F&W’s Test Kitchen offers amazing versions of eight Thanksgiving classics, then gives two innovative variations for each.

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More Innovative Versions of Classic Thanksgiving Recipes
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Creamy Carrot Soup with Scallions and Poppy Seeds

Easy, Elegant Creamy Soup

Marcia Kiesel’s luxuriously creamy soups are the perfect starters for Thanksgiving dinner because they can be made in advance, then reheated and garnished just before serving.

Roast Turkey with Fried Sage & Pecans
Credit: © Frances Janisch

Moist, Flavorful Roast Turkey

Grace Parisi blends ingredients like lemons or pecans into a butter that she rubs all over the turkey.

Jellied Cranberry Sauce with Fuji Apple

Sweet, Tart Cranberry Sauce

Cranberries only need to be cooked for a few minutes before they burst and form a sauce.

Bacon, Onion and Rye Bread Stuffing
Credit: © Frances Janisch

Rich, Savory Baked Stuffing

After tossing the ingredients and spreading them in a pan, chill the stuffing for at least an hour before baking. This ensures that the bread soaks up the liquid—key to a stuffing that’s crisp on top and moist within.

Kale with Currants, Lemon and Olives
Credit: © Frances Janisch

Bright, Tender Braised Greens

Boiling kale before sautéing it is key to making it tender. If the stems and center veins are very tough, remove them: Fold the kale leaves in half with the vein side out, then pull up on the stems.

Mashed Potatoes with Crispy Shallots
Whoever said mashed potatoes weren't a meal was sorely mistaken. For ultrafluffy potatoes, Grace Parisi presses them through a ricer. To achieve a similar texture, pass the potatoes through a food mill or a fine-mesh sieve.
| Credit: © Frances Janisch

Silky, Creamy Mashed Potatoes

For ultrafluffy potatoes, press them through a ricer. To achieve a similar texture, pass the potatoes through a food mill or a fine-mesh sieve.

Maple-Ginger-Roasted Vegetables with Pecans
Credit: © Frances Janisch

Caramelized Autumn Roasted Vegetables

When roasting winter vegetables, be sure to chop them about the same size, so they cook at the same rate. And toss them at least once while they’re in the oven, so they brown evenly.

Classic Pumpkin Pie

Classic, Custardy Pumpkin Pie

To create a crisp crust on the bottom, partially bake the pie shell before adding the filling. If the edge starts to darken too much, cover it with a pie shield or strips of foil.