Delicious Thanksgiving Recipes for Two (So You Don’t Have to Eat Leftovers for Days on End)
If pandemic travel and safety concerns have narrowed your Thanksgiving guest list to a party of two, you can still celebrate in style. Here’s a Thanksgiving menu for two that offer most of the classic flavors you love on the holiday—without mountains of leftovers.
Instead of long, communal tables, many of us will be having smaller, more intimate Thanksgiving dinners. Be it with a partner, a parent, a child or roommate, many gatherings will be tables of two this year.
Mom might not be in the room to help you ace that homemade pastry, but it is still possible to sit down to a classic Thanksgiving menu. These Thanksgiving recipes for two were designed for a duo or are easily scaled-down to be enjoyed the day-of or to make just enough Thanksgiving leftovers to finish off the next day.
So choose your favorites or choose them all to whip up between your virtual Thanksgiving get-together(s). They’re delicious and surprisingly simple to make—they might just become your go-tos for years to come.
Thanksgiving Dinner Recipes For Two
Serve a cozy, comforting and delicious Thanksgiving for two featuring any or all of these seven Thanksgiving recipes:
See photos and learn more about each of these Thanksgiving recipes for two, below.
Appetizer: Cheese Board
A snack while cooking will never go out of style! Before you prep the rest of these Thanksgiving recipes for two, build a custom cheese board featuring your favorite fromages (try a hard cheese, a soft cheese and a blue cheese for a nice mix), condiments, pickled vegetables, nuts and fruits.
Test Kitchen Tip: Aim for at least 2 ounces of cheese per person so you don’t have to fight over the last slice.
Get the recipe: Cheese Board
Appetizer: Golden Squash Bisque
Start the official Thanksgiving meal in comfort food fashion with a silky bowl of squash soup. This serves-two starter takes just 20 minutes start to finish thanks to a head start from frozen winter squash. Instead of heavy cream, this bisque gets its rich texture from protein-rich yet light Greek yogurt. That simple swap means you’ll tame your appetite just enough while leaving plenty of room for the Thanksgiving turkey, side dishes and desserts ahead.
Test Kitchen Tip: If you prefer, you can trade in an equal amount of roasted squash or even canned pumpkin puree for the frozen winter squash.
Get the recipe: Golden Squash Bisque
Main Dish: Turkey Pot Pie for Two
Yes, we know it’s not quite the classic roast turkey centerpiece, but hear us out. These savory pies are already scaled for a duo and combine your poultry, veggies, gravy and piecrust into one package. The only adjustment you need to make for these baby casseroles to make them Thanksgiving-appropriate? Trade turkey for chicken. Since the recipe calls for cooked meat, swing by the butcher or deli counter, or simply saute a turkey tenderloin or two in a skillet. We recommend making them in individual dishes, like Noritake Colorwave Ramekins ($17 for two, Bed, Bath, and Beyond)
Get the recipe: Turkey Pot Pie for Two
Side Dish: Walnut-Onion Green Beans
Now that we’ve got the casserole covered with those pot pies, the green beans swoop in with a burst of freshness. This 20-minute green bean recipe is designed for six, but we suggest only cutting it in half because you’re going to want a generous portion of the caramelized onion- and walnut-studded beans.
Get the recipe: Walnut-Onion Green Beans
Side Dish: Bacon-Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits
Think of this homemade bread as a mash-up recipe of corn bread and biscuits...with crispy bacon and salty cheese invited to the party. Use one to dunk into the soup and another to sop up every last drop of the pot pie gravy, then enjoy any leftovers of this 9-biscuit recipe as the base for a breakfast sandwich tomorrow.
Get the recipe: Bacon-Cheddar Cornmeal Biscuits
Dessert: Apple Crème Brûlées
You won’t miss the pumpkin pie one bit when you can dig into one of two of these apple pie-flavored crème brûlées with a showy caramelized sugar topping. By this point, you might be getting full, which is why we think this unique dessert is the perfect Thanksgiving final course for two. It tastes decadent but is only 169 calories, thanks to Greek yogurt and Granny Smith apples in the custard.
Get the recipe: Apple Crème Brûlées
Drink: Cider Moscow Mule
Instead of—or in addition to—a bottle of Thanksgiving wine, shake up a Moscow Mule full of fall flavor with this easy, 5-ingredient cocktail recipe. Apple cider makes the easy drink seasonal and just sweet enough. This Thanksgiving cocktail makes a single serving at a time so you can only make what you need to spend the holiday evening in good spirits.
Test Kitchen Tip: The original formula calls for vodka, but we’re also big fans of substituting in bourbon.
Get the recipe: Cider Moscow Mule