So excited to finally share our 2022 Thanksgiving menu and guide! This year I’m focusing on easy, make-ahead recipes, with tried and true classics…and a few new ones sprinkled in too. These are the recipes we all want to see most on our Thanksgiving table, along with a few new surprises. We’ve got everything from cocktails to desserts. We’ve included staples like buttery mashed potatoes and my favorite sweet potatoes. There are homemade croissants, no drippings gravy, my favorite kale and cranberry salad, balsamic brussels sprouts, molten chocolate pie, pecan cookies, a new Thanksgiving punch, and so much more.
I’m late with this year’s menu (what’s new), but the official countdown to Thanksgiving is on. With less than two weeks to prepare, I’m excited to be sharing my fun, EASY Thanksgiving menu. This year’s menu focuses on the no-stress Thanksgiving. I’m sharing tried and true favorites, with a handful of new, easy recipes to add to our menus to keep dinner exciting!
How beyond crazy is it that we are less than 2 weeks away from Thanksgiving? The holiday really snuck up on me this year. I’ve been traveling more than usual. And then, suddenly I came home from New York last week and Thanksgiving was in full swing. I’ve already started up my Thanksgiving tips series on Instagram. I love to share my best tips, my essentials for the meal, and more. But what I love even more is learning your tips. Over the years I’ve certainly adapted some genius ideas – hello to the table runner that doubles as a heating pad! Just place a microwaveable heating pad under your table runner.
I always learn so much each year! This year, I’m happy to share my easiest, simplest menu yet. But don’t worry, it’s not lacking in flavor or sides. We’re simply using recipes that can either be prepped ahead or mixed up quickly.
It was my tablescape that inspired my menu this year. I wanted to create the prettiest fall Pumpkin Patch to go with our Pumpkin Smash candle. I found these gorgeous velvet pumpkins and built out the recipe for my menu from there. It’s so much fun!
(shop the Pumpkin Smash candle, velvet pumpkins, stemless wine glasses and more Thanksgiving favorites)
And easy too! My family is heading to Europe the day after Thanksgiving, so keeping the menu easy and cozy was an absolute must. I have lots of details below along with some tips and tricks too. I can’t wait for this year’s dinner!
And please remember that these are just my suggestions. You certainly don’t NEED to make every item on my menu. Pick and choose your favorites, create the menu that’s right for you and your family!
Let me know if you have any questions. I’m here to help as best I can!
(shop the Pumpkin Smash candle)
Tip: Never skip breakfast on Thanksgiving Day. We like to eat later, around 7 pm or so. Then we can enjoy a casual family day, cut our Christmas tree down, and settle in for a feast. In fact, planning breakfast is always a must around here.
Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Brown Butter Maple Icing
Cinnamon Crunch Apple Butter Soft Pretzel Knots
Tip: I try to go lighter on appetizers every year, but in the end, we all love them, so I usually end up serving a few favorites. Have these out when guests arrive, especially the cheese board, it’s always so welcoming with a cocktail in hand.
Goat Cheese Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Dates
Thanksgiving Turkey Cheeseboard – new and coming soon
Pull-Apart Cranberry Baked Brie
Whipped Goat Cheese with Warm Candied Bacon and Dates
Pastry Wrapped Cranberry Baked Brie
Everything Ranch Cheese and Pretzel Snack Mix
5 Ingredient Cranberry Brie Cinnamon Puff Pastry Swirls
Easy Cheesy Soft Pretzel Bites
Tip: Keep drinks simple, but make sure they’re special enough to get everyone excited for the night ahead. Most importantly? Make them all ahead of time…with the exception of the espresso martini, of course.
Vanilla Cinnamon Maple Whiskey Sour
Spicy Pomegranate Ginger Paloma
For after dinner: Chai Espresso Martini
Spiced Honey Bourbon Old Fashioned
(shop the Pumpkin Smash candle, napkins, ribbon, and flatware)
Tip 1: include at least one vegetarian main course. It’s nice to have a main course that’s just as hearty and exciting as the turkey for any vegetarian eaters.
Tip 2: don’t feel like you have to roast a whole turkey. This year I’m making my go-to herb butter roasted turkey, but instead of roasting the whole turkey, I’m doing chicken breast and thighs!
Herb and Butter Roasted Turkey
(I make this every year…it never fails me, so I’m not switching it up)
Make Ahead Easy, No Drippings Gravy with Bacon
Roasted Garlic Alfredo Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
Tip: make these all ahead of time and don’t stress about a thing
Crockpot Cheesy Mashed Potatoes with Caramelized Onions
Easiest No-Boil Brie Mac and Cheese
Sweet Potato Casserole with Sweet ‘n’ Savory Bacon Pecans
Herby Mushroom Croissant Stuffing
Roasted Balsamic Parmesan Brussels Sprouts
Kale Bacon Salad with Maple Candied Walnuts
(use your favorite recipe, I simply simmer cranberries with maple, orange juice, rosemary, or sage and a pinch of salt until thickened)
Creamy Brie Four Cheese Mac and Cheese with Buttery Ritz Crackers
Crispy Parmesan Thyme Sweet Potato Stacks
Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with Caramelized Onions.
Harvest Honeycrisp Apple and Feta Salad
Salted Honey Butter Parker House Rolls
Tip: I bake the pumpkin cookies and use them as place settings for my table. It’s such an easy way to add a personal touch to your tablescape.
Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies
Molten Chocolate Crackle Pie (my favorite, I now make this every year)
Chocolate Chai Cupcakes with Butter Pecan Frosting
Soft Pumpkin Sugar Cookies with Cinnamon Brown Butter Frosting
White Chocolate Chai Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
Vanilla Chai Pumpkin Latte Cupcakes
Salted Caramel Snickerdoodle Pie
Thanksgiving week prep
– organize, make your list, get prepared
– set the table
– prep the make-ahead mashed potatoes
– prep the sweet potatoes
– grocery shop
– buy wine and alcohol
– prepare the stuffing, chill until ready to bake
– prepare the make-ahead gravy
– make the potato stacks
– prep the croissants and or parker house rolls, and chill until ready to bake
– prepare the cocktails
– bake the desserts
– prepare the cranberry sauce
– prep the cinnamon rolls for the morning
– make the spaghetti squash
– prep the brie
– prep the dates
– final grocery trip for last-minute items
In the Morning…
– remove the turkey from the fridge and start prepping
– bake the cinnamon rolls
– begin roasting the turkey
– make the goat cheese stuffed bacon-wrapped dates
In the Afternoon…
– begin baking off the sweet potato casserole, stuffed shells, scalloped potatoes, and stuffing
– start warming the mashed potatoes (in the oven or slow cooker). Cook the spaghetti squash in the instant pot or on the stove
– toss the Kale Bacon Salad together, this can sit in the fridge for up to 6 hours.
Before Guests Arrive…
– bake off the brie
– lay out the bacon-wrapped dates
– lay out the turkey cheeseboard
– set out the cocktails
– remove the turkey and let it rest, then carve
– warm the gravy
– bake off the rolls
– set out the sides
– serve up the turkey, gravy, and all the sides!
Of course, enjoy the night with family and friends. You deserve it!!
Question: what recipes are you looking forward to serving up most this Thanksgiving? Can’t wait to see what you all make!
(shop the Pumpkin Smash candle)
My favorite tried and true tips
Tip 1: Think About Your Menu
A few things to be thinking about when creating your 2022 Thanksgiving Menu. How much oven space do you have, how many people are you serving, and does anyone have any dietary restrictions?
Depending on how many leftovers you’d like, plan on anywhere from a pound to a pound and a half per person. If everyone is heading out the door at the end of the day, I would go closer to a pound per person. If your guests are staying through the weekend, go for a pound and a half. Bone-in breasts are a nice option if you don’t want to cook more than one turkey. And lastly, keep in mind, if you’ve got a lot of sides, guests will probably eat less turkey.
Tip 2: Make an Oven/Food Schedule
This is certainly my number one tip for easily getting dinner on the table…and at a reasonable hour. An oven schedule is essential for staying on track on Thanksgiving Day, especially if you’re working with limited oven space.
Tip 3: Test Your Recipes
If you’re trying new recipes, make sure you test them out before Thanksgiving Day. Certainly, no one wants to be disappointed on Thanksgiving with a bad batch of mashed potatoes. Test your recipes out now so they’re perfect for Thanksgiving.
Tip 4: Invest in a Slow Cooker and/or Instant Pot
If you’re working with limited oven space, I highly recommend using your slow cooker and instant pot. They can cook mashed potatoes from start to finish, or keep your dishes warm without taking up any oven space.
Tip 5: Make a To-Do List TODAY
About a week or so before Thanksgiving, I sit down and make a checklist of everything that needs to be done before we sit down to eat. I make my list by the days leading up to Thanksgiving.
Tip 6: Use A Meat Thermometer
This might be a no-brainer, but don’t try cooking your turkey based solely on time…no one wants to cut into a beautiful looking turkey only to find that it’s still raw inside. Using a thermometer is the best way to know when your turkey is cooked to perfection. This one is my favorite.
Tip 7: Roast Your Turkey in a Butter Soaked Cheesecloth.
My number 1 tip for the best turkey. Grab my favorite herb butter roasted turkey recipe here.
Tip 8: Don’t Cook the Stuffing Inside The Turkey
If you cook the stuffing inside the turkey, you’ll have to overcook the turkey in order to actually cook the stuffing to a temperature that’s safe to eat. And even then, you end up with soggy stuffing…and dry turkey. Not good. Instead, bake the stuffing separately. You’ll get soft on the inside and crisp on top stuffing that actually tastes good.
Tip 9: Set the Table Way Ahead of Time
This is something my Nonnie taught me, and it’s probably my favorite entertaining trick. I like to set my dinner table ideally a week ahead. Of course, that’s not possible if it’s a table you use every day. If that’s not possible, at least the night before. It’s one more thing you can cross off your checklist early. Plus you’ll be guaranteed to have the table set and looking pretty when guests arrive.
Tip 10: Create a Seasonal Tablescape
When setting your table, don’t stress too much about making it perfect. I love the imperfect-perfect look. My best budget tip for creating an elegant tablescape is to incorporate the food onto the table. My favorite thing to do is to use fresh produce around my table to add pops of color. I certainly love a bouquet of flowers, but food can be equally beautiful, if not prettier. In addition, I like to surround the table with candles, use fresh herbs for greenery, and seasonal fruit for color.
Lastly, if you make a dish from our 2022 Thanksgiving Menu and Guide be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is certainly my favorite!
I made the turkey, rolls and the crinkly salted caramel snickerdoodle pie. All of it was the best I’ve ever had maybe..When I shared the pie people literally stopped and were shocked looking at the pie from how good it is. Thanks for the recipes!! Happy Thanksgiving May God bless you!
Oh! And the snack mix 🙂
A family fave!!
Thank you so much for making theses recipes this year, I love to hear that they were all enjoyed! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! xx
Hi! I am hosting and making every item from your blog! For the sweet pot stacks, I just prepped them by cutting but is that the only “make ahead” part? Wasn’t sure what else I could be doing ahead of time.
You could do everything up until the point of baking and have them stacked ready to go in the muffin tins. I hope you love the recipe! Happy Thanksgiving! xx
Do thé potatoes turn brown if making them ahead for the potato stacks? Love your recipes – always inspired!
They should be just fine for you:) Please let me know if you have any other questions! Happy Thanksgiving! xx
All of this sounds amazing! You said you might adapt and just do breasts and thighs instead of a whole turkey. How would you adjust the recipe? Im thinking of going that route but still want to try yours.
Thanks so much Dawn!!
Butter Roasted Turkey Breasts
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 60 minutes
2 skin on, bone in turkey breasts (about 4-5 pounds total)
1 stick (1/2 cup) salted butter
1/3 cup mixed chopped fresh herbs, such as thyme, sage, and parsley
zest of 1 lemon
kosher salt and black pepper
1 head garlic, skin left on and head cut in half horizontally
4 shallots, halved
1 cup white wine
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
2. In a small bowl, combine the butter, herbs, lemon zest, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
3. Gently loosen skin from the turkey breasts. Rub butter under the skin and all over the outside of breasts. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Arrange the thyme sprigs, garlic, and shallots in large roasting pan and then place the turkey breasts, skin side up, on top. Roast turkey breasts, rotating halfway through, until skin is crisp and golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of breasts registers 160 degrees F., about 45–55 minutes.
5. Transfer turkey breasts to a platter or cutting board and let rest 10 minutes. Carve and serve the turkey breasts with pan drippings and roasted shallots.
When do you add the wine? Or is for drinking while you cook?!
So sorry, I’m not sure what you mean? I typically serve wine with dinner. Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx
for the butter roasted turkey breast, you have 1 cup of wine in the ingredient list. when does that get added to the turkey breast? do you have a recommendation for a non-alcoholic item instead/would turkey broth be okay to substitute? so excited to try this recipe!!
Yes, you can use broth in place of the wine:) You’ll use that in step 4 during the roasting. I hope you love the recipe!! xT
thanks for sharing Tieghan can’t wait to give the turkey and stuffing a try ~ Happy Holidays!
Thanks so much Laura! I hope it all turns out well! Happy Thanksgiving! xT
I think I’m going to try out your sweet potatoes this year. It sounds like a nice twist on our traditional sweet potatoes. The one recipe that I make every year and refuse to alter is a creamy, cheesy Spinach Casserole. It’s my fave and I make it for Christmas too.
Thanks so much Caroline! I hope you love the sweet potatoes, let me know how they turn out! xT
Thank you so much for all of the work you do in putting all of this together! I’m tasked with bringing mashed potatoes to a kosher Thanksgiving. Do you have any recipes (scoured your site looking for some but fingers crossed I maybe missed one) or tips for making dairy-free mashed potatoes?
Thanks so much for your kind message and following along! So sorry, I don’t, but I would probably use ghee and coconut milk for best results in any of my mashed potato recipes! xT
I am a novice in the kitchen. I am making cranberry sauce and I saw your “recipe” above. However, I don’t know what quantities one would use. I’d love any suggestions you can provide!
So sorry, I really don’t have exact measurements, I would say 1 bag of cranberries, some maple syrup, and a whole orange juice. I hope this helps! xx
Just an FYI – ghee is not dairy-free. Some people with dairy issues can tolerate it, and others can not. Ghee is made from butter so just be careful depending on who you are serving if you’re going to use ghee. (Coconut oil is another good substitute.)
Thank you for this detailed guide! It’s filled with so many great tips! I’m interested in the “Make Ahead Easy, No Drippings Gravy with Bacon”, but I can’t find a link. Is this on the coming soon list or did I miss it?
Thanks so much for your kind message Tracy!! That recipe is coming soon:) xx
Hi – I am also interesting in this gravy. Is the recipe available? Thank you!
You can follow this recipe and add bacon to it:
Please let me know if you have any other questions! xT
I just adore you and all of the content you create for us! I live for “slow Sundays” where I brew coffee and greedily gulp up every tip, trick and pro tip you post. Thank you so much for all that you do! A real life Wonder Woman!
Awe, thank you so much for your kind message Laura and reading each Sunday! I love that you enjoy these posts as much as I do:) xT
Excited to see this years menu! When do you bake the pies? How far in advance does the maple pie bake? Didn’t see those on the prep schedule. Thanks!
Thanks so much Dana!! You can bake your pies on Tuesday:) Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx
Question: where did you get your wine glasses from?
The ones that are next to the pumpkin candle.
You can find all the links for everything Thanksgiving located here:
Please let me know if you have any other questions! Happy Holidays! xx
$115 for a set of velvet pumpkins is just ridiculous. Seriously. In this day and age, I’d like to think we can use our money wiser than that.