In today’s post, I share my favorite foolproof recipes to help you make a delicious Thanksgiving Dinner. I have printable recipes for everything you need, from making the sides ahead of time to cooking a turkey and saving your turkey carcass to make bone broth afterward. I also talk about my memories of roasted chestnuts and our plans for Thanksgiving this year.

Affiliates note: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. My content may contain affiliate links to products and services. If you click through and make a purchase, I’ll receive a small commission. It does not affect the price you pay.

Delicious Sides for Your Thanksgiving Dinner

Choose from these Thanksgiving recipes to make the sides you’d enjoy with your turkey, and don’t worry if you find you’ve made extra. It’s always nice to have a bounty at your Thanksgiving Dinner table, knowing you’ll have leftovers to enjoy afterward.

Cranberry Sauce Recipes for Your Thanksgiving Dinner

Yes, it’s a tasty side for your Thanksgiving Dinner, but I had to put cranberry sauce in its own category. You know that I’m not a fan of cranberry sauce in the can that’s made with high fructose corn syrup. It’s so easy to make your own, and your dinner guests will notice the homemade difference.

Turkey Recipes for Your Thanksgiving Dinner

How about roasting two small turkeys in your oven instead of one large one for your Thanksgiving Dinner? And if you’re planning a smaller Thanksgiving this year, you can even make a turkey breast in the Instant Pot that comes out delicious.

Dessert Recipes for Your Thanksgiving Dinner

Making these desserts is a real treat and harkens back to our pioneer roots. I love making and enjoying pumpkin and apple pies, but there’s something special about having pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving Dinner.

And if you want to make a pumpkin pie but don’t have time to roll out a traditional crust, be sure to try my NO-ROLL pie crust. It’s the easiest pumpkin pie you’ll ever make! Yet it will probably be the most delicious!

This apple pie is easy too, since it’s made in a cast iron skillet with only a top crust. When you bring this to the table, you will really feel like a Modern Pioneer!

Turkey Bone Broth Recipes

Don’t throw out your leftover turkey carcass! Instead, save it and your vegetable scraps to make some of the best turkey bone broth you’ve ever had. It’s perfect as the base for soups, and you can also sip a warm cup of turkey bone broth by the fire!

Memories of Roasted Chestnuts

When I stopped by the Central Market grocery store in Austin, Texas, earlier this month, a bin full of chestnuts greeted me. This nut brings back fond memories of growing up in New York. In the late fall, my mom and dad would take me to visit the roadside stands that dotted the countryside, and we would buy a small basket of chestnuts.

When we got home, my dad would score the chestnuts and place them in a special metal roaster that he could place over a fire. He had to score the chestnuts; otherwise, they would burst open as they were roasting. (Sometimes, a chestnut or two would sneak in without getting scored and then explode with a bang, causing much excitement!)

After they roasted and the shell popped open, we let them cool and peeled the remaining shell pieces off to get to the slightly sweet and buttery-tasting nut inside. I enjoyed eating the soft nut while enjoying family time together. It’s amazing how certain foods and aromas bring back sweet memories.

Although chestnuts have migrated to Texas and are part of Christmas songs, we don’t have the same tradition for enjoying chestnuts in Central Texas as folks did back in the Eastern part of the United States. Instead, we have access to lots of pecans and love them in many dishes. My husband Ted especially likes pecan pie.

In my How to Soak Nuts recipe video, I show you how to make crispy pecans that are easy to digest. You’ll learn how to soak nuts for better digestion. I use pecans, but you can also use other nuts with the soaking and drying recipe. (But if you use pecans, you’ll be an honorary Texan!)

Our Thanksgiving Plans

Our family will be enjoying two Thanksgiving celebrations this week. On Thanksgiving day, our church has invited our community to a Thanksgiving dinner, and all are welcome to dine in for a complimentary turkey meal with all the fixings and dessert too.

We so appreciate the volunteers at our church who spend the time roasting the turkeys, making the sides, and putting together the meals for everyone to enjoy. Their love adds to the deliciousness of the food. We’ve attended the community dinners each year since our dads went to heaven, and we so enjoy the festive atmosphere with the opportunity to catch up with old friends and get to know new ones.

I bought a frozen turkey this weekend and nestled it into my freezer. On Friday, I’m taking it out to roast it in the oven with lots of vegetables, including cut-up carrots, celery, and onions. (The onions are so delicious when they are roasted.) I’m also making stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, and gravy. Oh, and rolls too!

We enjoyed green bean casserole in the past, but I’m not going to make it this year. It’s delicious fresh, but alas, the leftovers don’t retain the same flavor. So this year, I’m planning to make green beans almondine. The almonds give the green beans a nice crunch, and the dish reheats well.

Of course, I’ll save my turkey carcass and vegetable scraps to make turkey bone broth afterward. Once my frozen turkey is out of my freezer, I’ll have some space in there to store my bone broth.

However you plan to celebrate this week, I hope you, your family, and your friends have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving! 😊

Download Your Free 36-Page Pantry List

For an extensive list of the traditional foods you can make and purchase to stock your pantry, be sure to download my free 36-page Traditional Foods Pantry List. This comprehensive eBook is full of links to recipe videos, helpful articles, and more!

And if you’re looking for a printed book full of my traditional foods recipes to show you how to create a traditional foods kitchen, be sure to order your copy of my new bestselling book, The Modern Pioneer Cookbook.

Order YOUR COPY Now!

The Modern Pioneer Cookbook

Seasonal ingredients, traditional techniques, and nourishing recipes. Over 85 traditional, from-scratch recipes! Discover for yourself how you can use simple ingredients and traditional techniques to cook the modern pioneer way.

Join the Traditional Foods Kitchen Academy

Are you looking for more traditional foods videos? If so, I invite you to join the Traditional Foods Kitchen Academy. Members of this optional paid YouTube community get access to exclusive videos, live streams, and other members-only perks. Plus, your YouTube comments include a special members-only badge.

The following is a members-only video replay of my November live stream from last year.

Kitchen Academy Videos

See all →

Stay in Touch with Mary’s Nest

  1. Subscribe to My YouTube Channel for Traditional Foods Videos (Free) - When you subscribe, be sure to click on the notification bell that will let you know each time I upload a new video.
  2. Subscribe to Mary’s Traditional Foods Newsletter (Free) - Get a free 36-page eBook for signing up: How to Stock Your Essential Traditional Foods Four-Corners Pantry.
  3. Join the Traditional Foods Kitchen Academy (Optional Paid) - For more detailed videos and exclusive members-only perks, join my YouTube membership community.
  4. Order The Modern Pioneer Cookbook (Optional Paid) - Get a printed book of Mary's nourishing recipes from a Traditional Foods Kitchen. This bestselling cookbook is published by Penguin Random House with their DK imprint.

I look forward to having you join me in my Texas Hill Country Kitchen!

Shop for items used in this blog post or video

Favorite Kitchen Supplies

Amazon Shop and Shopping Guide

  • Visit Mary’s Nest Amazon Shop
  • Visit my Shopping Guide page
    Get up to 15% off for stocking your Traditional Foods Pantry and equipping your Modern Pioneer Kitchen, including discounts from US Wellness Meats, Farmhouse Teas, Lehman's, Masontops, Cultures for Health, Survival Garden Seeds, Redmond Real Salt, Plan to Eat, and More!

Posted in: ,

About the Author

Read More About Me

You may also like:

Turkey Neck Pot-au-Feu Recipe

Surprise yourself and your family and friends with this easy and memorable French Pot-au-Feu recipe made with turkey necks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *