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Thanksgiving sides that can be served room temperature?

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for sides that can be served room temperature. Something I could maybe bake that morning and take along to the family Thanksgiving. We do the usual turkey and traditional sides and condiments, and oven space/timing is always an issue with our large crowd. I was hoping not to stress out my SIL with another side that requires oven time. Any ideas?

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  1. A nice, rich & moist corn bread; IF SIL doesn't serve cornbread stuffing..
    Cheese & cracker platters are best at room temp
    Mixed nuts
    Some of the appetizers on the CHOW page are room temp style

    1. Do they only eat canned cranberry sauce or could you make that and bring it? One of the easiest things in the world and tastes 100 times better than the canned. There are some great recipes here on this board for it, too.

      1. Well, not necessarily room temp, but doesn't require heating... what about a broccoli salad? I always like to have something cold/crunchy to offset all the warm, often soft-textured sides. You could take it in a cooler, so as not to take up space in the fridge.
        Here's one we love:
        1 head cauliflower, broken
        1 head broccoli, broken (florets only)
        1 cup celery, diagonally sliced
        1 cup frozen peas (I get the little bitty ones)
        ½ lb. bacon cooked and crumbled
        Small bunch green onions, chopped
        1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained
        2 cups mayonnaise
        ¼ Cup Sugar
        1 T (or more) finely chopped onion
        ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
        2 tsp. vinegar
        ¼ tsp. salt

        I make it the night before, but keep the bacon separate until just before serving

        1. as Val suggested, definitely scratch cranberry sauce!

          - roasted brussels sprouts are great at room temp
          - don't forget about salad - you could even skip the lettuce/greens & do a green bean salad with toasted nuts, cheese, and a simple vinaigrette
          - do you have a crockpot? you can make soup and bring the entire pot with you, then just plug it in to reheat at their house.

          oh, and ditto HillJ's suggestions for corn bread...and you can find plenty of threads here on CH with terrific recipes for spiced, glazed or candied nuts.

          1. My Mom always brings a salad and assembles it all while the turkey is being carved. Everything is presliced and the dressing is made. She usually does a watercress salad, with pears, candied pecans, and gorgonzola. I make a roasted sett potato salad with cranberriesan be served at room temperature. It is on here under sides. I will try and link you to it. It is actually better the second day. I get the potatoes already cut at Trader Joe's to make it easier.

            1. Salads:

              Arugula Salad with Pomegranate and Toasted Pecans

              Kale Salad With Pine Nuts, Currants & Parmesan

              Cauliflower, White Bean, and Feta Salad

              Green Leaf Lettuce, Pomegranate, and Almond Salad

              Toasted Barley Salad With Red Pepper and Corn

              Clementine Jicama Salad

              1 Reply
              1. re: toveggiegirl

                Ill third the cranberry sauce from scratch suggestion- super easy to make and so delicious as well.
                I also agree with the salad ideas above. I make one for Thanksgiving that is Arugula, Snow peas, fennel, pomegranate seeds, toasted almonds, ricotta salata and a gremolata dressing.
                I have also made popovers ahead- and while they are delicious hot- they are also pretty darn tasty room temperature :-)

              2. How about some nice roasted golden beets tossed with a vinaigrette?

                1 Reply
                1. re: Janer

                  Beets are excellent served at room temp or even chilled

                2. pumpkin muffins - different from pumpkin pie, very child friendly, and can be served at room temp-

                  1. Green Bean Salad with Corn, Cherry Tomatoes and Basil, from Fine Cooking. A Thanksgiving staple at our dinner table,


                    1. I always roast root veggies with herbs- thyme and rosemary are good. Red onions, sweet pots, rutabega, carrots and loads of parsnips. Roast them in the morning, serve at room tempreature you can dress them like a salad with evoo, balsamic and more chopped herbs.

                      1. Tyler Florence has a recipe for Green Bean Salad with Bacon and dressing that can be made in the morning and served at room temp.

                        1. Wow, these are all great ideas! I did the cranberry sauce from scratch last year, and may do that again this year. Wanted to add another side or two and the cornbread, salad or roasted root vegetable ideas sound wonderful. Thanks everyone, I will take a look at all of these again before deciding whtat to make.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: mschow

                            Wow mcel215, the Tyler recipe sounds fantastic! Any chance you could provide a link?

                              1. re: dkennedy

                                Sure. I found it on Fridays with Tyler, that provided this link and the picture is gorgeous.


                                I am thinking of serving it in case anyone wants to bring the Green Bean Casserole,
                                for Thanksgiving. ;)

                            1. this is not traditional for thanksgiving but I love it as a room temp item- braised leeks in vinaigrette

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: cassoulady

                                If you want to keep a side dish or pie warm but not hot without taking up oven space. you could bring an electric heating pad with you. Put the heating pad under the dish, cover it with something to keep the dish warm. This does not have to be done in the kitchen.