Wondering what to serve for Thanksgiving besides turkey? If you think seafood is only suited for summer, think again! These recipes are ready for fall and perfect for your Thanksgiving dinner. You don't have to live on the coast to enjoy these seafood-inspired Thanksgiving dishes, but each bite will make you feel like you're just inches from the beach.

By BH&G Holiday Editors
Updated July 17, 2020

Whether you're landlocked or living on the beach, a seafood Thanksgiving menu will transport you to new fresh and flavorful holiday territory. So skip the expected turkey this year and try a few recipes that are a little more unique. This light, satisfying menu—starting with Pumpkin-Shrimp Bruschetta and ending with light and creamy Pavlova—will impress your guests even more than a basic Thanksgiving dinner. Round out the meal with one of our vegetable side dishes or try making homemade boiled lobster with butter and lemon. As an added bonus, this easy holiday menu includes a vegetarian Thanksgiving main dish option!

Seafood Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes

Go beyond the bird this year with these six seafood Thanksgiving recipes:

See photos and learn more about each of these seafood-inspired recipes below.

Pumpkin-Shrimp Bruschetta

Appetizer: Pumpkin-Shrimp Bruschetta

Pumpkin + shrimp = the power duo you didn't know you needed until now. It's a bit fall and a bit fresh—the perfect shrimp recipe for Thanksgiving.

If that's not enough to convince you, wait until you hear what else is in this dish. The pumpkin is mixed with goat cheese, lemon juice, and honey, while the shrimp are combined with arugula, onion, pumpkin seeds, and salad dressing. Baguette slices are lightly oiled and toasted, then topped with the pumpkin, shrimp, and salad mix. Make it yourself and fall in love with the latest and greatest new way to use pumpkin in Thanksgiving dishes.

Get the recipe: Pumpkin-Shrimp Bruschetta

Rosemary Garlic Flatbread with Spicy Tuna Salad

Bonus Appetizer: Rosemary-Garlic Flatbread with Spicy Tuna Salad

Since this seafood Thanksgiving menu entrée is a bit lighter than normal, it's wise to offer a couple of different pre-entrée selections. Of course, if your guests are saving their appetites for Thanksgiving dinner, you can also serve these easy apps as side dishes.

Start with thin flatbread topped with shaved garlic, rosemary, sea salt, and pepper. Then prep the tuna salad, and don't forget to add in a little kick with some sriracha!

Layer the tuna salad on top of the flatbread pieces, then sprinkle on some greens and balsamic vinegar for a delicious Pescatarian Thanksgiving appetizer.

Test Kitchen Tip: To save time (and precious oven space), purchase already-baked naan or flatbread when you're picking up the rest of the ingredients at the supermarket.

Citrus Salad with Poached Cod

Salad: Citrus Salad with Poached Cod

This light and refreshing salad will have you feeling like you're dining at a tropical seaside resort.

Oranges and limes aren't the only unexpected addition, frozen cod is the star of this Thanksgiving fish recipe. The base of peppery arugula ensures that you get your greens for the day. After all, Thanksgiving dinner can be healthy and decadent at the same time!

Roasted Chicories with Brown Butter

Vegetable Side Dish: Roasted Chicories with Browned Butter

For a vegetable side that's the perfect partner for your seafood Thanksgiving entrée, try roasted chicories.

Start by toasting bread cubes, then sprinkle on Parmesan and parsley. Next, season and roast the endive and radicchio. Bring it all together with a citrus-tinged browned butter and caper sauce. It's almost like classic Thanksgiving stuffing, but with a seafood-inspired twist!

Whether you serve it with turkey or fish, this might just become your new favorite Thanksgiving side dish.


Entrée: Bouillabaisse

Ham or turkey for Thanksgiving? Neither! Seafood fans: This delicious bouillabaisse, a seafood stew that originated in the Provence region of France, is designed for you.

An assortment of seasonings like lemon peel and cayenne pepper make the broth stand out without overshadowing the fresh shrimp, scallops, whitefish, and mussels (there's no shortage of seafood in this Thanksgiving fish recipe). Plus, there's fresh produce like tomatoes and potatoes.

On a chilly day in fall, this dish will make you feel warm, comfortably full, and happy.

Get the recipe: Bouillabaisse

Easy Boiled Lobster
Credit: Blaine Moats

Entrée: Boiled Lobster

Celebrate the holiday with this Thanksgiving lobster recipe. Plan on serving one pound of lobster per person. Complete this seafood dish for Thanksgiving with one (or two!) of our four sauce options. Serve the finished lobster on a large platter with sliced lemons.

Test Kitchen Tip: Live lobsters should be cooked the same day they are purchased.

Get the recipe: Easy Boiled Lobster

Lemon-Cream Pavlova with Berries

Dessert: Lemon-Cream Pavlova with Berries

Ready for a delicious dessert to complete this seafood masterpiece? Skip the heavy pie and follow up this meal with an airy, fresh dessert. Fill a light meringue with a cream mixture, lemon curd, and berries, then crown it all with a touch of elegance by way of edible rose petals. This light, fluffy, fruity dish is the perfect ending to your Thanksgiving seafood feast.

Tip: For the meringue, bake as directed without opening the oven door. Turn off the heat after the designated time and allow the meringue to cool/dry in the oven with the door closed.


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