Haven’t finalized your Thanksgiving menu yet? Need to add another side dish? I’m sharing a roundup of my favorite Thanksgiving dishes to help you get your menu set!
Appetizers set the vibe of your meal – and keep your hungry guests out of the kitchen while you finish prepping the main meal! I always like to have a mix of old favorites and new-to-me plates!
Cranberry Pumpkin Walnut Spread
Baked Spinach and Artichoke Dip
While the turkey is the center of the meal, we all know the main stars are the side dishes! Great versions of the classics are my favorite.
Brown Sugar Butternut Squash
Green Beans with Bacon and Brown Sugar
Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
Pomegranate and Avocado Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette
Green Bean Casserole
Sweet Potato Casserole
Autumn Salad with Homemade Dressing
Roasted Garlic Macaroni and Cheese
Bacon Parmesan Green Beans
Dessert is undeniably my favorite part of the meal. I’m not a pumpkin fan, so apples and cranberries are my go-tos for Thanksgiving!
Cranberry Ice Cream
Baked Apple Roses
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Pie
Buttermilk Custard Apple Pie
Apple Hazelnut Chocolate Cake
Cranberry Apple Crisp
What is the typical Thanksgiving weather where you are?
I was recently chatting about Thanksgiving plans with a far-flung friend and she mentioned wearing shorts on Thanksgiving. It struck me as funny, because it is so not what I think of as Thanksgiving weather. We’re lucky if it’s warm enough to go for a walk after dinner without getting totally bundled up!
It also got me thinking about how much different my Thanksgiving dinner would be if it was warm outside. Is it weird to have cranberry apple crisp when it’s 90 degrees out?
Ice cream seems way more appealing – and this would be perfect on a Thanksgiving table. It’s a perfect balance of sweet and tart and I just love the color. It’s also a great option for Thanksgiving because you make it ahead – giving you more free time to focus on the rest of the meal!
I’m excited to be sharing this recipe as part of Cranberry Week – now in it’s third year! See all the tasty cranberry recipes being shared today below and follow #cranberryweek on social media for more ideas all week long.
Cranberry Ice Cream
(from Wonky Wonderful)
Makes 1/2 gallon
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp. salt
12 oz. fresh cranberries cleaned & sorted
2 Tbsp. orange juice
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups cranberry puree
Combine the water, salt, and cranberries in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat for 6-7 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool for 10 minutes.
Transfer the cranberry mixture to a blender or food processor and add orange juice. Puree.
Refrigerate for several hours.
To make the ice cream, mix together the cream, milk, sugar and cranberry puree. Churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions.
Transfer the ice cream to a chilled container and freeze for at least 4-6 hours. Thaw for 5 minutes before serving.
Today, I’m jumping in with a fun, new-to-me group – Improv Cooking Challenge. Each month, there are two ingredients to use – and you can make any kind of dish you want. I’m really excited to jump in and create some fun things in the coming months!
This month’s ingredients were peaches and cream. My first thought was a pie or cake (and I’m kind of hoping some of the other bloggers did this so I can drool over their treats!) but it’s been so ridiculously hot here that popsicles sounded like the best bet. These were delicious – and a relatively healthy treat to boot. Jake and I both loved them!
You can check out all the other peaches and cream dishes bloggers made here:
Peaches and Cream Popsicles
(from Pint Sized Treasures)
2 large peaches, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
3 Tbsp. milk
2 Tbsp. honey
Combine all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze until solid.
I’ve been sitting on this post for a year, waiting for an opportunity to post it. Guess what? We’re finally going to get some snow this weekend! We got a little bit of a dusting last weekend and Jake was so, so excited about it that I’m really hoping this weekend’s storm pans out so we can get in some good outside play time.
Cake batter is one of my favorite ice creams so I was excited to try a snow version. This worked out well – I’m pretty sure it’s going to be our go-to snow ice cream recipe!
Cake Batter Snow Ice Cream
(A Kate’s Recipe Box Original)
2/3 cup yellow cake mix
2/3 cup milk
Large bowl of snow
3 Tbsp. rainbow sprinkles
In a large bowl, whisk together the cake mix and milk until well combined. Stir in snow until you get an ice cream-like consistency. Fold in sprinkles. Serve immediately.
We had a really lovely Memorial Day Weekend. Mark’s been working long hours the last few weeks and his CFA exam is only a few weeks away so things have been generally crazy around here. Having three days of him home with no real plans was glorious. We played in the baby pool with Jake, had a picnic with friends, walked over to the town parade – such a perfect, laid-back weekend.
And I spent a lot of time in the kitchen, which is something that’s been hard to do lately. I got to try out a whole bunch of summery recipes I’m super excited to share – but figured that kicking off summer with popsicles was a sweet way to start.
Oreos are a favorite around here so these were a big hit. I got four popsicles out of the recipe but my molds are fairly large so I think you’d get six with most others.
Cookies and Cream Popsicles
3/4 cup milk
1/2 frozen whipped topping, thawed
2 Tbsp. sugar
In a blender, combine the milk, whipped topping an sugar. Add the Oreos and pulse until they are small bits.
Freeze in popsicle molds until solid.
You know what the best part of today’s snow storm is? That most news outlets are calling it the “last” of the season. I have a feeling they’re just getting our hopes up to crush them with a late-March blizzard but instead of irresponsible reporting, I’m choosing to see it as optimism. I am over winter.
To be fair, we haven’t gotten that much snow this winter. Instead, we’ve been getting ice storms. I prefer snow.
I’m using the “last” storm today to do all the things I feel like I’ve been missing out on this winter – more snowman making, more cuddling under a blanket reading, more hot chocolate drinking while watching the flakes come down and, of course, more snow ice cream.
Mint Chocolate Chip Snow Ice Cream
(a Kate’s Recipe Box original)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. mint extract
1/2 c. milk
Large bowl of snow
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, vanilla, mint and milk until well combined. Stir in snow until you reach the desired consistency. Fold in chocolate chips. Serve immediately.
During the last two winters, I’ve shared my recipes for snow ice cream and the chocolate version after snowstorms. It usually takes me a few storms to get the recipe right. This winter, though, I’ve been getting lots of time to play with new flavors. Strawberry seemed like the obvious next choice. It’s one of my favorite ice cream flavors and if you make all three flavors and you can have Neapolitan snow ice cream! This would be excellent with diced strawberries mixed in too.
In other news, what are your favorite ice cream flavors? We’re getting another snow storm today so I’m looking to experiment with even more variations!
Strawberry Snow Ice Cream
1/4 c. sugar
1 c. strawberry milk
Large bowl of snow
In a large bowl, mix together sugar and strawberry milk. Stir in enough snow to make an ice cream consistency. Enjoy immediately!
Its nearly August – AUGUST! – and I haven’t made any popsicles or ice cream yet this summer. It’s tragic. Especially considering I bought a whole bunch of popsicle molds to start off the season. As soon as I realized this unfortunate fact, I started browsing for a batch to kick off what will undoubtedly be a rest-of-the-summer popsicle binge.
I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted, so I combined a few recipes to create these Cake Batter Popsicles. These came out amazing. They totally taste like you’re slurping down the last of the cake better from the bowl. My only regret is that I didn’t make these sooner!
Cake Batter Popsicles
(inspired by Mrs. Happy Homemaker and Rachel Cooks)
1 (3.4 oz.) box instant vanilla pudding
1/3 c. yellow cake mix
1 3/4 c. cold milk
2 T. rainbow sprinkles
In a medium bowl, whisk together the pudding mix and cake mix. Whisk in the cold milk and stir until it starts to thicken slightly. Stir in the sprinkles.
Pour the mixture into popsicle molds and freeze for at least 6 hours before enjoying.
For me, Shamrock Shakes appearing at McDonald’s are a sign that spring is coming. By the time you hit St. Patrick’s Day, the weather around here is starting to get decent again. And by decent, I mean you probably won’t need the scarf, gloves, hat AND your car warmed up so you don’t freeze on the way to work. I’ve grabbed two so far this season and have sipped them happily dreaming of warmer weather.
Of course, Friday morning we woke up to some unexpected snow – total buzz kill. I decided another dose of the minty goodness was what I needed to shake the snow blues. Luckily, these are ridiculously easy to whip up yourself at home.
I used low-fat ice cream and low-fat milk to keep these slightly healthier and it didn’t feel like I was missing calories at all. I also opted for the more generic mint extract over peppermint extract, which a lot of the Shamrock Shake recipes call for. I think the flavor of the mint extract is closer to what you get at McDonald’s. Add on some whipped cream, a cherry and a green straw and you’ve got a perfectly festive treat.
(adapted from Number 2 Pencil)
Makes 1 Shake
1 1/4 c. vanilla ice cream
1/4 t. vanilla extract
2-3 drops mint extract
1/4 c. milk (plus additional if needed to thin the shake)
1 T. sugar
2-3 drops green food coloring
Whipped cream and cherry, for garnish
In a blender, combine the ice cream, vanilla extract, mint extract, milk, sugar and green food coloring. Blend until smooth. If too thick, blend in a little more milk until the desired consistency is reached.
Top with whipped cream and a cherry.
We spent a good part of our weekend snowed-in in Connecticut. We had friends from Oregon and Texas staying with us last week and our plan was to meet other friends in CT for the weekend so they could transport the crowd up to Boston for their flights home. We raced the storm up Friday morning and then spent most of Friday and Saturday hunkered down at our hotel waiting for the roads to clear.
The Texans hadn’t ever seen so much snow so we gave them the full snowstorm experience – snowball fights, shoveling out cars and, of course, snow ice cream.
We bought some chocolate milk from the gas station next to our hotel (and begged a cup of sugar from the gas station owner) to make this variation of my snow ice cream recipe. We made it in the hotel ice bucket and ate it with forks – when you’re snowed in you’ve got to work with what you’ve got!
Chocolate Snow Ice Cream
1/2 c. sugar
1 c. chocolate milk
Large bowl of snow
In a large bowl, mix together sugar and chocolate milk. Stir in enough snow to make an ice cream consistance. Enjoy immediately!
Linked up with Ingredient Spotlight: Chocolate at Finding Joy in My Kitchen.