Our 65+ Best Thanksgiving Recipes of All-Time
We've pulled together our favorite Thanksgiving dishes over the years. In November 1966 Southern Living magazine celebrated our first Thanksgiving with a foil-baked turkey, fluffy sweet potatoes, savory string beans, and pumpkin and pecan pies. Years later, the SL Test Kitchen continues to dream up delicious new ways to bring the storied dishes that have graced our tables for generations to life. And while we always welcome the new additions to the holiday feast (crowd-pleasing sides, showstopping pies, the skillet cornbread, a new spin on mashed potatoes), Southerners always leave room on the table for the tried-and-true classics. The recipes that have been passed down for generations and been in our family–and on our holiday tables–for decades. Not only are they delicious but they have stories that are meant to be told (and retold) year after year. In honor of our 50th anniversary celebration, we challenged our editors to do the near impossible task of choosing the top 65+ recipes of all-time. From appetizers to desserts, here are their top picks.
Sorghum-Pecan Monkey Bread Muffins
Prepare these muffins the night before Thanksgiving for an easy, stress-free morning.
Buttermilk Spoon Bread
Recipe: Buttermilk Spoon Bread
This Buttermilk Spoon Bread is a delicious cross between a skillet cornbread dressing, cornmeal soufflé, and hot cornbread.
Herby Pecan-Cornbread Dressing
Recipe: Herby Pecan-Cornbread Dressing
This cornbread dressing recipe has all the flavors you expect around Thanksgiving with the welcome addition of nutty pecans.
Dulce de Leche-Cheesecake Pecan Pie
A layer of rich and velvety dulce de leche cheesecake is the star of this otherwise classic pecan pie.
Cheesy Bacon Pinwheels
Recipe: Cheesy Bacon Pinwheels
The buttery dough in this spiraled pinwheel recipe is complimented by salty bacon, creamy Gruyère cheese, and sweet caramelized onions.
Oven-Roasted Root Vegetables with Spicy Pecan Topping
The candied, textured, slightly spicy pecan topping on this recipe beautifully compliments the root vegetables.
Pear-Cranberry Pie with Ginger-Almond Streusel
The ginger-almond streusel perfectly compliments the pear-cranberry filling in this rich, fall pie.
Chocolate-Pecan Phyllo Turnovers
Recipe: Chocolate-Pecan Phyllo Turnovers
Serve Chocolate-Pecan Phyllo Turnovers instead of a classic pecan pie this year to surprise your Thanksgiving guests.
Simple Mashed Rutabagas and Potatoes
Lighten up the Turkey Day table this year with our modern twist on traditional mashed potatoes.
Granny Smith Apple Pie
Recipe: Granny Smith Apple Pie
Roasted Granny Smith apples are the game-changing ingredient in this indulgent fruit pie.
Recipe: Turkey Salad
Use your leftover Thanksgiving turkey to make this absolutely scrumptious Turkey Salad recipe.
Leftover Turkey Hash
Recipe: Leftover Turkey Hash
Leftover Turkey Hash is the perfect recipe to serve for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving.
Recipe: Pomegranate-Chess Tart
A halo of pomegranate seeds and a layer of tangy pomegranate gelée give the basic chess pie an exciting makeover.
Fluffy Corn Pudding
Recipe: Fluffy Corn Pudding
The perfect cross between a custard and a souffle, this Fluffy Corn Pudding recipe is sure to impress.
Dairy-Free Coconut-Pumpkin Pie
Recipe: Dairy-Free Coconut-Pumpkin Pie
Serve this embellished coconut-pumpkin pie as a Thanksgiving dessert for all your dairy-free guests.
Fried Arkansas Black Apples
Recipe: Fried Arkansas Black Apples
Serve these apples alongside your roasted turkey, ham, or chicken for a simple and flavor-filled side dish.
Easy Turkey Stock
Recipe: Easy Turkey Stock
Don't let your leftover turkey go to waste; instead make this Easy Turkey Stock with very little effort.
Deep Fried Turkey with Creole Spices
Spice up your holiday turkey this year with a delicious combination of Creole flavors.
Whole-Grain Mini Bread Loaves
Recipe: Whole-Grain Mini Bread Loaves
These homemade bread rolls are a surefire crowd-pleaser, and they are so easy to make.
Recipe: Shrimp-Stuffed Mirlitons
These Shrimp-Stuffed Mirlitons are sure to impress even your pickiest Thanksgiving dinner guest.
Sea Island Crab Fried Rice
Recipe: Sea Island Crab Fried Rice
Sweet crab meat comes together with rice, bacon, and sautéed vegetables to make an incredible dish that is truly a Southern favorite.
Collard Greens with Garlic and Sippets
Bring new life to your collard greens this year with the addition of garlic and sippets.
Recipe: Scalloped Oysters
This flavorful casserole is a Southern classic.
Baked Mac and Cheese with Bacon
Recipe: Baked Mac and Cheese with Bacon
Just when you thought mac and cheese couldn't get any better . . . we added bacon.
Baked Brie with Pecans
Recipe: Baked Brie with Pecans
This deliciously simple appetizer is packed with our favorite fall flavors.
Honey-Glazed Spiced Carrots Recipe
Coated in sweet honey and fall spices, these carrots might just steal the show.
Grated Sweet Potato Pudding
Recipe: Grated Sweet Potato Pudding
Grated Sweet Potato Pudding is a modern twist on sweet potato casserole.
Sweet Potato Rolls
Recipe: Sweet Potato Rolls
Warm, light, and rich in flavor - this sweet potato roll recipe will be the talk of the Turkey Day buffet line.
Homemade Crescent Rolls
Recipe: Homemade Crescent Rolls
Some choose cornbread, others pick biscuits, but everyone votes for the crescent roll. This make-from-scratch recipe is easy enough for an amateur in the kitchen to tackle. Tip: Brush unbaked rolls with melted butter; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, kosher salt, coarsely ground pepper, and dried Italian seasoning.
Herbed Wild Rice Dressing
Spicy Cornbread Dressing with Chorizo
Add a little kick to your Thanksgiving meal this year with a bit of chorizo.
Tee's Corn Pudding
Recipe: Tee's Corn Pudding
Tee's classic Corn Pudding recipe gives you the rich, airy texture of soufflé for the price of cornbread casserole.
Farro Salad with Toasted Pecans, Feta, and Dried Cherries
An unexpected side dish that is packed with flavor. Our grain salad is loaded with fresh ingredients like feta cheese, sweet dried cherries, scallions, and toasted pecans.
Candy Roaster Squash with Sorghum, Black Walnuts, and Cranberries
Unique candy roaster squash is the perfect veggie addition to your Thanksgiving spread.
Brussels Sprouts with Cornbread Croutons
Brussels sprouts are finally having a moment, and getting the attention they deserve. This beautiful recipe calls for crunchy cornbread croutons too.
Cheesy Broccoli and Rice Casserole
Packed with flavor and light on fat, this hearty vegetable dish takes broccoli to a whole new level.
Recipe: Squash Casserole
Because Thanksgiving is one of the few times of the year that covering your vegetables in Cheddar cheese, mayonnaise, breadcrumbs, butter, Parmesan, and French fried onions is not only acceptable–but expected.
Root Vegetable Gratin
Recipe: Root Vegetable Gratin
This comforting side dish combines our favorite seasonal root vegetables—hearty russet potatoes, crunchy rutabagas, and snappy parsnips—and cooks them together.
Skillet Squash Blossom
Recipe: Skillet Squash Blossom
With carmelized edges and an intricate presentation, this Thanksgiving side is pretty enough to stand in as the table's centerpiece.
Cornbread Dressing with Sausage and Fennel
Fennel lovers, rejoice: This Italian-inspired cornbread dressing will certainly earn its way up to your yearly Thanksgiving menu.
Slow-Cooker Green Beans
Recipe: Slow-Cooker Green Beans
This green bean recipe frees up precious stove-top space and reminds us of the traditional green beans our grandmothers used to make.
Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Recipe: Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
We've made quite a few mashed potato recipes over the years but this is by far the best. Our mouthwatering version calls for goat cheese, heavy cream, and chopped fresh chives.
Classic Parmesan Scalloped Potatoes
Rich whipping cream and golden, bubbly Parmesan cheese make this dish divine.
Smashed Baby Red Potatoes
Recipe: Smashed Baby Red Potatoes
Crispy on the outside and tender and creamy on the inside, these are the best baby potatoes around.
Classic Sweet Potato Casserole
Recipe: Classic Sweet Potato Casserole
This sweet potato is top-rated, and we're guessing it's because of the toppings, which includes crunchy pecans, crispy cornflakes, brown sugar, butter, and more.
Sweet Potato and Chorizo Sausage Bites
Looking for an alternative to sweet potato casserole? This sausage ball appetizer combines sweet potatoes, spicy chorizo sausage, and sharp Cheddar cheese into mini appetizers.
Recipe: Candied Yams
Make this classic candied yams recipe in the slow cooker for a warm and delicious side.
Cornbread Dressing with Kale and Bacon
Kale and bacon come together in this smoky, moist cornbread dressing.
Creole Deep-Fried Turkey
Recipe: Creole Deep-Fried Turkey
Deep-fried and delicious. This is the only recipe you will ever need for a deep-fried turkey.
Roasted Herb Turkey and Gravy
Recipe: Roasted Herb Turkey and Gravy
Seasoned with classic spices like sage, thyme, and fennel seeds, this turkey recipe practically makes its own gravy.
Sweet-and-Spicy Roast Turkey Recipe
We dry-brined this bird with a fragrant spice rub, and then roasted it with a honey-hot sauce glaze.
Smoked Turkey Breast
Recipe: Smoked Turkey Breast
A crowd-pleasing way to prepare your Thanksgiving turkey, this smoked meat is bursting with apple cider, fresh thyme, rosemary, and sage.
Roasted Dry-Rub Turkey with Gravy
Recipe: Turkey Dry Rub
This recipe, with its Paprika-Brown Sugar Rub, yields a turkey with dark, crispy skin.
Utterly Deadly Southern Pecan Pie
There's nothing sweeter than a homemade pecan pie baked in a cast iron skillet.
Classic Bread Dressing
Recipe: Classic Bread Dressing
This easy bread dressing recipe is made-from-scratch with high-quality sourdough bread, fresh parsley and thyme, and celery, leeks, and garlic.
Sliced Sweet Potato Pie
Recipe: Sliced Sweet Potato Pie
A crumbly, crispy, golden struesel and layers of sweet potatoes.
The Ultimate Carrot Cake
Recipe: The Ultimate Carrot Cake
One reader said it best: "It was the best cake I've ever eaten." We must agree.
Brown Butter Sweet Potato Pie
Recipe: Brown Butter Sweet Potato Pie
Browing the butter with spices lends a deep, nutty flavor to this Southern classic.
Sweet Potato Bread with Buttermilk-Lime Icing Recipe
Pumpkin bread's more sophisticated, spicy cousin. Top with tart icing for a dessert people will beg you to bake.
Recipe: Turkey Tetrazzini
For a creamy casserole, toss your Thanksgiving leftover turkey into a baking dish with spaghetti, vegetables, and Alfredo sauce.
Au Gratin Potato Casserole
Recipe: Au Gratin Potato Casserole
This cheesy, creamy potato casserole uses frozen hash browns, cream of mushroom soup, shredded Cheddar cheese, and a straight-out-of-the-box corn flakes cereal.
Fresh Corn Spoonbread
Recipe: Fresh Corn Spoonbread
If you're looking for a moist alternative to traditional cornbread, this simple spoonbread recipe is the one for you.
Sweet Potato, Cauliflower, and Greens Casserole
It's almost as though three of our favorite sides got together to revolutionize dinner.