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21 Fast Thanksgiving Sides

Fast Thanksgiving Side Dish Recipes

You spend hours on your Thanksgiving turkey, but who has time to spend hours making multiple side dishes? These vegetable sides, many of which cook on the stovetop, require minimal prep and cook in 30 minutes or less. And while they may indeed be simple, they’re right at home at a holiday meal.


Acorn Squash with Rosemary & Brown Sugar

A quick braise gives this favorite fall dish and Thanksgiving side a sweet and tangy finish.

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Green Beans with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette & Parmesan Breadcrumbs

The Meyer lemons and zest in this recipe gives the dish an herbal, even floral, undertone―and it feeds a crowd.

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Cauliflower with Brown Butter, Pears, Sage & Hazelnuts

This simple yet elegant Thanksgiving side has the advantage of cooking on the stovetop, freeing up valuable oven space for the turkey or other dishes.

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Maple Pan-Roasted Baby Carrots

This 5-star favorite is a Thanksgiving must-make. The maple adds a sweet element in perfect balance with more savory Thanksgiving sides.

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Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Apples & Maple-Sage Butter

Roasted sweet potatoes have a lush, tender texture and concentrated flavor. When paired with maple syrup and apples, they make a deliciously sweet side that works especially well with turkey.

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Sautéed Shredded Brussels Sprouts with Fresh Herbs & Crisp Shallots

Brussels sprouts are a classic Thanksgiving side, and roasting them isn’t the only way to go. Here, the sprouts are shredded, making them perfect for a quick, high-heat sauté.

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Sour Cream and Leek Mashed Potatoes

Potatoes and leeks are a classic flavor pairing, and here, they come together in luscious, creamy mashed potatoes. And bonus: the recipe doubles or triples easily, so it’s perfect for a crowd.

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Green Beans with Toasted Slivered Almonds

To some, it isn’t Thanksgiving without green beans. This dish, in the spirit of Green Beans Amandine, is a simple and flavorful classic.

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Smashed Potatoes with Horseradish Crème Fraîche

It doesn’t take much to dress weeknight staples up for the holidays. Here, smashed fingerlings join with tangy crème fraîche and pungent horseradish for a holiday-worthy side.

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Orange-Maple Cranberry Sauce

This homemade cranberry sauce is a no-brainer. It’s make-ahead, though also so quick that making it on Thanksgiving isn’t a problem, plus you’ll get major points for its rich maple flavor.

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Roasted Potatoes with Crispy Rosemary and Oregano

These simple roasted potatoes are just as well-suited for a weeknight dinner as a holiday roast.

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Caramelized Onions

Flavored with thyme and a little cider vinegar, the soft and sweet onions nestle into the tender, roasted sprouts, so you get some with every bite.

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Browned-Butter Mashed Potatoes

Fragrant, nutty browned butter adds extra depth and dimension to your usual mashed potatoes. Try them with Salisbury Steak with Mushroom Gravy.

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Kale with Burst Grape Tomatoes

This quick side dish is a great way to add color to a winter dinner plate. Pair it with seared or roasted chicken breasts or steak.

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Roasted Pears and Parsnips

Roasting pears with earthy parsnips plays up the root vegetable's natural sweetness. This simple side dish is perfect paired with seared pork chops.

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Haricots Verts with Spicy Pancetta Dressing

A tasty combination of salty, spicy, and fresh, this flavorful side dish is quick enough to make for a weeknight supper, or you can double it for a festive gathering—just use the same pot to blanch the beans, cook the pancetta, and finish the dish.

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Sautéed Sweet Potatoes with Orange-Mint Gremolata

Here, sweet potatoes are lightly browned and tossed with a simple gremolata—a garnish of citrus zest, chopped herbs, and garlic—for a bright hit of flavor. Toasted pecans lend crunch and richness.

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Roasted Fennel with Asiago and Thyme

Roasting fennel brings out its mellow sweetness; a sprinkling of thyme and grated Asiago dresses it up. If you double this recipe, use two baking sheets so the fennel isn’t too crowded to brown.

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Quick Cranberry-Orange Relish

This ginger-tinged relish is more tart than sweet -- a perfect complement to the holiday bird. You can make it the day ahead, if you like.

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