Our Thanksgiving Menu

Home made stuffing is easy to make and well worth the effort. This version has a crispy outside and a tender, custard-like interior that is full of fresh flavor from the leeks and celery. Get a good loaf of ciabatta or sour dough and hand tear it for the best results.
Thanksgiving stuffing

Hi all! I am getting excited to cook and have our Thanksgiving menu all picked out. In the spirit of organization, I even did the shopping on Sunday to avoid the crowds. Normally we head to a relative’s for a lovely and large Thanksgiving. This year they are wisely not holding that gathering due to the pandemic. So Mr. SB and I will be cooking Thanksgiving for just the four of us.

We actually always cook our own Thanksgiving as I had found through the years that I love leftovers. We also host a Friendsgiving with a college friend and her children. I also like to make the family favorites that I grew up with as our family always hosted our aunts, uncles and cousins.

Thanksgiving Memories

I have very fond memories of waking up and my mom and dad would already be hard at work. My dad took care of preparing the turkey. My mom would make all kinds of sides – mashed potatoes (a must in our house and quickly depleted when my three cousins arrived), pureed butternut squash, peas, stuffing, creamed onions and at least two or three pies. I remember loving the apple, cranberry pie she made one year.

Conversation would last well beyond dinner. I used to love hearing my mom and aunts telling stories about my grandparents who had died when I was very young. Some holidays there were heated political conversations but always in good humor and with no lasting ill will (life seemed easier in that way back then!).

This year, while our gathering will be small, it will still be special. I am going to use our china and good silverware and pick up some fresh flowers.

The food will include a mix of old favorites and a few new recipes. I love to try one or two new recipes every holiday to keep it fresh.

The 2020 Thanksgiving Menu

I plan to make the following – and am sharing my recipe for the best stuffing ever (home made and easy as can be…just some chopping).

Turkey smoked on the Big Green Egg (Mr. SB’s specialty:)

The best stuffing with celery and leeks. I adapted this from the NYT Cooking and it is delicious. Feel free to experiment with the herbs you like best too. I may even use a bit of my meat share’s bacon to flavor it this year.

Roasted brussels sprouts with bacon

Roasted butternut squash with sage

Home made cranberry sauce

Mashed potatoes


And, I am trying out a gratin of celery root, potatoes and rutabaga that I found in this month’s Food and Wine (way out of my comfort zone!).

Pumpkin bread

Pumpkin cake in the slow cooker (am trying this one too for the first time). It looks so easy and with just the four of us I think a homey, easy dessert will be welcome.

What dishes will you be making? Any special family traditions?

Oh, and on Friday we go to cut down our Christmas tree and tailgate with friends. Will be sharing what I make for that too! Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Thanksgiving stuffing

Best Ever Thanksgiving Stuffing (with a crisp outer edge) with Celery and Leeks

Home made stuffing is easy to make and well worth the effort. This version has a crispy outside and a tender, custard-like interior that is full of fresh flavor from the leeks and celery. Get a good loaf of ciabatta or sour dough and hand tear it for the best results.
Print Pin
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Side Dish, Stuffing, Thanksgiving
Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 8
Cost: $8


  • 3 quart baking dish


  • 1 large loaf bread preferably sourdough or ciabatta (about 1¼ pounds)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 garlic cloves thinly sliced
  • 2 large leeks white and light green parts, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 6 celery stalks chopped
  • ½ cup dry white wine I like Pinot Grigio
  • 2 ½ cups chicken broth
  • 3 large eggs
  • ½ cup finely chopped parsley
  • ¼ cup finely chopped chives
  • 2 tablespoons shredded sage leaves and thyme leaves


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, combine olive oil and 4 tablespoons butter. Once the oil and butter has melted, add the garlic and leeks. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until leeks are bright green and softened about 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Then add celery, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally until bright green and tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Add white wine, and cook until reduced by about three-quarters, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Whisk together broth and eggs in a medium bowl. Place bread in a large bowl big enough for mixing. Add the leek and celery mixture, parsley, chives and marjoram. Stir to coat so that everything is evenly distributed. Pour the egg mixture over everything and toss a few times. Let sit a minute or two and give another toss. Repeat twice until all the liquid has absorbed and evenly distributed to each and every piece of bread.
  • Transfer mixture to a 2 1/2- to 3-quart baking dish (a 9-by-13 pan also works), making sure not to pack it too tightly. Dot the top with the remaining 4 tablespoons butter, making sure to pay extra attention to the corners, where the stuffing will get the crispiest.
  • Cover with foil and bake until the stuffing is sizzling at the edges and completely cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes. If it’s not yet time to serve, remove stuffing from oven and set aside.
  • When ready to serve, remove foil and increase temperature to 425 degrees. Bake stuffing until crispy, crunchy and deliciously golden brown on top, 20 to 25 minutes. Sprinkle some chopped parsley on top if desired.
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