It’s already Tuesday, so Thanksgiving is right around the corner and we’re sure a lot of you folks have already begun preparing for Thursday’s festivities! If so, we’ve got a few traditional side dishes for you to check out and serve your family and friends this Thanksgiving. We’ll start off with a deliciously sweet cranberry based stuffing, followed by some creamy whipped mashed potatoes (insert mouthwatering emojii here). Moving right along into a savory Parmesan & Balsamic-flavored dish of Brussels sprouts, only to end with an Abt-made video of a mini sweet potato casserole recipe, which is super easy to make and a fun way to incorporate cooking with your kids this Thanksgiving!
Thyme & Sage Cranberry Sausage Stuffing
10 cups cubed day-old bread
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion (diced)
3 stalks celery (thinly sliced)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 cup of chopped mushrooms
1 teaspoon dried sage (or 2 Tbsp fresh)
2 teaspoons dried parsley (or 2-3 Tbsp fresh)
1 pound sweet or spicy Italian sausage
2 cups diced apples (about 2 medium)
2 and 1/4 cups chicken broth
2/3 cup dried cranberries
>>> Preheat oven to 300°F (149°C). Spread bread cubes out on two large baking sheets and bake for 15 minutes until browned and crisp. Transfer to a large bowl.
>>> Place butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, salt, and pepper. Sauté for about 4 minutes until vegetables begin to soften. Add mushrooms, thyme, sage, and parsley. Continue cooking for another 3 minutes. Squeeze the sausage meat out of the casings into the skillet. Break up with spoon, then add the apples. Cook for about 4 minutes, until sausage meat is just about cooked through.
>>> Remove from heat and stir the sausage/apple mixture in with the toasted bread. Pour the broth on top, then the cranberries. Give everything a stir.
>>> If using to stuff a turkey, allow to cool completely before stuffing. If baking the stuffing separately like I did in these photos, heat oven to 350°F (177°C). Grease a casserole dish (I use an 11×7-inch– use a similar size) or spray with nonstick spray. Spoon stuffing into the dish, then bake for 40-45 minutes or until lightly browned and crisp on top. Garnish with fresh herbs before serving, if desired. Serve warm. Cover leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave.
Here’s the Le Creuset 4 Quart Rectangular Cherry Dish we used to make our stuffing.
Whipped Mashed Potatoes
5 to 6 baking potatoes, peeled and halved
1 stick of butter
1/4 cup milk
salt and pepper
>>> Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until soft (15 minutes). Drain.
>>> Using a stand mixer, slowly whip milk and butter into potatoes until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Check out the KitchenAid Stand Mixer we used to whip up these creamy mashed potatoes.
Parmesan Balsamic Slow Cooker Brussels Sprouts
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
2 Tablespoons olive oil
kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter (cut into cubes)
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
>>> To make the balsamic reduction, add balsamic vinegar and brown sugar to a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a slight boil and reduce by half, about 6-8 minutes; set aside and let cool.
>>> Place Brussels sprouts into a 3-qt slow cooker. Stir in olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Top with butter.
>>> Cover and cook on low heat for 3-4 hours or high for 1-2 hours.
>>> Serve immediately, drizzled with balsamic reduction and topped with Parmesan.
Make your Brussels sprouts in this 3-in-1 Cuisinart 6 Quart Slow Cooker.
Mini Sweet Potato Casseroles
2 to 4 sweet potatoes
1 cup light brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
butter (1/4 or ½ tbs, depending on taste per 1 cup ramekin)
Small bag of marshmallows
1 cup capacity bowls (Ramekins)
>>> Place sweet potatoes over high heat in a pot of water, make sure the potatoes are immersed, cover and cook for about 30 min or until tender on the outside, but slightly resistant on the inside.
>>> Remove potatoes from boiling water and place on paper towels to cool down and dry. When potatoes are cool enough to handle – peel and cut into large chunks and place into a bowl (large enough for mashing).
>>> Mash potatoes with potato masher until slightly lumpy.
1) Fill ramekin less than half way with sweet potatoes
2) Add a layer of brown sugar on top of potatoes
3) Sprinkle cinnamon on top of the brown sugar
4) Add a layer of chopped nuts on top of cinnamon
5) Place 2 pats of butter on top of the nuts
>>> Repeat steps 1-5
>>> Preheat oven to 350 F. Place ramekins on parchment paper lined cookie sheet and bake for 30 min. Top with marshmallows. Place in oven on broil for 2 min longer or until desired brownness is achieved. Remove from oven and let casseroles sit at least 20 min before serving.
If you want to turn this into a delicious dessert, try adding vanilla ice cream!
This recipe is just a guide line, you can add or take away any ingredient you like – as these fun little casseroles are meant to be tailored to your choosing!
Check out a few of the kitchen tools we used to make these delicious mini casseroles, including a set of Norpro Porcelain Ramekins, this All-Clad Stainless Steel 8 QT Stock Pot, a Rosle Potato Masher and Wusthoff Knives.
Cook the food, enjoy the food, & don’t forget to relax.