4 Easy, Last-Minute Thanksgiving Recipes to the Rescue

So you’ve waited until the last minute to whip up something special, and easy, to take with you to Thanksgiving dinner.

But time is of the essence and there’s only so much you can do in between commercials of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade or Packers vs. Lions game – if Matt Lauer and Neil Diamond aren’t cutting it for you.

For all those last-minute chefs, here are four simple, delicious recipes under 30 minutes that’ll leave your loved ones pining for more, and give you that extra time you need for some well deserved R&R.

1. Cheesy Onion Casserole from Forkable

Cook time: 30 minutes


  • 2-3 tbs. butter or margarine
  • 3 large sweet onions or 4 medium white or yellow onions
  • 2 cups shredded Swiss cheese (8 oz.)
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup or cream of mushroom soup
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 tsp. soy sauce
  • 8 or more slices of French bread


Slice onions. Melt butter in a sauté pan over medium heat and add onions. Sauté onions until clear, a little brown is okay. In a shallow 2 qt. casserole pan, layer onions, 2/3 of cheese and pepper to taste. In a saucepan, heat soup, milk, and soy sauce, stirring to blend. Pour soup mixture in casserole and stir gently to mix. Top with bread slices. Bake at 350 uncovered for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, top of bread should be nice and toasted. Push bread slices under the sauce and top with remaining cheese. Place casserole back in oven and finish baking for 15 more minutes.

2. Thanksgiving Cranberry Sauce from daxphillips on TastyKitchen

Cook time: 5 minutes


  • 1 bag (12 oz. bag) fresh cranberries
  • ¼ cups fresh rasberries
  • ¼ cups fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ whole lemon, zest only


Rinse, clean all berries and place in sauce pan. Add one cup each of water and sugar. Bring to a simmer, then with a potato masher, lightly mash. You want some texture with the sauce, so don’t consider mashing them like your creamy mashed potatoes. Remove from heat and let mixture cool to room temperature. Add your lemon zest, mix, and place in the refrigerator, allowing for the sauce to thicken.

3. Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes from whatsgabycooking on TastyKitchen

Cook time: 20 minutes


  • 2 whole large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 2 tbs. butter
  • 1 whole chipotle pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Adobo sauce
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper


Place the chopped sweet potatoes in a large pot of water. Place over medium high heat and boil until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain the water from the pot, leaving the potatoes in the pot. Add the butter, chipotle pepper and Adobo sauce to the sweet potatoes. Using a potato masher, mash the potatoes until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Add extra Adobo sauce or chipotle peppers once seasoned depending on how hot you’d like the sweet potatoes.

4. Super-Quick Trifle

Prep time: 15-20 minutes


  • Angel food cake or pound cake
  • Vanilla pudding
  • Frozen fruit
  • Liquor of choice (brandy, marsala, kirschwasser)
  • Whipped cream to top (optional)


Chop cake into smaller pieces about 1 inch thick and spread them in a dense layer across the bottom of trifle dish or bowl. White interior facing outwards. Drizzle liquor of choice over cake pieces. (If you don’t want alcohol, add a bit of fruit juice to help soften the cake). Cover the cake layer with fruit of your choice. Cover the fruit with a layer of vanilla pudding. Add another layer of cake, drizzle it with liquor, sprinkle with berries, and add more pudding. Continue until you’ve filled your trifle bowl or run out of ingredients. Cover top with whipped cream if you like. Cover finished trifle in plastic wrap and store in refrigerator until ready to serve. Flavors improve with time.