Short on time? These 43 recipes are impressive yet simple—and all of them can be pulled together in a relatively short amount of time, with easy-to-find ingredients. From Brussels sprouts with bacon to creamy sage mashed potatoes, all the Thanksgiving essentials are here.
Piccata Green Beans
This elegant side dish is simplicity itself: blanched green beans tossed in a vinaigrette of capers, bright lemon, and a beautiful olive oil.
See the recipe for Piccata Style Green Beans »
Parsley and Onion Salad
Fresh onions add cool spice to this simple parsley salad from Jeremiah Cooks (Stewart, Tabori and Chang, 2002) by Jeremiah Tower. This easy salad can be tossed together in minutes.
See the recipe for Parsley and Onion Salad »
Toasted cumin seeds, mint, and lime juice intensify the sweetness of simple baked root vegetables.
Get the recipe for Cumin-Roasted Carrots and Parsnips »
Grilled Romaine Salad with Blue Cheese and Bacon
Fresh heads of romaine lettuce are split down the middle, grilled until charred and smoky, and then topped with blue cheese and bacon for this satisfying salad.
See the recipe for Grilled Romaine Salad with Blue Cheese and Bacon »
Get the Recipe for Brussels Sprouts with Horseradish and Pomegranate Seeds »
Ciabatta and Sausage Stuffing
This rustic stuffing from Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bistro is made with crusty Italian bread and laced with fresh herbs, aromatics, and sausage.
See the recipe for Ciabatta and Sausage Stuffing »
Braising—with a healthy dose of soy—is one of our favorite ways to bring out the texture and flavor of winter squash.
This simple, satisfying side rounds out any Thanksgiving dinner.
The secret to this simple dish is to use the best quality bacon available. Delicious and straightforward, you can whip this dish together quickly while keeping the oven available for other jobs.
Baked Sweet Potatoes with Brown Sugar and Black Pepper
Sweet potatoes, baked until tender, need nothing more than butter, brown sugar, and black pepper to taste divinemuch easier than mashing and baking into a casserole!
See the recipe for Baked Sweet Potatoes »
Black pepper is a major ingredient in this dish, so be sure to use fresh-cracked as opposed to pre-cracked pepper.
Get the recipe for Grilled Turkey Breast with Caramelized Onion, Cracked Black Pepper, and Vinegar»
Whole Cranberry Sauce
Fresh orange and grapefruit juice add zest to this seasonal staple. **
See the Recipe for Whole Cranberry Sauce »**
This recipe, from Fore Street restaurant in Portland, Maine, calls for using six 4″ steel blini pans. But you can make a single cake in an 8″ cast-iron skillet, if you prefer. If fresh or frozen cranberries aren’t available, use reconstituted dried berries.
Get the recipe for Apple and Cranberry Upside-Down Cakes »
The origins of leeks vinaigrette–poached leeks in a mustardy dressing–are unknown, but it’s easy to imagine someone pulling them out of the stockpot once they had worked their magic, then seasoning them.
See the recipe for Leeks Vinaigrette »
In so many green bean casseroles, the beans are cooked well past the point of mushy. In this recipe they keep some snap.
Skillet-toasted pecans, candied with rosemary and Spanish paprika, take mere minutes to prepare and use ingredients you probably already have on hand.
See the recipe for Spiced Pecans »
An aromatic combination of spices elevate the humble sweet potato oven fry to something truly special.
Get the recipe for Sweet Potato Honey Fries with Curry-Honey Sauce »
Brussel Sprouts with Bacon
This two-step recipe produces a delicious, sweet-salty result. If you can’t find slab bacon, thick-cut prepackaged bacon works well too.
See the recipe for Brussel Sprouts with Bacon »
Green Beans with Sesame Sauce
After a four-minute blanche and quick toss in homemade dressing, this Japanese-inspired recipe is ready to serve.
See the recipe for Green Beans with Sesame Sauce »
Leaving the skins on your potatoes saves on prep time and gives a rustic feel to the finished dish. We love the technique of infusing the milk and butter with sage—start heating a saucepan of milk and sage when you set the water to boil to speed up this process.
Get the recipe for Sage Mashed Potatoes »
It’s rare that we encounter spaghetti squash
not shredded into its eponymous noodle-like threads. But kept intact, it reveals a beautifully yielding texture and a savory, subtle flavor that’s perfectly offset by a rich walnut-miso glaze.
Roasted Vidalia Onions with Herbed Bread Crumbs
Sweet Vidalia onions, grown in and around the namesake Georgia city, turn even sweeter when roasted with a savory herbed bread crumb topping.
See the recipe for Roasted Vidalia Onions with Herbed Bread Crumbs »
A high oven temperature results in potatoes that are crispy on the outside and creamy within.
See the recipe for Roasted Potatoes »
Maple syrup enhances the sweetness of this simple sweet potato mash.
Get the recipe for Maple Butter Mashed Sweet Potatoes »
Raw Kale Salad with Lemon and Currants
This preparation of kale couldn’t be easier, simply shred the kale, and toss all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
See the recipe for Raw Kale Salad with Lemon and Currants »
Turkey Roulade with Chestnut Stuffing
This roulade cooks in just an hour, so you won’t have to devote half a day to your main dish.
See the recipe for Turkey Roulade with Chestnut Stuffing »
Honey makes for a more flavorful glaze for carrots than sugar does. In this dish, orange zest keeps the sweetness from becoming cloying.
See the recipe for Orange and Honey-Glazed Carrots »
Port Wine Poached Pears
While these pears need to simmer in poaching liquid for about 50 minutes, active cooking time is less than 10 minutes, making this a low maintenance dessert option. Served with ice cream, poached fruit is a nice alternative to the more-typical thanksgiving spread of pies.
See the recipe for Port Wine Poached Pears »
Cime di Rapa Fritte (Slow-Cooked Broccoli Rabe)
Notoriously bitter and tough, broccoli rabe becomes mellow and supple when cooked slowly in a bath of water and olive oil. Simply seasoned with garlic and chile flakes, this Italian home-cooking classic is true comfort food.
See the recipe for Cime di Rapa Fritte »
Roast Turkey with Root Vegetables
This three-step recipe cooks quickly because the turkey is broken down in pieces (which also allows you to pull out pieces as they’re done, so nothing comes out dry) and also yields a side dish of roasted root vegetables as well as gravy.
See the recipe for Roast Turkey with Root Vegetables »
Lime and jalapeño punch up this fresh, no-cook take on cranberry sauce.
See the Cranberry Salsa recipe »
Green Bean and Radish Salad
Quick-cooked green beans, radishes, and garlic are caramelized with honey for an elegant side dish.
See the recipe for Green Bean and Radish Salad »
Curried Pearl Onions
While this recipe already doesn’t require much cooking time, using frozen, pre-peeled pearl onions will save you lots of prep work.
See the recipe for Curried Peal Onions »
Pecan Pie is one of quickest Thanksgiving desserts to pull together, especially if you use store-bought dough. Just stir the filling ingredients together and pour into your pre-crimped crust.
See the recipe for Pecan Pie »
Brussels Sprouts with Chorizo
Chorizo is a natural partner for Brussels sprouts; its spiciness complements the vegetable’s earthy flavor.
See the recipe for Brussels Sprouts with Chorizo »
Feta, red onion, and mint are a classic combination; tossed with snappy green beans they make a salad of surprising complexity.
Bacon and jalapeños flavor this otherwise classic cornbread dressing from Mary Sue Milliken.
Maple-Syrup Roasted Tomatoes
Maple syrup intensifies the sweetness of tomatoes in this recipe for Tomate Confite au Sirop d’Érable. Serve these with toothpicks as an appetizer or on salads, pizza, and pastas.
See the recipe for Maple-Syrup Roasted Tomatoes »
Seasoned with thyme and cooked until tender, peppery radishes make a colorful addition to the traditional Thanksgiving spread.
See the recipe for Roasted Radishes »
This creamy, savory preparation brings out Brussels sprouts’ natural sweetness.
Creamed Brussels Sprouts »
Cranberries with Port
We found the easiest and tastiest way to make this all-important side dish to your holiday meal.
See the recipe for Cranberries with Port »
Fennel al Forno (Fennel Baked in Cream)
This simple, classic Italian preparation calls for baking fennel in the oven with cream and Parmesan to create a luxurious gratin.
See the recipe for Fennel al Forno »
Ricotta Crostini with Chestnut Honey
Ricotta on toasted bread drizzled with honey is one of the easiest, and best-tasting appetizers to prepare. Use store-bought crackers or wafers if you don’t want to make the crostini toasts. Tastes great alongside sopressata or other cured sausages.
See the recipe for Ricotta Crostini with Chestnut Honey »