There’s nothing scarier than Thanksgiving dinner for a novice cook. You don’t have the opportunity to cook for a group of people who have preconceived notions about how food should be prepared very frequently.

That’s not the only option. So I set out to create a simplified menu for those who are just starting out, or who simply don’t want to spend as much time cooking in order to get the same results.

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A sheet pan and a large skillet are all that are needed to make most of the dishes. This means you don’t have to perform any mental or physical gymnastics when using the oven.

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Contents

Require Items For Recipes

These recipes require only a few fundamental items, many of which are shared across the entire meal, making shopping a breeze. Fresh herbs are a waste of time because they would add to the laundry. As an alternative, use a single dried herb, such as oregano or thyme, to provide a consistent flavor throughout the dish.

Avoid the frantic last-minute cooking scramble, as well! In order to save time, it’s recommended that you prepare much of this menu the day before. In the range of three to four hours. Put on your apron, turn on your favorite podcast, and relax as you cook. The turkey can wait till the day after Thanksgiving.

in Turkey Style

A bone-in turkey breast cooks in a fraction of the time and feeds a crowd just as well as a whole bird. It’s the same way I roast my chicken: butter, salt, and pepper. Then it goes into a medium high oven till it’s nice and crispy.

Making gravy from the hot pan drippings of the turkey is the last thing you want to do on Thanksgiving Day. An umami boost from nutritional yeast is an optional addition to this make-ahead variation, which starts with caramelised red onion as a basis.

Lighten Workload Recipes

The red-sauce flavours of pizza may seem out of place on Thanksgiving, but they work incredibly well as a custardy stuffing bonded by cheese. The heavy lifting in this cosy meal is done by tomato paste and dried oregano blooming in buttery onions, with an ivory rain of shredded mozzarella melting and turning lushly gooey in patches.

There’s no reason why we can’t mash sweet potatoes with butter, cream, roasted garlic, and a lot of salt like regular potatoes. Sweet potatoes can be baked in the oven rather than boiled in big pots of water, which not only saves time but also concentrates their flavour.

Salad

When combined with radicchio and canned artichokes, snappy cooked green beans make a beautiful salad. To make this zesty side dish, all you need is a liberal drizzle of olive oil, plenty of salt and pepper, and a zingy squeeze of lemon.

With the addition of a whole lemon, this cranberry-and-orange relish provides your Thanksgiving table with the sharp, acidic edge it deserves. Moreover, the ruby-jeweled brilliance of this concoction makes it look like stained glass.

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One of the best things about this pudding is how soft and fluffy it becomes overnight in the refrigerator. After some time, the layers begin to come together: vanilla cookies with caramel-fried apples and cinnamon whipped cream.