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Planning a Thanksgiving menu can be overwhelming. We all have our favorite recipes for staples, like mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and stuffing, that we turn to year after year — but it's also fun to shake up our holiday tables with new recipes, unexpected ingredients, and unchartered cooking methods.

Whether you're serving a favorite family recipe or trying a new holiday dish, these Thanksgiving dinner menus will help you plan and serve a fabulous meal.

It’s all about the Bird:

Pear Thyme Brined Turkey

Be sure to choose a fresh, unbrined turkey for this recipe. Many varieties are injected with a salt solution prior to packaging and will make this dish too salty. Reserve a couple of thyme sprigs to use in the gravy.

Get the recipe at Country Living

Citrus and Herb Turkey

Oven management on the big day can be hectic, but don't stress. Bake your sides once the bird comes out of the oven. The turkey will stay warm for about an hour, leaving you plenty of time to finish cooking the meal.

Get the recipe at Martha Stewart

Roast Turkey With Sage Butter

Bacon was a staple meat for the pioneers. (They stored it in bags surrounded by bran for insulation.) As a result, the cured meat has found its way into a variety of heartland dishes. This all-American bird embellished with sage and bacon is a good example.

Get the recipe at Epicurious

Make the Cranberry Sauce at Home:

This side is so easy to make. Add 200 grams of sugar, 200 milliliters of water and 1,000 grams of cranberries to a pot and boil for 10 minutes. Serve cold and impress everyone.

The Side Dishes:

Slow-Cooker Sweet Potatoes with Bacon

Sweet potatoes are often a part of Thanksgiving, and this recipe gives you a new twist on that classic flavor. Orange juice gives this dish a little sweetness, while pieces of crumbled bacon will give you something to savor, and rosemary will give it an aroma all its own. Delicious together, this sweet-and-salty side could not be easier to prep on Thanksgiving morning.

Get the recipe at My Recipes

Fresh Green Bean Casserole

Forget about the recipes with canned ingredients that may still haunt your holiday memories. This comforting recipe is made with only fresh ingredients (and absolutely no onion soup mix).

Get the recipe at Cooking Channel Tv

Grilled Brussels Sprout Salad With Pecans, Pomegranates and Blue Cheese

With slightly melted blue cheese and crunchy pomegranates and pecans on top, these brussels sprouts will be gobbled up fast.

Get the recipe at Cooking Channel Tv

Ruby Red Grapefruit and Chicory Salad

This bright salad features sweet-tart grapefruit slightly bitter chicory for a refreshing addition to your holiday table.

Get the recipe at Astray

Wild Rice and Basmati Dressing with Sausage and Sage

For this take on Thanksgiving dressing, two types of rice are cooked in a fragrant medley of mushrooms and onions sautéed in butter, bay leaf, and fresh sage.

Get the recipe at Edamam

Cornbread Stuffing with Sweet Peppers, Onions, and Celery

Make this for a grade-A Thanksgiving feast.

Get the recipe at All Recipes

The Finisher (Dessert):

Pecan Pie with Salted Egg Yolks

This is made from salted egg yolks (found at Asian Grocers)


2 c. all-purpose flour


4 tbsp. unsalted butter

3 tbsp. Lard

2 tbsp. ice water

6 qt. salted egg yolks (optional - *find salted egg yolks at Asian grocers)

1 c. pecan halves

1 c. dark-brown corn syrup

1 c. sugar

2 tsp. sugar

3 large eggs

4 tbsp. unsalted butter

1 tsp. vanilla extract


In a medium bowl, mix together flour, 1 teaspoon salt, and sugar, then cut in butter and lard. Add ice water gradually and form a ball; then, without overworking, knead until smooth. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a disk about 1/8-inch thick. Fit into a 9-inch deep-dish pie pan, crimping edges. If using salted egg yolks, arrange them in an evenly spaced circle in pie shell.

In a medium bowl, mix together remaining ingredients and pour over egg yolks. Bake pie until set, about 45 minutes. Let cool before serving.

What are your favorite recipes? Share with us and inspire other families to try out something new this Thanksgiving!

Happy cooking, Happy Thanksgiving!


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