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Nearly everyone looks forward to enjoying a delicious Thanksgiving meal each year, and customers are almost always willing to sit down and enjoy a traditional holiday menu. However, sometimes, the same old thing may get a little boring.
When you think of your holiday meal, you probably envision a roasted turkey, cranberry sauce, green beans, and a host of other tasty dishes. While the details will vary from table to table, there are some staples that most of us have come to know and love over the years, even if the consistency makes the years all blur together.
Thanksgiving doesn’t always have to follow traditional rules, though, especially in your restaurant! Offering a modern, unique spin on some favorite tried-and-true dishes with some new menu items can be a great way to bring in a new crowd and impress existing customers, all while keeping some traditional options available for those who would rather stick with the classics.
Here are just a few ideas of ways to spruce up your restaurant or catering menu with some fun new Thanksgiving recipes.
1. Buttery Salmon Wellington
Thanksgiving calls for elegant dishes, but it doesn’t always have to call for turkey! Salmon subs in for turkey in this delicious salmon wellington paired with creamed spinach and Dijon mustard inside of a puff pastry. Those who aren’t fans of traditional Thanksgiving turkey – or those who are simply looking to try something unique this year – will appreciate this special seafood offering. It can also be a great option for pescatarians looking for a non-poultry source of protein on the menu. This fanciful dish is the ideal entrée for a tasteful and elegant yet homey meal.
2. Deep-Fried Sriracha Turkey
Everyone loves turkey on Thanksgiving, so put your own spin on it with a deep-fried siracha turkey. Sriracha adds a bit of spice and a unique taste to a traditional Thanksgiving turkey but isn’t too heavy or overwhelming for the average guest. Adding in the texture from deep-frying turkey is both delicious and faster than cooking turkey the traditional way, lessening the load for your kitchen staff and offering an appealing but unusual spin on this classic dish.
3. Green Bean Casserole With Lobster
For a luxurious take on Thanksgiving dinner, serve up this rich and creamy green bean casserole that your customers will love. The green bean casserole evokes nostalgic, comforting memories, while the lobster adds a taste of decadence and elegance. Remember that if your kitchen cooks with live lobsters, they should be cooked that same day!
4. Truffled Cheese Mashed Potatoes
Everyone looks forward to eating mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving, so impress your guests with a truffled cheese mash. This recipe uses a cheese called Sottocenare, which is an aged truffle cheese that will have your guests wishing their instant mashed potatoes at home tasted nearly this good. This rich dish doesn’t overwhelm the palate but will be sure to ‘wow’ guests with its subtle truffle touch, making it an excellent side dish for the larger entrees on our list.
5. Bacon-Wrapped Brussels Sprouts
Even the pickiest of customers will enjoy chowing down on crispy bacon-wrapped brussels sprouts It’s hard to go wrong with bacon wrapped around a fan-favorite Thanksgiving side – talk about an upgrade! Both children and adults will turn toward the vegetables on your menu with this delicious, crispy offering.
6. Bistro Macaroni And Cheese
This creamy bistro Macaroni and cheese with a crunchy topping will take your Thanksgiving menu to another level. This option is a total crowd-pleaser, perfect for your youngest guests and those of all ages. Customers will love to pair macaroni and cheese and other traditional Thanksgiving sides with a unique entree, like our suggested salmon wellington or fried sriracha turkey.
7. Fruit And Vegetable Winter Salad
With rich, heavy dishes like bacon-wrapped brussels sprouts and bistro macaroni and cheese on your menu, you’ll want to offer something light to complement them. This winter salad mixes fruit and vegetables to create a tasty, spicy, and crunchy experience that will leave guests’ cravings for a refreshing salad satisfied.
8. Autumn Roasted Pumpkin Soup
With salad must come soup, so for a dish that will appeal to palates of all kinds, go with this roasted pumpkin soup for your Thanksgiving menu. Serve with bread, sour cream, and spices to turn this homey dish into an upgraded, fanciful restaurant version. This dish can stay on your menu long after Thanksgiving passes, too, as it’s perfect for all throughout the autumn and early winter seasons.
9. Creamy Pumpkin Pie Brownies
Simple boxed brownie mix goes a long way in these pumpkin pie brownies, made to impress a crowd of customers. These will no doubt remind your guests of fall, and they make for a gorgeous presentation as a fun and filling treat after a big meal. Pumpkin puree baked to perfection with creamy cream cheese, pumpkin pie spice, and sugar creates the gooey, beautiful filling for this perfectly seasonal dessert.
10. Pumpkin Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting
Offer up another pumpkin dessert on your menu with this pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting. Not only is this dish easy for your kitchen staff to create and replicate, but it’s also loaded with traditional autumn flavors that your customers crave. You can’t go wrong with a pumpkin cake during autumn, and the cream cheese frosting makes this one especially unique.
88% of all Americans eat turkey as part of their Thanksgiving dinner each and every year. While that shows the staying power of this classic, it doesn’t mean that diners aren’t interested in more diverse dishes!
In fact, there are countless customers out there who are seeking a unique spin on the usual Thanksgiving fair this year. As a restaurant owner, offering a unique take on Thanksgiving dinner will undoubtedly draw in more customers to your restaurant and perhaps interest an audience you didn’t even know you had.
The holidays also represent a valuable opportunity to impress customers by leveling up your presentation. Consider adding special touches or minute items with flares such as:
Rather than sticking with only the same old roasted turkey and green beans on your business’s Thanksgiving menu this year, take your guests on a flavor journey by giving one of the ten unforgettable holiday dishes we’ve suggested a try.