7 Classic Southern Recipes for a Soul Food Thanksgiving Menu

Fill your Thanksgiving table with love and comfort including soul food classics like collard greens, buttermilk biscuits, and a Southern Thanksgiving turkey.

Spending time with family, friends, and great food is our go-to recipe for a memorable Thanksgiving dinner. The special holiday memories are a treat for the soul, just as these yummy Southern Thanksgiving recipes are a treat for your taste buds. For the best Thanksgiving soul food, mix foods you remember your mom making, add a dash of Southern charm, and finish with lots of comforting flavors. Stuffing, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, biscuits, turkey, homemade corn bread, and pie are all on the menu. So get your fork ready because you won't want to miss any of these delicious soul food recipes.

Soul Food Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes

Feed your soul along with your stomach this Thanksgiving by serving these soul food recipes:

See photos and learn more about each of these tasty creations below.

Bourbon-Pecan Stuffing
Kritsada Panichgul

Stuffing: Bourbon-Pecan Stuffing

If you look forward to Thanksgiving just for the stuffing, get excited. This hearty recipe has all the essentials (bread, onions, broth, celery, etc.), plus a shot of bourbon that cranks up the soul-warming factor a notch. Don't forget the crunchy pecans, too! This stuffing recipe is definitely good enough to make it onto your Thanksgiving dinner menu so you can add a little bit of soul to Thanksgivings to come.

To make your own bread cubes for stuffing:

  1. Cut homemade bread or a dense store-bought loaf into 1/2-inch cubes.
  2. Spread in one layer on a sheet pan.
  3. Bake at 300°F for 10 to 15 minutes or until dry, stirring twice at even intervals.

Get the recipe: Bourbon-Pecan Stuffing

Creamy Brussels Sprouts
Andy Lyons

Vegetable Side Dish: Creamy Brussels Sprouts

Whoever gave Brussels sprouts a bad rap never had this Creamy Brussels Sprouts recipe! Not only are these sprouts coated in a creamy sauce, but they're also topped with an ingredient that makes everything better: bacon. Crispy bacon + savory Brussels sprouts = the best soul food Thanksgiving side dish yet. Soul food recipes have never been better!

Fan Rave: "This side dish was a hit, and everybody wanted the recipe. The dressing is not too overpowering with the Brussels sprouts." — J Malonzo

Get the recipe: Creamy Brussels Sprouts

Classic Buttermilk Biscuits
Andy Lyons

Biscuit: Classic Buttermilk Biscuits

Ready for flaky biscuits made in just half an hour? Yes, it's possible! These delicious biscuits require no rise time, are best served fresh from the oven, and are so quick to make that you can bake them while carving the turkey. The warm, traditional, melt-in-your-mouth goodness makes these biscuits an essential soul food recipe to serve at Thanksgiving dinner. Make sure you have enough ready because no one will want to pass up seconds. Plus, they make excellent "buns" for a Thanksgiving leftover sandwich. Pile on the turkey, cranberry sauce, and veggies.

Get the recipe: Classic Buttermilk Biscuits

turkey overhead shot with plates and biscuits
Blaine Moats

Entree: Turkey with Fresh Herb Rubs

No Thanksgiving meal is complete without turkey—especially not a soul food Thanksgiving dinner. This classic entrée never gets old! To give this centerpiece a personal touch, try making a spice blend to rub on the skin before roasting. Try Five-Herb Rub, Cilantro-Cumin Rub, Sage-Honey Butter Rub, or Arugula-Basil Pesto Rub. Any of these are sure to please. Save any leftover rub to use on chicken breasts or steak the following week. Naturally, all good soul food recipes feed a crowd, and this one makes more than enough for everyone (plus leftovers).

Get the recipe: Turkey with Fresh Herb Rubs

Bacon Corn Bread
Blaine Moats

Bread: Bacon Corn Bread

You can't go wrong with extra bread (in addition to the biscuits!) AND extra bacon. This Bacon Corn Bread recipe gives you both for a surefire crowd-pleaser. Served warm with a side of butter, this yummy recipe will quickly become a Thanksgiving side dish that'll be requested every holiday—and every time you enjoy barbecue throughout the year. You could also add this corn bread recipe to a soul food Christmas menu!

Get the recipe: Bacon Corn Bread

Mallow-Praline Sweet Potato Pie
Blaine Moats

Dessert: Mallow-Praline Sweet Potato Pie

Soul food recipes aren't all about savory. Everyone needs a touch of sweetness, too. If you have trouble deciding between the nutty flavor of pecan pie and the soul food-fave sweet potato pie, this recipe is for you. This dessert is made with all of the delicious fall ingredients you can't resist like ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and maple syrup. That's all topped with a sweet surprise: brown sugar, pecans, and marshmallows. You better grab a slice full of these sweet fall flavors before they disappear!

Ingredient Substitution: No buttermilk on hand? No sweat. Make your own by stirring together 1 Tbsp. lemon juice or vinegar with enough milk to make 1 cup total. Let stand 5 minutes before incorporating it into the pie filling.

Get the recipe: Mallow-Praline Sweet Potato Pie

Bourbon Mint Iced Tea
Jessica Merchant of How Sweet It Is

Drink: Bourbon Mint Iced Tea

Sweet tea is a Southern soul food staple. Make it a fall- and holiday-appropriate option by adding a splash of bourbon and some fresh orange and lemon juice. Prep a big batch up to two days ahead, then pour into individual glasses and garnish with fresh mint as guests arrive. Having this easy soul food Thanksgiving recipe ready ahead of time will help your dinner run more smoothly, so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time socializing with guests.

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