Great Side Dishes

Great Side Dishes

Looking for some recipes to complement your family feast? Try our tried-and-true favorite side dishes.

These delicious additions will add color, variety, and new flavors to your meal.

 

Spicy Okra [1]

This unique and flavorful okra recipe is packed with healthy vitamins! This dish adds a lot of vibrant color to your dinner table as well. 

spicy okra and veggies in skillet

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound fresh okra (3″-5″ pods)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, medium (coarsely chopped)
  • 1 pound tomatoes, chopped (about 3 medium tomatoes)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper or habanero chile (pierced 3 times with a fork)
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

  1. Slice rinsed okra crosswise, cut into 1/2″ to 1″ slices.
  2. Heat oil in a heavy skillet over moderately high heat. Saute onion for about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes (including juice) and chile, and bring to a boil. Stir the mixture for 8 minutes. Add okra and cook, gently stirring until okra is tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in salt and pepper and discard the chile.

Candied Yams [2]

You won’t sacrifice flavor with these appetizing yams! However, you will lose the extra calories, sugar, and fat that is common in most Thanksgiving side dishes containing yams.

candied yams in skillet with wooden spoon

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups yams
  • 1/4 cup brown sugarpacked
  • 1 teaspoon flour, sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon orange peel
  • 1/3 tablespoon margarine, tub, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup orange juice

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cut yams in half and boil until yams are easily pierced with a fork but retain their shape (about 20 minutes). When cool enough to handle, peel and slice into ¼-inch thickness.
  3. Combine sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and grated orange peel.
  4. Place half of the peeled and sliced yams in an even layer in a medium-sized casserole dish. Sprinkle with half of the spiced sugar mixture.
  5. Dot the yams with half the amount of margarine.
  6. Add the second layer of yams, using the rest of the ingredients in the order above. Add orange juice.
  7. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes.

Collard Green Cornbread Muffins [3]

Surprise your family with a tasty version of cornbread loaded with good nutrition. Two favorite foods, collards and cornbread, collide and a new favorite is born- Collard Green Cornbread Muffins! 

collard corn bread muffins in a basket

Ingredients:

  • 1 (1 pound) package chopped collard greens
  • 1 1/4 cups self-rising cornmeal mix
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup light (1.5% milkfat) buttermilk
  • 1 (14.75 ounce) can sweet cream corn
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • Vegetable cooking spray

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Remove any remaining stems on collards. Cook collards in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain well and squeeze with paper towels to remove as much liquid as possible from the leaves. Set aside to cool.
  3. Whisk together cornmeal mix, flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk together eggs and buttermilk in a large mixing bowl Stir in the cornmeal mix, corn, onion, collards, and pepper. Stir well to incorporate collards throughout the batter.
  4. Spray muffin tins (there is enough batter for 18 muffin cups) with vegetable cooking spray. Place muffin tins in the oven for 2 minutes. Remove from the oven and fill hot muffin tins until almost full. The hot muffin tins will give each muffin crispy edges.
  5. Bake at 400°F for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Let muffins cool for 10 minutes before removing them from the muffin tin for serving.

Holiday Stuffing [4]

Put this savory stuffing recipe on your Thanksgiving menu for a delicious side dish that is healthy and easy to make. You don’t have to forego taste to keep up your healthy eating habits during the holidays.

thanksgiving stuffing in a casserole dish

Ingredients:

  • 10 cups whole wheat bread cubes (or white bread or buns, dry)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 cup onionchopped
  • 1/2 cup celerychopped
  • 1 teaspoon parsley, dried or 1 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 egglightly beaten
  • apples (optional – medium, pared, cored and chopped, or 1/4 cup raisins)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Put bread cubes in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. Put water in a medium saucepan. Add onion, celery, parsley, saltand pepper. Cook for 5 minutes. Do not drain. Pour over bread cubes.
  4. Stir in milk and egg into the breadcrumb mixture. Gently stir in apples, and raisins, if desired.
  5. Spoon into a greased 2-quart baking dish. Bake for 1 hour until liquids have soaked into the bread and it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Enjoy these additional recipes with your family on Thanksgiving: Skillet Mac and Cheese, Greens with Beans, and Stir-fry Cabbage

 

Written by Leslie C. Davis, MS, RDN, LD, CDCES | Edited by the Nutrition Education Team 
[1] Spicy Okra
[2] Candied Yams
[3] Collard Green Cornbread Muffins
[4] Holiday Stuffing
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