Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas PLUS Tips!

Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas PLUS Tips!

This collection of Thanksgiving dinner recipes and tips will help you have a stress-free holiday. From planning, organizing, shopping and making, to a complete list of recipe ideas – this article contains everything you need to know about Turkey Day!

I’m helping you get ready for Thanksgiving – from dinner ideas to appetizers and side dishes, we’ve got you covered! Check out these recipes to help you prepare and make your Turkey Day entrees.

More Collections: Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving Appetizers, Thanksgiving Side Dishes, Thanksgiving Desserts

When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, even knowing where to start can be a little overwhelming, especially if you’re the host. But don’t worry, we’re sharing all the best recipes and tips to help you plan your Thanksgiving menu.

When our family gets together for Thanksgiving, one of the things we like to do is divide the labor and assign each person to bring a dish (or two)

Whether you’re sharing the responsibilities or it’s all on you, here are some tips to ensure you have a great Thanksgiving dinner without stress!

Tips for Making Thanksgiving Dinner Easy

Seasoned Thanksgiving cooks know the secrets to a successful meal: organization. Whether you are a beginner or a professional, you need to have a plan for a successful Thanksgiving feast. I’ve collected some tips to help you:

  • menu: From appetizers to dessert, plan everything you want to serve (use our free Thanksgiving menu planner to help).
    • How much to make: Figure out how many people will participate. Then, decide how much each item will be crafted. Add a new dish every 5-8 people.
    • Don’t be afraid to ask your guests to bring a dish. Most people are happy to help!
  • Shopping: Don’t wait until the last minute. You should plan your menu and then use it as a guide for what you need to buy as much as possible. You don’t want to go to a crowded store at the last minute only to find that none of them have the ingredients you need.
  • Storage: Clean out the refrigerator the week before. Make a note of any items that don’t have to be refrigerated. Some fruits and vegetables can sit on the counter for a day or two to make room for other dishes.

more tips

Plan your cooking schedule: Here are some questions and some information to help you plan your schedule:

  • What are all the items that need to be cooked in the oven? Cook in what order?
  • Can any items go into the oven at the same time?
  • What are all the items that need to be cooked on the stove top? What is the order?
  • Can anything be made in a crock pot?
  • How can I keep items warm?
  • Is there anything I can do ahead of time? Do they need to be reheated? How to heat it?

advance time: Several dishes such as pies, casseroles, and salads can be made the day before. This will reduce the stress of the day. You can also prepare ingredients ahead of time, such as making sure the turkey is thawed, chop vegetables, and pre-measure ingredients so they’re ready to mix.

the day: Figure out what you want to eat. Then figure out how long each item will take to cook or reheat, and subtract that time from the time dinner should be served.

Example: Dinner is at 2pm – 20 minutes to reheat casserole – 3 hours to cook turkey – 40 minutes for sweet potatoes – 30 minutes to buffer.This means you need to start putting food in the oven by 9:30am

Favorite Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas

Here are some suggestions if you are confused about what to offer for all courses.

Of course, most of them are the typical items you’ll find on any American table at Thanksgiving (turkey, mashed potatoes, Rolls Royces, etc.), but there are also some more uncommon items that we tend to find on our family.

We usually pick two mains, a potato dish, a veggie dish, rolls, and then a whole bunch of desserts!

Thanksgiving main course:

Turkey is usually the main course for Thanksgiving. Typically, you can plan to serve 1.25 pounds of turkey per person.

Other recipes to keep in mind include: turkey brine, turkey gravy (drip free), turkey gravy (drip).

i If you don’t like turkey, or you plan to serve a crowd, you can definitely choose a different protein to serve.

Here are some of our favorites:

Main Dish Oven Roast Turkey Recipe

How to roast the perfect turkey – so full of flavor it’s a hit any holiday or day of the year, especially Thanksgiving! !

Total time: 3 hours

Check out this recipe for Main Dish Pot Roast Recipe

This crock pot roast recipe is one of our favorite Sunday dinners. It only takes 3 minutes of prep time and the slow cooker does the rest! The Chuck Roast ended up being so tender and full of flavors of brown gravy, Italian and ranch dressing!

Total time: 7 hours 5 minutes

Check out this recipe for Main Dish Brown Sugar Ham Recipe

This crock pot ham is made entirely in the slow cooker for quick prep time and minimal effort. With a delicious sweet brown sugar glaze, this is our favorite way to make ham for the holidays!

Total time: 3 hours 10 minutes

Check out this recipe for Main Dish Honey Ham Recipe

Just place the spiral cut ham in the crock pot, cover with the 5-ingredient glaze, and in 4 hours, you’ll have a tender and juicy honey-glazed ham!

Total time: 4 hours 10 minutes

Check out this recipe for Entree Crockpot Roast Chicken Recipe

Juicy and delicious roast chicken in the slow cooker! It is very easy to make a whole chicken with the help of a crock pot.

Total time: 4 hours 5 minutes

Check out this recipe for Entree Swiss Chicken Roast Recipe

Delicious Creamy Swiss Chicken – an easy and delicious dinner recipe that includes Swiss and Parmesan cheese.

Total time: 1 hour 7 minutes

Check out this recipe for Main Dish Ribs Recipe

Perfect prime rib, seasoned with garlic and cooked in the oven. A recipe that will make you the most tender and juicy meat you’ve ever made!

Total time: 3 hours 35 minutes

Check out this recipe for Entree Easy Steak Marinade Recipe

This is our favorite steak marinade! It only takes four ingredients and makes our steak taste so amazing! Everyone always asks for this easy steak marinade recipe because it’s just so good! !

Total time: 5 minutes

Check out this recipe for Main Dish Roast Turkey Recipe

Your guide to a perfectly roasted and seasoned turkey every time. Herb-Glazed Roast Turkey is a juicy, moist display stuffer.

Total time: 3 hours 20 minutes

check out this recipe


Check out our full list of Thanksgiving appetizers.

Plan to serve 3-5 appetizers per person. If you have only 5-10 people plan to offer 1-2 different appetizers. For every 5-8 people in attendance, add an additional appetizer.

Appetizer Turkey Vegetable Tray

The most festive vegetable tray you’ll ever make! Perfect for Thanksgiving dinner with friends and family. Kids and adults alike will be impressed!

Check out this recipe for Appetizing Bacon Ranch Cheese Balls Recipe

These Bacon Ranch Cheese Balls are the perfect addition to your veggie tray! Pair it with cheese, bacon and ranch flavors and you can’t go wrong!

Total time: 15 minutes

Check out this recipe for Appetizer Deviled Eggs Recipe

Nothing beats a smooth deviled egg appetizer! You’ll be surprised how easy these are to make. Full of flavor, super delicious, perfect for parties and vacations.

Total time: 30 minutes

Check out this recipe for Appetizing Spinach Dip & Bites Recipe

Spinach dips are crunchy, and bite-sized treats are cheese and butter, making them a great appetizer. They are a hit every time!

Total time: 20 minutes

Check out this recipe for Appetizer Pulled Bread Recipe

This pull-apart bread is a favorite appetizer. With cheese, butter, and seasoning, every bite is cheesy, delicious!

Total time: 30 minutes

Check out this appetizing caprese kebab recipe

Easy, quick, and delicious Caprese Kabobs come together in minutes and are perfect for any party or gathering.

Total time: 10 minutes

Check out this recipe for Appetizing Spinach Artichoke Dip Recipe

This is the BEST Spinach Artichoke Dip recipe, the ultimate dip for any party! Filled with spinach, artichoke hearts, cheese, sour cream, cream cheese, and mayo – this easy spinach artichoke dip is cheesy and delicious and goes perfectly with chips, croutons, or vegetables.

Total time: 30 minutes

check out this recipe


Check out our full list of Thanksgiving side dishes.

Plan for about 6 ounces of potatoes per person and 4 ounces of vegetables per person. For every 5-8 people in attendance, a dish is added to the menu. Plan to serve 1.5 rolls per person.

Bread Dinner Rolls Recipe

These are our favorite dinner rolls! They’re soft, butter-y and always perfect for any dinner or holiday gathering. It’s so hard to eat alone!

Total time: 35 minutes

Check out this recipe for a side dish thanksgiving stuffing recipe

Would Thanksgiving be the same without the stuffing? This homemade stuffing recipe, made with sourdough bread, is just what you need with your Thanksgiving turkey!

Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Check out this recipe for side dish green bean casserole recipe

Green Bean Casserole is a classic side dish, especially at holiday meals! This savory casserole is easy, delicious and requires only 4 ingredients, making it the perfect addition to your holiday menu!

Total time: 30 minutes

Check out this recipe for Side Dish Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows recipe

Classic sweet potato casserole topped with sweet pecan skewers and toasted melted marshmallows.

Total time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Check out this recipe for Main Course Macaroni and Cheese Recipe

The cheesiest, creamiest homemade macaroni cheese you’ll ever make! The macaroni is covered in sharp cheddar cheese that melts into a warm creamy sauce and topped with the perfect panko crust. The whole family will definitely agree!

Total time: 35 minutes

Check out this recipe for the best mashed potatoes recipe

My Favorite Mashed Potatoes Recipe! These buttery smooth mashed potatoes are our go-to potato side dish recipe for every dinner and holiday gathering.

Check out this recipe for Side Dish Funeral Potatoes Recipe

Cheesy and delicious funeral potatoes (aka cheesy potatoes, party potatoes). This easy casserole is a potato lover’s dream. With cheese, sour cream, butter, chicken and whipped cream, these potatoes are perfect for any meal or holiday.

Total time: 50 minutes

Check out this recipe for potato rolls recipe

The potato rolls were soft, chewy and buttery. The mashed potatoes make the rolls super soft and add something extra to make them melt in your mouth!

check out this recipe


Check out the full list of Thanksgiving desserts.

A 9-inch pie serves 6-8 people. Plan to have enough dessert for people to eat 2. While pies are the most common dessert on Thanksgiving, there’s nothing wrong with serving other desserts—especially ones with seasonal flavors like pumpkin!

Dessert Pumpkin Pie Recipe

Not only is this pumpkin pie super easy – it’s the moistest, tastiest, and most perfect pumpkin pie ever! Made with canned pumpkin, seasonal spices and evaporated milk, this pie is a must-have dessert for the holidays.

Total time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Check out this recipe for Dessert Pecan Pie Recipe

Butter, nuts, ooey gooey pecan pie is easy to make and requires only a few ingredients. A perfect classic for all seasons! !

Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes


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