Opinion: Top 5 Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Turkey may be the centerpiece of your Thanksgiving dinner, but these side dishes are the real stars.

  1. 1

    Cranberry Sauce

    Maybe this isn't quite a "side dish," but this sauce is vitally important to any Thanksgiving meal. Whether you buy that familiar jelly in a can or make some yourself, cranberry sauce just makes the meal that much more festive. It's tart and not too sweet, which somehow perfectly complements the turkey. Plus, it's that necessary "glue" for your leftover sandwich.

  2. 2

    Green Bean Casserole

    Green beans become the star of your Thanksgiving meal when you put some French fried onions on top. It's one of those dishes that you enjoy so much during the holidays, but never chose to make it any other time of the year. That's the perfect excuse to go back for seconds. Or thirds. It's technically all vegetables.

  3. 3

    Sweet Potato Casserole

    Why wait for dessert when you can have it with your dinner? Sweet potato casserole is everything good about Thanksgiving. It's the perfect dish to go alongside your other savory sides and makes you feel like you're breaking all the rules. When the marshmallows are perfectly toasted, you know it's going to be the highlight of your meal.

  4. 4


    There are plenty of ways to make stuffing, but it's perfectly delicious no matter what you do. It's savory and comforting, which is a good representation of Thanksgiving itself. Plus, it satisfies even the pickiest eaters at the kids' table.

  5. 5

    Mashed Potatoes

    Potatoes don't actually have to try that hard to be the best item on the menu, but they really make any Thanksgiving dinner special. You can make instant potatoes from a box, or put some blood, sweat and tears into peeling and mashing (hopefully not literally). Either way, you know they'll taste good with some gravy on top.

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