How to CookCranberry Sauce

10 Thanksgiving Dishes You Can Make Without a Recipe

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Throw away your notes and take the pressure off—here's how to do Thanksgiving without a recipe. 

If you're anything like us, you spend the month leading up to Thanksgiving in research-mode: How will I make this Thanksgiving better than the last? Are the mashed potatoes of my dreams on page 10 of my Google search results? What is the secret to my aunt's secret (and legendary) stuffing recipe?

It's time to stop the madness and call off the dogs. Thanksgiving doesn't have to be so hard; it doesn't have to feel this complicated. In fact, most of the dishes you're making this week can be prepared without a recipe at all. So take the pressure off and trust your instincts—we're revisiting these 10 spectacularly easy ways to throw together your favorite holiday's fare, no notes required. (You can even go rogue with our favorite technique for the bird, by adding your own spices and herbs to the dry brine.)



Mashed Potatoes


Macaroni and Cheese


Potato Gratin


Roasted Vegetables


Cranberry Sauce




Fruit Crisp (or Crumble)


Galette (or Crostata)



This article orginally appeared on November 23, 2015. We're re-running it in honor on Thanksgiving (which is in about 3 weeks!).

Tell us: Which Thanksgiving dishes will you be winging this year?

Automagic Thanksgiving Menu Maker!
Automagic Thanksgiving Menu Maker!

Tags: Punch, Galette, Potato, Thanksgiving, (Not) Recipes