Thanksgiving is a time for feasting with your loved ones, and who better to turn to for the perfect recipes than Ree Drummond, also known as The Pioneer Woman? From the star of the show, the Thanksgiving turkey, to classic side dishes and desserts with a twist, Ree has got you covered. In this article, we'll delve into 10 of Ree Drummond's mouth-watering Thanksgiving recipes, including her secret for the perfect roast turkey.
The Perfect Roast Turkey: Tips and Tricks
First up, let's talk turkey. Roasting a turkey can be intimidating, but Ree Drummond has shared some tips and tricks to ensure that your bird comes out tender, juicy, and packed with flavor.
How to Brine a Turkey for Maximum Flavor
Ree's first tip is to brine your turkey. Brining involves soaking the turkey in a mixture of salt, sugar, and aromatics to infuse it with flavor and lock in moisture, resulting in a juicy and tender bird. Ree's brine recipe includes ingredients such as apple cider, brown sugar, bay leaves, and thyme. Brine your turkey for at least 24 hours before roasting.
The Best Way to Roast a Turkey for a Juicy and Tender Bird
Ree's second tip is to roast the turkey low and slow. This means cooking it at a lower temperature for a longer period of time, allowing the turkey to cook evenly and remain moist. Ree roasts her turkey at 325°F, and bastes the bird with a mixture of melted butter, garlic, and fresh herbs. Cook your turkey until the internal temperature reaches 165°F, and let it rest for 20-30 minutes before carving.
How to Carve a Turkey Like a Pro
Once your turkey is cooked to perfection, it's time to carve it. Ree recommends letting the turkey rest for at least 20-30 minutes before carving to allow the juices to redistribute. Start by removing the legs and wings, then slice the breast meat against the grain. Don't forget to save the bones and carcass to make a delicious turkey stock!
Leftover Turkey Ideas
After your Thanksgiving feast, you're likely to have some leftover turkey. Don't let it go to waste! Ree suggests using leftover turkey in sandwiches, salads, soups, and casseroles. One of her favorite leftover turkey recipes is turkey pot pie, which combines leftover turkey with vegetables and a creamy sauce, topped with a flaky pie crust.
Elevate Your Cranberry Sauce Game
No Thanksgiving meal is complete without cranberry sauce, and Ree has some creative twists on this classic side dish.
Homemade Cranberry Sauce with a Twist
Ree's first cranberry sauce recipe incorporates orange juice and zest for a bright, citrusy flavor. She also adds cinnamon and maple syrup for a touch of warmth and sweetness. This sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
How to Make Cranberry Sauce from Scratch
If you're looking for a more traditional cranberry sauce recipe, Ree has got you covered. Her recipe includes fresh cranberries, sugar, orange juice, and water. Simply boil the ingredients together until the cranberries burst and the sauce thickens.
Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes: Quick and Easy
Mashed potatoes are a staple side dish for Thanksgiving, but they can be time-consuming to prepare. Ree's Instant Pot mashed potato recipe cuts down on prep time without sacrificing flavor.
Creamy and Fluffy Mashed Potatoes in Minutes
Ree's recipe calls for Yukon Gold potatoes, which have a buttery flavor and creamy texture. She also uses heavy cream and butter to create a rich and fluffy mashed potato dish. Simply cook the potatoes in the Instant Pot for 10 minutes, and then mash with the cream and butter.
How to Make Mashed Potatoes in an Instant Pot
If you've never used an Instant Pot before, have no fear. Ree provides step-by-step instructions on how to use this magical appliance to make perfect mashed potatoes in no time.
But did you know that you can also add other ingredients to your Instant Pot mashed potatoes to give them a unique twist? Ree suggests adding roasted garlic, grated Parmesan cheese, or even horseradish for a little kick.
Another great thing about using an Instant Pot for mashed potatoes is that you can keep them warm in the pot until you're ready to serve. No more reheating in the microwave or oven!
Cornbread Dressing with Dried Fruits and Nuts: A Thanksgiving Classic
Cornbread dressing, also known as stuffing, is a classic Thanksgiving side dish. Ree's recipe takes it up a notch by incorporating dried fruits and nuts.
A Delicious Twist on Traditional Cornbread Dressing
In addition to cornbread, Ree's recipe includes ingredients such as dried apricots, cranberries, and pecans for a sweet and crunchy addition. She also adds sage and thyme for a savory element.
How to Make Cornbread Dressing from Scratch
If you've never made cornbread dressing before, Ree's recipe provides step-by-step instructions on how to make it from scratch. Start by baking a batch of cornbread, and then combine with the other ingredients before baking in the oven.
Customizing Your Cornbread Dressing
One of the great things about cornbread dressing is that it can be customized to your liking. If you prefer a spicier dish, add some diced jalapenos or red pepper flakes. If you want a more savory flavor, add some cooked sausage or bacon to the mix. You can also experiment with different types of bread, such as sourdough or whole wheat, to give your dressing a unique flavor.
Serving Suggestions for Cornbread Dressing
Cornbread dressing is a versatile dish that can be served in a variety of ways. It pairs well with turkey, ham, or roasted chicken. You can also serve it as a vegetarian main dish by adding some roasted vegetables, such as sweet potatoes or Brussels sprouts. Leftover cornbread dressing can be reheated in the oven or microwave and enjoyed as a snack or side dish for days after Thanksgiving.
Beautiful Brussels Sprouts: A Side Dish That Steals the Show
Brussels sprouts are a delicious and healthy side dish that can often get overlooked at Thanksgiving. Ree has two recipes that will make Brussels sprouts the star of the show.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Balsamic Glaze
This first recipe involves roasting Brussels sprouts with bacon for a rich and smoky flavor. Ree then drizzles the sprouts with a balsamic glaze for a sweet and tangy finish.
How to Cook Brussels Sprouts Perfectly Every Time
If you're not a fan of bacon, Ree has another recipe that showcases the natural flavor of Brussels sprouts. Her recipe involves blanching the sprouts before roasting them with olive oil, salt, and pepper. This method ensures that the sprouts are perfectly cooked and crisp-tender.
Brussels sprouts are not only delicious, but they are also packed with nutrients. They are a great source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and fiber. In fact, just one cup of Brussels sprouts contains more than 100% of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C. So not only will you be impressing your guests with a tasty side dish, but you'll also be providing them with a healthy option.
Nantucket Cranberry Pie: A Sweet and Tart Thanksgiving Dessert
Last but not least, dessert. Ree's Nantucket cranberry pie is a sweet and tart dessert that will leave your guests asking for seconds.
How to Make Nantucket Cranberry Pie from Scratch
This recipe starts with a pie crust made from flour, sugar, and butter. The filling consists of fresh cranberries, walnuts, and orange zest. Bake for 40 minutes until the pie is golden brown and the filling is bubbling.
There you have it, 10 mouth-watering Thanksgiving recipes from Ree Drummond that will have your guests asking for seconds. From the perfect roast turkey to creative side dishes and desserts, Ree has got you covered. Happy Thanksgiving!
If you're looking to switch things up this Thanksgiving, try adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of the warm Nantucket cranberry pie. The creamy sweetness of the ice cream pairs perfectly with the tartness of the cranberries.
For a fun twist on the classic recipe, try making mini Nantucket cranberry pies in a muffin tin. This is a great option for those who want to try a little bit of everything without committing to a full slice of pie.