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12 Traditional Thanksgiving Sides Worthy Of Their Classic Title, And 16 Refreshingly Modern Ones

Add these scene-stealing side dishes to your list of things to be grateful for.

No disrespect to turkey, but side dishes are the real stars of any Thanksgiving meal.

Choosing successful sides for your T-giving feast is no small feat. You have to accommodate lots of different people: picky eaters, foodies, folks with dietary restrictions, kiddos, and everyone in between. 

Lucky for you, this collection of palate pleasers gives you expert takes on all the classics you know and love...plus a few new tricks to impress your guests when Turkey Day rolls around.

1. Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower

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Cauliflower can be transformed into pizza crust, gnocchi, or even "rice," but sometimes you just want to eat this delicious veg in its truest form...with some added cheese, of course!

Recipe: Parmesan Roasted Cauliflower | Shop This Recipe

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2. Ultimate Green Bean Casserole

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Is it even Thanksgiving without green bean casserole on the menu? Using fresh green beans instead of canned makes this dish truly unforgettable, and that homemade, mushroomy sauce takes this casserole to the next level.

Recipe: Ultimate Green Bean Casserole | Shop This Recipe

3. Festive Stuffed Butternut Squash

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Festive, indeed! This celebration of Fall flavors is also hearty enough to act as a main dish for any of the vegetarians in your life.

Recipe: Festive Stuffed Butternut Squash | Shop This Recipe

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4. Cheesy Pesto Twists

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Come on, baby, let's do the twist — and using store-bought puff pastry makes it easier than ever. These pesto twists are the ultimate, crowd-pleasing take on dinner rolls for the big event, but they're also delicious served with cocktails and other apps.

Recipe: Cheesy Pesto Twists | Shop This Recipe

5. Brioche Stuffing

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Dry stuffing is a problem of Thanksgivings Past with this elevated take on the old standby. It's perfect for customizing and mixing in your fam's fave ingredients.

Recipe: Brioche Stuffing | Shop This Recipe

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6. Roasted Carrots

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Let's get to the root (veg) of it: These quick, easy, and delicious carrots are sure to be your new fave.

Recipe: Roasted Carrots | Shop This Recipe

7. Ultimate Mashed Potatoes

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The Thanksgiving side dish staple, perfected. You have full permission to pretend this is your top-secret recipe that's been in the family for years.

Recipe: Ultimate Mashed Potatoes | Shop This Recipe

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8. Slow Cooker Rosemary Bread

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Put your slow cooker to work for the holidays with this no-fail recipe. The only thing you really *need* to do is, well, knead the dough. After that, your slow cooker will take care of everything for you.

Recipe: Slow Cooker Rosemary Bread | Shop This Recipe

9. Potato Roses

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Will you accept this rose? Seriously, with herbs, bacon, and parmesan, this side dish is a real catch.

Recipe: Potato Roses | Shop This Recipe

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10. Roasted Sweet Potato And Apple Salad

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Make this, and you'll swear that a salad deserves a spot at the Thanksgiving table every single year. To make this salad vegetarian-friendly, feel free to skip the chicken. As an added bonus, you'll ensure all the poultry limelight goes to the turkey. 

Recipe: Roasted Sweet Potato And Apple Salad | Shop This Recipe

11. Homemade Dinner Rolls

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This recipe comes with four different options for toppings, so you can choose the flavors you and your family want to roll with this year.

Recipe: Homemade Dinner Rolls | Shop This Recipe

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12. Sausage And Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash

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Your guests will go nuts for this acorn squash. It's savory, it's sweet, and it's a real palate pleaser.

Recipe: Sausage And Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash | Shop This Recipe

13. Wild Rice Casserole

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This classic dish uses store-bought rotisserie chicken, an all-time favorite hack, so you're only responsible for cooking one of the birds at the table.

Recipe: Wild Rice Casserole | Shop This Recipe

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14. Scalloped Potatoes

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How many different potato dishes should you have on your table? This garlicky, buttery, cheesey dish is proof that you need at least one more. 

Recipe: Scalloped Potatoes | Shop This Recipe

15. Pumpkin Mac ‘N’ Cheese

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Here's a brilliant idea: Take everyone's favorite side and give it an autumnal twist for a next-level addition to the meal. 

Recipe: Pumpkin Mac ‘N’ Cheese | Shop This Recipe

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16. Butternut Squash Sage Pull-Apart Bread

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The pull-apart style is perfect for sharing — but you won't really want to do that, will you? 

Recipe: Butternut Squash Sage Pull-Apart Bread | Shop This Recipe

17. Maple Hazelnut Squash And Sausage Stuffing

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Another take on stuffing that blends sweet and savory flavors. Pro-tip: Don't forget to prep ahead of time, since the recipe calls for day-old bread. 

Recipe: Maple Hazelnut Squash And Sausage Stuffing | Shop This Recipe

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18. Pumpkin Curry Soup

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Don't forget it's also soup season! The flavor combo of pumpkin and curry is truly something to be thankful for.

Recipe: Pumpkin Curry Soup | Shop This Recipe

19. Slow Cooker Collard Greens And Ham Hocks

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This slow-cooker dish makes it even easier to ensure you eat at least *one*  green thing during the holidays. 

Recipe: Slow Cooker Collard Greens And Ham Hocks | Shop This Recipe

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20. Kale And Mushroom Stuffing

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Oooh, this stuffing feels so fancy that you might even want to call it "dressing" instead.

Recipe: Kale And Mushroom Stuffing | Shop This Recipe

21. Lentil & Roasted Vegetable Salad

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Lentils with your roasted vegetables? It's potentially like inviting a new guest to the party — but trust us, this dish will get invited back next year, too. 

Recipe: Lentil & Roasted Vegetable Salad | Shop This Recipe

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22. Slow Cooker Creamed Corn

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Not trying to get too corny here, but this is the dish that holiday memories are made of. 

Recipe: Slow Cooker Creamed Corn | Shop This Recipe

23. Smoked Bacon Lardon And Walnut Brussels Sprouts

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Bacon and brussels go together like peanut butter and jelly...with just a little bit more sophistication. 

Recipe: Smoked Bacon Lardon And Walnut Brussels Sprouts | Shop This Recipe

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24. Roasted Veggie Salad With Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette

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Pro-tip: Make extra maple balsamic vinaigrette. You're going to want to put it on pretty much everything, even in the days following Thanksgiving.

Recipe: Roasted Veggie Salad With Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette | Shop This Recipe

25. Honey Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts

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The bright, vibrant taste of this dish is obviously the best part, but the second best part is that this recipe only uses one sheet pan — no extra pots, pans, or bowls to clean! 

Recipe: Honey Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts | Shop This Recipe

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26. Hasselback Butternut Squash

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Your guests will wonder: Did this come from the fancy new vegetarian restaurant in town, or did this stunner come from your kitchen?

Recipe: Hasselback Butternut Squash | Shop This Recipe 

27. Cheesy Garlic Broccoli

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Broccoli and cheese, a combination as classic as pumpkin and pie, should not be skipped.

Recipe: Cheesy Garlic Broccoli | Shop This Recipe 

28. Maple Bacon Sweet Potato Soup

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Maple AND bacon AND sweet potato? Yeah, we're going to need to make a soup course at Thanksgiving dinner a permanent tradition. 

Recipe: Maple Bacon Sweet Potato Soup | Shop This Recipe

For even more delicious recipes and meal ideas, download the award-winning Tasty app for iOS and Android! 🍳

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