When deciding what to bring to Friendsgiving, I never even toy with the idea of a well-decorated pie or dish of roasted brussels sprouts: my fate is already sealed. I must bring the macaroni and cheese. I brought this genius version to my first ever Friendsgiving many years ago, only to watch it snarfed up before I even had the chance to pull a crispy bread cube off the top for myself. Macaroni and cheese, though perhaps not the first dish that comes to mind when you think about Thanksgiving food, is virtually guaranteed to be the first dish to disappear off your holiday table. This is because everyone—no, everyone—loves macaroni and cheese.
For one thing, macaroni and cheese is vegetarian (unless you decide to add bacon, in which case more power to you). It also fits in with the overall edible themes of Thanksgiving food: comforting, savory, and (mostly) starchy. Plus, if baked in a casserole (my recommendation) in lieu of on the stovetop, it is make-ahead, requiring only a quick trip in the oven to get all bubbly and gooey before serving. On the other hand, if oven space is in high demand, stovetop mac & cheese frees up an extra spot for green bean casserole or warming dinner rolls.
If you love macaroni and cheese as much as I do, here are 10 recipes—both traditional and unconventional—to consider for your Thanksgiving table: