Easy Thanksgiving Recipes for a No-Stress Turkey Day

a sliced turkey breast on a platter with clementines

Take it easy this holiday season (without sacrificing flavor) with my best easy recipes for Thanksgiving sides, desserts, appetizers and more.

easy delicious recipes to the rescue this Thanksgiving

Good food doesn’t need to be complicated! It’s the mantra of this site and always has been. Even for those of us who love to cook, Thanksgiving is really all about the time spent with friends and family, and the last thing we want is a stressful, messy day in the kitchen.

My simple recipes for appetizers, sides, dessert, and even a pared down turkey main course are all about that kind of cooking that is actually enjoyable, without sacrificing anything. Simple food cooked well, now that’s something to be thankful for!


3 Ingredient Biscuits

There is something so satisfying about whipping together something fabulous from ingredients you can count on one hand. These fluffy, buttery biscuits deliver on texture and flavor, and are a cinch to whip together.

A plate of biscuits with butter

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Honey and Sage

No need to boil, mash, bake, and top with a marshmallow-concoction, this delicious sweet potato dish cuts down on so many steps. Thinly sliced potatoes are roasted with fresh sage leaves and a tiny drizzle of honey for that hint of sweetness that goes so well with the rest of the dishes on your Thanksgiving table.


How to Perfectly Cook a Turkey Breast

When a whole bird is just a little too much for your table (or oven), a simple, perfectly cooked turkey breast can still be festive for the holiday. My method even gives you a delicious gravy from the drippings at the end, too.

A turkey breast sliced on a platter

Simple Buttered Rutabagas

Thanksgiving brings us back to seasonal ingredients and recipes that we tend to forget about the rest of the year. These simple buttered rutabagas are a great way to try a traditional fall veggie that maybe you’ve never had before, or maybe you remember from your childhood. I’m on team rutabaga, for sure!

buttered rutabaga is a simple, rustic side dish full of flavor and nutrition ~ theviewfromgreatisland.com

Sweet and Spicy Bar Mix

If you’re anything like me, you want a little something to nibble on while waiting for the big meal, but forget fussy appetizers that are cut out into little shapes or anything too heavy and filling. This addictive little snack mix is just the thing. Ever since I started making it last year, I’m almost never without a fresh batch!

bar mix in a wooden bowl

Pear Salad with Creamy Walnut Dressing

A fresh green salad is always welcome on a Thanksgiving table. A sliced pear and creamy walnut dressing makes this salad special, but it couldn’t be easier to make.

Pear salad with walnut vinaigrette on a patterned plate.

Pumpkin Spice Liqueur

This homemade liqueur makes for such a fun and impressive night cap after the big meal. Make extra and you’ve got your holiday gifts sorted!

pumpkin liqueur in a glass with cinnamon stick

Perfect Oven Roasted Potatoes with Rosemary

You can’t go wrong with a classic, and these crispy roasted potatoes require just 4 ingredients and a little oven space ~ they go a long way towards rounding out a Thanksgiving menu.

oven roasted potatoes on a baking sheet

Instant Pot Gravy

Every Thanksgiving table needs extra gravy, but oven and stovetop space is always at a premium. My Instant Pot gravy solves that problem!

Instant Pot Gravy in a white pitcher

Cranberry Shortbread Crumble Tart

This gorgeous tart is festive and delicious, but soooo much easier than pie! It’s my classic shortbread crumble base that I’ve used with everything from marmalade to rhubarb.

cranberry crumble tart on a white board

Rainbow Carrots with Browned Butter and Sage

Fresh veggies, a little browned butter and a light sprinkling of fresh sage make for an aromatic and gorgeous side dish that is the epitome of laid back, wholesome cooking.

A bowl of rainbow carrots with browned butter and sage

The Ultimate Cheese Board

If you’re looking for a no-cook appetizer (or even sophisticated dessert!) idea for Turkey day, a cheese plate is the way to go. Simply assemble and serve! My tips for balancing the flavors and textures of the perfect cheese board will make yours as memorable as anything else on your table.

a cheese board with rolled ham

No Churn Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream

No-churn ice creams are one of my favorite desserts to make because it’s just so satisfying to mix together a few ingredients, throw it in the freezer, and, like magic, you have a silky, rich homemade ice cream! This dessert tastes just like pumpkin pie, and doesn’t hog any oven space 🙂

No Churn Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream tastes just like your favorite Holiday pie, and you don't need any special equipment to make it! ~ theviewfromgreatisland.com

Roasted Rainbow Vegetables

Between the turkey, the gravy, and the mashed potatoes, Thanksgiving tables can get a little drab. These fresh, vibrant roasted veggies bring so much life and flavor to the holiday spread.


The Best Pecan Sandies

These buttery shortbread cookies are infused with the rich flavors of pecan pie, in an easy, slice-and-bake cookie! Set out a plate with after dinner coffee and you’ve basically beat the system with an effortless dessert that everybody loves. (My butter pecan shortbread also works!)

a plate of pecan sandy cookies
e book

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3 Comments

    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    Cecil Axson
    November 24, 2021 at 11:16 pm

    This year will be the year I finally nail the turkey. The last few years have been a real disappointment. No one likes a dry and tough turkey on turkey day! This year is gonna be the one!

  • Reply
    Ellen Easton
    November 14, 2021 at 9:30 am

    What time are you serving ? Everything photographed looked scrumptious!

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      November 14, 2021 at 9:46 am

      lol, haven’t even started figuring that out yet 😉

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