Foodies Reveal the Quickest (and Tastiest) Thanksgiving Sides

In an ideal world, we'd be able to dedicate hours to lovingly craft every homemade dish on our Thanksgiving table. Unfortunately, the reality is that when you consider brining a turkey, making stuffing, styling the centerpiece, and putting the finishing touches on each place setting, the hours before guests arrive can be stressful.

If you'd rather minimize hours spent toiling in the kitchen and make the most of time with family, add these simple Thanksgiving sides to your menu. We turned to seven leading foodies, from the co-founders of Food52 to a bevy of blogger extraordinaires, to find out their go-to fast and flavor-packed side dishes. 

Forget finicky finger food or time-consuming platters—these are the seven best foodie-approved Thanksgiving sides every busy hostess should make. 

Butternut Squash Purée


The Foodies: Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, the former New York Times food writers behind Food52, follow the cooking manifesto "eat thoughtfully, live joyfully." The pair has just released A New Way to Dinner, a playbook for weekly meal planning. 

The Recipe: Consisting of only three ingredients, this simple Butternut Squash Purée is as easy as it gets. "I’d like to tell you that I spent months perfecting it; I did not," Hesser tells MyDomaine. "Lazy, one weekend, I threw a bunch of butternut squash cubes into a pan with lots of olive oil. I covered the pot and simmered the butternut squash in this bath of oil until it was good and soft. Then I mashed it right in the pan and swirled in a few tablespoons of cream. It worked." It's proof that the best recipes don't always involve hours of time and effort. 

The Pro Tip: Make double and stash it in the fridge so there's plenty of leftovers. Stubbs says her toddler is a fan of the creamy consistency of this purée. 

Autumn Salad