19 Easy Thanksgiving Sides Made in 30 Minutes or Less

Zlata Faerman | Nov 6, 2017 Food & Party
19 Easy Thanksgiving Sides Made in 30 Minutes or Less
Image: iStock.com/PoppyB


Hosting Thanksgiving for friends and family can be really overwhelming. Not only is there a large number of mouths to feed, but there is an entire menu to put together, complete with enough options for said large number of mouths -- and let's not forget all those eating preferences. It's just too much! The good news is that there are incredible recipes that take a short amount of time, many of which can be made ahead.  

Some family and friends may offer to bring something to the table to help alleviate the stress of cooking for a big group. And that's where this list also comes in handy.

More from CafeMom: 10 Reasons to Keep Pawning Off Thanksgiving On Loved Ones

Send them one of these choices ... or two ... without guilt. These recipes not only take a short amount of time, but many also have simple instructions and few ingredients. Side dishes have never seemed more complex and delicious and yet so simple to make. There are meat and vegan options, too. 

More from CafeMom: 7 Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Sides & Dessert Recipes

Thirty minutes goes by fast -- and no folks want to spend all their time prepping and cooking without enjoying the company of loved ones at the Thanksgiving table. This year, these quick sides dishes are the answer to entertaining and feasting the right way without sacrificing taste.

  • Sauteed Spinach With Garlic and Lemon

    sauteed spinach garlic

    Add some more greens to the table with this simple yet delicious Sauteed Spinach with Garlic and Lemon recipe from Martha Stewart. It tastes really delicious in the same mouthful with stuffing. Plus, the leftovers are amazing on a turkey sandwich.

  • Honey Butter Creamy Skillet Corn

    corn side dish

    Creamy corn is a must -- and this Honey Butter Creamy Skillet Corn recipe by Together As Family is supreme. Honey mixed with cream cheese and butter make this dish sweet so you can reduce the amount of honey used to suit your taste.

  • Massaged Kale and Avocado Salad with Pumpkin Seeds

    kale salad

    With all the hot dishes on the table, balance it out with something cold. We love this Massaged Kale and Avocado Salad with Pumpkin Seeds recipe by Savory Lotus. The avocado is smashed and coats the kale. Dress with a simple lemon, salt, and pepper mix and the Thanksgiving table just got healthier without sacrificing deliciousness.

  • Fresh Corn Salad

    corn salad

    Corn salad isn't just for summer and BBQs and this Fresh Corn Salad from Barefoot Contessa adds the perfect zing to a Thanksgiving table. The cold crisp corn is the star of this side dish, but the basil, onion, and cider vinegar gives it a memorable punch. (Fresh corn optional, of course. We won't tell if you use frozen or canned.)

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  • Turnips With Garlicky Breadcrumbs and Parmesan

    turnips dish

    Panko breadcrumbs make all the difference in this Turnips with Garlicky Breadcrumbs and Parmesan dish from Bon Appetit. They love Japanese hakurei turnips if you can find them, but this sweet dish comes alive with the garlic, lemon, parsley, and Parmesan sprinkle not matter what kind of turnips you use.

  • Vegan Green Bean Casserole

    vegan green bean casserole

    Minimalist Baker's Vegan Green Bean Casserole recipe takes 30 minutes total with prep and cooktime. The crispy fried onions are the perfect topper and almond milk gives it a really great taste.

  • Green Peas and Mushrooms

    green peas

    When you add in portobello mushrooms to peas with onions, the taste is just perfect. Plus, it's a super quick side dish -- following this Green Peas and Mushroom recipe from Paula Deen. You can also add garlic or bacon to take it to a whole other level.

  • Garlic Roasted Beets

    roasted beets

    This is Laura Prepon's recipe for Garlic Roasted Beets as seen on The Rachael Ray Show and they are as colorful as they are tasty. With just 25 minutes of roasting time, these beets are perfect for your bountiful Thanksgiving table.

  • Leeks in Vinaigrette


    While it is a classic, when was the last time you made leeks? For many of us, it was a long time ago. Bon Appetit's Leeks in Vinaigrette recipe calls for mustard, thyme, and vinegar. It can be made a day ahead as well, which gives you more time to tend to day of prep.

  • Quick & Easy Drop Biscuits


    Not all biscuits take a long time -- these Quick and Easy Drop Biscuits from Serious Eats are also called "Emergency Biscuits" because they take 25 minutes and use five basic ingredients. However, may we suggest adding one teaspoon of fresh rosemary to the recipe to take it to next level savory.

  • Creamy Mashed Parmesan Cauliflower

    Creamy Mashed Parmesan Cauliflower

    Kirbie's Cravings' Mashed Parmesan Cauliflower is the perfect low carb alternative to traditional mashed potatoes this Thanksgiving. It's ultra creamy and cheesy and comes together in less than 30 minutes.

  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Turkey Bacon Vinaigrette

    Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Turkey Bacon Vinaigrette

    This simple Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Turkey Bacon Vinaigrette recipe from Honeysuckle White combines the medium-spicy flavor of dijon mustard with tasty turkey bacon for the perfect Thanksgiving side.

  • Light Turkey Sausage & Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms

    Light Turkey Sausage & Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms

    For an easy-to-make and serve Thanksgiving holiday side, try this savory Light Turkey Sausage & Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms recipe with lean ground turkey from Shady Brook Farms. Takes just about a half hour.

  • Pomegranate Coleslaw

    Pomegranate Coleslaw

    Kosher in the Kitch takes a classic side dish and gives it a Thanksgiving twist with the addition of sweet and tart pomegranate seeds, adding the perfect crunch in this Pomegranate Coleslaw recipe.

    More from CafeMom: 10 Creative & Delicious Stuffing Recipes Just in Time for Thanksgiving

  • Fresh Cranberry Sauce

    Fresh Cranberry Sauce

    The Lean Green Bean's Fresh Cranberry Sauce is the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving table. Ready in just 15 minutes, it is full of flavor and tastes great on turkey. Use the leftovers to top your sandwiches, oatmeal, and more!

  • Honey Roasted Carrots With Thyme

    Honey Roasted Carrots With Thyme

    These Honey Roasted Carrots With Thyme from Feed Me Phoebe are truly nature's candy! A little honey and a trip to the oven brings out the natural sweetness of this versatile vegetable. No marshmallow required.

  • Cast Iron Cornbread

    Cast Iron Cornbread

    Consider guests with gluten and other food intolerances with this Cast Iron Cornbread recipe by Not From a Packet Mix. It bakes in just 25 minutes and will go fast! Consider making two for a larger group.

  • Sautéed Asparagus With Mint & Lemon

    Sauteed Asparagus With Mint & Lemon

    SoulBeet's Sauteed Asparagus With Mint and Lemon is a quick, fresh side dish that comes together in minutes. Add a little green to your Thanksgiving meal!

  • Low FODMAP Lemon & Zucchini Quinoa

    Low FODMAP Lemon & Zucchini Quinoa

    This Lemon and Zucchini Quinoa recipe from Life and Thymez offers a great mix of protein and veggies in one dish. It's easy to make and gives guests with gluten sensitivities something to enjoy as well!

    More from CafeMom: 7 Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Sides & Dessert Recipes

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