It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving weekend is right around the corner, but here we are! If you are hosting this year, it is time to start making a firm menu and handing out assignments for those that want to contribute. Today we are rounding up 30 of our favorite recipes to help get your menu started. We love starting the afternoon off with a festive cocktail and lots of good appetizers. Our list includes everything from fried turkey to buttermilk biscuits, creamy brie mac and cheese to deep dish apple pie. There is something for everyone coming to your table in this roundup. We have also included the ever-important “day after” recipes for those of you looking to refresh some of your leftovers. Don’t miss the Thanksgiving Hangover Breakfast Sandwiches…. that is one of our favorite recipes in the list!
We love any holiday that has eating at the forefront of activities, so you can imagine that we go pretty big for Super Bowl Sunday! Tate’s dad has his favorite team – the Buccaneers – playing in the Super Bowl this year, which means we have an even bigger reason to celebrate. Today we are giving you the best of the best when it comes to Super Bowl feasting options. We always like to have lots of appetizers at the start of the game and an entrée that can slow cook until halftime. We don’t want to have to watch the halftime show while slaving away in the kitchen! Most of these recipes can be made in advance so that you can enjoy the game from start to finish.
- Kale & Artichoke Dip – our favorite OG party dip that is sneaky healthy. You won’t have to feel bad if you crush the entire bowl in the first quarter.
2. Homemade Pretzel Bites – this is the appetizer that Tate’s dad’s is famous for at parties. We cook some of the pretzel bites in a ring with the Kale & Artichoke Dip in the center and bake the rest on a cookie sheet for dipping. These look very impressive for guests but are actually easy to make.
3. His & Hers Air Fried Wings – we love a recipe that tastes indulgent but is actually on the healthy side. These air fried wings are crispy and packed with flavor. “His” wings are traditional buffalo flavor while “her” wings are a savory Indian inspired chicken wing with turmeric and tandoori powder. They give a little something for everyone to pick at during game time!
4. Homemade Guacamole – this is our go-to recipe for homemade guac. Once you make this you’ll never go back to anything bought at the grocery store. This guac is a great as an appetizer but is also a nice topping for some of the entrees below.
5. Buffalo Chicken Dip – this is one of our favorites as Tuck’s dad loves buffalo chicken. Our version is a little different than other recipes out there- we have lightened things up a bit with Greek yogurt as the base of the dip and have a garlicky bread crumb topping that is pretty much to die for.
6. Seven Layer Dip Nachos – one of the newest recipes to our list, we love this take on the traditional seven layer dip. Turning the dip into nachos makes the cheese and refried beans hot and melty, while keeping the sour cream and guacamole chilled for dipping into.
7. Jalapeno Poppers – another one of our favorite recipes for people that like some heat in their appetizers! Our poppers are stuffed with all of the flavors of a cheesesteak, minus the steak. Lots of cheese, caramelized onions, and bell peppers make these incredibly tasty and a crowd favorite.
8. Buffalo Cauliflower – it’s always nice to have some vegetarian options on the table, and this Buffalo Cauliflower is one of our go-to recipes. We have again used the air fryer for this recipe, which makes the cauliflower crispy without making it greasy. This is another appetizer that can be served in tacos as an entree for vegetarians.
9. Pepperoni Pizza Dip – you can probably tell from the photo below that we originally made this dish for our Halloween menu last year. It is SO good for any gathering, which is why it made the list! You can easily shape the dough into a football for the Super Bowl if you want to theme it out your party foods.
10. Air Fryer Corn Dogs – the air fryer strikes again, this time for mini corn dogs! We made these for last year’s Golden Globe Awards menu and they were such a crowd pleaser that we make them regularly for a fun snack. They are healthy and easy to make thanks to cornbread mix and the air fryer.
11. Beer Braised Instant Pot Chicken – we love making recipes in the Instant Pot because we can set it, forget it, and keep watching the game. This spicy pulled chicken has a burst of citrus from the limes and a nice little kick from the Corona. We like to serve this chicken as tacos with our homemade guacamole recipe above.
12. Octoberfest Chili – this is a great choice for your menu if the weather is supposed to be cold. This chili might be vegetarian but it’s rich and hearty – we promise you won’t miss the meat. Serve this with our Cast Iron Corn Bread below for a stick to your ribs sort of meal.
13. Smoked Brisket on the Big Green Egg – if you are an “egg head” you know that smoking a large brisket is a labor of love, but one that we are glad to put the work into! We smoke a big brisket (15+ lbs) and serve it sliced with barbecue sauce and all of our favorite bbq side dishes like our Everything Bagel Coleslaw, Cast Iron Corn Bread, or Hatch Chili Mac & Cheese. We use the leftovers for everything from chili to tacos to breakfast hash.
14. Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork – another Instant Pot recipe that is great for game day. We love this BBQ Pulled Pork in sliders or sandwiches, served with barbecue sauce, homemade pickles, and our Everything Bagel Coleslaw below. It would also be great in tacos or on our Seven Layer Dip Nachos, above.
15. Italian Beef Sandwiches – one of our newest recipes on the blog! If you have lived in or visited Chicago, you know Italian beef sandwiches are a classic. Tate’s mom has perfected this recipe over the years and it is always a favorite of ours. We serve these sandwiches with provolone, giardiniera, and lots of jus for dipping. We practically drown our sandwiches the jus is so good, so serve them with lots of napkins!
16. Chicken Tortilla Soup – while the Super Bowl is known for some pretty heavy eating, that doesn’t mean that every dish needs to have a health warning attached. This is a healthy recipe that is quick and easy to prepare. It’s also one of those recipes that the longer it sits, the better it tastes- perfect for game day! You can create an easy and delicious Mexican inspired menu with our Seven Layer Nachos above and Skillet Corn Bread below.
17. Chicken Chili Verde – green chili is a signature dish in Colorado and this is one of our many versions that we have developed over the years. We love the punch from the tomatillos in this chili and that it’s lighter with chicken. We serve this with ALL of the toppings and have our guests make their chili dreams come true.
18. Cast Iron Corn Bread – this is one of our favorite side dishes to make for just about any dinner! This crunchy corn bread pairs well with everything from Instant Pot Beer Braised Chicken to Oktoberfest Chili. While we love it piping hot out of the oven, it can be prepared ahead of time and served at halftime with your favorite entree.
19. Hatch Chili Mac & Cheese – another great side dish option for nearly everything, but we love to serve this hatch mac with our Big Green Egg Brisket or our Chicken Chili Verde. It makes a huge batch and holds well in the oven, making it a great game day recipe.
20. Everything Bagel Coleslaw – this coleslaw was featured on our 2020 Super Bowl Menu. We topped it onto sandwiches with our Instant Pot Pulled Pork and it was an immediate hit! Serve this with any of our smokey meat entrees for a killer combo.
21. Pumpkin Corn Bread Muffins with Cinnamon Honey Butter – another great side dish for just about any of the entrees on our list. We love anything that comes in individual servings, that way our guests can help themselves in the kitchen!
22. S’mores Blondies– every good dinner menu needs a dessert, and we love these bite sized S’mores Blondies. They are a favorite for all ages and can be made ahead of time so that no one has to miss the game!
23. Heath Bar Brownies – another bite sized dessert that is perfect for the 4th quarter. These brownies are made extra decadent with a hint of caramel from the Heath bars.
Thank you for following along with us for the last two weeks as introduced some of our favorite Thanksgiving dishes. Below is our full Thanksgiving Menu, including a timeline to help you be a rockstar host. The timeline starts this weekend. A lot of us will be hosting smaller gatherings this year, and many people will be hosting holiday gatherings for the first time. If you want to be relaxed and enjoy Thanksgiving this year, you must be organized and start prepping now. You will be so glad you did come Thursday! If you are still looking for more recipes to fill up your Thanksgiving Menu, checkout our Thanksgiving 2019 Menu. It is packed with loads of our favorite dishes including deep fried turkey with buttermilk gravy, our “best ever” mashed potatoes, and the love-it-or-hate-it green bean casserole. We have also included some table decorating ideas for a more low key celebration. We know that Thanksgiving is going to look different for everyone this year, but we hope your holiday is still filled with lots of good food, family, and friends (even if those family and friends are joining you virtually).
Thanksgiving Prep List
The Weekend Before Thanksgiving (This Weekend!!)
- Plan out your full grocery list and do all of your food shopping.
- Stock up on beer, wine, and cocktail ingredients.
- Finalize your ideas for table linens and decorations. See our ideas below!
3 Days Before (Monday)
- Make the sauces for the appetizer dipping platter if you are making them from scratch. Refrigerate until Thanksgiving Day, about 30 minutes before serving.
- Cut the sourdough bread for the stuffing and let it sit out overnight to dry out.
- Make the cinnamon honey butter for the cornbread muffins. Refrigerate until Thanksgiving Day; serve at room temperature.
- Make your pie crust for the deep dish apple pie; refrigerate until the day before Thanksgiving.
1 Day Before (Wednesday)
- Set your table. Designate tableware, serving dishes, barware, and dishware that you will need and make sure it is set aside and available for Thanksgiving Day.
- Refrigerate any beer, champagne, or white wine.
- Roast the vegetables for the appetizer platter. Cool completely and refrigerate overnight until 30 minutes before you are ready to serve appetizers.
- Make the mac & brie to the point of baking. Set aside to cool and refrigerate overnight. Take out 30 minutes before cooking, top with the brie cheese and bake.
- Peel and dice the sweet potatoes. Blanch them in hot water. Cool and refrigerate overnight.
- Prepare the turkey breast up until it is ready to bake in the oven; refrigerate overnight. Take out 30 minutes before cooking so that it isn’t cold going into the oven.
- Slice/shave the brussels sprouts for the brussels sprout salad. Cover with a damp paper towel and refrigerate overnight.
- Prepare the dressing for the brussels sprout salad; refrigerate overnight.
- Completely prepare and bake the apple pie. Let it rest for 30-40 minutes after baking before refrigerating overnight. Keep the pie in the springform pan; do not remove it until you are ready to serve.
- Make the pumpkin cornbread muffins. You can cover them with foil and reheat in the oven just before serving.
- Assemble the sweet potatoes and make the crumble.
- Take the bacon wrapped turkey breast out of the refrigerator 2 hours before you want to eat dinner. Cook the turkey breast 90 minutes before you want to eat, so that there is plenty of time for it to rest and be sliced before serving.
- Take the appetizer ingredients out 30 minutes before you want to serve appetizers. Assemble the ingredients on a platter and let sit at room temperature.
- Assemble the brussels sprout salad. It can be dressed up to 30 minutes before dinnertime.
Table Decorating Ideas
We know that your Thanksgiving might be smaller this year, but that doesn’t mean that it should be any less celebratory and special. For our table this year, we have chosen to combine a bunch of different shades of whites and creams for a rustic chic look. We used ivory pillar candles from Crate & Barrel, various sizes of white pumpkins we found on Amazon, and bouquets of white roses that we divided into small arrangements across the table. If you don’t have small vases, short water glasses are a great substitute! We completed our look with rattan chargers from Pottery Barn, white dishes, napkins from Chilewich, and an assortment of gold napkin rings from Crate and Barrel. We particularly love the “grateful” napkin rings they are selling this year! The overall look is simple, elegant, and very easy to pull together.
The unofficial “end of summer” is approaching and we are using Labor Day as an excuse to cook on the barbecue and celebrate. In honor of Labor Day, we have compiled some of our favorite recipes to create the ultimate summer sendoff. We have a little bit of everything, most of which can be prepped ahead of time, so that you can spend your holiday in the backyard enjoying the weather.
- Strawberry Lemon Rose Sangria
- Cucumber Lemonade Gin Fizz
- Classic Guacamole
- Kale & Artichoke Dip
- Spicy Turkey Burgers
- Juicy Lucy Burgers
- Instant Pot BBQ Pulled Pork
- Grilled Skirt Steak with Chimichurri
- Summer Pesto Pasta Salad
- Spicy Watermelon Salad
- Hatch Chili Mac
- Elote (Grilled Street Corn)
- Farmers’ Market Brown Butter Orzo
- Everything Bagel Coleslaw
- Summer Berry Trifle
This year was a special Mother’s Day for a lot of reasons. This was the first year that Tate’s mom was celebrating being a mother to both a human and a fur child, and due to the pandemic, the first year that Tuck’s parents were home for Mother’s Day. We knew we had to do something really special to celebrate the big day. Tuck’s mom took the lead on menu planning and prep so that all the moms could have a relaxing day without being slaves to the kitchen. Here is how the menu and day played out.
We tried to create a menu that had a little something for everyone. Our mom loves Israeli food and the restaurant Safta here in Denver in particular. When Safta opened she went to a food event with the head chef, Alon Shaya, which means we are all owners of his cookbook. We wanted to take elements from his book that we all love and create a menu from it. Originally we had planned to have appetizers and lunch as two separate courses, but decided having lunch as one big platter of food would serve the mood of decadence and be easier to prepare. It ended up being very family style, which feels appropriate to the day even if it isn’t the best social distancing practices.
When planning a menu as extensive as this one, it is important to be strategic in time management and designating specific areas to extend the most energy. The first step to doing this is buying as many items that are pre-made as possible. We bought all of the “snacks” from our favorite Middle Eastern market, Arash. They have better hummus than we could ever make on our own and it is an easy way to eliminate a lot of prep work. Making homemade pitas with a menu this large would be absurd, so we bought those as well and threw them on the grill so that they were hot and crunchy when we sat down to eat. We marinated the chicken kabobs and lamb meat the day before, so that all that was left to do the day of for those dishes was to cook them on the grill. The pound cake is a favorite recipe of ours from the Safta cookbook and easily can be made the day before, which eliminated having to spend a lot of time Sunday morning on dessert.
The final preparation for lunch was pretty easy with the help of a few extra hands. We had Tate’s dad grill the lamb and chicken in the backyard, Tuck’s dad on roasted cauliflower duty, and the Tuck’s mom assembling the platters. The key to any platter, as you can read from our cheese board assembly posts, is that more is more. We divided the dips into small ramekins so that each platter had a little bit of everything and filled the boards with veggies and pitas once the entrée kabobs were cooked. The visual is stunning and almost overwhelming- they are always a crowd pleaser!
We have had so much fun putting together new ideas together for the Super Bowl this year. At Tuck & Tate, Super Bowl is as much about the food and half time show as it is about football (except when the Broncos are playing). We have put together a list of some favorite recipes that would go great together for game day eats this Sunday.
- Buffalo Chicken Dip
- Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers
- His & Hers Air Fried Chicken Wings
- Homemade Guacamole
- Homemade Pretzel Bites
- Kale & Artichoke Dip
Here at Tuck & Tate we love just about any reason to have a party. After the winter holiday season ends and New Year’s Eve has passed, we anxiously await the start of awards season. The Golden Globes nominees were announced a few weeks ago and we have been trying to cram in every movie and TV show we can before the show airs this Sunday. Each award show we host a small get together with lots of drinks, snacks, and voting ballots. We all vote for who we think will win each category and usually have a small prize for the winner. In the spirit of a good theme, we always try to make a punny dinner menu based on the nominees and award recipients.
We created this menu with two things in mind: 1) you are probably just getting over the rush and stress of the holiday season and don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen, and 2) you may have set some health-related resolutions that you don’t feel like breaking in the first week of the new year. The two of us made this entire menu in under two hours, and with the help of extra hands could have done it all in 90 minutes. With the exception of the dessert, the dishes are all VERY healthy so that you can snack without guilt while you watch the Globes.
We plan to serve all of our dishes at the same time, appetizer style so that everyone can grab what they want when the show starts. We like to keep it casual and let our guests help themselves as we anxiously watch the red carpet and show.
Ricky Gervais- Host of the 2020 Golden Globes
Ellen Degeneres- Winner of 2020 Carol Burnett Award
Tom Hanks- Winner of the 2020 Cecil B. deMille Award
Joaquin Phoenix- Joker- Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama
Christina Applegate- Dead To Me – Best TV Actress Musical or Comedy
Tuck & Tate did not grow up celebrating Christmas, but adopted the holiday when their parents got married. What they have learned over the years of celebrating is that Christmas breakfast should be quick and easy. No one wants to spend their morning slaving in the kitchen when there are presents to be opened and an exciting day getting started. With that in mind, we have created a quick and easy tablescape and menu to help you plan your Christmas morning festivities. We chose red and gold for our theme and used items that we have collected over the years to keep the cost of this look festive but at a reasonable price.
Red Placemats (see similar) -Houzz- (Red Pomegranate Crock Placemat)
White plates (see similar) – Crate and Barrel-18th Street Dinner Plate
Coffee Mugs – Starbucks – You Are Here Coffee Mugs (not available online)
Prosecco Glasses (see similar)- Reidel – Gold Champagne Flutes
Ornament Flower Vase
Our menu this year is great for breakfast for a crowd. If you have some helping hands in the kitchen, everything can be ready in less than 45 minutes (including down time to get started drinking our Christmas themed cocktails). We wanted to have things feel decadent and special, but not so overkill that everyone needs a post-breakfast nap.
Christmas Breakfast 2019
Coffee For Those Needing a Caffeine Boost
Thick Cut Bacon
Let the winter holiday season begin!! It feels like from the moment that Thanksgiving comes and goes, we are in a quick and busy countdown to the weeks of winter holidays. Tuck & Tate come from households where they celebrate both Jewish and Christian holidays. We love a reason to celebrate just about anything (as you can tell from our Entertaining section), but Hanukkah is unique because it lasts for eight nights. For Tuck & Tate this means many dinners with family and friends and a whole lot of latkes. Whether you are hosting or attending a holiday dinner in the next few weeks, it’s nice to have a few trusty and reliable recipes in your back pocket. That way the focus can be on celebrating and creating memories and not about what is burning in the kitchen.
Our theme and inspiration for Hanukkah Dinner this year was to take all of the classics of the holiday and give them a contemporary and exciting twist. Like all holiday celebrations, there is a fine line between tradition and having something feel too repetitive. Every once in a while traditions need a glow up to keep the holidays feeling fresh and exciting. For our Hanukkah tablescape and menu, we did just that. We kept the traditional themes of metallic colors and hues of blue, but gave them a contemporary twist. We also have a centerpiece with nine metallic candle holders, just as a menorah would have. We love this tablescape because you can use it for nearly any holiday celebration- Hanukkah, a nice brunch, Christmas dinner… it is very universal.
Placemats: Chilewich Bamboo in Seaglass
Wine Glasses: Riedel Cabernet/Merlot
Centerpiece: Homefest- see similar
We wanted our Hanukkah menu to feel just as refreshed as our tablescape. We’ve traded brisket for Mustard & Parmesan-Crusted Lamb Chops. Latkes get a makeover by using three varieties of potatoes and a Green Goddess Sour Cream. We will be posting recipes all week from the menu below… stay tuned!
Hanukkah Dinner 2019
Thanksgiving is one of our absolute favorite days of the year. Our Nana has hosted Thanksgiving for as long as we can remember and is the ultimate hostess. Everything from the table settings and place cards to the delicious meal is expertly thought out and memorable. We were inspired by her attention to detail when creating this year’s look for our Thanksgiving table setting.
When starting to create a scheme for your table, it’s important to narrow your scope and limit the design elements. It is easy to go overboard with a theme for any holiday, Thanksgiving included. Our inspiration for this year’s table came from new place settings that Tate’s mom purchased this year – rustic placemats and napkins that can easily be matched with our china to make the table feel dressed up for the holiday. We continued the rustic chic theme and added natural looking table decorations- faux pumpkins and squash in hurricanes, cinnamon scented pinecones for the table, and an arrangement of flowers purchased at the grocery store. As a whole, this look is very clean, simple, and cost effective. It is a great example that less is always more when it comes to decorating. One of the best things about using hurricanes and vases for flowers is that they can be easily lifted and removed to bring food to the table. It will make it that much easier to be a host that can enjoy the party.
Expert Tip: set your table at least a day in advance (flowers excluded). There is no reason to wait until the last minute to do this and can save you a lot of time the day of.
Get The Look:
Chargers – Pottery Barn – Tava Rattan Flat Round Charger
Napkins- Pottery Barn – Mason Oversized Linen Napkin (in flax)
China Plates and Salad Plates- Waterford Ballet Ribbon Dinnerware
Hurricanes- Crate and Barrel – London Narrow Clear Hurricane Candle Holder
Filler for Hurricans- Home Goods- see similar from Amazon
In setting out to create our Thanksgiving menu for Tuck & Tate, we really tried to think about all of our favorite memories and moments from our past Thanksgivings. We took into consideration rules our Nana has instilled over the years like “there is NO kale at the Thanksgiving table” and “mashed potatoes should never be healthy”. We know that everyone has a favorite dish, and we hope we can contribute some new ideas to your table this year! We will be posting a new recipe from the menu below every day leading up to Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving Dinner 2019