LIFE

9 Recipes From Grandma You Should Have On The Menu This Thanksgiving

by Jess Catcher
Jess grew up in Oklahoma before moving to New York to become a writer. She has a cat named Agnes.

Thanksgiving is probably my favorite holiday. That’s right — even more than receiving presents at Christmas!

There’s just something so soothing and comforting about being surrounded by your family to enjoy a meal baked with so much love. I’ve also always enjoyed chipping in to help my grandma out with preparing an item when she would let me, especially if it included my favorite ingredient: sweet potatoes!

Sure, the turkey was usually the main event, but we all have those classic side dishes passed down over the years from our grandmothers and their grandmothers before them that we look forward to digging into each time the big day rolls around.

All families are different, of course, but the recipes below definitely reminded me of all the aromas that would fill up my grandma’s kitchen.

Did we miss your most beloved hand-me-down recipe from back in the day? Let us know in the comments and be sure to SHARE with your loved ones!

[H/T: Midcentury Menu]

Thumbnail Source: Wikimedia Commons, Flickr

1. Frosted Cranberry Squares

1. Frosted Cranberry Squares

Ingredients:
1 13.5 oz. can crushed pineapple
6 oz. lemon flavored gelatin
7 oz. ginger ale
1 can jellied cranberry sauce
1 tub whipped topping
8 oz. package softened cream cheese
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Instructions:
Drain the pineapple can, but save the syrup and add water until it measures 1 cup. Heat until boiling, then mix in gelatin and allow to cool. Stir in the ginger ale and leave until the blend is almost set. Fold the pineapples and cranberry sauce into the gelatin mixture, then pour into a dish. Combine the cream cheese and whipped topping, then frost entire mixture. Toast the pecans in butter for about 10 minutes and sprinkle on top.

2. Sour Cream Green Bean Casserole

2. Sour Cream Green Bean Casserole

Ingredients:
3 Tbsps. butter
2 Tbsps. flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 cup sour cream
2 packages of frozen green beans
1/2 lb. grated sharp cheese
1/2 cup cornflakes

Instructions:
Heat the butter and flour together, cooking gently. Remove from heat and stir in the seasonings, followed by the cream. Cook beans until tender and fold into the cream mixture. Pour into casserole dish, cover with grated cheese and crushed cornflakes with another tablespoon of melted butter.

Bake at 350 °F for 30 minutes.

3. Cheesecake Pecan Pie

3. Cheesecake Pecan Pie

Ingredients:
8 oz. cream cheese
1/3 and 1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsps. vanilla
4 eggs
1 and 1/4 cup of pecans
1 cup light corn syrup
1 pie shell

Instructions:
Mix the cream cheese with the 1/3 cup sugar, salt, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and one egg. Spread mixture onto the pie shell, then sprinkle pecans on top. Mix together the remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla, and syrup, then pour over the pecans.

Bake at 375 °F for 35-40 minutes, or until middle of pie is fully set.

4. Citrus Sweet Potatoes

4. Citrus Sweet Potatoes

Ingredients:
6 medium sweet potatoes or yams
2 oranges peeled and sliced thin
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 and 1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 cup orange juice
2 Tbsps. butter or margarine

Instructions:
Wash and boil potatoes until tender, then drain, allow to cool, and peel. Slice into thin chucks (or long slices like above) and line the bottom of a baking dish alternating with the orange slices. In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, cornstarch, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Slowly pour in the orange juice and butter, and allow to boil for two minutes.

Pour over potato and orange slices and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.

5. Corn Pudding

5. Corn Pudding

Ingredients:
4 eggs separated
2 Tbsps. flour
1/4 cup of sugar
1 stick of butter
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup diced green pepper
3 Tbsps. chopped pimento
1 tsp. salt
1 can creamed corn

Instructions:
Pour corn into a large bowl, then add beaten egg yolks, milk, sugar, salt, green pepper, pimento, flour, and melted butter, then mix until fully combined. Fold the mixture into beaten egg whites and pour into casserole dish.

Bake at 325 °F for one hour or until pudding is set.

6. Creamed Pearl Onions And Peas

6. Creamed Pearl Onions And Peas

Ingredients:
2 cans of pearl onions
2 packs of frozen peas
3 Tbsps. margarine or butter
1/2 tsp. caraway seeds
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
2 and 1/4 cups milk

Instructions:
In a skillet, boil one inch of water and add onions until boiling again. Reduce heat and allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes, then drain and wait until they’re cool to the touch. Peel the onions, leaving small parts of the root intact. Melt margarine or butter over medium heat, then stir in flour, caraway seeds, salt, and pepper until fully combined. Slowly stir in milk until sauce is thick.

Return onions to skillet and add peas and sauce, slowly stirring until heated all the way through.

7. Raisin Sauce Over Roasted Ham

7. Raisin Sauce Over Roasted Ham

Ingredients:
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsps. cornstarch
1 tsp. ground mustard
1 and 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup raisins
2 Tbsps. white vinegar
2 Tbsps. lemon juice
2 Tbsps. butter
1 roasted ham

Instructions:
Combine brown sugar, cornstarch, and mustard in a saucepan, then blend with water, raisins, vinegar, and lemon juice. Bring to a boil and stir for two minutes, or until thick. Stir in butter until melted.

Pour over sliced ham and serve.

8. Chestnut Stuffing

8. Chestnut Stuffing

Ingredients:
2 loaves white bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
1 1/2 lbs. fresh chestnuts scored with an “X”
1 and 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
4 small peeled and diced onions
1 bunch celery diced
3 Tbsps. finely chopped fresh sage
5 cups chicken stock
1 Tbsp. coarse salt
3 cups coarsely chopped parsley
Ground pepper

Instructions:
Spread bread cubes in single layers on baking sheets and allow to dry out overnight. Bring medium saucepan of water to a boil, then add chestnuts and cook until soft. Drain and let cool slightly, then peel and quarter. Melt butter in a large skillet and add celery and onions, cooking until onions are translucent. Add sage and simmer for three minutes, then add 1/2 cup of stock and cook until reduced by half.

Transfer onion mixture to a bowl and add remaining stock, bread, chestnuts, salt, and parsley, adding pepper to taste. Toss to combine, then cover and bake at 350 °F for 25 minutes. Uncover and bake for 30 more minutes or until golden brown.

9. Mincemeat Pie

9. Mincemeat Pie

Ingredients:
4 lbs. beef (or your preferred meat)
Water
2 1/2 cups beef fat
7 1/2 cups chopped tart apples
3 cups beef stock
5 cups granulated sugar
3 cups apple cider
1 cup molasses
1/2 cup cider vinegar
3 cups raisins
2 Tbsps. ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp. ground cloves
2 Tbsps. ground allspice
2 Tbsps. ground nutmeg
Juice of 2 lemons
Juice of 2 oranges
1 cup brandy or sherry
Pie crust

Instructions:
Place beef in large pan over medium heat, cover with water and simmer until meat is tender. Remove from heat, cover with stock, and refrigerate overnight.

Remove beef from stock and save the liquid for later. Chop the beef into small cubes and place in a large pot. Add chopped beef fat, apples, leftover stock, sugar, apple cider, molasses, cider vinegar, raisins, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, lemon juice, and orange juice. Simmer for two hours then remove from heat. Pour in brandy or sherry and mix.

Tastes best if stored in the fridge for a couple of weeks, then poured into the pie crust, covered with more crust, and baked at 425 °F for 40 to 50 minutes.

Did we miss your favorite old fashioned recipe for the holiday? Let us know below and be sure to SHARE with your loved ones!