Potato Pull-Aparts
It would be totally possible to fill your entire table with just potato dishes, and one of our favorite new additions to the spread is this recipe for Potato Pull-Aparts. They’re like baked potatoes and fries combined, and just as delicious and fun as both.
- Cast Iron Skillet Cornbread
For the longest time, cornbread was a Southern secret, but now that the whole country is starting to catch on, it makes sense that it would immediately become a starring player in one of the most American holidays! The best-ever recipe makes it in a cast iron skillet, just as it should be.
- Green Bean and Wild Mushroom Casserole with Shallot Topping
Much as we’d like to fill our Thanksgiving menu with only turkey, potatoes, carbs and cranberries, we all know we need some veggies in there, too! One of the most classic: green beans! We can make them a little more indulgent by putting them in a casserole, like in this recipe from Serious Eats that uses fresh ingredients like mushrooms and shallots to update the classic.
- Gluten-Free Green Bean Casserole
Love the taste of green bean casserole but need one without the gluten? We’ve got you covered, thanks to Serious Eats.
- Green Beans With Crisp Shallots
Prefer your veggies to be lean and simple? Then you’ll love this recipe that sits back and lets the green beans shine with crisp, satisfying taste.
- Haricort Verts with Sauce Ravigote
Otherwise known as green beans in a mustard caper vinaigrette, this final green bean variation from Serious Eats cuts the difference between casserole and sautéed simplicity for a perfectly-balanced, healthy veggie side.
- Mushroom Turnovers
Impressing your guests doesn’t have to be stressful when you can make these treats ahead of time, freeze before baking, and then bake up on turkey day! They’ll keep in the freezer for up to a whole month.
- Cranberry Meatballs
With meatballs made of turkey and cranberry sauce to dip them in, this idea from Spoon Fork Bacon goes from “crazy” to “perfect” in no time flat.
- Butternut Squash Soup
Has a dish gone from a novelty to a seasonal staple and Thanksgiving favorite as fast as butternut squash soup? This recipe from Wanna Bite It lets you prepare it ahead of time for convenience and taste!
- Garlic Herb Mashed Potatoes
We can’t talk about Thanksgiving without mentioning this classic. When you make them with lots of full-fat milk, they’ll stay soft and fluffy even if you need to freeze them ahead of time.
- Cheddar Green Bean Casserole
Just one more green bean casserole recipe! We couldn’t resist the cheesy addition from Healthy Seasonal Recipes.
- Bibb and Beat Salad
When you think of Thanksgiving, you normally don’t think of salad, but after tasting this beet-and-butternut-squash-starring version from POPSUGAR, that’s all going to change.
- Potato Basil Puree
Tired of regular mashed potatoes? A fan of pesto? Always up for trying something new? Whatever your reason, you’ll absolutely want to try this incredibly flavorful recipe, coming to us from Ina Garten via POPSUGAR.
- Savory Squash Pudding
This dish from POPSUGAR is so tasty and filling, it can serve as an entrée for vegetarians— and regardless of diet, it will satisfy everybody at your table.
- Pumpkin Risotto
Want to incorporate some pumpkin into your meal but pretty sure you’re full up on desserts? No worries! You can use pureed pumpkin to make a fast, filling and easy risotto, like this one from POPSUGAR . . .
- Pumpkin Bread
. . . or make some extra-special bread that’s so sweet and tasty, nobody will even want dessert!
- Cheese Balls
Whether you make the Pizza, Cannoli, or Honey Dijon version, a cheeseball is the perfect thing to whet your guests’ appetites before dinner and satisfy their persistent munchies after the meal is finished.
- Garlic Buns
You can never have too many bread options, am I right? Choose from these garlic buns, bursting with a cheesy surprise . . .
- Traditional Biscuits
. . . these classic flaky biscuits, which you can adapt for all your favorite flavor palates . . .
- Oatmeal Dinner Rolls
. . . easy oatmeal rolls that only take 15 minutes to bake . . .
- Cauliflower Breadsticks
. . . or two awesome cauliflower substitutes! We love these cheesy breadsticks . . .
- Cauliflower Biscuits
. . . almost as much as we love these bite-sized biscuits.
- Mashed Cauliflower
Speaking of cauliflower, it’s the perfect veggie to lighten up your meal’s caloric load. Swap out a potato dish and make this mashed cauliflower instead!
- Cauliflower Mac ‘n’ Cheese
If you want to get really healthy and crazy with the cauliflower substitutions, you can’t go wrong with macaroni and cheese.
Wow! My Thanksgiving menu is going to be filled to the brim with new dishes this year! I’m excited to try them and turn them into family classics. Which ones will you be adding to your table?