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11 Fun Twists on Thanksgiving Classics

Turkey. Pumpkin pie. Mashed potatoes and gravy. Cranberries.

When it comes to Thanksgiving, there’s a lot to love about the classics. (Seriously, I’ve already set aside my stretchiest pair of leggings for the big day.) But what if you’re ready to put a fresh twist on some of those old family traditions?

It’s easy to add a couple deliciously different dishes to your Thanksgiving table that are festive, fun and full of fresh flavor. In fact, here are 11 favorites your whole family will gobble up!

11 Fresh Favorites for Thanksgiving

1. “Pumpkin” Jalapeno Cheese Ball.
So charming. So simple. So good.

“Pumpkin” Jalapeno Cheese Ball

Simply mix 1 packet Jalapeno Honey Cheese Ball Mix with 1 (8 ounce) package softened cream cheese and 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese. Chill. Shape into a ball, draw grooves down the sides using a chopstick or skewer, and then insert a stem from a bell pepper or mini pumpkin into the top. That’s it!

2. Rustic Parmesan Twists. Forget the same old dinner rolls. Crispy, buttery and flaky, these fresh-baked herb breadsticks are perfect for holiday entertaining.

Plus, they are ready from start to finish in only 30 minutes!

3. Deviled Egg Pumpkins. A cute twist on a classic crowd favorite, these perfectly poppable appetizers look like little pumpkins, complete with chives for stems.

The secret ingredient: a spoonful of Smoky Bacon BBQ Sauce!

4. Turkey Veggie Trays. You can still get plenty of oohs-and-aahs, even if you’re only in charge of bringing the veggie tray.

Turkey Veggie Trays

Aren’t these adorable? Here’s how to put them together!

  • For the turkey “body,” slice an Asian or Bosc pear in half. Using a dab of cream cheese, stick on two candy eyes, a whole almond for the beak and slice of red grape for the wattle.

  • Surround the halved pear with mini cheese balls. (I used Jalapeno Honey Cheese Ball Mix for mine!)

  • Starting at the outside of your plate or board, add a ring of celery and cucumber sticks. Layer the middle with rows of bell pepper rings, any of your other favorite fresh veggies and crackers.

5. Creamy Wild Rice Stuffing. Not a big fan of traditional dressing with sage or rosemary? Try this delicious stuffing instead, baked with buttery croutons, nutty wild rice and smoky bits of bacon.

It’s really easy to make, too! 

6. Rustic Herb Turkey. It just isn’t Thanksgiving without it. If you’re new to making a big beautiful bird, don’t worry! You’ll get rave reviews with this extraordinarily juicy, aromatic and tender turkey. Your whole house will smell heavenly, too.

7. Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Sweet Potatoes. Filled with fall flavors, these roasted garden veggies will be a delicious addition to any holiday table. Just double the recipe if you have a full house!

8. Spiced Apple Cranberries. Leave that can of jellied cranberries in the pantry. This year, make your own sweet-tart homemade version, simmering with warm spices and juicy bits of apple.

9. Green Bean & Artichoke Casserole. Try a new twist on traditional green bean casserole with this elegant dish, bubbling with Italian cheeses, buttery bread crumbs and marinated artichokes.

10. Frosty’s Carrot Cake. Personally, I ADORE pumpkin pie, but I know it isn’t for everybody. For a different dessert kissed with autumn flavors, serve this luscious carrot cake topped with swirls and twirls of cream cheese frosting.

Tip: for an easy and elegant garnish, sprinkle the edges with chopped pecans or toasted coconut.

11. Cranberry Caramel Cobbler. Last but not least, take fresh cranberries center stage with this spiced sweet-tart cobbler, served family-style with ice cream or baked in ramekins for mini desserts. So fun and festive!

Remember, you can find more than 100 easy Thanksgiving recipes on our website, too. No matter which ones you choose, you’ll be able to relax, enjoy and spend more time around the table with the ones you love.

And that’s definitely something to be thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving, friends!

– Jen