5 Simple and Delicious Thanksgiving Side Dishes

October 31, 2017

Comfort food lovers, rejoice! Thanksgiving is just around the corner and that means it’s time to start planning a feast for the whole family to enjoy. While turkey has a special spot on the menu, Thanksgiving dinner is always enhanced by a wide range of flavorful side dishes. Thanksgiving dishes don’t have to be especially complex or difficult to make. In fact, some of the most savory meals rely on a simple selection of high-quality ingredients. Whether you are sticking to a classic staple or putting your own twist on a dish, the following recipes can make Thanksgiving dinner especially memorable. If you need a quick side dish in a flash or some culinary inspiration, look at the list below for five simple and delicious Thanksgiving dishes.

Herbed Breadcrumb Macaroni and Cheese

Thanksgiving is the perfect time to indulge in some comfort food and, for that, there’s no better dish than macaroni and cheese. This upscale take on a classic is packed with zesty cheddar cheese and topped with a combination of panko breadcrumbs, melted butter, sage, thyme and rosemary for that satisfying crunch. A standard baking dish of herbed breadcrumb macaroni and cheese serves about 10, making it perfect for large-scale holiday dinners. Plus, preparation for some of the steps can be started a day in advanced, leaving you with plenty of time to tend to the turkey.

Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad

During Thanksgiving, it can be notoriously difficult to get some green on your plate. Luckily, this shaved Brussels sprouts salad is a fresh, healthy and tasty option that your guests can enjoy. When making this salad, be sure to have a mandolin handy, as it will make the process much more efficient. In a medium bowl, thinly slice the Brussels sprouts into a medium bowl. Add walnuts and grated pecorino Romano cheese and then top with the juice of half a lemon, olive oil, salt and pepper. All it takes is a few simple ingredients for your Thanksgiving table to light up with bright flavors.

Apricot-Wild Rice Stuffing

Nothing says fall flavors more than a heaping serving of Thanksgiving stuffing. This apricot-wild rice variety combines the sweetness of stone fruit with savory elements like toasted bread and fragrant rice. With orange, yellow and gold ingredients, this dish is a beautiful addition to a seasonal tablescape. Even better, this side dish can be completed in just over an hour, with 30 minutes of preparation and 35 minutes of cooking time. To prepare, boil the rice and toast the bread on a large baking sheet. While those ingredients are cooking, soften onion, celery and garlic in butter. Next, add the chopped apricots, parsley, sage and thyme. Finally, mix in the rice, bread and walnuts, adding chicken stock as necessary. Let the mixture bake for 35-40 minutes. Now, you have an amazing, show-stopping side dish that smells and looks as incredible as it tastes!

Parmesan-Roasted Cauliflower

Ever wonder how something so simple can taste so delicious? Caramelized to perfection, these parmesan-roasted cauliflower florets are the perfect way to incorporate veggies on your plate. In addition to the amazing taste, one of the best parts of this side dish is how quickly it can be prepared! All you have to do is place all of the ingredients on a baking sheet and let them bake for 35-40 minutes. Once they are cooked until tender, top the cauliflower with some parmesan cheese and you have a crispy, savory side dish everyone will enjoy.

Perfect Mashed Potatoes

When you gather around the Thanksgiving table, chances are your guests will immediately reach for the mashed potatoes. Rich and creamy, this classic holiday side dish pairs beautifully with so many types of appetizers and entrees. This side dish is so beloved, that every Thanksgiving table seems to display its own version of the recipe, and there are multiple how-to guides explaining how to whip up the perfect batch. Some pro tips include choosing the right potato (Russets provide extra creaminess while Yukon Golds offer that iconic golden color), boiling the potatoes before peeling for a better texture and adding warm butter before cream for silky smooth potatoes. As for toppings, we leave that decision up to you!

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