A dash of salt, a pinch of chili powder, and one large glass of wine...maybe two

Easy Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes – No Need to Stress!

Easy Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes – No Need to Stress!

happy-thanksgivingIf you’re like me, Thanksgiving crept up on you this year. Or maybe you’ve just been putting off creating your menu because you just haven’t had the time. Well no worries! Here I have a list of easy Thanksgiving dinner recipes (sans turkey) to help you through the holiday.

Let’s start with a main course


Shredded Pork in the Crock Pot


  • 1 4-5 lb Center Cut Pork Loin
  • 8 Strips of Bacon
  • Salt
  • Garlic Powder
  • Chili Powder

This one is super simple and incredibly tasty. Prepare this one the night before and start cooking it Thanksgiving morning. Or depending on what time you plan to eat, let it cook the night before and reheat on Thanksgiving.

Season the pork loin with the salt, garlic powder, and chili powder. Wrap pork loin completely with bacon strips. Place in crock pot. Cook for 10-12 hours on low. When it is done, the meat will be so tender it will shred easily with a fork. Shred the pork loin and the bacon together.

This recipe is good on its own served with slaw or as a sandwich.



Butter Chicken


  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 cups crushed Ritz crackers
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 stick butter
  • salt, chili powder, garlic to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season the chicken with salt, chili powder, and garlic. Put crushed Ritz crackers in one shallow bowl and egg in another. Dip the chicken in the egg, then coat with cracker crumbs. Place the chicken in a greased glass baking dish. Cut the butter into small pieces, or pats, and place all around the chicken. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour.

I suggest checking the chicken with a meat thermometer at the 45-minute mark and adjusting cook time as needed. There is nothing worse than over-cooked, dried-out chicken. Keep that bird juicy and this will be one of the best meals of the season!


Now on to the sides!


“Scalloped” Potatoes in the Microwave


  • 6-8 large red potatoes, peeled
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • salt and pepper to taste

Slice the potatoes into thin disks. This helps keep the cook time shorter. Place into microwave-safe bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together the cream of mushroom soup, milk, salt and pepper. Pour mixture over potatoes. Cover with lid. Microwave on high for 12 minutes. Stir and microwave for an additional 12 minutes.

Depending on your microwave, you may need to adjust cook time. Stab the potatoes with a fork to check for tenderness.


Green Bean Casserole


  • 1 28 oz can French style green beans
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 can French’s fried onions (sometimes I use more. This is the best part of the casserole to me)
  • salt, garlic, and chili powder to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine everything, leaving half of the fried onions for later. Pour the mixture into a glass baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes. Pour the rest of the onions on top and bake for another 5 minutes.

This is a pretty basic recipe, but a major staple in holiday feasts.


Aunt Lib’s Fruit Salad


  • 3 apples, cored and chopped
  • 3 bananas, sliced
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp sugar

In a large bowl, whisk together the mayo and sugar. Add in the fruit and raisins and stir. Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. This allows all of the flavors to blend.

This recipe is also super basic, but this is the best fruit salad I have ever had.


Now let’s get to the sweet stuff


Mema’s Chocolate Pie


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • 3 Tbs cocoa
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla flavoring
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 pie shells, baked according to package

Mix everything together in a sauce pan on the stove over medium heat. Stir constantly until mixture thickens into a pudding. Pour mixture into pie shells and let cool.

You can’t go wrong with a classic chocolate pie!


Mama’s Sugar Cookie Dough


  • 1 box 10 x powdered sugar
  • 2 sticks margarine, softened (meaning room temp)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla flavoring
  • 4 cups self-rising flour

Using an electric blender, cream butter and sugar well. Add in the eggs and vanilla flavoring and blend. Add the flour and begin to mix by hand. Roll the dough out onto wax paper and shape into tubes. Chill the dough for at least two hours.

From here you can freeze and save for later, bake it now, or eat the raw dough (you know you want to).

When you’re ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice the roll into small circles. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes until done, but still soft in the center. Again, you may need to adjust cook time based on your oven.

I drew a lot of inspiration for this list from the tried and true recipes my family has made for years. And the best part – they are all really easy to do!

So pour yourself a glass of wine, relax, and get cooking!!

14 thoughts on “Easy Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes – No Need to Stress!”

  • Great choice of recipes! Thanksgiving is creeping up and many are scrambling to be prepared and I like the variety in your recipes. I love using my slow cooker so that shredded pork recipe is right up my alley. And the scalloped potatoes and green bean casserole dishes really bring me back to my childhood Thanksgiving at my Grandparent’s house!

  • This is a wonderful list of thanksgiving recipes. I am bookmarking the recipes. It was the first time I prepared thanksgiving dinner for my family few years ago, and it turned out to be a disaster. The food I made tasted horrible, some were overcooked and some undercooked. Ever since that time my family decided to prepare authentic Chinese food instead of turkey. I am glad I came to your website, and it just reignited my passion to prepare the traditional thanksgiving dinner. I love the recipes, simply and easy to follow. Hopefully it won’t be another disaster for me lol. Thank you for sharing!

  • Oh my gosh, I love all of the recipes. I am especially excited to try the shredded pork in a crock pot and the butter chicken. They both look so yummy! My dad will be visiting, so this gives me some variety to try after Thanksgiving is finished. I like it! Thanks for sharing!

  • Finally I have found a website with all the information that I was looking for.

    I was really desperate in finding an article about Easy Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes.

    I found everything I needed to know about this subject.

    Thanks for your valuable information!

  • These all sound so yummy! We always do the traditional turkey and stuffing dinner at my in-laws’ on Thanksgiving, but these will give us something tasty to look forward to after a busy day of shopping on Friday. Thanks for the great ideas!

  • I never like the stress preparing thanksgiving dinner, so thanks for sharing these easy recipes. I especially like the Shredded Pork in the Crock Pot. I will definitely do this overnight for it to finish just about dinner time. I also like the Butter Chicken, never tried it with Ritz Crackers, so I am looking forward to this. I will certainly share this post with friends that I know are looking for easy thanksgiving recipes.

  • I have always though how unlike you American must be to have to cook 2 big festive meals so close to each other’s: that is Thanksgiving and Christmas. But I’ve just read your recipes and I actually feel better about the Chrisdinner I’ll have to put together. I stopped at the desserts, as I would have started craving during my diet period, so best to leave in ignorance. But the pork and the chicken recipes are so straightforward that I feel tempted to give them a go well before Christmas. Thank you ever so much!!

  • This all sounds so tasty! i am from Ireland so we don’t celebrate thanksgiving normally, but i will definitely be bookmarking this page as i love to try out new recipes for me and my son, the butter chicken sounds divine, will definitely be trying this!!

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