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Traditional Thanksgiving dishes

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Thanksgiving foods
Enjoy tasty dishes for a traditional thanksgiving holiday this season
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Here is a list of traditional Thanksgiving dishes for your holiday table

Thanksgiving is a holiday celebrated by most Americans and Canadians in November and October of each year respectively. The holiday is best known for the consumption of a large meal among friends and family. 

Most of the dishes making up a traditional thanksgiving dinner are prepared from foods native to the indigenous peoples of the Americas. This is said to be because the Pilgrims received many of these foods from the Natives during their pilgrimage to the New World.

The centerpiece of a traditional Thanksgiving meal is a cooked turkey, usually roasted over the course of several hours and weighing several pounds in order to feed many hungry mouths. Of course, a traditional Thanksgiving feast will vary widely among cooks, chefs and families as everybody has their own likes, dislikes, cooking methods and foodie preferences. Some cooks prefer a smoked turkey, others add a beef roast to the table.

No matter your tastes, check out the following list of traditional Thanksgiving dishes and serve up your own delicious meal this holiday season.

Turkey and Stuffing

When you think of Thanksgiving dinner, the first thing you are likely to envision is a big, juicy turkey. In fact, the holiday is often referred to as Turkey Day for this reason. Thanksgiving turkeys are usually roasted, baked or braised  in the oven and stuffed with a tasty stuffing that typically consists of dried breadcrumbs, herbs and spices. 

Some alternative turkey prep recipes are becoming more popular, however. Deep fried turkey and smoked turkey are appearing on more and more holiday tables. Meat-free options are becoming the norm, too. 

Many cooks will also add chopped veggies such as onions or mushrooms to a stuffing with garlic for extra zing. Stuffing that is cooked in the turkey often tastes better than stove-top prepared stuffing as it soaks up the turkey's juices and flavors.

Mashed Potatoes

No Thanksgiving turkey meal is complete without a side accompaniment of potatoes. Mashed potatoes is the preferred method of serving plain boiled white potatoes as they are often funner to eat when all mushed up particularly by kids! Boil a pot of white or red potatoes and mash with a fork when cooked through enough to be soft.

Add flavoring to mashed potatoes by stirring in a tablespoon -- depending on taste preferences -- of butter for a creamy, melt-in-your-mouth taste that will have family and friends clamoring for seconds.

Green Beans

A holiday such as Thanksgiving doesn't give you free rein to skip eating anything green or healthy for you. In fact, vegetables often form the foundation of many traditional thanksgiving dishes. Green beans are a popular choice among many families as they can be prepared in a number of ways.

Try something as simple as crisp steamed beans to a more flavorful roasted green beans side dish that is drizzled with olive oil. Take the dish a step further by preparing a green bean casserole that consists of layering green beans with chopped potatoes, carrots, tomato sauce and topping with cheese.


Thanksgiving desserts can range from mild, sweet, savory, simple or a combination thereof to satisfy even the fussiest palate. Most traditional Thanksgiving dishes will boast a delicious pumpkin pie to celebrate the fall season or an apple pie prepared from freshly picked autumn apples. Other tasty dessert ideas include pecan pie, sweet potato pie or a Kugel, a sweet dessert pudding prepared by many Jewish cooks.

Thanksgiving is a holiday enjoyed by millions of people since it usually means a day off of work, a day spent with family and a day to stuff oneself silly with food. Take advantage of the holiday and plan a menu of traditional dishes for a foodie holiday frenzy to remember.

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