Some of My Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes
Guys. You’d think since it’s just my family of five, I’d be able to do a low key Thanksgiving. I tried. Really I tried! But the requests just keep coming. The newest one today was for homemade mac-n-cheese. Y’all, we NEVER have mac-n-cheese for Thanksgiving, but we’re adding it to the list.
I have a couple older posts with links to my Thanksgiving menu along with planning tips. But I have an updated menu, along with my timeline of what will get done ahead of time. Here are some of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes!
Last year we warmed up an pecan Danish kringle from Trader Joe’s, and unfortunately I ate about half of it myself. So that’s a no go this year. My kids requested a bagel bar with all the fixings: Smoked salmon, cream cheese, hard boiled egg, tomato, red onion, capers, lemon and crunchy salt. You can also order New York H&H Bagels from Goldbelly if you want the real deal. A bagel bar sounds good to me since everyone can fix their own plate while I keep cooking!
We usually have an early evening Thanksgiving dinner, so I like to set out a cheeseboard and some spiced cocktail nuts for noshing during the afternoon. I won’t make an elaborate board, just something simple with a couple cheeses, some crudités like watermelon radish and endive spears and figs or apple slices.
Let’s support California wineries this year after all they’ve been through. We ordered half a case of Smith Story sauvignon blanc. For reds, I’d recommend Frank Family Zinfandel or Pinot Noir Round Pond Proprietary Left Bank Red. Start with some Schramsberg sparkling rose if that’s your jam.
The Main Event
In years past, we’ve started with a plated butternut squash soup or wintery collard green and brussels sprout salad or arugula and squash salad. This year, we’re having a more casual Thanksgiving dinner and don’t plan to have a first course.
The main event! On my Smart in the Kitchen Facebook group, I posted my favorite recipe for citrus and herb turkey. Along with turkey, we’re having a simple pan gravy. I make the gravy while the turkey rests. Use Wondra flour for a silky smooth gravy.
Meyer lemon cranberry sauce. Make this up to a week ahead of time and store covered in the refrigerator.
Simple mashed potatoes. These can be made a day ahead of time!
Smitten Kitchen easy mac-n-cheese. Can be made the day ahead and reheated.
Brioche (or corn bread) Italian sausage and leek stuffing (I’ll share this on Instagram and Facebook this week!). Assemble the morning of and bake off before dinner.
Honey balsamic brussels sprouts for the super easy win! These can go in the oven while you’re working on the gravy. Here’s the recipe:
Tangy Roasted Brussels Sprouts
2 pounds Brussels sprouts
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
Kosher or sea salt
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Use convection roast setting if you have it. If you think your oven may run on the cool side, increase heat up to 420 degrees. You want the base of the Brussels to roast and caramelize.
Clean the brussels and cut them in half from top to bottom, through the base. Peel off any yellowed or blemished leaves. If other leaves fall off while you’re cutting the Brussels, add them to the pan. They make tasty Brussel sprout chips.
Add the cut sprouts to a sheet pan and drizzle with the olive oil. Toss to coat in the oil and spread out the sprouts, cut side down.
In a small bowl, combine the balsamic vinegar, honey and about ¼ teaspoon salt.
Roast for 30 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and immediately drizzle with the balsamic mixture. Use a spatula to release and toss the sprouts in the glaze.
Easy puff pastry pumpkin tart (recipe coming this week!)