It’s been far too long since gathering with everyone we love, so this year, we’re making every effort to plan a memorable event. We’ve finalized plans for our table design—don’t miss looks one, two, and three—and now we’re shifting attention to the Thanksgiving menu. Inspired by the notion of “tradition with a twist,” we put together three courses that offer something for everyone at your table. We’ll kick things off with a starter and a festive cocktail, followed by two entree options with sides, and of course, finish off the evening with dessert. Each recipe has been sourced from our most trusted food writers, so you can rest assured they are worthy of your menu. As always, our hope is a take the stress out of planning and give you more time with your favorite people. So without further adieu, let’s get cooking.
In our experience, the best hosts offer something delicious from the minute your walk in the door. And if it happens to involve whipped ricotta and prosciutto? Even better. This year, we’re taking cues from Half Baked Harvest with these starters that deliver all the flavors of a cheese board in bite-size proportions. Just layer everything on your favorite cracker (we love Trader Joe’s Raisin Rosemary Crisps), drizzle with honey, and you’re set.
It doesn’t get more classic than a turkey on your Thanksgiving menu, and who better to show us how it’s done than Bon Appétit? Their expertly spiced turkey lives up to its name with black and pink peppercorns, kosher salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and smoked paprika to deliver a flavor punch. Keep in mind that cooking an entire turkey is quite an undertaking, so make sure to read the full recipe (several times!) and form your game-plan in advance.
Whether you have non-meat eaters at your table or want to mix things up, having a second entree option is always a good idea. But finding a vegetarian main dish that feels Thanksgiving-worthy is something easier said than done. Luckily, Ana of Inspired With a Twist rose to the challenge with a potato-based gnocchi that anyone would love. It incorporates all the fall flavors with nutmeg, maple syrup, and sage, plus a dollop of burrata cheese to tie it together. If you feel so bold, serve this in place of a traditional turkey, and we’re pretty sure you’d have zero complaints.
Heavy, filling dishes are often the hallmarks of a Thanksgiving menu but don’t underestimate the power of a leafy green side. We’re partial to this wheat berry salad, featuring roasted squash, dried cranberries, pecorino cheese, and freshly torn kale. You’ll drizzle the entire salad in an apple cider vinaigrette and gently massage the kale for the best flavor.
Full disclosure: this is not your grandmother’s stuffing. Instead, it’s savory bread pudding infused with Gruyere cheese, Kalamata olives, and tons of fresh rosemary for flavor. You’ll use a large, rustic loaf of bread as your base, and let that sit with your egg and cheese mixture for at least 30 minutes. From there, bake until your bread pudding reaches puffed, golden perfection.
Step aside, pumpkin pie. There’s a new dessert in town, and it’s topped with cinnamon bourbon whipped cream. This frozen take on pumpkin pie is a fun way to mix things up and make you a hero with every kid at your table.
We know pie gets all the attention on a Thanksgiving menu, but why not add something new? We’re trying Dani of Sweet & Sorrel’s rich and creamy cheesecake topped with roasted figs this time around. Serve it with a cup of dark espresso, and it’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
It’s not an IDCO menu without a seasonal cocktail, and this one has Thanksgiving written all over it. You’ll mix vodka with lime juice, apple cider, apple butter, fresh ginger, and top off with ginger beer. From there, garnish with a sprinkling of pomegranate arils and cinnamon sticks and serve in a classic copper mug. We love this vintage copper set for a timeless look.
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