Garden-Inspired Recipes & Cooking

Garden-Inspired Thanksgiving Recipes For A Fresh Celebration

Welcome to a Thanksgiving celebration where we celebrate the flavors of the garden. As we come together to give thanks, our table is adorned with dishes that highlight the best of the season’s harvest. From fresh and vibrant sides to hearty entrees, we’re bringing the essence of the garden to your holiday feast.

Picture the crunch of just-picked vegetables, the aroma of herbs straight from the garden, and the rich, comforting flavors of farm-fresh produce. Our Thanksgiving spread is a tribute to nature’s bounty and the hands that tend to it.

So, let’s gather around and savor the taste of freshly harvested ingredients, appreciating the hard work that goes into cultivating the land. From farm to table, our Thanksgiving celebration is a straightforward homage to the garden’s abundance and the gratitude we feel for the season’s blessings.

First things first, cocktails. Cocktails are the start of the celebration and are a great way to set the scene for all of the excitement to come for the rest of the meal and the rest of the season. 

Fizzy Rhubarb Cocktail

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb rhubarb, sliced into ¼ inch semicircles
  • 2 cups light agave nectar
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 oz of your favorite vodka
  • Sparkling water
  • Sprigs of fresh thyme and kumquat slices for garnish

Directions:

  1. To make syrup, combine sliced rhubarb and agave in a medium mixing bowl. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 48-72 hours. Strain, reserving syrup. Add apple cider vinegar to the liquid. (More vinegar is tangier—adjust the amount to your preference.) Transfer syrup to a lidded container and keep it in the refrigerator.
  2. Combining 3-4 portions of sparkling water with 1 portion of syrup. Add 1 ounce of vodka. Dilute or concentrate to your preference. Serve over ice.
  3. Garnish with kumquat slices and thyme!

Next up in the early stages of our Thanksgiving meal is the appetizer. You gotta have something to tide everyone over before the turkey comes out of the oven. Before the heavy desserts and meats, let’s light up the appetizer with some fresh herbs!

Herb Hummus Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley leaves
  • 10 basil leaves or ¼ cup of thyme or oregano
  • 1 medium scallion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dill
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth.

Arguably the best part of the Thanksgiving feast…we give you the Thanksgiving sides! These perfect partners add texture, flavor, and an umami of flavors to your turkey or whatever you choose for your main dish.

Creamy Herby Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 4 pounds medium Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed but not peeled
  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 head of garlic, halved crosswise
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
  • 3 sprigs of sage
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted room temperature butter, cubed

Directions:

  1. Place unpeeled potatoes in a large pot and pour in cold water to cover by 1″. Add a large handful of salt (water should taste briny, like the ocean) and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are very tender but not crumbly, 30–35 minutes. Drain water and return the potatoes to a warm pot. Using a vegetable peeler and protecting your hand with a dish towel, quickly peel the potatoes, returning to the warm pot when finished to keep them warm. Let them rest in the pot while heating the milk mixture.
  2. Warm milk, cream, garlic, sage, and rosemary sprigs in a small saucepan over medium until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat.
  3. Pass hot potatoes through a ricer or food mill into a large bowl. Slowly add butter and 4 tsp. salt and stir until butter is completely incorporated. Strain the warm milk mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large measuring glass. Pour into potatoes ½-cupful at a time, stirring after each addition until the liquid is fully incorporated and the mixture is smooth before adding more.

Golden Beet Salad with Radicchio

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 golden beets, tops removed
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon honey, divided
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 cup farro, uncooked
  • 1 head radicchio, cut into ribbons
  • ½ cup feta cheese, thinly sliced or crumbled
  • ½ cup pistachios, chopped
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries (optional)

Directions:

  1. Prepare the beets. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, combine two tablespoons of olive oil, all spices, and 1 teaspoon of honey and mix until well combined. Rub beets with the spice blend, then wrap each one in its own aluminum foil pod. Roast for 40-90 minutes until very tender. Set aside to cool, then peel the skin off with your hands. Just before adding to the salad, cut each beet into 1 ½ inch pieces.
  2. Make the dressing. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of honey, and lemon juice to a medium-sized bowl. Add a pinch of salt and stir until homogenous.
  3. For the salad: Cook farro according to package instructions. To a large salad bowl, add cooked beets, cooked farrow, radicchio, feta, and pistachios. Top with dressing, and toss until well combined. Serve immediately.

The cocktails have been drunk, the appetizer is long gone, and it is time for the main event. But what if it was something other than a giant, dry bird?

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium acorn squash
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, divided
  • ½ cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup raw pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds)
  • ¼ cup chopped green onion
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus 1 tablespoon for garnish
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed or minced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup crumbled goat cheese or feta

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean-up.
  2. To prepare the squash, use a sharp chef’s knife to slice through it from the tip to the stem. I find it easiest to pierce the squash in the center along a depression line, then cut through the tip, and finish by slicing through the top portion just next to the stem. Use a large spoon to scoop out the seeds and stringy bits inside, and discard those pieces.
  3. Place the squash halves cut side up on the parchment-lined pan. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over the squash, and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon of the salt. Rub the oil into the cut sides of the squash, then turn them over so the cut sides are against the pan. Bake until the squash flesh is easily pierced through by a fork, about 30 to 45 minutes. Leave the oven on.
  4. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa: In a medium saucepan, combine the rinsed quinoa and water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer. Simmer, uncovered, until all of the water is absorbed, 12 to 18 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the cranberries. Cover, and let the mixture steam for 5 minutes. Uncover and fluff the quinoa with a fork.
  5. In a medium skillet, toast the pepitas over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the pepitas are turning golden on the edges and making little popping noises, about 4 to 5 minutes. Set aside.
  6. Pour the fluffed quinoa mixture into a medium mixing bowl. Add the toasted pepitas, chopped green onion, parsley, garlic, lemon juice, the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt, and the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Stir until the ingredients are evenly distributed. Taste and add additional salt, if necessary.
  7. If the mixture is very hot, let it cool for a few minutes before adding the Parmesan cheese and goat cheese. Gently stir the mixture to combine.
  8. Turn the cooked squash halves over so the cut sides are facing up. Divide the mixture evenly between the squash halves with a large spoon. Return the squash to the oven and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until the cheesy quinoa is turning golden on top.
  9. Sprinkle the stuffed squash with the remaining 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, and serve warm.

Wrap up your garden-glorified gratitude gobbling with this delicious (and vegan) take on a classic Thanksgiving dessert…

Vegan Pecan Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 heaping cup chopped pecans
  • 2 Tbsp molasses, blackstrap or regular
  • ¾ cup pure maple syrup
  • ⅓ cup of water
  • 1-2 Tbsp bourbon
  • 2 Tbsp nut butter of choice
  • ¼ cup flax meal
  • 1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Optional ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  • Extra pecans, for garnish
  • Vegan pie crust (store-bought and baked)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Whisk together all ingredients and let sit at least 30 minutes in the fridge to thicken.
  3. Pour filling into your crust. Arrange the optional extra pecans over the top if desired. Bake on the center rack for 35 minutes. Then, turning off the oven and leaving the oven door closed, let sit in the oven for an additional 10 minutes.
  4. Let the pie cool down, and enjoy!
Gardenuity

Recent Posts

9 Tips for Growing Tasty Tomatoes in Pots on Your Patio

Your Patio Garden of fresh Tomatoes will thrive this spring. You don’t need a big… Read More

3 hours ago

American Heart Association’s “Life Is Why” Campaign | Gardening & Heart Health

Gardenuity is sponsoring the American Heart Association’s “Life Is Why” campaign to inspire people to… Read More

3 hours ago

The Best Tomato Pie Recipe | Quick & Easy

We present to you the easiest way to use up all of your tasty tomato… Read More

3 hours ago

Women Over 50: Growing Greatness | Lemon to Lemonade: Wrap Up

A year ago, when I heard Don Lemon comment, "Women over 50 are past their… Read More

1 week ago

Introducing The Growing For Good Garden Kit with Veggie Seed Strips + Herbs

Our Growing For Good Garden Kit brings together the joy of watching veggies sprout from… Read More

1 week ago

Roasted Ginger Carrots and Herbs Recipe

This is the perfect time of year to plant and grow carrots. They are a… Read More

1 week ago