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Christmas side dish tips

Looking for some tips for rounding out your Christmas dinner menu? They're right here, from make-ahead ideas to help with choosing peak-season produce. We also have the perfect holiday side dish recipes to complement whatever your entrée may be. The hard part will be narrowing down the choices—from savory rice dishes and potato sides to tried-and-true vegetables, stuffing recipes and Christmas salads. Need help pulling it all together? Three little words: holiday countdown planner!

Preparing the entire meal may seem a little overwhelming. Consider handling the main items, such as roast beef or turkey, mashed potatoes and green beans. Then ask your guests to bring a side dish to round out the meal. You can even suggest a few recipes, such as: Apple, Cranberry & Pecan Stuffing, Cheesy Stuffed Butternut Squash, Carrot & Parsnip Gratin, Mushroom, Almond and Cranberry Rice Pilaf or Cider-Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Almonds.

Separate your sides into “make-ahead” and “day-of” recipes. For example, Classic Green Bean Casserole and Tracy’s Make-Ahead Mashed Potatoes can be prepared as directed and refrigerated for a couple days before baking. Check individual recipes for exact instructions on how to finish them up on the day of the party.

KIS – Keep it simple! When having guests, keep a few traditional menu items and partner them with one or two new recipes to add variety.

Root vegetables make a welcome addition to the holiday table, since they complement almost any type of meat. Think beets, turnips, carrots and parsnips, just to name a few. Roasted Winter Vegetable Trio features a mixture of vegetables tossed with dressing and oven roasted to perfection. In Carrot & Parsnip Gratin, carrots and parsnips are nestled in a creamy sauce and baked into a gratin. Either way, these humble vegetables are sure to be a hit.

Christmas side dish tips
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