MENU

The Modern Classic Thanksgiving

From the essential dishes you have to have to the cleverest new takes on classics, we have every dish you need—plus cooking and baking advice—to create an updated-yet-timeless Thanksgiving feast. MORE+ LESS-

NEW & NOW

The Betty Crocker Test Kitchens have been busy creating fresh spins and adding up-to-date flourishes to the ingredients, flavors and dishes we all love at Thanksgiving. So when you’re ready to try something new, make these kitchen-tested recipes your go to!

"Every year my grandma makes her famous cherry Jell-O™ salad—the feast wouldn't be the same without it. This year, I'm planning to make this new recipe from the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens. I can't wait to continue her tradition with this delicious new twist!"
"Every year my grandma makes her famous cherry Jell-O™ salad—the feast wouldn't be the same without it. This year, I'm planning to make this new recipe from the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens. I can't wait to continue her tradition with this delicious new twist!"
—Emily Planek, Managing Editor of BettyCrocker.com
"Oh my, this turkey is quite the stunner. Basting with soy and butter makes it look like it's been sunning in St. Tropez. The dry brine makes it tender and sweet, while keeping the skin tight and beautiful. And using unsalted butter and reduced-sodium soy sauce keeps the sodium in check, while delivering on that soy-butter umami bomb of flavor. A nap will definitely be necessary after experiencing this bird."
"Oh my, this turkey is quite the stunner. Basting with soy and butter makes it look like it's been sunning in St. Tropez. The dry brine makes it tender and sweet, while keeping the skin tight and beautiful. And using unsalted butter and reduced-sodium soy sauce keeps the sodium in check, while delivering on that soy-butter umami bomb of flavor. A nap will definitely be necessary after experiencing this bird."
—Maggie Lyon, Chef and Betty Crocker Test Kitchens Consultant
There’s a certain math that applies to Thanksgiving dinner. It only involves addition. No subtraction. Let me explain. When you’re creating a menu for your Thanksgiving feast, and you want to try a new dish, the only real option is to add it to your traditional family dinner. People feel strongly about which dishes make a meal feel like Thanksgiving. These are dishes people love and look forward to all year long. So there’s no subtracting a family favorite. You can only add a new dish into the mix. Be careful though. It might soon become a family favorite too!
There’s a certain math that applies to Thanksgiving dinner. It only involves addition. No subtraction. Let me explain. When you’re creating a menu for your Thanksgiving feast, and you want to try a new dish, the only real option is to add it to your traditional family dinner. People feel strongly about which dishes make a meal feel like Thanksgiving. These are dishes people love and look forward to all year long. So there’s no subtracting a family favorite. You can only add a new dish into the mix. Be careful though. It might soon become a family favorite too!
—Meredith Deeds, Culinary Consultant to the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens

THE UNBEATABLES

Here they are: the dishes everyone’s been waiting for all year. Full of expert advice and kitchen-tested techniques, you can rely on these recipes when you’re ready to cook up the non-negotiable dishes of Thanksgiving.

We've all had enough bad gravy in our lives to make this the most-feared dish of the Thanksgiving feast. But I’m here to tell you that anyone can make a flavorful, silky smooth gravy. It’s a simple matter of cooking a thickening agent, like flour, in the turkey drippings (aka, fat), before adding in a liquid, like chicken or turkey broth. Cooking the flour in the fat coats it, so it can’t clump together when the liquid is added. It’s an easy technique that ensures success.
We've all had enough bad gravy in our lives to make this the most-feared dish of the Thanksgiving feast. But I’m here to tell you that anyone can make a flavorful, silky smooth gravy. It’s a simple matter of cooking a thickening agent, like flour, in the turkey drippings (aka, fat), before adding in a liquid, like chicken or turkey broth. Cooking the flour in the fat coats it, so it can’t clump together when the liquid is added. It’s an easy technique that ensures success.
—Meredith Deeds, Culinary Consultant to the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens
When you stuff a turkey, you’re taking away air circulation through the cavity of the bird, and you’re also taking it away from the stuffing, which will brown and crisp more beautifully in a casserole dish.
When you stuff a turkey, you’re taking away air circulation through the cavity of the bird, and you’re also taking it away from the stuffing, which will brown and crisp more beautifully in a casserole dish.
—Maggie Lyon, Chef and Betty Crocker Test Kitchens Recipe Developer

A SWEET FINISH

Dessert is just as crucial a part of Thanksgiving as the turkey. While the classics are a “must” on the dessert table, as much as they are in the dinner spread, there’s room to add new too. These extraordinary desserts, running the gamut from impressive layer cakes to impossibly easy pies, truly capture the flavors of fall.

"This elegant French Silk Layer Cake has all the flavor of the original pie. Inspired by a recipe in the 1966 'Cake and Frosting Mix Cookbook,' it's a nod to Betty’s heritage. I love serving a layer cake alongside Thanksgiving's traditional pies, so there is something for everyone (and you definitely want to have something chocolatey!)."
"This elegant French Silk Layer Cake has all the flavor of the original pie. Inspired by a recipe in the 1966 'Cake and Frosting Mix Cookbook,' it's a nod to Betty’s heritage. I love serving a layer cake alongside Thanksgiving's traditional pies, so there is something for everyone (and you definitely want to have something chocolatey!)."
—Carrie Franzen, Pastry Chef and Culinary Consultant to the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens
Homemade whipped cream only takes a minute to make, but delivers big every time. It makes everything you dollop it on seem special.
Homemade whipped cream only takes a minute to make, but delivers big every time. It makes everything you dollop it on seem special.
—Meredith Deeds, Culinary Consultant to the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens
"This is the most in-demand dish at my family's huge Thanksgiving gatherings: Cranberry Molasses Cake. We have to make two, minimum. My Grandma Dee's recipe has been passed down, and the handwritten notes leave a little specificity to be desired, if you're new to it. We turned those notes into a recipe that everyone can follow, and which captures the same dusky molasses sweetness and tangy cranberry bursts of Grandma's cake—and, crucially, the warm butter sauce that absolutely has to top it!"
"This is the most in-demand dish at my family's huge Thanksgiving gatherings: Cranberry Molasses Cake. We have to make two, minimum. My Grandma Dee's recipe has been passed down, and the handwritten notes leave a little specificity to be desired, if you're new to it. We turned those notes into a recipe that everyone can follow, and which captures the same dusky molasses sweetness and tangy cranberry bursts of Grandma's cake—and, crucially, the warm butter sauce that absolutely has to top it!"
—Gina Czupka, Executive Editor of BettyCrocker.com
To give your double-crust pie a professional appearance, brush top crust with milk, heavy cream or egg wash (egg lightly beaten with water) and sprinkle with granulated or coarse sparkling sugar. When it comes out of the oven, it'll be golden brown and sparkly.
To give your double-crust pie a professional appearance, brush top crust with milk, heavy cream or egg wash (egg lightly beaten with water) and sprinkle with granulated or coarse sparkling sugar. When it comes out of the oven, it'll be golden brown and sparkly.
—Carrie Franzen, Pastry Chef and Culinary Consultant to the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens
"These soft cookies with just the right amount of pumpkin flavor are perfectly complemented by their brown butter frosting. I love how easy they are to make, and they always get gobbled up, so they're an all-around win!"
"These soft cookies with just the right amount of pumpkin flavor are perfectly complemented by their brown butter frosting. I love how easy they are to make, and they always get gobbled up, so they're an all-around win!"
-Hannah Broadbent, Social Media Producer of BettyCrocker.com

HOW-TO HEADQUARTERS

Step-by-step guides and deep dives on how to perfect each item on your Thanksgiving menu.

When it comes to a stress-free Thanksgiving, a little preparation goes a long way. Some dishes can be prepared early in the day while others can be cooked a full 24 hours before the big feast.
When it comes to a stress-free Thanksgiving, a little preparation goes a long way. Some dishes can be prepared early in the day while others can be cooked a full 24 hours before the big feast.
Be confident when carving a turkey. Put on some gloves, take a deep breath, and just get in there. Don’t whittle nervously at the thing—you’ll see the hesitation in the finished product. Decide where you’re going to cut, and do it. Make firm, confident cuts. It’s more effective and looks better in the end.
Be confident when carving a turkey. Put on some gloves, take a deep breath, and just get in there. Don’t whittle nervously at the thing—you’ll see the hesitation in the finished product. Decide where you’re going to cut, and do it. Make firm, confident cuts. It’s more effective and looks better in the end.
—Maggie Lyon, Chef and Betty Crocker Test Kitchens Consultant

READY, STEADY, GO

Here's how to tackle everything that needs to get done with grace, precision (or something close to it!), the smartest shortcuts and as little stress as possible. This is the prep and planning advice that'll make you feel confident and prepared about what's happening in the kitchen, so you can focus on enjoying your guests!

What To Make The Next Day—And The Rest of the Month, Too

When you've got a house full of guests, a hectic schedule and a packed fridge, these are the recipes you can turn to.

Browse All Thanksgiving Recipes