2020 Thanksgiving Menu

What to Make for Thanksgiving Dinner

Are you cooking Thanksgiving dinner this year but aren't sure what to make? Here is my exact menu Thanksgiving this year along with each recipe.

Thanksgiving Main Dishes

Slow Cooker Turkey Breast

We never have a huge crowd at our house for Thanksgiving. A large turkey would be way too much for our family to eat, so I make a turkey breast instead. It's smaller, and I can cook it in a slow cooker instead of in the oven.

This slow cooker turkey breast recipe by Plain Chicken is super simple and delicious!

INGREDIENTS

  • Thawed turkey breast
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp pepper
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 2 tsp onion powder

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place the thawed turkey breast on a large cutting board or clean surface. Brush it with olive oil. Then, combine the remaining ingredients in a bowl and rub on the turkey.
  2. Place the turkey breast in a slow cooker, breast side up. Cover and cook for 5-6 hours.
  3. Slice and serve warm.

Slow Cooker Ham

Can you tell I like "set it and forget it" recipes? If I can use a slow cooker, I usually choose that route. It makes everything so simple. I'm a big fan of ham at Thanksgiving and Christmas, even more so than traditional turkey!

This sweet brown sugar and pineapple slow cooker ham recipe by My Organized Chaos makes prepping and baking a ham easy!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 spiral ham, thawed
  • 15 oz can of pineapple chunks with juice
  • 1 cup brown sugar, divided
  • 1 pinch dried red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Remove the ham from its wrapper and discard any flavoring that came with it. Place the thawed ham in a slow cooker.
  2. Sprinkle 1/4 cup brown sugar over the ham. Pour the pineapple juice from the canned pineapple in the crockpot, then sprinkle half of the pineapple chunks on top of and around the ham.
  3. Cook the ham for 2.5 hours on high or 4.5 hours on low.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the remaining brown sugar, ground ginger, and red pepper flakes. Sprinkle this mixture over the ham at the end of the 2.5 or 4.5 hours.
  5. Let the ham cook for an additional 30 minutes.
  6. Serve warm!

Thanksgiving Side Dishes

The BEST Baked Mac and Cheese

Baked mac and cheese is my favorite Thanksgiving side, hands down. I make this delicious dish year-round because I love it so much!

This extra cheesy macaroni and cheese recipe by Mom on Time Out is great. The recipe is truly a made-from-scratch recipe and it shows in the taste. Yum!

INGREDIENTS

  • 16 oz elbow macaroni
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 4 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 + 1/2 cups panko crumbs
  • 4 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese shredded
  • 1/4 tsp paprika

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Cook the pasta one minute shy of al dente according to the package instructions. Remove from heat, drain, and place in a large bowl.
  2. Set aside pasta to cool while preparing cheese sauce.
  3. Melt butter in a deep saucepan, dutch oven, or stock pot.
  4. Whisk in flour over medium heat and continue whisking for about 1 minute until bubbly and golden.
  5. Gradually whisk in the milk and heavy cream until nice and smooth. Continue whisking until you see bubbles on the surface and then continue cooking and whisking for another 2 minutes. Whisk in salt and pepper.
  6. Add two cups of shredded cheese and whisk until smooth. Add another two cups of shredded cheese and continue whisking until creamy and smooth. Sauce should be nice and thick.
  7. Stir in the cooled pasta until combined and pasta is fully coated with the cheese sauce.
  8. Pour half of the mac and cheese into the prepared baking dish. Top with remaining 2 cups of shredded cheese and then the remaining mac and cheese.
  9. In a small bowl, combine panko crumbs, Parmesan cheese, melted butter and paprika. Sprinkle over the top and bake until bubbly and golden brown, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Secret Ingredient Sweet Potato Casserole

I made sweet potato casserole for the first time last Thanksgiving side. When I was mixing the ingredients and following the ingredients, I saw the recipe called for vanilla extract. I grabbed lemon extract by accident and didn't notice until I added it in. Well, we kept going and it turned out great!

I love this sweet potato casserole recipe by Bubba Pie because she set it up to use canned sweet potatoes. Not having to peel the potatoes, cook them, and mash them saves so much time!

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 large cans 40 oz each, sweet potatoes, drained
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 3 tablespoons apple juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 package 10 oz, mini marshmallows
  • 1 tsp of lemon extract (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mash sweet potatoes in a large bowl.
  2. In a small bowl add butter, sugar, apple juice and cinnamon and mix well. Add lemon extract if using it. Pour mixture into the large bowl of Sweet Potatoes and mix well.
  3. Spread mixtures into prepared pan. Pat mixture flat with the back of a spoon. Top with marshmallows.
  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes until marshmallows are puffy and sweet potatoes are heated through.

Southern Style Green Beans

I made sweet potato casserole for the first time last Thanksgiving side. When I was mixing the ingredients and following the ingredients, I saw the recipe called for vanilla extract. I grabbed lemon extract by accident and didn't notice until I added it in. Well, we kept going and it turned out great!

I love this sweet potato casserole recipe by Bubba Pie because she set it up to use canned sweet potatoes. Not having to peel the potatoes, cook them, and mash them saves so much time!

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 slices bacon, cut into pieces
  • 2 pounds fresh green beans, rinsed and ends snapped
  • 2 cups chicken stock or water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • dash red pepper flakes

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9-by-13-inch cake pan with baking spray.
  2. Combine the cake mix, butter, vanilla, eggs and 1/2 cup reserved mandarin juice in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 4 minutes on medium-high speed. Add 1 1/2 cups of the drained orange slices and beat again until the oranges have broken into small pieces, about 1 minute. Transfer the batter to the prepared cake pan and bake until golden brown and set, 25 to 27 minutes. Allow to cool completely, then turn out onto a large platter.
  3. For the topping: Cream together the cream cheese and confectioners' sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the mixture to a small bowl. Add the cream and vanilla to the stand mixer bowl and switch to the whisk attachment, then whip until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes. Add the cream cheese mixture, distributing it evenly around the bowl. Whip until stiff peaks form, 3 to 4 minutes. Fold in the pineapple.
  4. Spread the frosting evenly over the cooled cake and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Garnish with the remaining mandarin orange slices.