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As November nears, words like gather, grateful, and blessed come to mind. While you may be used to getting together with tons of friends and family members at Thanksgiving time, keeping it small may be a smarter move this year. Read on for some of the best Thanksgiving sides for simple celebrations. Take advantage of a reduced crowd size this year, and use it as an opportunity to get creative and try a new recipe!

Best Thanksgiving Sides: Savory Stuffing

Stuffing Recipe


Who doesn’t love stuffing? (Ummm…no one!) This beauty is way better than any box mix.

Read the recipe at Cooking Classy.

Simple is Best Dressing


This stuffing recipe will easily become a favorite Thanksgiving staple. Tear the bread instead of slicing to get this textured look.

Read the recipe at Bon Appetit

Cornbread Stuffing with Bacon and Sage


Variety is key with this interesting twist on a familiar classic. Cornbread, bacon and sage, oh my!

Read the recipe at The Food Charlatan.

READ MORE: 12 Kitchen Gadgets You Need For Thanksgiving Prep

Best Thanksgiving Sides: Simply Squash

Herb-Roasted Parmesan Acorn Squash


While winter squash is delicious with maple syrup, it’s certainly not the only way. Find a new favorite with this savory, roasted option.

Read the recipe at The Real Food Dietitians.

Instant Pot Whole Butternut Squash


Intimidated by the idea of slicing up a butternut squash? Fear not! This easy method uses an Instant Pot to roast whole, making slicing a breeze. And it tastes great, too!

Read the recipe at Clean Eating Kitchen.

Butternut Squash Gratin: A New Family Favorite Side Dish


Sweet onion, parmesan and Panko make this squash gratin dish really shine.

Read the recipe at Simple Bites.


Best Thanksgiving Sides: Carrot Cravings

Easy Oven Roasted Carrots


Roasting whole carrots brings out their simple, sweet flavor. Keep it easy with salt and pepper, or use this as a base for adding more sophisticated herbs and flavors.

Read the recipe at Spend with Pennies.

Whiskey-Glazed Carrots


This cheery side will brighten up your dinner table. Oh, and speaking of cheer, did we mention there’s whiskey in the glaze?

Read the recipe at The Pioneer Woman.

Roasted Carrots with Candied Pecans and Goat Cheese


Candied pecans and goat cheese really up the “wow factor” of this far-from-typical roasted carrot side.

Read the recipe at Inspired by Charm.

Best Thanksgiving Sides: Perfect Potatoes

Onion and Sage Mashed Potatoes


Why settle for plain mashed potatoes when you can enjoy them loaded with sage and oniony goodness instead?

Read the recipe at Better Homes & Gardens.

Hasselback Potatoes


Break out your best chef’s knife and get slicing for baked potatoes with this unique and tasty effect.

Read the recipe at Seasaltwithfood.

Rosemary Roasted Potatoes Recipe


Sometimes simple is best. All you need for this easy side is potatoes, olive oil, rosemary, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper. Roast and enjoy!

Read the recipe at Budget Savvy Diva.

READ MORE: 10 Fun Thanksgiving Snacks For Kids

Best Thanksgiving Sides: Sweet Potatoes with Panache

Sweet Potato Casserole


There are many ingredients that can make a great sweet potato dish. In this case though, the brown sugar pecan streusel topping is definitely the star.

Read the recipe at Real Housemoms.

Corn Flake, Pecan, And Marshmallow Topped Sweet Potato Casserole


We love this stylish take on a classic sweet potato dish. Alternate cornflakes and marshmallows to get this crunchy, yet gooey topping.

Read the recipe from Southern Living.

Sweet Potato Casserole {Thanksgiving Side Dish}


Looking for an easy sweet potato casserole? Look no further than this beauty.

Read the recipe at Chef in Training.

READ MORE: 12 Sweet Potatoes Recipes To Try For Thanksgiving

Best Thanksgiving Sides: Green Beans Galore

Green Bean Casserole


Bored with your same old green bean casserole recipe? Liven things up with bacon, onions, sharp cheddar, pimentos and more.

Read the recipe at The Pioneer Woman.

Parmesan-Roasted Green Beans Recipe


This easy, roasted green bean recipe will quickly become another fall staple. Just five ingredients, and tons of crunch. Yum!

Read the recipe at Budget Savvy Diva.

Jeweled Green Beans


Red and yellow peppers plus onions cooked in apple cider or white balsamic vinegar give this green bean recipe a fresh, tangy bite, that’s bursting with flavor.

Read the recipe at My Recipes.

READ MORE: 10 Memorable Thanksgiving Poems For Kids

Best Thanksgiving Sides: Celebrating Cranberries

Best Ever Cranberry Sauce


This sweet and tart cranberry treat is spiced with cinnamon and packs a zesty orange kick. By using fresh cranberries, you’ll enjoy a way better flavor than anything you’d get out of a can.

Read the recipe at Mom on Timeout.

Cranberry Quinoa Salad with Orange, Mint and Kale

Best Thanksgiving Sides For Simple Celebrations

A perfect accompaniment to a heavy traditional turkey dinner, this simple, beautiful salad will shine on your dinner table.

Read the recipe at Family Spice.

Festive JELL-O Cranberry-Pineapple Salad


This jiggly JELL-O treat combines cranberries with pecans and fresh fruit, such as pineapple and pear. Place on the dinner table to help cleanse palates with a lighter dish, or top with whipped cream for a great dessert table addition.

Read the recipe at Just a Pinch.

Best Thanksgiving Sides: All in One!

Next-Day Turkey Soup with Mashed Potato Polpetti


This unique soup makes fantastic use of all of your best Thanksgiving sides, once they’ve their best life. Simply fill a stockpot and boil the turkey bones with soup seasonings, fry up some potato polpetti (patties), toss in literally any leftover veggies and then add the potato patties back in to the soup at the end. It’s a new recipe each time you make it, and is absolutely delicious!

Read the recipe at Food Network.

There’s always so much to be grateful for at Thanksgiving time. And this year, we’ll be reflecting on our blessings more than ever. Even if your dinner crowd is smaller this year, we hope you enjoy this special time as well, and that our round-up of best Thanksgiving sides inspires you to try something new!

Once your dinner menu is planned, check out these 10 Thanksgiving Pies To Reinvent Your Holiday Table.

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