Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes: Our Favorite Sides

November 21, 2013

10 comforting side recipes to add to this year's Thanksgiving buffet.

Our Favorite SidekicksClassic Bread StuffingStuffed Acorn Squash with Barley, Apples and WalnutsWarm Pumpkin Salad with Bacon and Pumpkin SeedsGreen Bean Casserole with Crispy OnionsRoasted VegetablesSpiced Cranberry Sauce with Pinot NoirFour-Cheese Macaroni and CheeseSoft RollsBrussel SproutsSweet Potato Casserole with Meringue Topping
Turkey may be the centerpiece of Thanksgiving, but we think it's fair to say that sides really make the meal. Ranging from classic to comfort to unexpected, the following assure a well-balanced—and at Thanksgiving, extra-hearty—meal.
Allow your turkey to strut its stuff(ing) in this dressing studded with dried cranberries. While only a few cups will actually fit in the bird, the rest can be baked on its own in a casserole dish.

Get the Recipe: Classic Bread Stuffing
Boasting varying textures of barley, apples and walnuts, this super-stuffed side is full of flavor and an absolute beauty with its tender acorn squash bowls.

Get the Recipe: Stuffed Acorn Squash with Barley, Apples and Walnuts
Brighten and liven up your salad choice this holiday with seasonal pumpkin. Add bacon and the pumpkin's own shell-less seeds (pepitas) for a savory crunch.

Get the Recipe: Warm Pumpkin Salad with Bacon and Pumpkin Seeds
This creamy green bean classic features a hearty helping of mushrooms and is covered with thin, crunchy onions. We are complete advocates of crisping your own onions too—it's not incredibly time consuming or difficult and is completely worth the extra effort.

Get the Recipe: Green Bean Casserole with Crispy Onions
On a buffet decked out in decadence, it's good to have a basic, no-frills side option to balance your guests' plates out. We suggest going the roasted vegetables route.

Get the Recipe: Green Bean Casserole with Crispy Onions
Fresh cranberries, ginger, curry powder, and Chinese five-spice mix and meld perfectly with Pinot Noir in this surprisingly spicy rendition of traditional cranberry sauce.

Get the Recipe: Spiced Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir
As we give thanks for all things this season, it's only appropriate we recognize the king of comfort food—macaroni and cheese. This melty variation features four fantastic cheeses and goes quite well with traditional Thanksgiving offerings.

Get the Recipe: Four-Cheese Macaroni and Cheese
These easy-to-make rolls are pillowy soft on the inside and flaky on the outside. Serve with a healthy slab of butter and have a large basket readily available for mopping plates of gravy and excess cranberry sauce.

Get the Recipe: Soft Rolls
In recent years we've seen a resurgence of the once scoffed and dismissed Brussel sprout—and we couldn't be happier about it. Best served simply, sauté sprouts in butter and garlic and serve with fresh parmesan.

Get the Recipe: Brussel Sprouts with Parmesan
This lighter variation on sweet potato casserole features a fluffy meringue topping and weighs in at about 1/3 of the calories. If you haven't made meringue before, do not fear, with an electric mixer it's a relatively quick process.

Get the Recipe: Sweet Potato Casserole with Meringue Topping
Turkey may be the centerpiece of Thanksgiving, but we think it's fair to say that sides really make the meal. Ranging from classic to comfort to unexpected, the following assure a well-balanced—and at Thanksgiving, extra-hearty—meal.Allow your turkey to strut its stuff(ing) in this dressing studded with dried cranberries. While only a few cups will actually fit in the bird, the rest can be baked on its own in a casserole dish. 

Get the Recipe: 
Classic Bread StuffingBoasting varying textures of barley, apples and walnuts, this super-stuffed side is full of flavor and an absolute beauty with its tender acorn squash bowls. 


Get the Recipe: 
Stuffed Acorn Squash with Barley, Apples and WalnutsBrighten and liven up your salad choice this holiday with seasonal pumpkin. Add bacon and the pumpkin's own shell-less seeds (pepitas) for a savory crunch.

Get the Recipe: 
Warm Pumpkin Salad with Bacon and Pumpkin SeedsThis creamy green bean classic features a hearty helping of mushrooms and is covered with thin, crunchy onions. We are complete advocates of crisping your own onions too—it's not incredibly time consuming or difficult and is completely worth the extra effort. 

Get the Recipe: 
Green Bean Casserole with Crispy OnionsOn a buffet decked out in decadence, it's good to have a basic, no-frills side option to balance your guests' plates out. We suggest going the roasted vegetables route.

Get the Recipe: 
Green Bean Casserole with Crispy OnionsFresh cranberries, ginger, curry powder, and Chinese five-spice mix and meld perfectly with Pinot Noir in this surprisingly spicy rendition of traditional cranberry sauce.

Get the Recipe: 
Spiced Cranberry Sauce with Pinot NoirAs we give thanks for all things this season, it's only appropriate we recognize the king of comfort food—macaroni and cheese. This melty variation features four fantastic cheeses and goes quite well with traditional Thanksgiving offerings.

Get the Recipe: 
Four-Cheese Macaroni and CheeseThese easy-to-make rolls are pillowy soft on the inside and flaky on the outside. Serve with a healthy slab of butter and have a large basket readily available for mopping plates of gravy and excess cranberry sauce.

Get the Recipe: 
Soft RollsIn recent years we've seen a resurgence of the once scoffed and dismissed Brussel sprout—and we couldn't be happier about it. Best served simply, sauté sprouts in butter and garlic and serve with fresh parmesan.

Get the Recipe: 
Brussel Sprouts with ParmesanThis lighter variation on sweet potato casserole features a fluffy meringue topping and weighs in at about 1/3 of the calories. If you haven't made meringue before, do not fear, with an electric mixer it's a relatively quick process.

Get the Recipe: 
Sweet Potato Casserole with Meringue Topping
Mark Boughton Photography / styling: Teresa BlackburnHigh Cotton Food Styling and PhotographyRachel WillenMark BoughtonRachel WillenMark Boughton Photography / styling: Teresa BlackburnMark Boughton Photography / styling by Teresa BlackburnMark Boughton/styling: Teresa BlackburnQuentin Bacon