25 Easy Thanksgiving Vegetables

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Thanksgiving vegetables add more flavor, a bit of color, and delicious variety to your holiday menu. While delicious vegetable casseroles make yummy sides, you can get easy vegetable recipes that will save space in your oven and can be made ahead, too.

The photo collage shows a serving bowl of glazed carrots, a Thanksgiving salad, squash casserole, and roasted green beans.

Once you have your main dishes and Thanksgiving side dishes all picked out, the easiest way to add a big dose of variety to the holiday menu is to fill in the blanks with a few easy Thanksgiving vegetable recipes.

The challenge then just becomes, how do you want to cook those veggies?

If you need to save space in your oven, I've got easy skillet vegetables, air fryer vegetables, and slowcooker vegetables that make perfect alternatives to oven baked veggies.

I also included some make ahead Thanksgiving salads for a completely no-cook vegetable option.

Will you be hosting kids at your holiday table, too? Don't miss my kid-friendly ideas for serving veggies for the holiday at the bottom.

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Why These are the Best Recipes

A traditional Thanksgiving dinner is all about having lots of options on the table.

Once you've got your main dishes and Thanksgiving side dishes planned, it is easy to fill out the rest of the menu with simple vegetable recipes.

I think these are the best Thanksgiving vegetable recipes because:

  1. Flexible Cooking Methods: When you're juggling dishes in the oven, it is nice to be able to use an appliance like a slowcooker or air fryer to help finish some of the other items.
  2. Easy to Make: Let's be honest, the vegetables are not the star of the show. There's no reason to make them difficult. This is a great spot to cut some corners on prep.
  3. Super Delicious: Even though they are easy, these recipes are still big on flavor and will actually make the veggies something you want to eat!

Easy Vegetable Casseroles

If it doesn't have a pat of butter or a bit of cream, is it even a Thanksgiving side dish??

If you want to turn your vegetables into something extra delicious for the Thanksgiving meal, you definitely want one of these creamy vegetable casseroles.

They are easy to prepare and will be eagerly enjoyed at the table.

Crockpot Green Bean Casserole

The most classic Thanksgiving vegetable is green bean casserole.

I've developed an easy way to make this vegetable side in the slowcooker while still keeping that amazing crispy onion topping.

Crispy Crockpot Green Bean Casserole
Classic green bean casserole is a Thanksgiving side dish essential. When you need to feed a crowd and your oven is full with other things, you can make a crispy Crockpot green bean casserole that stays hot and crunchy for your guests with these tricks.
5 from 44 votes
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A serving of crispy green bean casserole is in a blue dish with a fork.

Old Fashioned Squash Casserole

Ooey gooey cheese and crispy buttery breadcrumbs on top make this old fashioned squash casserole a total winner for a holiday dinner.

Pretty large slices of yellow squash and zucchini add a little bit of color to the feast.

Old Fashioned Squash Casserole
Turn ordinary fresh zucchini and yellow squash into a decadent side dish for a special meal by pairing them with a touch of cream, shredded cheese, and crispy bread crumbs. This is the perfect side dish for grilled fish or chicken when your garden is overflowing with squash!
4.99 from 51 votes
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A white bowl is filled with sliced zucchini squash covered in cheddar cheese and bread crumbs.

Air Fried Butternut Squash

I love recipes that keep my oven open for other important dishes. This air fried butternut squash roasts in my air fryer in 20 minutes and tastes amazing with fresh sage.

Air Fried Butternut Squash
Toss pre-chopped butternut squash with a drizzle of olive oil and this savory seasoning blend and roast it in your air fryer for an easy side dish to pair with seasoned chicken or pork. Fresh sage and parmesan make excellent garnishes if you have them on hand.
5 from 1 vote
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A white platter of cubed butternut squash has been air fried to a golden crispy brown.

Grated Zucchini Gratin

Need an easier veggie casserole? This 3-ingredient zucchini gratin uses grated zucchini and can be prepped in advance.

You'll want to double or triple the recipe for a holiday dinner.

Grated Zucchini Gratin
Use up the leftover grated zucchini after making zucchini bread to make this quick and easy cheesy gratin side dish for dinner. Mix and match your favorite shredded cheese and seasonings, bake with a sprinkle of breadcrumbs until hot and bubbly, and serve warm. This makes 4 "just a taste" servings or 2 generous side dish servings.
5 from 1 vote
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A white baking dish has baked zucchini gratin with breadcrumbs on top.

Crock Pot Creamed Corn

The kids will be thrilled to find a batch of Crock Pot creamed corn on your buffet table! It's a holiday, this totally counts as a vegetable.

Crock Pot Creamed Corn
Sweet creamed corn is an easy holiday side dish for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Easter. This hands-off recipe lets you dump everything into the slowcooker and focus your attention on prepping the rest of your meal. The smooth cream cheese and butter sauce clings to the whole corn kernels giving it the perfect texture.
5 from 42 votes
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The white ruffled bowl has creamed corn made in the Crock Pot. Fresh chives are sprinkled over the top.

Acorn Squash with Apples

Slowcooker acorn squash has cooked apples, brown sugar, and dried cranberries in the mix.

You can cook everything in the Crockpot and then just mash the squash into a serving bowl to bring to the table as a casserole.

Slow Cooker Acorn Squash with Apples and Raisins
This easy side dish is perfect for Thanksgiving or other fall dinners. Pop the acorn squash and apples into the crockpot and enjoy a sweet side dish with turkey or pork.
5 from 42 votes
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A sliced open acorn squash has been filled with red dried cranberries and a spoonful of brown sugar.

Roasted Vegetables

If you want to use your vegetables as a less-creamy, more healthy option at the holiday table, you can't go wrong with a simple roasted veggie.

These crispy vegetable recipes are tossed with just a bit of oil or butter and are a delicious option for the Thanksgiving plate.

Air Fryer Green Beans

Save room in your oven and make these easy green beans in the air fryer.

I use pre-washed green beans for extra-easy prep. Just toss them in olive oil and add a little seasonings, they can cook just before you head to the table.

Air Fryer Green Beans
These quick and easy air fryer green beans make the perfect healthy side dish for dinner.
5 from 45 votes
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A white plate has a pile of freshly roasted green beans hot from the air fryer basket.

Roasted Carrots

Prep a batch of roasted carrots and they can pop into the oven while the turkey is resting and you're making the gravy on the stovetop.

Roasted Carrots
These delicious roasted carrots are slightly seasoned with garlic and red pepper flakes. Enjoy them as an easy side dish or use them to bulk up a salad or rice dish.
5 from 44 votes
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The oven roasted carrots have golden brown edges and are being served on a white platter with a serving spoon.

Roasted Broccoli and Carrots

Want something a little more colorful for your Thanksgiving menu?

Try making a batch of this delicious roasted broccoli and carrots. There are colorful bell peppers and a red onion in the mix and they'll look super pretty in a serving bowl at the table.

Roasted Broccoli and Carrots
This easy roasted vegetables side dish is perfect for serving alongside your favorite Italian pasta dishes or even tossing right into a pasta primavera.
5 from 2 votes
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A baking sheet is filled with roasted broccoli and carrots.

Roasted Potato Gnocchi with Butternut Squash

Mix a pack of dried potato gnocchi with fresh butternut squash and roast it in the oven on a sheet pan. This easy roasted gnocchi could be prepped earlier in the afternoon and then bake while the turkey rests.

Roasted Gnocchi
This roasted gnocchi with butternut squash and fresh sage has a simple browned butter sauce that pairs perfectly with salty parmesan cheese. 25-minute sheet pan recipe that makes a great side dish or vegetarian main dish for the holiday.
5 from 41 votes
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A platter filled with roasted gnocchi, butternut squash, and parmesan cheese shavings with ripped fresh sage sprinkled over the top.

Sauteed Vegetables

Need to save room in the oven and make your veggies on the stove top?

Not a problem, sauteed vegetables are still very easy to prepare and very delicious. Here are a few of my favorites:

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Glazed Baby Carrots

You steam the baby carrots in a saucepan on the stovetop and then thicken the brown sugar and butter glaze at the end.

My glazed baby carrots recipe is truly a hit with kids for your holiday meal.

Glazed Baby Carrots
Sweet glazed baby carrots with brown sugar, butter, and a dash of ginger, make an elegant and easy vegetable side dish for a weeknight dinner but are pretty enough for your holiday table.
5 from 51 votes
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A white bowl is filled with glazed baby carrots, a blue napkin is tucked underneath.

Fried Green Cabbage

This fried green cabbage recipe has a touch of butter and savory caraway seeds in the mix.

It is perfect for the Thanksgiving menu as a simple vegetable side and cooks in a pot on the stove top.

Fried Cabbage
Crispy fried cabbage tossed with caraway seeds and a dash of salt and pepper is one of the easiest budget-friendly side dishes ever! Serve with pork, corned beef, or even roast chicken for a quick vegetable side.
5 from 46 votes
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A serving of crispy fried cabbage with caraway seeds is in a white serving bowl.

German Red Cabbage

For deeper flavor and a big boost of color, choose my classic German red cabbage.

While not a traditional Thanksgiving item it is perfect for fall and complements the flavors of many of the other dishes on the table.

German Red Cabbage
Traditional German red cabbage is cooked with red wine vinegar, a touch of mustard, and a sprinkle of caraway seeds. This warm side dish pairs wonderfully with many pork or beef recipes, especially German sauerbraten.
5 from 46 votes
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A white bowl filled with shredded cooked red cabbage.

Thanksgiving Salads

Thanksgiving salads are a great option for a make-ahead vegetable dish or if you need something to bring that travels well.

Prep a cold and crispy salad brimming with fall flavors, these salads could work as an easy Thanksgiving lunch while everyone is waiting on the turkey to finish baking, too.

Festive Apple Pear Salad

Crispy raw apples and juicy pears are the highlight of this amazing fall salad.

Dried cranberries and a mustard vinaigrette finish it off. You can prep all the ingredients in advance for an easy toss right before serving.

Apple Pear Salad
This festive salad features sweet and crispy red and green fruits and toasted almonds with a mustard vinaigrette dressing. Perfect for serving for Christmas or Thanksgiving as a festive holiday salad.
4.96 from 47 votes
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A platter of prepared apple and pear salad.

Fresh Garden Salad

Let's be honest, Thanksgiving dinner is truly rich and heavy. There would be nothing wrong with serving a light and crispy garden salad. Even just a few bites can help balance out the rest of the meal.

Garden Salad
Prep a large batch of garden salad for an easy dinner side dish all week long or for easy prep ahead work week lunches. Set out your family salad bar every night with your favorite salad dressings and toppings. Be sure to see my fun seasonal variations in the notes below.
5 from 1 vote
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The fresh garden salad is served in a white bowl. You can see lettuce, cherry tomatoes, croutons, and cucumber.

Simple Citrus Salad

While citrus has a stronger flavor and is not necessarily found on most Thanksgiving tables, it actually would be the perfect acidic complement to all the rich butter and gravy laden dishes.

My favorite herb butter turkey has lemons and oranges stuffed inside and my favorite cranberry sauce uses fresh oranges, I think citrus is an excellent flavor for Thanksgiving!

Sunny Citrus Salad
This sunny and fresh citrus salad is the perfect side dish for salmon or your favorite fish. A great healthy family dinner idea.
4.50 from 2 votes
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A platter of sliced oranges with crumbled cheese, chopped pistachios, and seasonings.

Carrot Apple Salad

Carrot apple salad is most often found on barbecue plates but could be a fun and colorful relish to add to the Thanksgiving table.

Carrot Apple Salad
Easy carrot apple salad is a vinegar based slaw that tastes amazing with savory barbecue dishes or grilled meats. Use it to top a pulled pork sandwich or spoon some over spicy barbecue chicken. This is a great side dish to bring to a potluck!
5 from 1 vote
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Colorful shredded cabbage, carrots, cilantro, and green onions are mixed in a bowl.

Crispy Wild Rice Salad

I love that this crispy wild rice salad uses up leftover roasted carrots and wild rice, but you could prep it especially for the holiday dinner by making those items the day before.

This would make an amazing vegetarian entree to offer for Thanksgiving and is a perfect way to bulk up their plate with some warm and filling items.

Crispy Rice Salad
Next time you make rice for dinner, double the recipe for leftovers so you can make this delicious and simple salad for another meal.
5 from 2 votes
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A serving of crispy rice salad shows green lettuce, roasted carrots, fried wild rice in a white bowl.

Easy Salad Greens

If you want to toss together a last-minute salad with a bag of salad greens, you could dress it up for the holiday with a drizzle of homemade buttermilk herb dressing and a batch of these easy cornbread croutons.

This mustard vinaigrette would be an excellent alternative since it pairs so well with many of the other fall flavors that will be on the table.

Raw Veggies and Relishes

Need a Thanksgiving vegetable that you don't have to cook?

These ideas are perfect for offering before the dinner as an appetizer or as a relish at the table.

Dill Dip for Veggies

Make a batch of my easy dill dip and serve it with a big platter of crispy raw veggies.

This is an excellent snack to nibble on before dinner or to just keep on hand all Thanksgiving weekend long.

Dill Dip for Veggies
This easy dill dip for veggies or chips is a quick cold dip for serving at your next party. Delicious when paired with fresh baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, raw broccoli, and celery sticks.
4.96 from 47 votes
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A bowl of dill dip has a baby carrot dipping in it. Cherry tomatoes and fresh herbs are on the platter behind it.

Chow Chow

This spicy chow chow relish pairs so well with pork and chicken, I think it would be a unique and amazing thing to offer on the Thanksgiving table, too.

You could make it up to a week in advance and just store it in the fridge. The crispy cabbage and carrot mix would be a vinegary substitute to gravy for the turkey if you're trying to lighten up your holiday meal.

Chow Chow Relish
This popular southern condiment is the perfect vinegary topping for savory meats and barbecue. Garden fresh vegetables are cooked in a sweet vinegar dressing and seasoned with mustard and turmeric for color. The base recipe has a jalapeño pepper for extra flavor but isn't too spicy. Check the notes for easy heat level adjustments.
5 from 37 votes
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The chow chow has been spooned over a baked chicken breast. Green beans and a couscous side dish are in the background.

Kid-Friendly Vegetables for Thanksgiving

So here's the tricky part when it comes to serving kids for Thanksgiving -- all those vegetables and sides mixing and mingling on their plates sends most kids running for the hills.

If you want to make the kids at your table happy, there are four excellent strategies:

  1. SIMPLE Cooked Veggies: Serve a simple veggie like frozen corn or a can of green beans, all by itself. No sauces, no seasonings, nothing added to it that they can see.
  2. Raw Veggies & Dip: Let them dip raw baby carrots into a simple dip like my dill dip above.
  3. Veggie Snacks BEFORE the Dinner: Want less fights at the Thanksgiving table? Get the kids to eat something with veggies in the afternoon before the main meal and then just let it go at dinnertime. Let them enjoy putting what they want on their plates.
  4. Just Don't Stress It: It's a holiday. You don't have to fight the vegetable fight all 365 days of the year. You can get right back to encouraging vegetable exposures tomorrow.

Check out some of my favorite kid-friendly vegetable ideas for you to use below and don't miss these awesome Thanksgiving recipes for kids for the rest of your menu.

Veggie Pizza

Make this delicious cold veggie pizza with crescent roll crust as a Thanksgiving appetizer.

You can top it with your kids' favorite raw veggies and make it custom just for them.

Even better? Let them help you decorate the top!

Crescent Roll Veggie Pizza
This cold veggie pizza appetizer is a favorite party snack that is easy to make ahead the day before. Buttery crescent roll dough is spread with ranch seasoned cream cheese and topped with your favorite raw veggies.
4.96 from 41 votes
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A veggie pizza has been sliced and served with a small spatula.

Cold Spinach Dip

My daughter loves this cold spinach dip and she totally eats more spinach this way than any other.

Serve it with raw carrots or bell peppers for dunking to up the veggie quotient or let it go and let them enjoy dunking crackers or bagel chips.

Cold Spinach Dip
This easy spinach dip recipe is best served chilled. Simply mix together the spinach and cream cheese base for a delicious dip for bagel chips and crackers.
4.98 from 45 votes
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A bowl of spinach dip is served with bagel chips for dipping.

More Thanksgiving Ideas

Now that you've got your easy Thanksgiving vegetables all picked out, what about the rest of your meal plan?

Don't miss my other easy Thanksgiving recipes for your family feast:

The photo collage shows canned vegetables next to a slowcooker and then serving dishes of glazed carrots, a salad, a skillet of squash, and a plate of green beans.

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