As most Americans are well aware by the time they are in elementary aged, Thanksgiving Day is a holiday celebrated in the U.S. on the last Thursday of every November. It commemorates a feast in 1621 where Puritan settlers and native New Englanders gave thanks for a good harvest. It is now perhaps the second-most important date for family gatherings in the U.S., after Christmas. The word Thanksgiving conjures up several dishes in the mind’s eye of many Americans:
It's never too early to start planning your Thanksgiving menu, especially if you are having a lot of visitors joining you at the table. Mashed potatoes are a classic Thanksgiving side dish, but what about serving sweet potatoes?
Sweet potatoes are just as versatile as regular spuds, plus they add a pleasant sweetness and pop of colour to your meal. On the nutritional side, sweet potatoes are loaded with vitamin A, potassium and fibre, which can help balance out all the other indulgent food at your holiday table.
Ready to get cooking? Here's a look at five easy yet flavourful sweet potato side dishes for Thanksgiving.
5 Sweet Potato Side Dishes for Thanksgiving
1. Sweet Potato Au Gratin
A delectable gratin featuring five simple ingredients: sweet potatoes, pecans, maple syrup, orange juice and butter. Get the recipe here.
2. Cinnamon Mashed Sweet Potatoes
These cinnamon-flavoured mashed sweet potatoes will be a welcome addition to your Thanksgiving table. You could easily make them vegan by using plant milk and olive oil. The simple prep for this dish comprises peeling and cutting the tubers; boiling them; adding cinnamon, salt, butter, and milk; and then mashing them until fluffy.
3. Chipotle Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes
Give your sweet potatoes a Southwestern touch with this easy recipe infused with chipotles, cilantro, spinach and plenty of cheese. To make this recipe, you bake the sweet potatoes, cut them open, and scoop out the flesh. You then mash the extracted flesh with half and half, chilli, and other spices before loading the mixture back into the skin and baking again. Garnish liberally.
4. Vegan Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie
If you are looking for a festive vegan option for your holiday table consider making this hearty mushroom and black bean shepherd's pie topped with mashed sweet potatoes.
5. Sweet Potato Casserole with Pistachio Crust
Most sweet potato casseroles are more akin to dessert than a side dish but this recipe isn't overly sweet. You'll especially enjoy the pistachio crust. To make it, first boil the sweet potatoes. Then mash them into a mixture of egg, buttermilk, vanilla, milk, maple syrup, and spices. Separately, mix pistachios, brown sugar, flour and butter together. Put the potato mixture in a dish, top it with the pistachio crust, and bake.