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50 Vintage Thanksgiving Recipes

From fruity takes on turkey to molded salads, you'll feel like you're back in the 1950s with these vintage Thanksgiving recipes.

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Marinated Thanksgiving Turkey

My family enjoys this Thanksgiving turkey because it cooks up tender, tasty and golden brown. Build up flavor by marinating the meat, then grill it to add a tempting barbecued flavor. —Ken Churches, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

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Molded Cranberry Orange Salad Exps Gbhrhbz18 163475 E07 18 3b 2

Molded Cranberry-Orange Salad

When I take this dish to potlucks during the holidays, people always ooh and aah. Feel free to top with whipped cream for added appeal. —Carol Mead, Los Alamos, New Mexico
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Crumb Topped Sweet Potato Bake Exps Thca19 33059 B02 26 5b Rms 3

Crumb-Topped Sweet Potato Bake

With lots of spice and bright orange flavor, this heartwarming sweet potato dish is perfect for fall, winter and special holiday meals. The citrus and honey make for a delightful spin on a traditional sweet potato casserole. —Billie Moss, Walnut Creek, California
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Butternut-Pineapple Crumble

I tried this sweet and crunchy casserole out on my 80-year-old parents and they loved it! Butternut squash now has a place at our holiday table year after year. —Barbara Busch, Henrico, Virginia
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Pressure Cooker Cranberry Apple Red Cabbage Exps Thca17 207936 B08 17 1b 1

Pressure-Cooker Cranberry Apple Red Cabbage

When I was looking for something new, I started playing with flavors and came up with this very tasty dish. My German grandmother would be impressed, I think! The colorful side is just right with pork. —Ann Sheehy, Lawrence, Massachusetts
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Layered Cranberry Gelatin Salad

Light and tangy, this gelatin is guaranteed to please. Kids go crazy for the marshmallow-cream cheese layer on top. —Irma Senner, Dixmont, Maine
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Grilled Apple-Brined Turkey

Producing a juicy, amber-colored turkey infused with flavor is possible with this apple juice turkey brine. You won't regret planning for the long marinating time. This tasty turkey is worth every minute. —Trudy Williams, Shannonville, Ontario
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Mashed Peppery Turnips

I created this recipe in an attempt to use up a great turnip harvest from our garden, and to lighten up one of our favorite dishes. By using turnips in place of potatoes, I made a low-carb side. Now we rarely serve plain mashed potatoes! —Courtney Stultz, Weir, Kansas
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Cucumber Canapes

I always get requests for the recipe for these canapes whenever I serve them. They're delicate finger sandwiches with a creamy herb spread and festive red and green garnishes. —Nadine Whittaker, South Plymouth, Massachusetts
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Creamed Spinach & Pearl Onions

When I was a culinary student, this creamy dish wowed me, and I don't even like spinach. This side is a keeper! —Chelsea Puchel, Pickens, South Carolina
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Sugar-Glazed Ham

This old-fashioned ham glaze gives a pretty, golden brown coating—just like Grandma used to make. The mustard and vinegar complement the brown sugar which adds a tangy flavor to this glazed ham recipe. Be prepared to serve seconds! —Carol Strong Battle, Heathville, Virginia
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Cauliflower au Gratin

Count on this dish to make new vegetable converts. Whenever I serve it, people ask for the recipe. Sometimes I’ll substitute broccoli for all or half the cauliflower, and the green veggie tastes just as good! —Jacki Ricci, Ely, Nevada
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Icebox Rolls

I remember my mom making these rolls almost every Saturday so they'd be ready to bake on Sunday for company or someone just dropping by. Although they take a little time to prepare, they're really not all that difficult to make. And there's nothing in the stores that can compare to them! —Jean Fox, Welch, Minnesota
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Viennese Coffee

This isn't your regular cup of Joe! Dress it up with chocolate, whipped cream and more, making it a drink to savor! —Sharon Delaney-Chronis, South Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Creamy Hash Brown Casserole

This versatile side dish is so good with grilled steak, and is delicious with other meats as well. A creamy cheese sauce and crunchy topping make this potato casserole popular for family dinners and potlucks. —Teresa Stutzman, Adair, Oklahoma
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Wild Rice Stuffed Squash Exps Hplbz17 29144 B06 02 4b 1

Wild Rice Stuffed Squash

I made this recipe when we invited both our families to celebrate our first Thanksgiving in our new home. There were 37 of us, and those who tried this dish raved about it. —Robin Thompson, Roseville, California
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Oyster Stew

My husband is a former member of the Air Force's Thunderbird team, and I developed this recipe after he invited the whole team to our house on short notice for an informal dinner. It was very easy-it was done in 45 minutes, and it turned out to be the best oyster stew I'd ever made! —Christa Scott, Santa Fe, New Mexico
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Mustard Brussels Sprouts

Mustard boosts the green flavor of the sprouts in this versatile side dish. Great served with breaded chicken or pork chops. —Leah-Anne Schnapp, Grove City, Ohio
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Spiced Coffee

I’ve found that those who aren’t necessarily coffee fans often change their tune when they get a whiff of this chocolaty coffee drink. I like to serve up a big batch at parties. —Joanne Holt, Bowling Green, Ohio
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Pumpkin Tartlets

Refrigerated pie crust and a muffin tin make it easy to create these delicious spiced pumpkin tartlets. Dollop with whipped cream and you’re done! — Jessie Oleson, Santa Fe, New Mexico
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Wedge Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing

A wedge salad gets the creamy treatment when topped with blue cheese dressing. Keep the dressing as a topper, or make it a dip for Buffalo wings. —Jenn Smith, East Providence, Rhode Island
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Holiday Baked Ham

Nothing is better at the holidays than a delicious ham baking in the oven. The preserves mixture will be sure to please all of your guests.—American Dairy Assoc, Stacy Duffy, Chicago, Illinois
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Seafood Bisque

We live on the Gulf Coast, where fresh seafood is plentiful. I adapted several recipes to come up with this rich bisque. It's great as a first course or an entree, and it can be made with just shrimp or crabmeat. —Pat Edwards, Dauphin Island, Alabama
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Chestnut Stuffing

It wouldn't be Thanksgiving without a serving of my family's favorite stuffing. If you can't find jarred chestnuts at your grocery store, check gourmet cooking shops or order them online. —Lee Bremson, Kansas City, Missouri
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Easy Green Beans with Mushrooms

My family looks forward to this side dish every holiday. I add sliced almonds for crunch and garlic for a little kick. —Cheryl Wittman, Bergen, New York
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Honey Pecan Pie

Looking for a sweet ending to a special meal? This attractive pecan pie is bound to please with its traditional filling and honey-glazed pecans. —Cathy Hudak, Wadsworth, Ohio
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Spiced Applesauce

Cardamom and mace add a bit of unusual spicy flavor to this homemade applesauce. This dish is a wonderful way to make use of autumn's apple bounty. —Janet Thomas, McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania
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Miniature Meat Pies

I make these handheld pies in advance, keep them in the freezer, then bake them the day of the party. They are always a hit at tailgate and potlucks. —Gayle Lewis, Yucaipa, California
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Triple Mash with Horseradish Bread Crumbs

Why settle for traditional mashed potatoes when you can enjoy three times the flavor? Combine spuds with rutabaga and parsnips, along with the zip of horseradish, for a taste treat. —Lily Julow, Lawrenceville, Georgia
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Molded Cranberry Nut Salad

We try lots of cranberry recipes, and this one is always requested when we have family get-togethers at Thanksgiving and Christmas. It's also been a favorite dish at every church potluck I've taken it to! —Eleanor Arthur, Seattle, Washington
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Aunt Margaret's Sweet Potato Casserole

My great-aunt made an incredible sweet potato casserole for our holiday dinners. I’ve lightened it up a bit, but we love it just the same. —Beth Britton, Fairlawn, Ohio
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Slow Cooker Candied Nuts

I like giving spiced nuts as holiday gifts. This slow cooker recipe with ginger and cinnamon is so good, you just might use it all year long. —Yvonne Starlin, Westmoreland, Tennessee
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Cranberry-Orange Roasted Turkey

You'll have an elegant centerpiece to your meal with this tender, juicy turkey. The cranberry makes it so good. It has such a wonderful aroma and flavor. —Kara de la Vega, Santa Rosa, California
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Herbed Bread Twists

A blend of herbs and a special shape dress up ordinary frozen bread dough in my unbelievably easy recipe. —Deb Stapert, Comstock Park, Michigan
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Fluffy Cranberry Delight

This was originally my daughter's recipe, and she or I will make it for one or more of our holiday get-togethers. It can be served as a fruit salad along with the meal or as a light dessert. It's particularly pretty in a cut-glass bowl on a buffet. —Ruth Bolduc, Conway, New Hampshire
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Watercress & Orange Salad

Keep this recipe handy when you need to make a special salad quickly. The flavorful vinaigrette adds a refreshing touch to the greens and oranges. —Alpha Wilson, Roswell, New Mexico
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Pumpkin Pie Pudding

My husband loves anything pumpkin, and this creamy, comforting pumpkin pudding recipe is one of his favorites. We make our easy pudding all year long, but it's especially nice in the fall. —Andrea Schaak, Bloomington, Minnesota
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Dill & Chive Peas

Growing my own vegetables and herbs helps keep things fresh in the kitchen, but frozen peas make this side is a breeze to prepare. —Tanna Richard, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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Baked Cranberry Pudding

This is an old-fashioned pudding that's a cranberry lover's delight. Serve warm topped with whipped cream for an elegant look, or in bowls with rich cream poured over for a homey touch. —Lucy Meyring, Walden, Colorado
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Creamed Green Beans

A family favorite for years, this special green bean recipe is a cinch to double and can be assembled ahead of time. When my nephews are coming for dinner, it’s an absolute must! —Betty Shaw, Weirton, West Virginia
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Roasted Orange Turkey

I like to bake my turkey a little different every year, so I came up with an orange mixture to rub under the skin. It gives the meat a delicate orange flavor that tastes even better the next day. —Brenda Brooks, Bowie, Maryland
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Giblet Turkey Gravy

Gravy enhanced with giblets is traditional in our house. Try this hearty gravy with sage and a dash of wine; I think you’ll love it, too. —Jeff Locke, Arma, Kansas
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Holiday Cranberry Jelly Exps134124 Cp143300d02 04 1bc Rms 1

Holiday Cranberry Jelly

Spread some holiday cheer with this rosy pink cranberry jelly. —Nancy Davis, Tualatin, Oregon
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Cranberry Waldorf Gelatin Exps Hplbz17 21734 B06 02 1b 4

Cranberry Waldorf Gelatin

We enjoy this easy-to-make salad in the fall when apples are in season. Their crisp freshness adds so much to a favorite dish. — Debbie Short, Carlisle, Iowa
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Candied Citrus

This tart and sweet candied citrus is so easy to make, and it adds a zippy pop to drinks, desserts and more. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Pork Loin with Raspberry Sauce

Raspberries add rub red color and fruity sweetness to the sauce that enhances this savory pork roast. This is an easy way to transform everyday pork into a special-occasion main dish. —Florence Nurczyk, Toronto, Ohio
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Lemon Herb Game Hens

My mom made game hens for my dad once a week. When my sister and I were little we would try to sneak some of the chicken from his plate. For this dish, use whatever herbs you have on hand. If you have some in the garden, even better! —Meagan Meyer, Irving, Texas
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Old-Time Custard Ice Cream

I think my most memorable summertime dessert for get-togethers has always been homemade ice cream. This recipe is so rich and creamy and the perfect indulgence on a hot summer afternoon. —Martha Self, Montgomery, Texas
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Praline Sweet Potato Pie

Adding a pleasant crunch, praline crumbles contrast perfectly with the smooth sweet potato filling in this recipe. It’s a fun, festive update on a classic Southern dessert. —Carol Gillespie, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania
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Potluck Candied Sweet Potatoes Exps150326 Esc3139121d03 29 2bc Rms 12

Potluck Candied Sweet Potatoes

To make it easier to bring this traditional southern staple to a potluck or gathering, I updated it so that it can be cooked in a slow cooker. It's hard to go wrong with candied sweet potatoes when it comes to pleasing a crowd. —Deirdre Cox, Kansas City, Missouri

Caroline Stanko
As Editor, Caroline writes and edits all things food-related and helps produce videos for Taste of Home. When she’s not at her desk, you can probably find Caroline cooking up a feast, planning her next trip abroad or daydreaming about her golden retriever, Mac.

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