I feel like I have a love hate relationship with Thanksgiving. While I love getting together with all my friends and family, I am picky when it comes to food. While I do eat a lot, I am a bit overbearing when it comes to how food is prepared, I like it the way I like it, ya know!? So it may shock you when I say, I have never hosted a Thanksgiving. I am usually the one who will bring some sides (my favorite part) but I have never fully hosted a Thanksgiving.
Last year, my husband and I did a mini vacation with the assistant in Rosemary Beach. We made a very small chicken and all the sides to go along with it, but that was the most hosting for Thanksgiving I have ever done. This year, my husband and I purchased a house and we will be hosting our first Thanksgiving. While I will be ordering a Honey Baked turkey and ham, I will be preparing all of my favorite sides.
I think sides really hold down the holiday. I mean, could you really go wrong with a turkey or ham... maybe? But not really. Actually, one time, my grandma BURNT the entire prime rib for our Easter dinner (sorry nanny!), so I guess it is possible. There is so much you can do with different sides though, it really makes or breaks the event.
Oh! And we cannot forget about appetizers! We are pulling out the best appetizers for when your guests arrive. There is nothing like a great first impression. Apps are my favorite foods, any time. I guess we will start this guide with some appetizers, since they are first. Let's get into it.
I would say the most classic appetizer you can make is a cheese board. There are so many different types of meats, cheeses, crackers, fruits, veggies that you can put on it to make it very customizable to every person. I have a whole guide on all my favorite tips and tricks to a WW friendly cheese board.
To go along with the cheese board, you have to make my charcuterie dip. It would be great as an additional to your board and great with fruits, veggies or crackers.
Next is dips. I love dips because everyone can stand around trying them all out while hanging out. My most popular dip recipe is my hot wing dip. I know it is not very "Thanksgiving-y" but it is my most popular and it is AMAZING. Zero points and great paired with carrots, celery or chips. Serve this warm or cold. Plus, you can make this ahead of time.
We do Thanksgiving at my Aunt Dale's every other year. The appetizer I always look forward to is her French onion dip. I know, it is so simple and easy, but this is maybe my favorite dip ever. I am obsessed with French onion dip and it always reminds me of my family. I, of course, made a lightened up version which is zero points. Great ith carrots, celery or chips.
My final dip recommendation is my skinny spinach and artichoke dip. I think this one is very holiday friendly. Spinach dip is amazing at any gathering. Who doesn't love a good spin dip.
Oh boy do I love sides. We would be here all day if I went through all my sides so let's just go with my tried and true, tested, Thanksgiving sides. These are some that I have brought to Thanksgivings in the past that everyone has loved!
My number one side that never fails, kid favorite, husband approved.... CANDIED CARROT CHIPS!! These are the most amazing carrots in the entire world. I could eat them any day.
Going along with the above, a very similar recipe, crunchy crack broccoli!
One of my most popular veggie recipes is my garlic parm zucchini rounds. These are hard to make a lot of because they do work best in the air fryer. But if you do not need to make many, this is a great side.
Okay, hear me out, Brussels sprouts. Ugh I know Brussels sprouts, yuck. NO. NO. This recipe I made is the first Brussels sprouts I have ever loved and now I am obsessed. They are sweet and salty and seriously amazing. You will convince everyone to love them too.
If you really want to impress your guests, you have to make my one point Alfredo. Grab an extra large squash or a couple smaller ones and make this. It is so easy to make but packs a punch.
Finally, delicata squash. The ULTIMATE squash. The greatest squash you will ever have. Remember, Thanksgiving is basically the last day you can use these so if you have any laying around, use them up.
If you want to look through anymore of my vegetable recipes, click the link below, I have tons.
Mac and cheese is a must at Thanksgiving. My family is just obsessed with it, we always have it. Make my healthier Mac and cheese!
Another tried and true side are my garlic bread muffins. I know many of you have made them and absolutely love them. They are made with two ingredient dough and covered with garlic butter.
And of course, mashed potatoes. You can pull my mashed potatoes recipe from this one.
The only main course I have made for a holiday is my Instant Pot rotisserie chicken. Works great if you are having a super small gathering.
Now that dinner is over, time to pull out the sweet stuff!
On a lighter side, we can start with my fruit dip. I have two versions, a zero point and a two point version. Pretty similar, yet still different. They are both great with fruit or pretzels.
Another fun dessert, that would actually work great in your cheese board for an appetizer too, are my Jell-O candied grapes. They taste like candy, yet are so good for you. Plus, they look so pretty.
Now that Thanksgiving is over, you know, dinner has been finished, it is officially Christmas so pull out that peppermint bark!!!
I hope you all have the best Thanksgiving! If you make any of these, please tag me on Instagram