It's not the turkey or even the pies that ignite some of our appetites. It's the Thanksgiving sides that make us long for November. Crock pot Thanksgiving sides make it even easier to whip up the seasonal recipes we enjoy alongside our turkey. Shortcut your way to dinner this Thanksgiving with simple slow cooker recipes.
Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Carrots
Don't let your carrots be an afterthought this Thanksgiving. Let your crock pot give them tons of attention while you're working on the main dish.
- 2½ cups carrots, sliced into medallions
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Add your sliced carrots and butter to the slow cooker. Toss to coat.
- Sprinkle in your herbs and drizzle on the honey.
- Lightly toss.
- Cook, covered, on low for 2-4 hours. Turn to keep warm setting until you're ready to serve.
Crock Pot Green Bean Casserole
Green bean casserole is almost as iconic as the turkey itself on Thanksgiving. Free up some space in your oven and make your dinner prep easier by whipping up the signature dish in your slow cooker. Bubba Pie makes crock pot green bean casserole easy.
Slow Cooker Stuffing
Debates rage during Thanksgiving over what sort of stuffing is best. Do you make the homemade version or stick to the trusty boxed kind? You can settle the debate once and for all by making a homemade version that's almost as easy as the boxed stuffing kit. Honey B's Kitchen shows you how with this crock pot stuffing recipe.
Crock Pot Mac & Cheese
Many of us are thankful for mac and cheese all year long. It's the ultimate comfort food, after all. But getting the timing just right on Thanksgiving is tough — the last thing you want is cold mac and cheese. So make it in your crock pot instead! You can't burn it, and it will be perfectly warm when it's time to eat.
- 2 cups elbow pasta, cooked according to package instructions
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- ½ cup colby cheese, shredded
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 cup milk
- ½ teaspoon ground mustard
- Salt to taste
- Add cooked pasta to your crock pot.
- Melt the cheeses with the butter in a saucepan, stirring until smooth.
- Add the remaining ingredients to your cheese mixture.
- Pour the entire mixture into the slow cooker with your pasta and stir to thoroughly coat.
- Cover and cook on low for 2 hours, stirring as needed. Reduce heat to keep warm until you're ready to serve.
Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Casserole
Some say sweet potato casserole is a dessert in disguise, but we're calling it a side dish so we can add it to our plate this Thanksgiving. Using the slow cooker to make this side dish just gives us another reason to add it to the menu. Melissa's Southern Style Kitchen makes crock pot sweet potato casserole a Thanksgiving staple.
Slow Cooker Creamed Corn
Crock Pot Cinnamon Apples
If you're from the South, you know that cinnamon apples (also called fried apples) are a staple at the Thanksgiving table. Skip the constant stirring and stove-watching this year and make your apples in the slow cooker.
- 6 granny smith apples, peeled and sliced
- ½ cup white sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Add the apples, sugar, cornstarch, and spices to the slow cooker.
- Stir to coat.
- Cube the butter and sprinkle the salt on top of the apples.
- Cover and cook on low for 3 hours, stirring as needed.
Slow Cooker Scalloped Potatoes
Some like them mashed, others prefer twice-baked. Then there's the scalloped potato people. Thanksgiving is basically just a celebration of every potato dish mankind has created. If you're part of the scalloped potato club, try this slow cooker recipe from Damn Delicious.
Crock Pot Maple Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts may be the one dish you skip every Thanksgiving as you're loading up your plate. But this recipe will convince you that the green bulbs deserve a spot next to your turkey.
- 1 bunch brussels sprouts, halved
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup vegetable broth
- 2 teaspoons rosemary
- ⅓ cup chopped pecans
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Add your brussels sprouts to the slow cooker, making sure they all lay in a single flat layer.
- Mix the syrup, broth, and rosemary together.
- Add the mixture to your brussels and toss to coat.
- Cover and cook on high for 2 hours.
- Add the pecans and cranberries and cook an additional hour on low.
If you find the dish has too much liquid after three hours, add a tablespoon of cornstarch during the final hour of cook time.
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Risotto
Crock Pot Mashed Potatoes
For some of us, this dish is far more important than the turkey or the pumpkin pie. If you live for mashed potatoes at Thanksgiving, whip them up in your slow cooker for a quick and easy way of making your favorite starchy side dish. Creme de la Crumb shows us just how easy it is to make the true star of Thanksgiving with this slow cooker mashed potatoes recipe.
Slow Cooker Garlic Mushrooms
A Thanksgiving side that looks like a gourmet dish but takes minimal effort? That's the stuff of Thanksgiving host dreams. These slow cooker garlic mushrooms are easy to make and look as delicious as they taste.
- 2 pounds whole mushrooms (fresh is best for this recipe)
- ½ cup salted butter
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried sage
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Place your whole mushrooms in the slow cooker in one layer.
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan.
- Add the herbs and garlic to the butter.
- Pour over the mushrooms.
- Add salt.
- Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours.
Crock Pot Broccoli Casserole
Thanksgiving is the only day of the year where casseroles count as side dishes and it's socially acceptable to have more than one kind on your plate. If you love broccoli casserole at Thanksgiving but dread the prep and baking, this crock pot version from The Magical Slow Cooker is the answer to your casserole conundrum.
Slow Cooker Corn Casserole
Speaking of Thanksgiving casseroles, just one really isn't enough. To meet the two-casserole minimum, try a sweet and creamy corn casserole this year. Taste of the Frontier makes the traditional corn casserole quick and easy in the crock pot.
Crock Pot Rosemary Olive Oil Bread
Making homemade bread isn't half as intimidating when your slow cooker does most of the work. This Thanksgiving, you can swap frozen rolls for homemade bread, and no one will know that you made it all without tons of kneading and filling your oven with bread pans. Give this rosemary olive oil bread (an easy recipe from Host the Toast) a try to wow all your Thanksgiving dinner guests.
Slow Cooker Cheesy Squash
Celebrating the bounty of harvest requires at least one squash dish, right? We're not sure they had cheesy squash at the first Thanksgiving, but it can definitely be a part of this year's feast.
- 2 yellow squash, sliced
- 2 zucchini squash, sliced
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- ½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a skillet, saute the squash and onion in 1 tablespoon of butter for 2-3 minutes or until slightly crisp and tender.
- Add squash and onions to your crock pot.
- In a saucepan, melt the other tablespoon of butter and add the cheeses in one handful at a time. Stir until melted between each handful.
- Pour the cheese mixture over the squash. Cover and cook on low for 2 hours.
Crockpot Creamed Spinach
This Thanksgiving side probably isn't popular at the kids' table, but the adults will love it. Creamed spinach is one of the greens we actually consider grabbing on our way to get seconds. Running in a Skirt shows us just how delicious it can be with this simple crock pot recipe.
Slow Cooker Baked Beans
It's time for this summer barbeque side dish to take its rightful place next to the turkey on your Thanksgiving table. Baked beans are beloved enough to warrant serving them alongside your other Turkey Day sides. Recipes That Crock has this crock pot bacon baked beans recipe, and it might be your next favorite Thanksgiving dish.
Slow Cooker Cranberry Sauce
There's nothing quite so satisfying as plopping that canned cranberry sauce in a bowl and admiring those perfect can-pressed ridges. But you might be willing to sacrifice the fun of canned cranberry sauce for the game-changing flavor of homemade.
- 12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
- Juice of 2 oranges
- ½ cup water
- ⅓ cup brown sugar
- Add all ingredients to your slow cooker.
- Stir and make sure every cranberry is coated.
- Cover and cook on low for 7 hours.
- Adjust sweetness as needed.
You can substitute the brown sugar for any sweetener you like: maple syrup, white sugar, date sugar, or honey all work well in this recipe.
Crock Pot Rosemary Honey Beets
Nothing "beets" a sweet take on vegetables. You'll excuse our food pun, but these rosemary honey beets show just how versatile the root vegetable is and how useful your slow cooker can be for Thanksgiving dinner prep. It's a Veg World After All is rebranding beets for the better with this crock pot beet roasting method.
Crock the Meal Prep Process This Thanksgiving
Every good host knows the key to a successful dinner is an efficient way of getting food prepared without making your kitchen a mess. These slow cooker sides are your ticket to doing just that. Whether this is your first Thanksgiving preparing part of the meal or you're a seasoned pro, your sides will steal the show from the traditional turkey.