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25 Delicious Recipes for Thanksgiving

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[In 2020, most of us are scaling back and celebrating with just our household or trying to find ways to keep distance but still share in the holiday. I encourage everyone to stay home this year! But please still make a little something to enjoy for yourself!]

Thanksgiving is fast approaching! It’s one of the best food holidays of the year.

If you’re looking for inspiration, here are some of my favorite delicious recipes for Thanksgiving.

These are a mix of appetizers, side dishes, and desserts. They include dishes that work for people with special diets, be they vegetarian, vegan, or gluten free, so everyone at your table can find something to enjoy. 

25 Delicious Recipes for Thanksgiving

While these aren’t the most traditional Thanksgiving recipes out there, they still rely on classic fall flavors—lots of apples and squash and cranberries. And they’ll all be welcome on a Thanksgiving table.

So without further ado: onto the recipes.

25 Delicious Recipes for Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Recipes

Here is a collection of some of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes. There's no turkey recipe here, but there are plenty of creative appetizers, vegetable side dishes, vegetarian and vegan main dishes, gluten free options, and beautiful desserts!

Make-ahead Appetizers

These Cranberry Lapsang Poached Apples are a great appetizer to put out for when guests arrive. They're beautiful, smoky, sophisticated, and great on a cheese plate. These spiced cranberries are incredibly versatile. They work as a variation on cranberry sauce, but they also pair beautifully with cheese (and if you wanted, you could save them for dessert and serve them over ice cream).

Vegetable Sides (& Vegetarian Mains)

Here are some creative vegetable side dishes.

If you like a soup with your Thanksgiving dinner, it's tough to beat this squash and tart apple soup.

The chile lime squash and chickpea salad works as a vegetarian (and vegan and gluten free) main dish, so it should work for most dietary restrictions. It also adds some much needed bright lime acidity to the meal.

The squash, kale, leeks, and farro dish is comforting and works with traditional Thanksgiving flavors remixed in a lovely vegetable and grain side that also works as a main dish for vegetarians and vegans.

The gochujang delicata squash is a Korean spin on squash that's savory and sweet and spicy.

The savoy cabbage gratin and rich and comforting and if you have rolls on the table you'll use them to sop up the every last bit of this.

The caramelized carrots and fennel with ricotta and walnuts uses an Instant Pot or pressure cooker, so you don't need to use the overtaxed oven for this one.

Bready Stuff

Buttermilk biscuits are a great thing to have on a Thanksgiving table. These biscuits are flaky, light, and easy to make. This fennel and kale stuffing is crispy on the edges and soft in the middle.

Desserts (beyond pumpkin pie)

The apple beehive is a showstopper that's a great gluten free alternative to apple pie.

The cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove pumpkin cake is simple and homey.

Brown butter apple bars are a great addition to a big dessert buffet—they're easy to slice into small squares.

The cranberry curd tart is an eye-catching favorite. It's beautiful and sweet and tart.

Honey walnut bars are a creative take on pecan pie.

And the brown butter cake with cranberry curd, orange cardamom crumbs, and Biscoff frosting is a layer cake inspired by Momofuku Milk Bar. If you want a fancy layer cake on your Thanksgiving dessert table, this one is a good one.

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