Here Are All the Recipes You Need to Throw the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner

So you're hosting Thanksgiving this year. Between decking out your space in fall-themed decor and making sure you have the perfect quilted table runner , there's a lot on your plate before even thinking about the meal. But don't sweat the main event — now you have a complete list of go-to recipes to help you crush Turkey Day.

The Main Meal


The secret to roasting the perfect turkey : plan ahead. Yes, it's a multi-day feat. But if you follow this recipe (and take deep breaths!), you'll have no trouble producing a bird with moist meat and deliciously crispy skin.

If you're in charge of roasting the festive turkey this year, there are two things to remember: 1) breathe, and 2) it's not as difficult as you might think.


No turkey is complete without gravy, and no gravy is truly great without making a from-scratch broth beforehand. Throw in some pan drippings from your turkey and hello, gorgeous.

Gravy is to turkey as frosting is to cake. As coffee is to donuts. As leggings and knit hats are to autumn days. Neither is really complete without the other. Get the picture? Although the turkey is often thought of as the Thanksgiving centerpiece, a good gravy is actually your secret weapon.


Brisket for Thanksgiving? When the recipe's this good, why not? Mix things up this year, or serve beef alongside the turkey. When it's paired with homemade cranberry sauce, this meat is *chef's kiss*.

Whether you're bored with the traditional holiday bird or just want to try something different this Thanksgiving, we're serving up a genius idea: Thanksgiving brisket. It's juicy, serves a big crowd and if you serve it with cranberry sauce, it's *chef's kiss*. Just make sure to give yourself plenty of time to prepare it — the brisket takes a full 24 hours to marinate and a good chunk of hours to cook.

Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes

When the dishes are piling high, a recipe that only requires one pot is a total life-saver. This creamy side is made from start to finish in the slow cooker , freeing up time for all your other Turkey Day responsibilities.

Take note: this isn't your typical "cook the mashed potatoes, then keep them warm in a slow cooker" method. Rather, it's the perfect one-bowl way to cook mashed potatoes from start to finish. Over the span of a few hours, cubes of seasoned potato are cooked until tender, mashed right in the same slow cooker bowl and mixed with creamy additives. It couldn't be more simple!

Twice-Baked Potatoes

Say hello to a dish so good, you've gotta bake it twice! This recipe is kinda like mashed-potatoes-meet-baked-potatoes, with a crispy skin and creamy center piled high with whatever flavorings you like.

There are so many reasons to love twice-baked potatoes. Because they're baked twice (yep, the name gives it away), the skin is roasted to crispy perfection. And once the mashed insides are piled high, they can be mixed with anything you want! Plus, this steakhouse favorite is super easy to make at home. Call it a win-win-win!

On the Side

Cranberry Sauce

Three ingredients and three steps is all you need to get a sweet cranberry sauce ready to serve. Amp it up with orange zest and watch it disappear in a flash.

Three ingredients. Three steps. Cranberry sauce doesn't get any simpler, or more delicious. We'd say it goes great on leftover turkey sandwiches, but we have a feeling there won't actually be any leftovers.

Honey Roasted Carrots

Cover carrots with honey and orange juice to highlight the natural sweetness of the popular fall veggie . Roast 'em to deepen the flavor and make your side dish oh-so-craveable.

Carrots are a total rock star for holiday meals. First of all, they're a really festive color (sorry, spinach). Plus they're naturally sweet, which is just what we crave for a big celebration.

Braised Green Beans

Punch up green beans with vinaigrette and a good braise, and it's like you have a whole new side dish. Trust us, you're gonna want to make sure there's room on your plate for these bad boys.

Green beans may seem like an overdone side dish, but braising them with a punchy vinaigrette gives the veggie a fresh lease on life. Make this recipe and see just how often you want to pair 'em with every meal.

Fall Harvest Salad

Think beyond the basic Caesar and top your greens with roasted butternut squash. While the gourd requires some prep work, the end result is so worth it.

It's official: fall is here. I know because I just roasted a squash. And of all the many rituals that mark the change of seasons, this one seals the deal for me. Once you roast a squash, there's no going back.

Dinner Rolls

With all the food prep happening on Thanksgiving, baking dinner rolls may not be at the top of your to-do list. But these homemade wheat ones are so tasty, they deserve a spot on the table (especially when there are seeds, nuts and other special flavorings kneaded inside).

A dinner roll done right is a thing of beauty, especially for a special-occasion meal when you're busting out the pretty dishes. And don't get us started on the aroma that fills your house when fresh bread's in the oven. They should bottle that stuff.

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Tbh, we might just load our whole plates with this sweet and cheesy recipe. The gourd makes a delicious sauce that's nearly impossible to resist, especially once you mix in the melted cheese.

The time has finally come to amp up your mac and cheese. And not with traditional ingredients like bread crumbs or even bacon. Instead, give it a seasonal twist by mixing your cheesy noodles with — wait for it — butternut squash. Sure, it may sound like an odd move, but smothering elbow noodles in a cheesy, gourd-y mix actually creates a rich, comforting flavor that's hard to resist. Who knows — it may even make an appearance on the Thanksgiving dinner table.

Sweet Finishes

Pumpkin Pie

It's not Thanksgiving without the classic autumn dessert. Whether you make it creamy with sweetened condensed milk or opt for a lighter texture with evaporated milk, you really can't go wrong. Especially when it's baked with a cookie crumb pie crust and topped off with a dollop of homemade whipped cream .

Real talk: it's not really fall until you bake a pumpkin pie. The earthy, spice-infused dessert is a universal comfort food, perfect for chilly autumn nights or family get-togethers. But did you know that one ingredient can totally change the flavor and texture of your pie?

Sweet Potato Casserole

Another Turkey Day staple, this recipe puts the sweet in sweet potato casserole, but with a lighter spin. (You'll definitely want room for seconds.)

Marshmallows with dinner is definitely an idea we can get behind. But when it comes to Thanksgiving, a little moderation makes sense. After all, we have save room for pie.

Mini Pecan Tartlets

Warning: these tartlets are so cute, you may find yourself snacking on the bite-sized treats all day. We're not sure what makes them so irresistible ... just kidding, we totally do — it's the sweet-and-salty flavor combo.

We're always on Team Pecan Pie, no matter how big or small but these bite-sized sweeties have a special place in our hearts. Could it be the cream cheese in the pastry that makes them so irresistible?

Sweet Potato Soufflé

This dessert is unbelievably light and airy. To prevent the soufflé from falling, gather up the crew to dig in as soon as it's out of the oven.

You've mastered the classic sweet potato casserole, now try your hand at another spud-tastic dessert: sweet potato soufflé. It's just sweet enough to highlight the natural flavor of the potatoes, and it's light, airy texture ensures you'll have plenty of room for a second serving of Thanksgiving turkey later on.

Pumpkin Croissants

Flaky butter croissants filled with sweet pumpkin filling. Nope, it's not a dream. Whip up a batch for Thanksgiving dessert, but be sure to tuck some away to enjoy the next morning .

Croissants are delicious on any table, but this recipe calls for a sweet surprise — there's pumpkin pie hiding inside! So not only do these deliver on the light-and-flaky texture you love in a croissant, but they also have a heartier punch to kick-start your seasonal celebrations. Pair them with a cup of coffee on a chilly autumn morning, or serve them as part of a tasty Thanksgiving dinner — either way, your taste buds are in for a treat.

October 25, 2019
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Here Are All the Recipes You Need to Throw the Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner