Chinese Thanksgiving Menu

Skip the traditional Thanksgiving foods and make Chinese food with fall flavors this holiday season. Have your pumpkin pie, sweet potatoes, and turkey—but give them a twist with flavors like ginger, hoisin, and sesame.

Maybe it is a tradition in your family to eat Chinese food on Thanksgiving day. Maybe you want to branch out because you're bored with the same ol' roast turkey and pumpkin pie every year. Maybe you just love Chinese food!

Whatever it is, we have the menu for you. This Chinese Thanksgiving menu offers the best of both worlds. On one hand, you have fall favorites like turkey, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin. On the other hand, you have your favorite Chinese food dishes, such as dumplings, and flavors like sesame, hoisin, and ginger.

You don't need a fortune cookie to know that this Chinese Thanksgiving menu is going to be delicious.

Appetizer: Soup Dumplings

soup dumplings, dumplings

Dumplings taste best when enjoyed fresh out of the steamer. So go the DIY route—it's worth the effort! Plus, since they're homemade, you can easily customize both the filling and the dipping sauce to get your ideal bite.

Whether you want pork, chicken, turkey, or beef, these savory, sesame-flavored dumplings will satisfy. You'll enjoy both making and eating these delicious bites!

Make-Ahead Tip: Prepare the dumplings up to a week in advance and freeze. Steam the dumplings directly out of the freezer (no separate thawing step required) for 10-12 minutes to cook the filling.

Get the recipe: Soup Dumplings

Vegetable Side Dish: Zesty Green Bean Slaw

Zesty Green Bean Slaw

Move over, classic cole slaw. This Zesty Green Bean Slaw has more of the crunch you crave with cabbage, peanuts, and pepper. Add in tasty green beans, some cilantro, garlic, lime juice, and more, and you've got a vegetable side dish that can't be beat. 

This is sure to be your freshest Thanksgiving green bean recipe yet.

Ingredient Info: Don't be afraid of fish sauce! The condiment lends a pleasant salty quality to the slaw's dressing. Look for it in your supermarket's Asian cuisine aisle, and if you can't find it (or don't enjoy the anchovy-like flavor), feel free to use soy sauce instead.

Get the recipe: Zesty Green Bean Slaw

Potato Side Dish: Mashed Potatoes with Shiitake Mushroom Gravy

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If buttery mashed potatoes have always been your favorite Thanksgiving side dish, wait until you try this upgraded version. The potatoes are extra fluffy and flavorful thanks to yogurt, butter, and green onion, but the real secret to scrumptious success comes in with the shiitake mushroom gravy. Starring earthy Asian mushrooms, rich cream, and plenty of savory seasonings, this gravy is an unexpected and exceptional topping for mashed potatoes.

For the Fluffiest Mashed Potatoes: Stick with Russet (aka Idaho or baking potatoes) since they are low in moisture and cook to a fluffy consistency.

Get the recipe: Mashed Potatoes with Shiitake Mushroom Gravy

Entree: Sesame Turkey

Sesame Turkey

If you were worried you'd have to give up turkey to enjoy Chinese food this Thanksgiving, you can relax now. This turkey recipe allows you to get your fix in an entree that fits your Chinese Thanksgiving menu!

The turkey breast is topped with a sauce made with soy sauce, ginger, sesame oil, garlic, and more. Extra flavor and the finishing touch comes from a sprinkling of sesame seeds and green onion. Oh, and did we mention that this dish can be made in the slow cooker AND that it takes only 20 minutes of prep? Easiest. Turkey. Ever.

Get the recipe: Sesame Turkey

Sweet Potato Side Dishes: Honey-Hoisin Sweet Potatoes

Honey-Hoisin Sweet Potatoes

Next to pumpkin, this is debatably the most popular orange-hued ingredient of the season. If you think no Thanksgiving dinner is complete without sweet potatoes but don't mind skipping the marshmallow-topped casserole variety, try this sweet and salty side dish.

Brush hoisin sauce, honey, olive oil, and salt over the potato halves. Then, once they've roasted to tender perfection, add some more of this tasty mixture and lime juice. Finally, serve the potatoes with cashews, green onions, and lime wedges for your new favorite way to eat sweet potatoes.

Get the recipe: Honey-Hoisin Sweet Potatoes

Study up on the difference between sweet potatoes and yams so you can wow your dinner companions.

Dessert: Ginger Pumpkin Meringue Pie

Ginger Pumpkin Meringue Pie

What happens when you combine a gingersnap-graham crust with a brown sugar meringue and a pumpkin pie filling flavored with ginger, maple syrup, and cinnamon? This delicious dessert! It's proof that meringue isn't simply reserved for lemons and spring. This dessert is all autumn.

From the pretty peaks of the meringue to the hints of harvest throughout the pie, you'll thoroughly enjoy every bite of this dessert.

Get the recipe: Ginger Pumpkin Meringue Pie

Fresh Takes on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Dinner with Friends

Like Chinese food on Thanksgiving Day, these ideas are innovative, yet they have the potential to become Thanksgiving traditions. Whether you want to try other Asian-inspired recipes, new Thanksgiving recipes, or celebrate a Friendsgiving, get inspired to try something different this holiday season.

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