Want to skip some of the stress this Thanksgiving? Try these make-ahead Thanksgiving recipes that are delicious and will make your life so much easier.
There are so many things to do around Thanksgiving. There are so many dishes to make and so little time. Having at least a few that you can make ahead of time can save you so much time.
I love to make as many side dishes ahead of time as I can so I mostly just need to reheat things and cook the main dish. It means I can sleep in a bit longer and I actually get to watch some of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!
It’s much better than when I used to get up at 6 am and rushed around to cook everything. I was so tired and stressed by the mealtime it was rather hard to actually enjoy it.
Between making things simpler, making more dishes ahead of time, and using my Thanksgiving planner I get to actually enjoy Thanksgiving now. It’s rather amazing.
All of these recipes can be made ahead of time so you can also enjoy the holiday again. Plus they all look amazing, what could be better?
Blueberry Bread Stuffing
Traditional homemade vegetarian bread stuffing with sweet blueberries added in! This bread stuffing recipe works so well as a make-ahead dish. You can assemble this whole recipe, cover it with foil, and place it in the fridge for up to 8 hours before you plan to bake it.
Sweet Potato Casserole with Oatmeal Topping
Delicious sweet potato casserole that's different than the old yams with marshmallows on top. Crunchy, buttery and delicious!
Orange Cranberry Sauce
This cranberry sauce is simple to make and is best when made ahead of time so it can chill and set up. You can even freeze it so you can make it even earlier or save some for Christmas dinner.
Green Bean Salad Recipe
Green Bean Salad is delicious made ahead. Great served warm or cold.
Crock Pot Stuffing
Crockpot stuffing can be assembled ahead of time and saves oven space.
Whipped Sweet Potatoes
These creamy whipped sweet potatoes are made with some simple ingredients and on the table in about 30 minutes! Super easy to reheat when ready to enjoy!
Spinach Artichoke Dip with Garlic Cashew Cream
You can make this Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip up to three days ahead and bake it day-of.
Southern Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Southern baked macaroni and cheese, also called soul food mac and cheese, is the ultimate in comfort food. Creamy, rich, ooey-gooey, super cheesy, with those crispy browned cheese edges…no one can resist perfectly baked mac and cheese.
The Easiest Way to Freeze Mashed Potatoes
You can make and freeze mashed potatoes so you can have them done way in advance. They are still delicious and it's very simple.
Vegan Orzo Potluck Salad Recipe
This vegan orzo pasta salad is great for kids and adults, so it is always a favorite on a buffet table.
Sturdy Whipped Cream Frosting
Skip the can and make these adorable whipped cream flowers the day ahead. Since they are stabilized they won't drip all over those desserts you've spent so much time making perfect!
Company Mashed Potatoes
Company Mashed Potatoes are incredibly creamy and can be prepped a day ahead and then baked in the oven when you’re ready for them to be served. They’re the perfect side dish for Thanksgiving Day or any other special occasion!
This Cranberry Salad is a must for holiday dinners! It is packed with fresh cranberries, oranges, apples, pomegranate, and pineapple. It goes perfectly with turkey or ham and is a delightful side to add to your holiday spread.
Cheesy Rosemary Mashed Potato Casserole
The perfect make-ahead holiday side dish. Creamy, cheesy and full of rosemary flavor with a crispy topping.
Apple Cider Sangria
A simple white wine sangria recipe featuring cozy & colorful fall ingredients like apple cider, Honeycrisp apples, oranges & cinnamon sticks. The fresh fruit soaks up all the sweet cider & warm cinnamon flavors, which makes it taste and smell heavenly.
Cranberry Fluff Jello Salad
The classic jello salad gets a festive holiday update with cranberries! serve as a side with your holiday meal or as a dessert option.
Lightened-Up Southern Macaroni and Cheese recipe
This creamy macaroni and cheese can be made ahead and baked the next day. An easy and delicious classic side dish.
With chicken wings and root vegetables, you have the ability to make a delicious gravy that you can freeze for the big day!
Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows and Streusel
This popular Sweet Potato Casserole is topped with marshmallows and brown sugar streusel. Use the make-ahead instructions to keep your Thanksgiving stress free.
Cornbread Sausage Stuffing
This cornbread sausage stuffing recipe is the perfect sweet and savory dressing for your Thanksgiving feast.
Fresh Green Bean Casserole with Fried Shallots
Utilizing fresh ingredients really makes this green bean casserole from scratch a star on the Thanksgiving table! Topped with crispy fried shallots!
French Silk Pie Recipe
This French silk pie is a decadent, smooth chocolate pie that everyone will devour! Bonus: it can be made 1-2 days in advance.
Homemade Dinner Rolls (Quick Easy Italian Parmesan)
Homemade Dinner Rolls, quick and easy Italian Parmesan roll recipe that is ready in one hour! These one-hour dinner rolls come out soft and fluffy for the best homemade dinner rolls ever and can even be made ahead.
Spinach Apple Salad with Honey Balsamic Vinaigrette
This Spinach Apple Salad is simple to prepare and perfect to be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge.
Instant Pot Beets Salad Recipe
Instant Pot Beets Salad is a super flavorful and versatile dish that is truly quick and easy to prepare ahead of time. Cooking beets in Instant Pot is so simple, you'll never want to make them any other way!
Apple chutney is like a chunky apple sauce with the warming flavors of curry, ginger, and cinnamon. It can be eaten warm or cold straight out of the refrigerator. It's a great alternative to cranberry sauce.
Cheesy Bacon Potato Casserole
Delicious, melt-in-your-mouth cheesy potatoes combined with bacon for the ultimate potato casserole experience! So easy and no peeling of potatoes required!
The Best Homemade Dinner Rolls
This dinner roll recipe is a staple at Thanksgiving dinner and pretty much every other special occasion where dinner rolls are appropriate. As delicious as they are fresh from the oven, the freeze beautifully, so you can make them weeks in advance.
Swedish Apple Pie
This Swedish apple pie is similar to a crisp and great made a few days ahead!
Apple Sausage Stuffing
This delicious apple sausage stuffing can be made a day or two ahead of time and just reheated in the oven on the big day.
Vintage Cheesy Potato Casserole
This retro dish needs to make a comeback. It's delicious and simple to make ahead of time.
Healthy Cranberry Wassail Recipe
Cranberry hot wassail is a unique twist on my mom’s classic sugar-free wassail recipe. In my opinion, the cranberry kicks things up a notch and turns your wassail a gorgeous festive red.
The Very Best Gluten Free Stuffing Recipe
It’s easy to prep this gluten-free stuffing ahead of time. Just follow the stovetop directions and then store it ready-to-go in a baking dish in the fridge or freezer.
Easy Southern Homemade Turkey Gravy
It’s all about the gravy on Thanksgiving, and this easy and delicious Southern Homemade Turkey Gravy recipe is foolproof. This make-ahead gravy recipe is also a perfect base for giblet gravy, and you can substitute chicken stock for turkey stock to make chicken gravy.
Sweet Potato Mac and Cheese Casserole
This Sweet Potato Mac and Cheese Casserole recipe is so easy to make and will make all the sweet potato lovers drool. It is a meatless casserole that can stand on its own as a meal but can also be the perfect side dish to serve up at dinner.
More Thanksgiving Resources
- Thanksgiving Planning Guide
- Get Your Own Thanksgiving Planner
- 10 Tips for a Stress-Free Thanksgiving
- Thanksgiving Instant Pot Recipes
- 50 Recipes for Thanksgiving Leftovers
Don’t forget to also sign up for the free Organized Thanksgiving E-Course to help you get ready for a stress-free Thanksgiving in no time.