For the inexperienced cook, Thanksgiving dinner can feel like the most intimidating meal to prepare.
It’s not often that a regular Joe has to whip together a whole spread, including a large bird, for a group of people with very specific expectations about how everything should be prepared.
But it doesn’t have to be like that. I set out to create a simpler menu for those just starting out, or for anyone who wants to hit the same flavour high points with less effort.
Most meals may be cooked using nothing more than a heating plate and a large skillet. Things baked at a temperature – 350 degrees – so you should not do mentally or physically gymnastics with the oven.
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Beginner’s Thanksgiving Recipes
Whether you’re a seasoned chef or have never cooked before, you’ll find something to your liking in this collection of Thanksgiving meal alternatives.
Including the best turkey recipes, the best simple stuffing, quick Thanksgiving side dishes, fresh, no-fuss salads, and show-stopping dessert alternatives. What you need, we can provide.
Breat of Turkey
Cooking a bone-in turkey breast is more quicker and easier than cooking a complete turkey, and it still feeds a great number of people.
My go-to method for preparing a turkey is to rub it all over with butter and season it well with salt and pepper before roasting it at a low to medium heat.
Make the gravy ahead of time so you’re not racing around on Thanksgiving to scrape the drippings from the hot pan.
This make-ahead version’s standout ingredient is caramelised red onion, but the flavor-boosting nutritional yeast is completely discretionary.
Thanksgiving’s custardy stuffing is complemented by the red-sauce characteristics of pizza, which are baked inside a cheese crust.
This meal is a cosy blend of tomato paste, dried oregano, and buttery onions blanketed in a cloud of shredded mozzarella.
Yeast-fermented Sweet Potatoes
The same butter, cream, roasted garlic, and plenty of salt that works for mashing ordinary potatoes can be used for mashing sweet potatoes.
To save time and retain the sweet potato’s natural flavour, try baking them instead of boiling them in a saucepan of water.
The Salad Is Stunning
Together with radicchio and canned artichokes, freshly cooked green beans make a beautiful salad.
This colourful and simple side dish requires only a few simple ingredients: olive oil, salt, pepper, and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
Preserve with Cranberries and Oranges
The inclusion of a whole lemon gives this Thanksgiving staple a sour touch. Also, the mixture’s ruby jewel brightness makes it look like stained glass.
Salted Cinnamon Whipped Cream, Caramel-Fried Apples, and Vanilla Cookies
The pudding develops a wonderful silkiness as it rests overnight. The final product is a perfect harmony of vanilla cookies, caramel fried apples, and salted cinnamon whipped cream.
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These dishes only call just a handful of pantry staples, yet many of them are used throughout the meal.
Doing the laundry twice as much just to wash fresh herbs is a waste of time. Instead, stick to using only one dry herb, like oregano or thyme, to ensure uniform flavour.