24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put an Unexpected Spin on the Classics

24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put an Unexpected Spin on the Classics
24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put an Unexpected Spin on the Classics

Spice up Thanksgiving traditions by adding new twists to classic Thanksgiving side dishes. The indispensable Thanksgiving recipes are all here—including mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, and stuffing—but each dish features an unexpected and delicious spin.

1. Spicy Green Bean Casserole

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24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put a Spin on the Classics

Fresh string beans meet jalapeno peppers, minced garlic, and onion in this flavorful green bean casserole recipe. Chicken broth and cream balance out the spice, while a thick layer of bread crumbs adds a light crunch.

2. Gluten-Free Harvest Rice Stuffing

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24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put a Spin on the Classics

The walnut and cranberry pork is the uncontested highlight of this easy Thanksgiving stuffing recipe. Butternut squash, green apples, and cranberries are simmered together for a light sweetness that offsets the meat, while parsley and sage tie the mouthwatering flavors together.

3. Sweet Potato Casserole

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24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put a Spin on the Classics

With its rich, sweet taste and crunchy crumb topping, this casserole combines six pounds of sweet potatoes for your new favorite side dish. Fresh cranberries sprinkled atop the lightly golden casserole give creamy potatoes an extra sweetness.

4. Pomegranate-Glazed Sweet Potatoes

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24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put a Spin on the Classics

This vibrant Thanksgiving side recipe adds fresh flavors to your holiday spread. Dress up spiralized sweet potato ribbons with cardamom, mint, and pomegranate. Test Kitchen Tip: If you do not have a spiralizer, thinly slice potatoes, then cut into narrow matchsticks.

5. Salt-Roasted Beets with Tehina Sauce

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24 Thanksgiving Sides that Put a Spin on the Classics

For a twist on your classic beet dish, this tahini sauce provides a delicious, nutty infusion. Top the roasted beets with mint leaves to balance the beet’s earthiness while adding an extra hint of freshness.

6. Cheesy Mashed Potatoes with Gouda and Crispy Pancetta

Pancetta adds a bacon-like twist to our extra-creamy mashed potato recipe. Add Gouda or mozzarella cheese for smooth, melty flavor.

7. Twice-Baked Pesto Mashed Potatoes

Cheesy twice-baked potatoes are back and better than ever! We’ve added savory pesto—mix it in or drizzle it on top for garlicky basil flavor.

8. Savory Collard Greens

This easy Thanksgiving side dish recipe will teach you how to love collard greens (really!). Instead of bacon, we’re using pancetta as a crispy topping—no mushy forkfuls here.

9. Brined Skillet-Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Soaking your Brussels sprouts in a salt brine infuses them with flavor before cooking. Finish this easy holiday side dish with grainy mustard and a drizzle of olive oil.

10. Roasted Vegetables with Sorghum

Give your roasted vegetables a modern makeover with cooked sorghum and smoky paprika. We made this vegetarian Thanksgiving side dish with beets, fennel, onion, green beans, and arugula, but you can customize it with your favorite seasonal vegetables.

11. Lemon-Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Turn your top-notch Thanksgiving mashed potatoes into a showstopping side dish with just a sprinkle of bold flavors, such as capers, lemon peel, and fresh parsley. The potatoes are cooked with garlic before mashing for an even more intense layer of flavor.

12. Medley of Roasted Root Vegetables

Roasting is one of the easiest ways to draw out the natural sweetness of root vegetables. Make the most of your favorites (we love beets, carrots, potatoes, and turnips) with a simple herbed olive oil dressing.

13. Chardonnay-Glazed Carrots

Verjuice, an acidic juice made from unripe grapes, adds a fresh twist to this classic Thanksgiving side dish. It gives a sweet-tart flavor similar to but less sharp than vinegar. Thanksgiving Side Dish Tip: Look for verjuice at your local specialty grocery store or from an online seller.

14. Broccoli & Cheese Air-Fried Baked Potatoes

Cheesy potatoes, a bit of heat, and chives upgrade ho-hum broccoli. Turn to your air fryer to make this crispy Thanksgiving side dish.

15. Roasted Green Beans with Beets, Feta, and Walnuts

Your guests will love beets when they’re featured alongside our crispy green bean and crumbly feta pairing. The earthy combination is an excellent alternative to traditional Thanksgiving side dishes, such as green bean casserole.

16. Honey-Roasted Air-Fryer Butternut Squash

Butternut squash is one of our favorite Thanksgiving side dishes. Roasted, baked, mashed—it has a subtle sweetness that pairs perfectly with roasted turkey. Here the crispy squash is toppedwith a drizzle of honey for added flavor, then air-fried to perfection.

17. Cornbread and Sausage Stuffing Muffins

Transform classic stuffing into individual cornbread muffins with the addition of savory sausage. These stuffing muffins are a fun and delicious twist on the traditional Thanksgiving side dish.

18. Cranberry Orange Quinoa Salad

Add a healthy and refreshing twist to your Thanksgiving table with this cranberry orange quinoa salad. Packed with protein, fiber, and vitamins, this salad combines the sweetness of cranberries and oranges with the nuttiness of quinoa for a delightful side dish.

19. Maple Roasted Acorn Squash with Bacon

Take your acorn squash to new heights with a maple glaze and crispy bacon. This sweet and savory side dish is sure to be a hit at your Thanksgiving feast.

20. Roasted Cauliflower with Curry and Parmesan

Elevate your cauliflower game with this roasted cauliflower dish flavored with curry and Parmesan cheese. The combination of spices and cheesy goodness adds a unique twist to a classic vegetable side.

21. Herb and Garlic Quinoa Pilaf

Swap out traditional rice pilaf for this flavorful herb and garlic quinoa pilaf. Quinoa is cooked with herbs, garlic, and vegetable broth for a nutritious and delicious Thanksgiving side.

22. Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries

Roasted Brussels sprouts get a tangy and sweet upgrade with the addition of balsamic vinegar and dried cranberries. This colorful and flavorful side dish is a perfect addition to your Thanksgiving menu.

23. Caramelized Onion and Gruyere Gratin

Indulge in the rich and comforting flavors of caramelized onions and Gruyere cheese with this gratin dish. The creamy and cheesy layers make it a delightful Thanksgiving side.

Unexpected Thanksgiving Sides That Have Guests Begging For More

Unexpected Thanksgiving Sides That Have Guests Begging For More
Unexpected Thanksgiving Sides That Have Guests Begging For More

24. Roasted Garlic and Parmesan Mushrooms

Elevate your mushroom game with this roasted garlic and Parmesan mushrooms recipe. The combination of garlic, cheese, and earthy mushrooms creates a flavorful and aromatic side dish.

These creative twists on classic Thanksgiving sides are sure to impress your guests and add a new dimension of flavor to your holiday feast. Whether you choose to spice up your green bean casserole or add a unique twist to mashed potatoes, these unexpected spins on traditional dishes will make your Thanksgiving meal memorable.

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