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Truffled Mashed Potatoes

Cynthia Hoyt

Truffled Mashed Potatoes


Three easy Thanksgiving side dishes to help you start planning your Thanksgiving dinner

Contrary to popular belief, you can whip up Thanksgiving in a day — all you need is a game plan.

The turkey may be the main focus of the meal, but you can't forget about the side dishes and dessert. While the turkey is cooking in the oven (check out our guide to Thanksgiving turkey), stick to the essentials that don't take up much oven space and are quick and easy to assemble, but never skimp on flavor.

Saving time doesn't mean you have to lose any quality in the dishes you'll be serving. If you're running behind on time, you might be tempted to grab a premade can of cranberry sauce, but resist the urge and make some from scratch instead. However, we'll forgive you if you heat up a frozen pie or two.

Here are three recipes that will get you covered for the big day.
Who Needs the Canned Stuff? Cranberry Sauce
Many people default to using canned cranberry sauce, but making it from scratch is oh-so easy. This ultra-quick recipe guarantees that you'll never look back. Fresh cranberries are usually available in most supermarkets around this time of year; if you can’t find them, you can substitute frozen cranberries, which are available year-round.
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Truffle Mashed Potatoes
These stovetop mashed potatoes go from spud to classic side dish in record time and can be made well in advance. To make quick work of mashing the potatoes, invest in a ricer, which will give the potatoes a fluffy consistency and give you more time for turkey basting — or relaxing with a well-deserved drink
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Squash Casserole 
This recipe plays double duty as both a comforting, cheesy side, and an almost-guilt-free vegetable dish. For the best timing, start this recipe just before the turkey is done and finish it up in the oven while the turkey is resting, so it's bubbly and ready to eat by the time you're ready for carving.    
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Photo credit (Truffle Mashed Pototoes): Cynthia Hoyt
Photo credit (Squash and cranberries): Ramona King

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Dena Rayess is a recipe editor and cookbook author based in San Francisco. She enjoys exploring new foodways in and around the Bay Area and beyond, and has been known to whip up a mean house cocktail at dinner parties.