The Aventine at Oakhurst North in Aurora Blog

“Set and Forget” Side Dishes for Thanksgiving

Dust off your slow cooker, these easy to assemble sides require low effort but deliver high flavor.

Maybe you dropped the ball on Halloween and needed a last-minute costume? Don’t let the same last-minute panic set in while you host Thanksgiving in your apartment near Naperville. These slow-cooker side dishes will allow you to “set and forget” while you take care of other details necessary for a successful Thanksgiving dinner.

Slow Cooked Broccoli

This simple and tasty recipe takes about 2.5 to 3 hours in the slow cooker and is ready to serve immediately. Combine the easily sourced ingredients and focus your attention on other dishes or straightening up around your apartment. Sharp cheddar cheese adds an interesting flavor note, while crushed crackers bring a little salt and crunch to the party. 

Slow Cooker Mac and Cheese

Once considered something that could only be made from a familiar blue box, mac and cheese has recently found a new place at holiday dinners. This recipe takes about as much time to prepare as its boxed cousin but packs a wallop of flavor. After Thanksgiving, consider tossing in some leftover turkey pieces with the pasta for a hearty lunch or dinner.

Slow Cooker Barbecue Beans

Ditch the familiar green bean casserole for this quick side dish. Barbecue sauce brings an expected tang to green beans, while a touch of cayenne pepper brings a welcome heat. The addition of bacon is very on-trend with the fact that bacon is delicious and makes vegetables that much more palatable. This recipe can be assembled in the morning and will be ready for table service mid-afternoon.

Balsamic Root Vegetables

Among all the cheese-laden dishes, bring this bright and oh-so-easy side dish to the table this year. Sweet root vegetables like carrots, parsnips and sweet potatoes pair beautifully with tart cranberries and sharp balsamic vinegar. This dish is light but satisfying and is sure to be a hit for kids as well as adults. 

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