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My Dream Thanksgiving Recipes

Good morning! I hope you're all doing well!

Thanksgiving is coming up this week, and I love Thanksgiving! I love feeling grateful, cooking, and overindulging in high-calorie goodness, ultimately putting myself in a food coma. Not to mention the best leftovers you could hope for for the entire week after that! It's da best.

This Thanksgiving is probably going to be a titch more stressful than those we've celebrated previously on account of:

1. We're moving.

That's the list. No need for any other reasons. The apartment complex we're moving into was having a deal that was "too good to refuse," so we're hightailing our hineys outta this joint and hopefully into greener pastures... we just have to do it within a week. Yikes. Wish us luck and pray for our souls. 

I was planning on doing Thanksgiving at home with just our herd this year, but I contacted my Mombie's cousin, Joyce, who lives half an hour away, and now we're going to her house! We're really excited. She's a great lady, and our house is in such disarray right now, so it'll be nice to escape the chaos for a few hours and enjoy the holiday.

However, I have all these recipes that I planned on making and I'm not making 'em anymore! Thus the reason for this post: I'm going to give you my awesome Dream Thanksgiving recipes in hopes that someone will use them this year! If not, put 'em in your pocket for next year!

Tip: If you're eating at someone else's place for Thanksgiving this year, make sure you bring your own tupperware so you can take home leftovers!


I bought a turkey breast to throw in my crockpot since there's only 4 of us (2 adults who overeat + 2 kids who under-eat = 4 people) and I will probably still end up doing that, but it'll be after the move. I found this easy, peasy recipe on Allrecipes and it has great reviews.


I bought packets from the store since I'm not making a turkey on Thanksgiving this year, but if I was, I'd make a roux (melt a few tablespoons of butter in a small pan on medium heat, add an equal amount of flour and whisk until the mixture is cooked and the flour taste is gone), take the juices and drippings from the turkey, strain them, and slowly add them to the roux, whisking constantly, while the mixture thickens. You can season with salt and pepper, as needed, but you probably won't need much, if any, salt, since you're using those lovely drippings.

Mashed Potatoes

I don't have a set recipe for how I make mine, but it's like this: Plan on 1-2 potatoes per person. I like using my stepdad's Russets (he's a spud farmer and has been the source of much potato joy. Thanks Vernadon!), but this year we're using Russets from "Terget." Name that reference. Anyway, I like to keep the skin on, and I just rinse and scrub them the best I can with my hands in the sink. Cube them up, throw them in an appropriate-sized pot, and cover them with water. Add salt to the water, but don't oversalt. Bring your potatoes to a boil, and boil them, stirring occasionally, until they're fork-tender (you can stick a fork in it and it breaks apart easily). Drain the water off the potatoes, and throw butter, milk, salt, and pepper to taste into your pot with the potatoes. Using a hand mixer, beat the potatoes, adding more butter and milk as needed, until you've reached your desired consistency (mine is mostly creamy with some lumps). Serve with gravy and peas, please.


Rhodes Rolls, baby. That's what I grew up on, and that's what I intend to use. If you must have homemade, however, here's a recipe from Allrecipes I've used before that's pretty yummy, and it doubles as cinnamon roll dough, too! That being said, they're sweet. You could probably reduce the amount of sugar if you want a less sweet roll. Also, if you don't have a breadmaker, read "the most helpful positive review from 'K Praper'" and you should be golden. Like those rolls.

Garlic Herb Butter

As if regular butter wasn't already good enough, this stuff is awesome. I got the recipe at a former Fall Bakeoff from my cute friend McKenna, who I want to be when I grow up.

1 stick butter (1/2 c.)
1 clove garlic
1 Tbsp. olive oil
Fresh thyme, to taste
Fresh oregano, to taste
Fresh sage, to taste  
Salt, to taste
Dried Chives, to taste

Start out with a little of the herbs, add more to taste if desired. Mix all ingredients in a food processor. Spread on everything.


My dad, D-Dawg, requests this recipe in quadruple amounts. I got this recipe from Crumb Brothers Artisan Bread, a bakery I used to work at in college and that I loved/hated dearly. The food was expensive but awesome and the people were awesomer and their friendship was free! Miss you guys.

4 cups cubed sourdough (preferably from CB's)
1/2 c. finely chopped celery
1/2 c. finely chopped onion
1/2 c. finely chopped carrots
1/2 c. melted butter
1 Tbsp. sage (I used dried)
1 tsp. thyme (same same)
salt & pepper , to taste
1/2-1 c. milk
1/2 c. cooked ground giblets (optional, I don't use them)
Broth from giblets (optional, I don't use them, either)

Saute celery, onion, and carrots in butter. Add sage and thyme. Pour over bread cubes and toss together. Add milk and optional giblets to bread mixture. If dressing seems dry, add broth until moist. Place in buttered casserole dish and cover. Bake 40-50 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove cover for the last 10 minutes to brown the top.

Cranberry Sauce

This is my Mombie's recipe and it's probably my favorite part of Thanksgiving. Funny story: every time we have Thanksgiving with my mom's family she brings this yummy cranberry sauce and my cousins always choose canned. They're crazy and they're missing out. And my husband doesn't like it either, but he's crazy too. Please don't let my crazy family steer you away from trying this recipe. It really is my favorite.

1 12 oz. bag cranberries, rinsed with all the gross berries picked out
1 whole orange (yes, including rind), cut in 8 pieces
3/4-1 c. white sugar
Cold water

In a food processor, combine cranberries and orange pieces. Pulse until smooth. Add sugar until you reach the desired sweetness. Add a little cold water if the sauce is too thick.

Green Bean Casserole

We never grew up eating green bean casserole, so I don't know what all the ruckus is about, but if you want a recipe, The Pioneer Woman's looks pretty appetizing. I watched her make it on Food Network once. It has bacon in it! And she shows you how to make a roux. How nice.

Sweet Potato Casserole 

Here are a three different recipes I found on Pinterest that looked super yummy. I was going to make one of them this year, but now I'm off the hook and you're on it.

Peanut Crunch Sweet Potatoes (The Washington Post)
Candied Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole (Le Creme de la Crumb)
Sweet Potato Casserole with Butter Pecan Crumble Topping (Averie Cooks)


The moment you've all been waiting for. Pie. Pie is pretty great. I think I prefer it over cake. I'm about to share my current favorite pies with you, so brace yo'self. I hope you like them as much as I do.

All-Butter Crust (aka the-best-crust-ever-besides-Mombie's-but-that-has-shortening-in-it-and-I'm-trying-to-steer-clear-of-that-stuff): Perfect Pie Crust by Simply Recipes. It's flaky and I have received so many compliments on the crust when I make it. The key to a good crust is making sure your ingredients are as cold as they can possibly be. If your recipe calls for water, put your water in a metal container with ice cubes for a minute, then use the water. Make sure your butter is really cold, but not frozen. Try not to handle your dough a lot, because the heat from your hands will warm it up and because it'll turn out tough if you over-knead it.

Pear Pie: My mom-in-law makes pear pie and I love it! How did I go so many years without it in my life I'll never know. I can't find her recipe, but this one is comparable. Make sure you sprinkle a little bit of nutmeg on top before you bake it! It really takes it to the next level.

Pumpkin/Sweet Potato Pie: Once you try a pie made with a real pumpkin, it's hard to go back to canned pumpkin. And also, sweet potato pie. It's great, another one of those pies that I have no idea how I went so long without trying.

Homemade Pumpkin Puree (The Pioneer Woman)
How To Bake Sweet Potatoes (North Carolina Sweet Potatoes) Remove skins and pulse in the food processor with a little water. 

There, now that that's out of the way, the actual pie recipe is from my Joy of Cooking cookbook, page 686.

Blind bake a 9 inch pie crust on the center rack in a 425 degree F oven for 15 minutes, take out weights and bake for another 5-10 minutes. Cool to a little warmer than room temp before filling.

Whisk thoroughly in a large bowl:

2-3 eggs (2 if you want a firmer pie with a more pumpkiny/sweet potato-y flavor, 3 for a soft, custardy filling)

Add and whisk:

2 c. cooked pumpkin puree or cooked sweet potato puree
1 1/2 c. sweetened condensed milk
1/3 c. packed brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon, 1 tsp. ground ginger, 1/2 tsp. grated/ground nutmeg, and 1/4 tsp. ground cloves/allspice OR 1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. salt

Pour the pumpkin/sweet potato mixture in the crust and bake at 425 degrees F for 35-45 minutes or until firm (a knife inserted comes out fairly clean, no liquid on knife) Cool completely on a rack. The pie can be refrigerated for up to 1 day.

Another pie that I want to make but I haven't yet is "Minny's Chocolate Pie" from The Help, sans feces. My friend Courtney from Avonlea Way sent the link to me and she said it's phenomenal!

Ok. I think I've fully exhausted my Dream Thanksgiving recipe list. What are your favorite Thanksgiving traditions and recipes? Any must haves? Send them my way! I'd love to have 'em!

Hasta la pasta and have a Happy Thanksgiving, ya'll!



  1. If there isn't chocolate pie at Thanksgiving this year I'm making that Minny pie next week. It sounds so good right now. I usually don't crave chocolate with my pregnancies, but Sunday I made chocolate chocolate chip cookies because I NEEDED them, and chocolate pie sounds AH-mazing right now...
    So SO excited that Thanksgiving is this week, because reading through your recipes I'm feeling ready for stuffing and mashed taters!!!!!
    I used a cranberry suace recipe from pinterest a few years back. It had clementines in it, and I can't remember what else...dang, though. It was amazing! I never even knew what Cranberry sauce was until I started dating Shawn. The Swede's put Lingonberry on their meatballs, which is very similar to a cranberry, so after I tried and loved that I have been scooping me up as much cranberry sauce as I can ;) Canned sauce just looks wrong...


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