The perfect collection of traditional recipes for your Thanksgiving Menu this year. From main dishes to desserts, appetizers to sides, we’ve got you covered! You’ll find the best, easy, crowd-pleasing favorite recipes, everyone loves and looks forward to year after year!
Easy Thanksgiving Menu Recipes
The crisp, cool air has arrived and the last of the leaves have begun to fall from our trees. Autumn is finally here! And my taste buds are already getting excited for the upcoming holiday – Thanksgiving! Hands down, Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. It is time filled with family and friends, football and some our favorite foods. Whether you’re hosting Thanksgiving at your home or you’re traveling near or far, we’ve put together the perfect recipes for your Thanksgiving Menu this year.
Growing up, our family drove to my Grandparents early Thanksgiving morning and spent the entire day together with our extended family. We’d watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, cheer for our favorite football teams, make blanket forts in the basement and play lots of board games. And we’d feast on the most delicious foods Grandma (and her many helpers) prepared. Now that I have children of my own, we open our home to family and friends for Thanksgiving and its my turn to do the cooking and hosting!
We’ve rounded up the perfect, crowd-pleasing, collection of Thanksgiving Menu ideas and recipes for you. And we’ve included our favorite tips and tricks for planning and hosting Thanksgiving so you can spend more time with those you love and stress less!
Plus, we’ve made a free Thanksgiving Planner just to help you get ready for the big day! It includes a Menu printable, Guest list printable, Shopping list printable and Thanksgiving Cooking Schedule printable to help you stay organized for the big day! Click the link below to grab it!
Planning Your Thanksgiving
1. Make a Guest List
As you are making your list of guests, be sure to ask if there are any food allergies or sensitivities. Knowing special dietary restrictions before your plan your menu is essential. It allows you to plan an inclusive menu from the start. Besides, guests who have dietary restrictions will be so THANKFUL you were thoughtful and kind enough to ask! If you’re overwhelmed at accommodating their food allergies or sensitivities, be honest and up front so they can plan accordingly.
2. Decide on a Menu
The more work you do ahead of time, the less stress and hassle you’ll have as Thanksgiving approaches. If you’re hosting at your home, you’ll want to start by picking out your recipes, keeping in mind you’ll want a variety of cooking methods so you don’t run out of cooking space and time. Think instant pot, crock pot, oven and stove top and pick a few recipes that can be made a day or two ahead of time. Again, you’ll want to keep in mind if any of your guests specified food allergies or sensitivities. Don’t forget your littlest guests who will be attending and add a few child-friendly foods to the menu. If you’re traveling, find recipes that will work with your travel plans and ask the host what you can bring.
3. Make Your Shopping List
From your recipes, make a grocery list of what things you need to shop for. Don’t forget to include supplies you’ll need like table settings, napkins and other items you’ll use more of while having guests (paper products like paper towels and toilet paper). If you’re not hosting, this is a great time to think about something to bring your host as a gift, such as a bottle of wine, new dish towels, candles, etc.
4. Prepare Easy Activities
Aside from rounding up some of our favorite card and board games, I always try to put together a simple trivia game. I come up with Thanksgiving related trivia questions for our guests. It’s a great way for everyone to mingle and spend time together. We divvy up the guests into teams and the loosing time – well, they get dish duty after the meal.
5. Clean The Fridge
You’re going to need all the fridge space for your Thanksgiving feast! Now is a perfect time to clean out your fridge (it needed to be done anyway, right?)!
6. Cooking Countdown
One of my favorite secrets to enjoying the time I spend with family on Thanksgiving, is to make a cooking countdown. Sit down with your menu and calculate out how long the different menu items will take to cook so you don’t end up with half of your meal getting cold while the rest finishes cooking.
7. Make Notes
This tip is actually for after the Thanksgiving holiday! Put together your menu, shopping lists and other various notes from planning and preparations and place them somewhere for future reference. Add notes of things that went well, things that could be done differently, etc. This allows planning for another Thanksgiving (or other holiday) much easier! I slip my notes into a clear sleeve and put it in the back of my recipe binder.
Tips and Tricks for Hosting Thanksgiving
1. Plan it Out
Find a Thanksgiving Menu that allows you to make some recipes a day (or two) before Thanksgiving. Whether it be the potatoes, salads, desserts or vegetables, the more you can make ahead of time, the less you have to do on Thanksgiving. And don’t forget that your slow cooker or crock pot is your best friend for making lots of food. Anywhere there is an outlet, you can set your food and forget it allowing you to enjoy time with your guests!
2. Double Your Recipe
If time and space allows, make extra food that can be used for leftovers and appetizers later. This is one of my favorite ways to maximize the time I spend with family and minimize the total time I spend cooking and cleaning.
3. Get Everyone In The Kitchen
Get all of your guests involved! If you have someone who loves to make dessert, ask them to do the baking. For those who love to eat but don’t love to cook, ask them to stay in the kitchen after the meal and help with dishes, bring the wine or pick up fresh bread from the local bakery. Delegating tasks will make everyone feel connected and important.
4. Ask The Kids To Help
Giving our kids a part in having guests for Thanksgiving is one of my favorite tips and tricks. Our kids get involved by making personalized name cards for the table, picking the napkins and setting the table. They help make centerpieces with gourds, ornamental corn and pumpkins from our garden and make turkey hand-print art!
5. Take Time To Be Thankful
I know taking time to be thankful sounds so simple but it often gets lost in the hustle and bustle of making food and entertaining guests. Taking a few moments to be thankful and count your blessings, is something you’ll remember long after everyone goes home. Being present with those you love is a gift in itself!
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Here you will find the following types of crock pot dinner recipes:
*click on one of these to take you directly to that section of recipes*
This dip is one of my favorite appetizers for Thanksgiving. Layered cream cheese, cranberries, green onion and cilantro. It is a quick and easy dip you and your guests will love.
These quick and easy stuffed mushrooms are rich and full of flavors thanks to garlic, butter, parsley and cheese stuffing. They are the perfect small bite Thanksgiving appetizers!
Take your favorite summertime sandwich and make it into a dip this Thanksgiving. Layers of lettuce, bacon, cheese and tomatoes! Everyone will be coming back for more of this tasty dip this Thanksgiving.
Mushrooms cooked to perfection in a ranch butter! This makes a great Thanksgiving Dinner appetizer!
Try this amazingly, sweet dip loaded with toffee and perfect for dipping apples into! This is great for guests of all ages to snack on this Thanksgiving!
The most amazing turkey EVER! Easy, delicious, flavorful and moist turkey that is baked in the oven and then slow cooked the day you serve it. The perfect turkey recipe for your Thanksgiving Dinner.
A Thanksgiving Menu favorite, this easy ham is slow cooked and smothered in a honey glaze!
A savory ham with a brown sugar glaze and pineapple, slow cooked to perfection and perfect to serve for your guests this Thanksgiving!
A delicious, moist and savory pork loin slow cooked in a cranberry sauce and a great main dish for your Thanksgiving Dinner Menu!
A traditional Thanksgiving Menu is not complete in my mind unless it includes potatoes as a side dish! These Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes are smooth, rich and creamy. An added bonus, they can be prepped ahead of time. Grab this recipe for a hectic free holiday dinner.
One of my new favorite kitchen is the Instant Pot. These Pressure Cooker Mashed Potatoes are delicious and can be made three different ways – traditional mashed potatoes, cheddar bacon or garlic mashed!
This Light Sweet Potato Casserole is a Thanksgiving Dinner Menu favorite at our gatherings year after year. Loaded with sweet potatoes, toasted pecans, cinnamon and nutmeg. Perfect for a Thanksgiving Side Dish!
Try these easy cheesy scalloped potatoes for your Thanksgiving Dinner Menu this year. Fresh hand cut potatoes, smothered in a homemade cheese sauce and baked until golden brown!
These Parmesan Crock Pot Sweet Potatoes are a perfect, easy side dish at your Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner this year! They are packed full of garlic and parmesan flavor!
These potatoes are a crowd pleaser at our house on Thanksgiving and all year long. These slow cooked creamy mashed potatoes are loaded with garlic, cream cheese and parmesan!
This Thanksgiving, try these easy creamy dream,y cheesy potatoes!
Thie crock pot makes this cheesy, creamy, and comforting dish so easy! perfect for a Thanksgiving side dish at your table this year!
Garlic Parmesan Mashed Potato Casserole makes the PERFECT Thanksgiving and holiday side dish! Creamy russet potatoes are cooked with garlic cloves, then mashed with butter, milk and Parmesan cheese. Top with additional Parmesan before baking to create a crispy exterior on this comforting casserole.
This Thanksgiving, add Crock Pot Cheddar Creamed Corn to your menu. Throw it in the crock pot and forget it! This is a perfect, easy side dish for your gathering!
This is the BEST Crockpot Green Bean Casserole Recipe to make as a quick side dish or a holiday recipe! Make this easy and delicious Green Bean Casserole in the Slow Cooker and everyone will asking for the recipe! If you are like me things get a little tight in the stove when I’m trying to prepare a meal for the holidays. That’s why I love easy side dishes like this.
Perfectly paired, this cheesy broccoli cauliflower casserole is so tasty! Even your kids will love this casserole topped with cheese.
A tasty combination of creamy, cheesy homemade macaroni and cheese mixed together with corn. Yum! A great side dish for your Thanksgiving Menu.
A quick and easy side dish for your Thanksgiving Menu this year!
This amazing Corn Pudding is a highlight on our holiday tables! It’s one of those recipes that everyone looks forward to and expects to get every Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. This casserole is sweet, savory and comes together with a hearty egg base which makes it the perfect side dish for your holiday! No matter if you are a veteran cook in the kitchen or a beginner you will love this one.
Deliciousness in every bite! This easy side dish is loaded with corn, green beans and cheese!
One of my favorites at the Thanksgiving table is this Easy, Homemade Gravy. It’s delicious homemade turkey gravy that ANYONE can make!
The delicious cranberry sauce recipe is flavored with orange and cinnamon to make it The Best Cranberry Sauce! It’s not the holidays without cranberry sauce and now you can make it homemade. It’s way better and super easy! Your guests will be thanking you for making this easy Thanksgiving side dish.
A perfect make ahead side dish for your Thanksgiving Dinner Menu this year. This seven layer salad recipe has chopped lettuce, peas, celery, onions, bacon and cheese!
Hearty, delicious and creamy, this macaroni and cheese will have everyone going back for more. An added bonus, it’s made in your slow cooker!
The Best Pumpkin Bars might replace your pumpkin pie at your Thanksgiving table this year. This easy recipe will be your new family favorite. They are the perfect combination of a delicious cake batter crust, creamy pumpkin pie filling, whipped cream and cinnamon!
Light, Airy Angel Food Cake with a Hint of Pumpkin. The perfect, quick and easy Thanksgiving Menu recipe!
Doctored up cake mix, swirled with a cream cheese filling, making a rich, gooey earthquake cake that’s 100% over-the-top and downright delicious. All of your Thanksgiving guests will love this tasty dessert.
A delightfully creamy, delicious pumpkin dessert with layers of gingersnap cookies, vanilla pudding and pumpkin!
A quick and easy dessert recipe loaded with pumpkin, spices and yellow cake mix!
Pumpkin cream cheese filling layered with whipped cream and crushed gingersnap cookies. Similar to pumpkin pie and pumpkin cheesecake, you will love this no-bake dessert perfect for Thanksgiving!
Creamy pumpkin cheesecake on top of a gingersnap crust! Light, delicious, easy and a crowd favorite.
Delicious, buttery pecan pie bar recipe with a cake mix crust, gooey middle and loaded with pecans. This recipe will be your new favorite for Thanksgiving.
A traditional, classic Thanksgiving pie loaded with pecans and drizzled with chocolate!
Easy Thanksgiving Menu
Get a jump start and make these Thanksgiving recipes the day before!
- The day before Thanksgiving make your Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes, Crock pot Make Ahead Turkey and Turkey Gravy. I make the Seven Layer Salad the day before also!Make the Easy Pumpkin Dump Dessert the day before. These recipes all reheat great!
- The morning of Thanksgiving start you Crock Pot with the turkey in it to warm it up. Also make you Crock Pot Cheddar Creamed Corn. After that you will begin to prep and make the Sweet Potato Casserole. Right before serving your meal reheat your gravy. That's it!