The Best of
After more than 60 years developing Thanksgiving menus for our customers, we’re an authority
on roasting turkeys, mashing potatoes and assembling easy apps. This year we’ve
combed through our entire recipe archive, considered customer reviews and interviewed
our Test Kitchen cooks to assemble the ultimate, top-rated Thanksgiving menu.
The Festive KickoffApple Cider Cocktail
Maple Bourbon Smash
Pomegranate Champagne Cocktail
Greet guests with one of these
super-seasonal cocktails to get
the evening off on the right foot.
The Easiest App EverWarm Dates with Parmesan and Walnuts
One of our most popular Facebook posts last
Thanksgiving is also one of our easiest apps ever.
Try a variation one of customers suggested,
swapping in Gorgonzola and slivered almonds
for the Parm and walnuts.
The Pretty Puff Pastry NibbleCaramelized Onion and Apple Tarts
with Gruyère and Thyme
Using purchased puff pastry puts this
sweet-yet-savory appetizer within the reach of
even beginning home cooks. Our customers say,
“This is a great little appetizer, as you can make
it according the recipe or change it up,” like
using caramelized shallots for the “wow factor.”
The Updated TraditionButternut Squash Soup with Crispy Prosciutto
One of our customers calls this her “happy
holiday all-star,” writing, “Tried this soup as a
change for Thanksgiving. . . . My family and
friends couldn’t get enough of this as an
appetizer, and I’m definitely going to make
it a tradition from now on.”
The Best-Ever BirdButtermilk Brined Turkey
We all know that brining is the best way to end
up with a moist, juicy turkey, but “there really
is some magic in the buttermilk,” too,
according to one customer who raved
“I will never make a turkey another way.”
The Go-To GravyCaramelized Onion Make-Ahead Gravy
Our test kitchen got the idea for this
game-changing gravy from legendary
cookbook author and TV host Ina Garten,
who uses caramelized onions for
extraordinary depth of flavor.
Traditional Cranberry Sauce
We have dozens of recipes for cranberry
sauces, relishes and compotes, but our
customers keep coming back for this
traditional take. Easy to assemble, it has
only four ingredients, but you can add other
fruits or spices to make it your own.
The Best of Both WorldsSausage, Cornbread and Chestnut Dressing
We love the flavor of cornbread stuffing, while
others prefer the less crumbly texture you get
from using cubes of country-style white bread.
Here we use both for a dish that “always
disappears” according to our customers.
The Family TraditionMashed Potatoes with Herb-Infused
Cream and Chives
This decadent side dish is the family recipe of
one of our former Test Kitchen cooks—
she even called her mom to get the ratios just
right when writing it for us—and it has been one
of our most popular potato recipes ever since.
The Sweet Potatoes
Sweet Potato Gratin with Pecans
We Can All Agree On
Sweet potatoes are often controversial—to
marshmallow or not to marshmallow?
Customers have spoken by rating this savory
side dish with five stars, saying, “I’ve made
this recipe 3 years in a row and it is fast
becoming a Thanksgiving staple.”
The 19th-Century TraditionEverything Parker House Rolls
Invented by a baker at Boston’s famous Parker
House hotel in the 19th century, these fluffy
rolls are so beloved by everyone we even
created a starter kit to streamline the
process. A Test Kitchen tip: Leftover rolls
are perfect for making little sandwiches
with your Thanksgiving leftovers.
The Heritage RecipeChuck Williams’ Glazed Carrots
Our founder, Chuck Williams, knew the value of
simple dishes executed perfectly, which is why
he favored this recipe in which carrots are
cloaked in a sweet-and-sour glaze of brown
sugar and balsamic vinegar, a product that
Chuck introduced to American cooks in 1977.
The Showstopping SaladPear Salad with Blue Cheese,
Walnuts and Pomegranate
No one ever leaves the Thanksgiving table
raving about the salad—unless it’s this one,
which combines thin slices of crisp pears with
crumbles of potent blue cheese and the bright
pop of pomegranate seeds.
The Social Media SensationGreen Bean Bundles with
Bacon and Brown Sugar
This crowd favorite is one of the top-rated
recipes on our site, our most-pinned dish on
Pinterest, and one of our most-liked on
Instagram. It’s a social media sensation
that your guests will definitely want to
snap a picture of too.
The Can’t-Beat-Perfection PieTraditional Pumpkin Pie
We have more than 50 years’ worth of
Thanksgiving menus, and we’re always trying
something new, but some things are best left
untouched, like this classic pumpkin pie.