Ten delicious Thanksgiving recipes your guests will love

Memory-making dishes your family and friends are sure to enjoy

Host a remarkable Thanksgiving dinner this year with these fantastic recipes. If you all can’t be together in person, share these recipes and feast virtually using WeInvite!

Should we start with the turkey, the star of the meal? Of course!

1. Juicy Thanksgiving Turkey

Credits: All Recipes
vt-imagePrep: 20 minutes vt-imageCook: 3 hours vt-imageTotal time: 3 hours, 20 minutes vt-imageServings: 20


  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • 2 tablespoons ground dried rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons rubbed dried sage
  • 2 tablespoons dried thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon lemon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 (15 pound) whole turkey, neck and giblets removed
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 orange, cut into wedges
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can of chicken broth
  • 1 (750 milliliter) bottle Champagne


  • Step 1

    Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a turkey roaster with long sheets of aluminum foil that will be long enough to wrap over the turkey.

  • Step 2

    Stir together the parsley, rosemary, sage, thyme, lemon pepper, and salt in a small bowl. Rub the herb mixture into the cavity of the turkey, then stuff with the celery, orange, onion, and carrot. Truss if desired and place the turkey into the roasting pan. Pour the chicken broth and champagne over the turkey, making sure to get some champagne in the cavity. Bring the aluminum foil over the top of the turkey and seal. Try to keep the foil from touching the skin of the turkey breast or legs.

  • Step 3

    Bake the turkey in the preheated oven for 2 1/2 to 3 hours until no longer pink at the bone and the juices run clear. Uncover the turkey, and continue baking until the skin turns golden brown, 30 minutes to 1 hour longer. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh near the bone should read 180 degrees F (82 degrees C). Remove the turkey from the oven, cover with a doubled sheet of aluminum foil, and allow to rest in a warm area 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.

2. Aromatic Pumpkin Tart

Credits: The Washington Post
vt-imagePrep: 1 hour (plus chill time for the dough) vt-imageCook: 55 minutes (total) vt-imageTotal time: 2 hours vt-imageServings: 10

A recipe is likely to become a Thanksgiving favorite for years to come. This Washington Post recipe was created by Chef Marcus Samuelsson. He recommends serving this tart with buttermilk sorbet or a natural vanilla ice cream.

What you need: a 10-inch tart pan with a removable bottom

Make ahead of time: Refrigerate the dough for a minimum of 30 minutes and a maximum of 3 days. The unbaked tart shell should be refrigerated for 30 minutes. You can bake this tart a day ahead of time and keep it a room temperature.

Servings: 12



  • 1 1/2 cups flour, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala, toasted (see NOTE)
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons ice water

    For the filling

  • 4 large eggs
  • 15 ounces canned pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala, toasted (see NOTE) *
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup, plus more for optional drizzling
  • Finely grated zest of 2 lemons, plus the juice of 1 lemon
  • One 1-inch piece fresh ginger root, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup half-and-half

    For serving

  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon garam masala
  • Sorbet or ice cream (optional)


  • For the crust: Combine the flour, salt, garam masala, and lemon zest in a food processor; pulse once or twice to blend. Add the butter and pulse just until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. Add 2 tablespoons of the ice water; pulse just until the dough comes together in a ball. Add some or all the remaining ice water as needed, 1 teaspoon at a time.

  • Lightly flour a work surface. Turn the dough out onto it; knead it for 15 seconds or so. If the dough seems sticky, work in a little flour. Shape the dough into a smooth disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days.

  • Roll out the dough on the floured surface (re-flour as needed) into a 12 1/2-inch round, moving the dough as you work to make sure it doesn't stick. Transfer it to the tart pan, draping the dough over the edges. Do not trim; you'll be baking and using those extra bits of dough to make crumbles. Gently press the dough into the pan and around the sides. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line the unbaked tart shell with aluminum foil (shiny side down) and fill it with pie weights or dried beans/rice. Bake for 18 minutes or until lightly browned, then transfer to the stovetop (off the heat). Remove the foil and weight material.

  • Meanwhile, make the filling: Beat the eggs in a mixing bowl, then whisk in the pumpkin puree. Gradually add the light brown sugar, then the garam masala, salt, maple syrup, lemon zest and juice, ginger and vanilla extract. Whisk in the half-and-half until thoroughly incorporated.

  • Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Place the parbaked tart shell on a baking sheet. Pour the filling into the shell. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the filling is almost set; it should still jiggle just a bit at the center. Transfer the tart (in its pan) to a wire rack to cool for 30 minutes before removing the outer ring.

  • Meanwhile, knock off the excess baked bits of dough and gather them in a bowl. Combine the confectioners' sugar and garam masala in a separate small bowl. Stir some of the spiced sugar into the bits of dough; use a fork or spatula to create crumbles.

  • Sift the remaining spiced sugar on top of the tart. To serve, top each slice with some crumbles, and sorbet or ice cream and a drizzle of maple syrup if desired.

Note: Toast the garam masala in a small, dry skillet over medium-low heat for about 30 seconds or just until fragrant. Cool completely before using.

*To substitute for garam masala: combine 4 parts ground cumin with 1 part allspice. It’s an easy substitute when you can’t find garam masala or you're in a hurry.

3. Oyster Dressing

Credits: Taste Of Home

Oysters add subtle saltiness to a classic Thanksgiving side dish.

vt-imagePrep: 30 minutes vt-imageCook: 30 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 1 hour vt-imageServings: 4


  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup of butter, cubed
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • ¼ teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1/8 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 cups of cubed day-old bread
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2/3 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup shucked oysters, drained and coarsely chopped


  • In a small skillet, sauté celery and onion in butter until tender; transfer to a large bowl. Stir in the parsley, poultry seasoning, sage and pepper. Add bread cubes. Combine the egg, broth and oysters; add to bread mixture, stirring gently to combine.

  • Transfer to a greased 1-qt. baking dish. Cover and bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Uncover; bake 10-15 minutes longer or until a thermometer reads 160° and stuffing is lightly browned.

Nutrition: 3/4 cup: 228 calories, 15g fat (8g saturated fat), 106mg cholesterol, 495mg sodium, 17g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 1g fiber), 7g protein.

4. Pecan Pie Bites with Gravy

Credits: KVDR
vt-imagePrep: 30 minutes, plus 30 minutes (minimum) to chill the dough vt-imageCook: 30 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 1 hour vt-imageServings: 12

A unique take on traditional pecan pie, these little bites of sweet and savory will leave you wanting more.


  • 12 tablespoons (1.5 sticks) unsalted butter
  • ⅓ cup confectioners' sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • Leftover turkey gravy, for dipping


  • Make the crust: In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter, confectioners' sugar and salt. Beat in flour. Form crust into a disk, wrap in plastic and chill for at least 30 minutes (or up to 3 days).

  • Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch-square pan and line with parchment paper. Press dough evenly into bottom of pan. Bake until crust is golden brown all over, about 30 minutes.

  • Make the filling: Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat corn syrup, sugar, cream and butter until the butter melts. Let cool, then stir in eggs, bourbon, vanilla and salt until smooth. Stir in pecans.

  • Pour filling over crust. Bake until set, 40 to 45 minutes. Cool completely before cutting into bars. Drizzle gravy on top or serve alongside as a dip.

5. Smoked Paprika and Garlic Hasselback Potatoes

Credits: Mod Meals On Mendenhall
vt-imagePrep: 25 minutes vt-imageCook: 1 hour vt-imageTotal time: 1 hour and 25 minutes vt-imageServings: 4

A savory and smoky side dish that rivals plain mashed potatoes any day of the year.


  • Large potatoes (I like Yukon Gold)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon, minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon, smoked paprika (sweet or bittersweet – maybe a touch of hot!)


  • Heat the oven to 425°F

  • Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch-square pan and line with parchment paper. Press dough evenly into bottom of pan. Bake until crust is golden brown all over, about 30 minutes.

  • Cut slits in the potatoes, leaving the bottom intact but stopping before you cut through the bottom, so the slices stay connected.

  • Space the slices 1/8-inch to ¼-inch apart.

  • Heat the oil, butter, garlic, salt, pepper and smoked paprika in a small saucepan until melted and aromatic.

  • Arrange the potatoes in a baking dish. Brush the potatoes all over with butter mixture. Sprinkle with a touch more salt and pepper.

  • Bake 30 minutes, then brush with butter again. Bake the potatoes for about 30 more minutes.

Once the potatoes are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, serve them hot!

6. Red Kuri Squash Soup with Ancho and Apple

Credits: Food & Wine
vt-imagePrep: 20 minutes vt-imageCook: 30 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 1 hour vt-imageServings: 4

This unique, warming soup makes a fantastic starter for Thanksgiving or any day of the year. Red Kuri squash has a creamy, chestnut flavor that satisfies comfort food cravings. This soup can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 pounds Red Kuri squash (can substitute 11 ½ pounds of butternut squash), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 medium onion, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 1 ancho chili, stemmed, seeded and torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 medium apple, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Toasted pumpkin seeds, for garnish


  • In a large soup pot, melt the butter. Add the squash seeds and onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring frequently, until the onion is golden brown, and the seeds are starting to brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the chilli and toast until fragrant and pliable, about 1 minute. Add the squash, apple, cinnamon and 4 cups of water and bring to a boil over high heat, then simmer over low heat until the squash is very tender, about 25 minutes.

  • Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender. Season with salt, pepper and sugar, then serve, garnished with pumpkin seeds.

7. Cornbread Pudding with Whisky Caramel

Credits: Southern Living Magazine & My Recipes

Your adult guests may want to double up on the caramel topping for this savory bread pudding – you've been warned (make double)! Serve with a no alcohol version sauce for those who cannot partake in the whisky version.

vt-imagePrep: 15 minutes vt-imageCook: 1.5 (total) vt-imageTotal time: 1.5 hours vt-imageServings: 4


  • Vegetable cooking spray
  • Ben Mims' Perfect Cornbread – room temperature
  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 5 large eggs
  • Whiskey Caramel


  • Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease a 3-qt. baking dish with cooking spray.

  • Cut cornbread into 2- to 3-inch pieces, and place in prepared dish. (You should have about 10 cups cornbread.)

  • Cook butter in a 2-qt. saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until butter begins to turn golden brown. Remove pan from heat, and whisk in milk and next 3 ingredients until sugar melts. Whisk in eggs; pour mixture over cornbread. Let stand 10 minutes.

  • Bake, covered, at 350° for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 30 more minutes or until light brown and set.

Let stand 10 minutes. Serve with Whiskey Caramel.

8. Lobster Mac and Cheese

Credits: The Food Network
vt-imagePrep: 30 minutes vt-imageCook: 25 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 55 minutes vt-imageServings: 6 - 8

Thank you to the state of Maine for your lobster harvest. This decadent dish can be a hearty main course or a side any time of the year. Lobster on Thanksgiving? Yes, please!


  • 1 pound cavatappi or elbow macaroni
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 quart milk
  • Pinch nutmeg (optional)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups extra sharp cheddar, grated (white or yellow)
  • 4 cups Fontina or Gruyere cheese, grated
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1.5 pounds cooked lobster, roughly chopped
  • 1.5 cups fresh white breadcrumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan Reggiano, if desired
  • Kosher salt
  • Vegetable oil


  • Preheat oven to 375°. In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook cavatappi until al dente. Drain and set aside.

  • Make a roux: in a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Sprinkle over flour and cook until slightly golden, 2-3 minutes.

  • Heat milk in a small saucepan for about 2 minutes, but don't boil. Stir with a whisk.

  • Still whisking, add the hot milk and whisk until combined. Cook for 1 -2 minutes until thick and smooth. Season with nutmeg if using, salt, and pepper. Let simmer until thickened slightly, about 2 minutes.

  • Remove pan from heat and stir in the cheddar, Gruyere, ½ cup Parmesan (if desired), 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and nutmeg and whisk until smooth. Fold in the cooked pasta and lobster and transfer into a 9"-x-13" baking dish or 6 – 8 individual gratin dishes.

  • Melt the remaining butter and combine with fresh breadcrumbs, then sprinkle on top.

  • If desired, sprinkle the remaining Parmesan Reggiano

  • Season with salt and pepper

  • Bake until bubbly and golden, 20-25 minutes.

9. Clam and Chouriço Dressing

Credits: The New York Times

This dressing recipe hails from Massachusetts, the birthplace of Thanksgiving. This dressing recipe contains Massachusetts' own quahog clams and a sausage called chourçio. Thank you to Matthew Jennings for this flavorful side dish!

Note: Fresh chorizo may be substituted for chourçio, but canned clams are not recommended as a substitute for fresh clams.

vt-imagePrep: 30 minutes vt-imageCook: 10 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 1 hour vt-imageServings: 10


  • 6 cups stale country bread, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes (1 1/4 pounds)
  • 1 pound fresh chourçio sausage (or use fresh chorizo), casing removed
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 large white onion, diced (2 cups)
  • 4 stalks celery, diced (1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh sage
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
  • ½ bunch fresh parsley, chopped (2/3 cup)
  • 1 dozen shucked and chopped quahog clams, liquor reserved (see note)
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper


  • Heat oven to 325 degrees. Spread bread cubes on a baking sheet in a single layer and bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until lightly toasted; set aside.

  • Increase oven temperature to 375 degrees. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add sausage. Sauté, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon until the fat has rendered, and sausage is cooked through 8 to 10 minutes. Remove to a large bowl with a slotted spoon and set aside. Discard all but 2 tablespoons of the fat left in the pan.

  • Add garlic, onion, celery, thyme and sage to pan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring, until vegetables start to soften about 5 minutes. Remove vegetables to bowl with sausage.

  • Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, swirling pan, until foam subsides and butter just begins to brown and smell nutty.

  • Add bread cubes, mustard, parsley, brown butter, clams, and clam liquor to bowl with sausage and vegetables and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer dressing to a baking dish and bake until golden brown and crisp on top, about 15 minutes.

10. Classic Cranberry Sauce

Credits: The Food Network & Food Network Kitchen
vt-imagePrep: 10 minutes vt-imageCook: 20 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 30 minutes (plus chilling time of 4 hours) vt-imageServings: 6 - 8

A tart and sweet side dish or turkey topping, this cranberry sauce is easy to make!


  • 1 pound cranberries, thawed if frozen
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 2 wide strips lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 wide strips orange zest, plus 2 tablespoons orange juice


  • Combine cranberries, sugar, 1 ½ cups water, lemon zest and juice, and orange zest and juice in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until the cranberries burst and the sauce thickens – about 15 to 20 minutes.

  • Transfer sauce to a bow; refrigerate at least 4 hours until cold and thick (but still saucy). Can be kept in the refrigerator up to 1 week.

11. Brussels Sprouts with Pistachios and Lime

Credits: Bon Appetit
vt-imagePrep: 20 minutes vt-imageCook: 30 minutes vt-imageTotal time: 50 minutes vt-imageServings: 8 - 10

Versatile and delicious, roasted brussels sprouts can be seasoned in countless ways. You'll never run out of options! Crispy toasted leaves and tender on the inside, this sweet and tangy dish is sure to please.


  • 2 pounds small brussels sprouts, trimmed
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, as desired
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons raw pistachios
  • 2 tablespoons date molasses or honey
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Zest of ½ lime
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Lime wedges for serving – optional


  • Make ahead: Brussels sprouts, glaze (without water), and pistachio mixture can all be made 3 hours ahead. Do not combine. Reheat glaze over medium heat until bubbling before adding water and brussels sprouts.

  • Place a rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 450°. Toss brussels sprouts and oil in a large bowl to coat; season with salt and pepper. Roast brussels sprouts on a rimmed baking sheet 15 minutes, then shake baking sheet to loosen them. Continue to roast until deeply browned all over, 5–10 minutes longer. Reduce oven temperature to 350° and roast another 10 minutes. Shake baking sheet again, then roast brussels sprouts until the tip of a small knife easily slides through, 5–10 minutes longer (total cook time will be 35–45 minutes).

  • Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Once butter starts to foam, add pistachios and a pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, until nuts are golden brown and butter solids are browned, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat.

  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer nuts to paper towels; let cool. Coarsely chop.

  • Meanwhile, bring date molasses, honey, and lime juice to a simmer in same skillet over medium heat (this will happen quickly), swirling pan to emulsify. Add 1 Tbsp. water and swirl to emulsify, scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon. Add brussels sprouts; toss to coat.

  • Transfer brussels sprouts to a platter. Toss nuts, lime zest, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl to combine; scatter over brussels sprouts. Serve with lime wedges if desired.

We hope you and your loved ones can try a few of these recipes. Leverage the power of WeInvite to plan and host your thanksgiving parties and events with just a few steps.