Crowd-Pleasing Thanksgiving Recipes Worth a Try This Year

A thanksgiving recipe for Potato gratin, baked potato slices with creamy sauce. Top view iStock

From easy-to-make-sides to Instant Pot turkey breast, here are our favorite Thanksgiving recipes that’ll have everyone at your table asking for seconds

We know everyone has tried and true family favorites when it comes to Thanksgiving Day recipes, but we also know that variety is the spice of life! Whether you’re looking to mix it up with a new dish that’ll surprise everyone or if you want some delicious vegetarian Thanksgiving recipes, we’ve got a little bit of everything in our list perfect for sharing with loved ones. Catch your kids’ attention with these delicious additions to the dinner table and impress the grownup foodies in your life.


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Instant Pot & Slow Cooker Thanksgiving Recipes

Sliced turkey made from an Instant Pot sits on a white plate and is a game-changing Thanksgiving recipe
Crunchy Creamy Sweet

Instant Pot Turkey Breast. Are you ready to revolutionize your Thanksgiving turkey? Because this Thanksgiving recipe is an absolute game-changer. Crunchy Creamy Sweet has the hookup: bone-in skin-on turkey breast that’s ready in 35 minutes. It’s a winner-winner turkey dinner. 

Instant Pot Deviled Eggs. Need a holiday appetizer ASAP? Lexi’s Clean Kitchen has you covered with no-fuss Instant Pot hard-boiled eggs and a deviled egg recipe that’ll wow your party guests.

Slow Cooker Carrot and Apple Soup. This hearty and flavorful soup from Foxes Love Lemons features ingredients like apples, carrots, and fresh garlic. It’s a guaranteed fall classic and a great way to warm up on a chilly day! Plus the mouthwatering smell coming from this Thanksgiving recipe will fill your home as it cooks. 

Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce. Do you crave cranberry sauce when Thanksgiving rolls around? Then you’ve got to check out this version from Zen & Spice. It calls for fresh cranberries instead of the artificial canned stuff, and it’s done in no time at all. 

Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipes the Kids Will Love

A Thanksgiving recipe for stuffing-in-a-bundt pan that is sure to please the kids
A Spicy Perspective

Stuffing in a Bundt Pan. With this stuffing recipe from A Spicy Perspective, the magic word is “bundt.” That’s right, with your handy bundt pan, you can make a stuffing sculpture that’s fit for any Thanksgiving dinner table! 

Thanksgiving Stuffing Muffins. Think outside the turkey! Not only are these stuffing muffins from The Colorful Kitchen kid-size, but they’re also vegan and gluten-free. Add a scoop of mashed potatoes on top and you’re all set for a can’t-miss combo. 

Classic Vegan Stuffing. Plant-based eaters don’t have to miss out on the feast thanks to this tasty stuffing recipe from Raepublic. It’s made with ingredients you probably already have in your pantry, making it a win for your shopping list. 

Marilyn Monroe’s Stuffing. Ready for Hollywood-worthy stuffing? This yummy dish is adapted from Marilyn Monroe’s recipe. This New York Times article has the low-down on the recipe and where it was found.

Related: 33 Free Thanksgiving Activity Pages That’ll Keep the Kids Busy

Potato Recipes You Haven’t Tried Yet

A thanksgiving recipe for Potato gratin, baked potato slices with creamy sauce. Top view
iStock

Au Gratin Potatoes. Pretty as pie! This healthy potato gratin with herbs from Food and Wine is creamy without having to add cream—and great flavor results from thyme and rosemary. This is a go-to Thanksgiving recipe if you’re going to a potluck-style turkey dinner. 

Perfect Potato Pancakes. These simple potato pancakes, made from pre-shredded frozen potatoes, can be fun for more than just one holiday this season. Switch out the flour for matzo meal and enjoy them at Passover too. 

Pretty Purple Potatoes. Finding perfectly hued purple potatoes is the most challenging part of this simple recipe, but if you do, you’ve got yourself a side dish recipe from Smitten Kitchen that will be the belle of the ball (our apologies to the turkey). So, you don’t HAVE TO use purple potatoes (Purple Majesty Potatoes, to be exact) for this Thanksgiving dish, but it will certainly make the food more fun. 

Not Quite Mashed Potatoes. Let’s call it a mockmash! This savory cauliflower puree from The Iron You makes a healthy stand-in for mashed potatoes. It gets its fabulous flavor from the cheese, milk (or almond milk), and a touch of butter, has about one-quarter of the calories of typical mashed potatoes, and best of all, little eaters may not even realize they’re getting their daily dose of vegetables. 

Related: 11 Things to Do with Your Family (That Don’t Involve Talking Politics)

No-Sweat Side Recipes to Make This Thanksgiving

Tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil sit on a plate as an easy-to-make Thanksgiving side
Bryony Elena on Unsplash

Mozzarella and Tomato Salad. You can’t go wrong with a caprese salad! This kid-friendly version is made with fresh mozzarella, heirloom tomatoes and a few other ingredients.

Instant Pot Honey Butter Carrots. These ain’t your average carrots! Covered in a honey butter glaze, these veggies from Salt & Lavender are positively addictive. The whole fam (kids included!) will be asking for seconds.

The Best Cornbread. Instead of plain rolls, why not cornbread? This recipe from Bless This Mess is super kid-friendly, and they will love helping make the batter. An added bonus: cornbread is a great tool to soak up the leftover juices on your plate!

Apple Bacon Stuffed Sweet Potatoes. Packed with kid-friendly flavors like bacon and apples, this recipe from How Sweet Eats is a great dish to make ahead of time and reheat in the oven just before serving. These flavorful spuds are perfect if you’re planning to be a guest at someone’s house for Thanksgiving. We’re pretty sure this dish will earn you a repeat invitation next year.

Easy Cranberry Thanksgiving Recipes

Easy to make maple cranberry sauce surrounded by Zucchini Latkes
The View from Great Island

Maple Cranberry Sauce. This easy cranberry sauce from The View from Great Island takes just 15 minutes to make, is made with just two ingredients, and has the perfect amount of tartness. Pair it with zucchini latkes and you’ll not only have a great Thanksgiving recipe but also a fun twist on tradition for Passover and Hanukkah. 

Spiced Cranberry Sauce. Chef Ryan Rendano offers up a wonderfully spiced version of cranberry sauce that only takes 20 minutes to make. We love that the recipe includes lemon and orange, some of the best winter produce around.

Simple Sugar Free Cranberry Sauce. Keep it simple with this easy recipe from Eat Within Your Means. It’s sweetened with apple cider and maple syrup instead of sugar and makes a perfect alternative to the canned stuff. 

Cranberry Relish. This refreshing take on cranberries from Kevin Is Cooking turns the traditional sauce on its head. Instead of cooking the cranberries, they’re blitzed up with orange and mixed with cherry jello to make a yummy relish. Cross your fingers for leftovers—this will taste fantastic on those day-after-Thanksgiving turkey sandwiches. 

Related: 25 Simple Ways to Keep the Kids Busy on Thanksgiving

Plant-Based Main Dish Recipes

Sliced portobello mushroom "steaks" sit on a white plate as a finished plant-based Thanksgiving recipe
Lindsey Eats LA

Portobello Mushroom “Steaks.” Impress your guests by serving up this beautiful dish from Lindsey Eats LA. The mushrooms are marinated in a savory sauce, then quickly fried to create a hearty main dish that just might steal the show.

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Walnuts, Parsley, and Garlic. These sweet potatoes from Irena Macri are a feast for the eyes and the stomach. The key is the super flavorful topping, made with a delicious mix of walnuts, herbs, and garlic. This Thanksgiving recipe will impress your friends, whether are vegan, vegetarian or not!

Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash. Put fall produce to good use with this fabulous recipe from Veggies Save the Day. Stuffed with quinoa, chickpeas, and tomatoes, it’s a hearty and satisfying dish that’ll go great with the rest of your Thanksgiving meal.

Sweet Potato Souffle. Sweet potatoes aren’t just for side dishes—they can take center stage with this fabulous recipe from From Scratch Fast. Laced with Comté cheese, brown sugar, and butter, it’s a great pick for vegetarians and omnivores alike. 

Thanksgiving Pie Recipes

A full pumpkin pie topped with whipped cream as a Thanksgiving recipe from Little Sweet Baker
Little Sweet Baker

Pumpkin Pie with Salted Caramel Whipped Cream. If your family prefers the classic pumpkin pie, try this Thanksgiving recipe from Little Sweet Baker. The pie crust is perfectly flaky, but the real star here is the salted caramel whipped cream—you just might not go back to the normal kind! 

Turkey Crust Pumpkin Pie. Wow your family and friends by making this adorable pie from Kudos Kitchen. It’s easier than you might think to pull off the intricate pattern, thanks to pre-made pie crusts and helpful step-by-step photos. 

Mini Pumpkin Tarts. These cute pumpkin tarts from What Great Grandma Ate are sure to be a hit with the whole family. Since it’s a no-bake recipe, it’s a great way to free up space in the oven for all your baked Thanksgiving sides. 

Chai Spiced Pumpkin Pie. Classic pumpkin pie gets a little bit fancy with this fab Thanksgiving recipe from Flavor the Moments. Warm chai spices make the perfect complement to pumpkin. Topped with a dollop of whipped cream, there’s no way this one won’t be a hit with your whole crew.

Thanksgiving Dessert Recipes That Aren’t Pie

A stack of pumpkin bars made with cream cheese
Oh My Goodness Chocolate Desserts

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese. How cute are these pumpkin bars from Oh My Goodness Chocolate Desserts? We love the criss-cross pattern of cream cheese on top, and we’re happy to report that they taste as good as they look. 

Turkey Cookies. Maybe you have so much on your plate cooking the big meal that the idea of adding dessert to your to-do list is a tad too much. That’s where Chelsea from Chelsea’s Messy Apron comes in. These treats are not only no-bake, but they’re also really creative. Recruit the kids to do them, and you have dessert and activities crossed off with one “recipe.”

No-Bake Pumpkin Parfait. The oven is already going to be working overtime on Thanksgiving Day, so why not take advantage of these creamy, no-bake parfaits from The Cozy Apron? If you’re worried about your fancy stemware, serve it up the kids’ desserts in plastic cups. Either way, your guests will be impressed by your creative Thanksgiving dessert that isn’t pie. 

Caramel-Chocolate Dipped Pears. Talk about a statement dessert: these caramel-chocolate-dipped pears are downright beautiful and incorporate a fall fruit favorite. Insider tip: use mini pears, as they’re the perfect size for your little one’s hands. 

 

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