Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas

Everyone knows the essential components of a great Thanksgiving dinner: an array of colorful side dishes, a moist, golden turkey filled with a fragrant savory stuffing, and a tempting spread of seasonal desserts. Indeed, there are so many great Thanksgiving dinner recipes, sometimes the hardest part is choosing which ones to cook! If it’s quick and easy nibbles you’re looking for, we can never get enough of these make-ahead appetizers, and always keep a stash of candied nuts on hand for cocktail time. When it comes to Thanksgiving side dish recipes, we like to let seasonal ingredients be the star, in dishes like brown-sugar glazed baby turnips, fennel and farro salad, and crispy accordion potatoes. (Bonus: the vegetarians at your table will also love them.) Want to shave a little time off your dinner prep this year? Try one of these slow cooker side dishes. And when you’re ready to tackle the bird, this is the only Thanksgiving turkey recipe you’ll ever need.

How to Make Classic Cranberry Sauce

Whip up this classic homemade cranberry sauce (made with fresh cranberries!) using just six ingredients. The tangy-sweet sauce is delicious served with turkey, chicken, quail, duck, or ham. As seen on MyRecipes.

10 Thanksgiving Activities That Will Keep Kids Busy During Dinner

From printable placemats to DIY scavenger hunts, these activities will ensure you can enjoy your meal (mostly) in peace.

7 Fresh Fall Salads for the Thanksgiving Table

These healthy, vibrant salads make a delicious complement to a carb-heavy Thanksgiving feast. 

5 Fabulous No-Bake Holiday Desserts

Main course monopolizing your appliance space? Treat your guests to one of these delicious desserts—no oven required.

6 Seasonal Thanksgiving Sides You Can Make in a Slow Cooker

Juggling all the details on a Thanksgiving menu can be a logistical nightmare. Put everyone’s favorite time-saving appliance to work instead.

10 Store-Bought Thanksgiving Shortcuts Real Simple Staffers Swear By

We get by with a little help from these grocery store finds. 

5 Insanely Delicious Pie-Inspired Ice Creams

Who says you can’t have it all? These amazing holiday desserts make it easy to have pie a la mode in a single bowl.

The Simple Secrets of Delicious Mashed Potatoes

Real Simple’s food director shares the secrets to a stand-out recipe.

How Long to Cook a Turkey, in One Easy Chart

You have your bird (and a recipe), but how long, exactly, are you supposed to cook it? Here’s a handy guide.

Thanksgiving Pies Worth Making Room For (No Matter How Full You Are)

There’s only one way to end a holiday meal: with a dessert that’s just as satisfying as the main event. From the unexpected, like Chocolate Whiskey Pecan Pie, to the old standbys, like Sweet Potato Pie, we’ve got a dozen dessert ideas that’ll leave your guests wanting just one more sliver.

10 Thanksgiving Sides You'll Keep on the Menu All Year

These inventive yet easy dishes are great to serve on Thanksgiving—or any old Thursday night.