Thanksgiving is a time for friends and family to come together and celebrate each other and the love that they share. However, the real star of the show is undoubtedly, the food. From the stuffing and mashed potatoes to the classic turkey and pies, the cooking of thanksgiving dinner can become pretty routine. If you want to impress your family and test out some new seasonal dishes at your Thanksgiving feast, this article has some fresh ideas that will surely surprise both you and your company.

A classic Thanksgiving turkey. Photo by Sam Tush

The Main Dish

One delicious meal that has been left in the dust over the years is the venison roast. It was said to be the original turkey and is still enjoyed by many, but has fallen off over the years. This year, try stewing up some venison instead of or alongside your turkey to switch things up.  While today turkey typically is the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving table, cornish hen used to be very prevalent. Often served with pecans and golden raisins, cornish hens make an excellent substitution for a turkey and in some cases, can even turn out better.

Can’t Forget About the Sides

Sweet Potato Casserole:

Mashed potatoes usually steal the starch spotlight, but how is combining a side with dessert not the most perfect idea? Sweet potatoes are delicious and super sweet, giving you the perfect tease before cracking into the pies. The brown sugar and candied pecans are a perfect match to the potatoes. 

Your typical holiday stuffing. Photo by Sam Tush


Nothing complements the turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, and pretty much everything else on your plate better than gravy. Gravy is like the salt of the Thanksgiving table, it enhances each dish and makes everything richer and tastier. The making of gravy is often very stressful since it is typically made at the last minute, but it is definitely worth it!

Green Bean Casserole:

Created in 1955, green bean casserole is a delicious dish to have beside your turkey. It is a perfect holiday dish and a definite crowd pleaser. It only takes a handful of ingredients and can be made in under a half hour, at most.

End the Night With Some Dessert

The typical desserts that you can normally find at the Thanksgiving table are apple and pumpkin pie. Even though apple and pumpkin pie are traditional and tasty, here are some other simple and delicious desserts that you can serve. One other dessert that most people forget about serving for the big feast is pecan pie. Pecan pie is a great dessert that also sticks to the theme of “pies” for Thanksgiving. Pecan pie is easy to make and you can let it bake in the oven while you work on preparing the other dishes. When the pie is ready to be served make sure to add some vanilla ice cream or whipped cream on top. The next dessert that many people do not include in their feast is iced pumpkin cookies. These cookies are super easy to make and also are part of the fall theme. Pumpkin cookies are a small side dessert that people can munch on after they eat if they are feeling stuffed. 

Thanksgiving food is something people wait all year for, and it is very important to make this meal an unforgettable one. If you’re looking to switch up your menu this year, these dishes will surely make everyone sitting at your table even more excited for next year’s feast.


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