MSJ’s New Family Faves for Thanksgiving Dinner

These recipes are our NEW family favorites to serve at Thanksgiving!

Click here for our Classic Family Faves.


Sweet and Spicy Candied Pecans

1/2 cup Confectioners sugar
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 cups pecans
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the Confectioners sugar, kosher salt and cayenne pepper.

Add the pecans to the sugar mixture, along with 4 teaspoons of water. Stir until the sugar is dissolved into a sticky glaze. (If the mixture is still too powdery after stirring for a while, it’s okay to add a few drops of water — just don’t add too much!)

Transfer the pecans to the prepared baking sheet and arrange in a single layer. Do your best to make sure they are evenly spread out and the nuts are not touching each other. Scrape out every last bit of glaze from the bowl and drizzle over the nuts. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until the pecans are crusty on top and caramelized and golden on the bottom. Immediately slide the parchment off of the hot baking sheet and allow the pecans to cool completely on the countertop. Once cool, remove the pecans from the parchment, breaking apart any clusters if necessary, and store in an airtight container.

Note: Make sure you’re using parchment paper and not wax paper. Wax paper is not nonstick.


Spinach Pecan Salad

1 Tbs. butter
1 Tbs. light brown sugar
½ cup pecan halves
1 (7oz) package fresh baby spinach, washed
1 large granny smith, thinly sliced
½ cup crumbled blue cheese
3 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. white vinegar
Salt & pepper (a pinch of each)

Melt butter and sugar in a small skillet over low heat, stirring constantly. Add pecan halves, cook 2 to 3 minutes, turning to coat. Remove coated pecans from skillet, and cool on wax paper. Toss spinach, apple, & pecans in a serving bowl. Whisk oil, vinegar, salt & pepper, drizzle over salad, tossing gently to coat. Makes 4 servings.

>>Main Course<<

Slow Cooker Shredded Turkey Tacos

2 1/4 cups salsa
2 Tbsp Chili Powder
1 Tbsp Ground Cumin
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
2 tsp Chili Powder
1 1/2 tsp Salt
6 cloves Garlic, minced
1 Medium Onion, roughly chopped
2.5 lbs Turkey Breast Cutlets
3 tsp Corn Starch
3 tsp Cold Water
1 Tbsp Butter
1/4 cup Lime juice
2 Tbsp Canola oil
1 Tbsp Sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups coleslaw mix
1-2 fresh red chili peppers, thinly sliced
1/4 cup green onions, thinly sliced
Soft tortillas
Guacamole, diced tomatoes, sour cream, shredded cheese, diced onions

Stir together the first 8 ingredients and pour into the crock pot. Add the turkey cutlets and mix to coat well. Cover and cook on medium for 6 hours. When the turkey is done, remove it from the pot and shred it using two forks. Mix together the corn starch and water and add it to the sauce. Stir in the butter until it melts, then add back the shredded turkey and mix so that the turkey is well coated with the sauce. Make spicy slaw in a large bowl…whisk together lime juice, oil, sugar, salt and pepper. Add slaw mix, red chili peppers and green onions. Serve in warmed tortillas with spicy slaw mix, guacamole, diced tomatoes, sour cream, shredded cheese and onions.


Stuffed Artichoke Casserole

from Holly Clegg’s KITCHEN 101: Secrets to Cooking Confidence cookbook

No fuss with stuffing this artichoke! Mix all the ingredients in one skillet, close your eyes and you will think you are eating a stuffed artichoke. Outstanding and so simple!stuffed-artichoke-casserole_1218

Makes 4 (1 cup) servings

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 1/2 cups seasoned stuffing mix
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1 cup fat-free chicken broth
1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and coarsely chopped
1/4-1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. In large nonstick skillet, heat oil and sauté onion and garlic until tender. Add stuffing, oregano and basil, mixing until combined. Add chicken broth and artichokes, carefully mixing.
2. Add cheese stirring until heated and well mixed.

Nutritional info per serving:
Calories 216, Calories from Fat 39%, Fat 10g, Saturated Fat 3g, Cholesterol 6mg, Sodium 759mg, Carbohydrates 26g, Dietary Fiber 3g, Total Sugars 5g, Protein 7g, Dietary Exchanges: 1 starch, 2 vegetable, 2 fat

Terrific Tip: Prepare ahead of time and transfer to baking dish. Heat in 350°F oven 20 minutes or until heated. For vegetarian version, substitute vegetable broth.

Twice-Baked Sweet Potato Casserole with Bacon (from Pillsbury)

6 lb dark-orange sweet potatoes (9 large or 12 medium)
8 oz bacon (8 to 10 slices)
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 medium green onions, chopped (2 tablespoons)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Heat oven to 350°F. Line 15x10x1-inch pan with foil; spray 13×9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray. Pierce sweet potatoes several times with fork. Place in pan. Bake about 1 hour 15 minutes or until tender. Cool 10 minutes. When potatoes are cool enough to handle, peel potatoes and cut out any eyes or dark spots.

Meanwhile, cook bacon as desired until crisp; chop. In small bowl, mix bread crumbs and 1 tablespoon butter; set aside.

In large bowl, mash potatoes with potato masher. Stir in chopped bacon, sour cream, 1/4 cup butter, the onions, salt and pepper until well blended. Spread mixture in baking dish, or form individual servings in dish with 1/2-cup ice cream scoop or measuring cup. Sprinkle crumb mixture evenly over top.

Bake 20 to 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated and bread crumbs just begin to brown.

Black-Eyed Pea and Sausage Soup

1 pound  smoked sausage, sliced
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 carrots, coarsely chopped
3 garlic cloves,minced
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 lard green bell pepper, chopped
4 cups frozen block-eyed peas (about 1 1/2 [16-ounce] packages)
3(14 1/2-ounce) can beef broth
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano, undrained
1 (16-ounce) jar chipotle-flavored salsa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cook sausage in oil in large Dutch oven, stirring until it browns. Remove sausage, reserving drippings in pan. Add onion and next 4 ingredients; saute over medium-high heat 8 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in sausage, peas, broth, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 35 minutes. Stir in salsa, salt and pepper; simmer 10 more minutes.


Cream Cheese Pecan Pie

3 eggs
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1 un-baked deep-dish (9-inch) pie shell
1 1/4 cups chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk topping ingredients until well combined. Set aside.

In a medium bowl using a hand mixer, mix cream cheese, sugar, salt, vanilla and egg until smooth. Pour into pie shell. Top with chopped pecans. Pour topping over pecans. Bake for 45 minutes. Allow to cool completely before serving.

Recipe courtesy of Paula Deen

Butter Pecan Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup white sugar


3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
3 eggs
2 cups sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F (245 degrees C). Combine graham cracker crumbs, 1/2 cup pecans, butter, and 1/3 cup white sugar in a food processor; pulse until evenly combined. Press mixture in the bottom and partly up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Beat cream cheese and 1/2 cup white sugar together in a bowl using an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add sour cream and vanilla extract and mix well; fold in 1 cup pecans. Pour cream cheese mixture over crust. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Reduce oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C) and continue baking for 50 minutes more. Turn off oven, open door slightly, and let cake sit in oven for 1 hour.

Egg Nog Cheesecake

For the crust:
12 oz. gingersnaps, crushed to a fine crumb
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
6 Tbsp salted butter, softened or melted

For the filling:
4 (8 oz.) bricks cream cheese, softened to room temp.
4 large eggs, at room temp
1 1/2 cups eggnog
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp rum extract
1/2 – 1 tsp cinnamon (to taste)

For the topping:
1 can of Original Reddi-wip®
cinnamon, as desired

Start by preheating your oven to 325°F

To make the crust. I used my blender to crush the gingersnaps, then poured them into a bowl and added the sugar, cinnamon and melted butter. Mix it all up until the crust is all soaked with butter!
Pour the crushed cookies into a 10″ spring-form pan and up the sides at least an inch.

I have two little tricks when making a cheesecake crust. First, I line the bottom (removable) circle with a piece of parchment cut to the exact circle size. I didn’t photograph this, but doing it allows you to get the cheesecake completely out of the spring-form pan and off the bottom piece without damage.

Second, I use my favorite juice glasses to press the crumbs into the corners and up the sides of the pan and to press them down in the bottom! It makes the crust very compact and “clean”.

Now, in a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until very light and fluffy. Then add the eggs, one at a time, mixing after each addition and scraping down the sides as needed.

Next you’ll need to add in the eggnog and mix until smooth. After that, add the sugar, flour, rum extract, and cinnamon. And yes… mix again until smooth and creamy. (that’s the last time to mix, by the way… and I promise those pics are of different steps)

Now pour that dreamy mixture into your crust and you’re ready to bake it! Bake for 1 hour, then turn the oven off and crack the oven door. Leave the cheesecake there for another hour. After that, you can move it to a cooling rack to come to room temp or cover it and move it directly to the fridge.

After it’s cooled and chilled for 6-8 hours, you can finally enjoy the fruit of all of your labor! Serve with a generous topping of Reddi-Wip and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Our Facebook friend, Anita, sent us this recipe (follow the link for some great step-by-step pics)!

Triple Chocolate Clusters

2 (4 ounce) white chocolate bars
1 cup milk chocolate morsels
1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
1 1/2 cups broken pretzels

Melt first 2 ingredients in a heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly. Stir in pecans and pretzels. Drop by heaping tablespoonfuls onto lightly greased wax paper. Chill in fridge at least 1 hour. Store in airtight container in fridge for up to a month.

(for a firmer candy, use 3 cups of semisweet chips instead of 3 different kinds of chocolate)

Pecan Pie Bark

2 sticks butter
1 cup white sugar
1 & ¼ cups pecan halves
About 2 pkgs (approx. 12 sheets) honey graham crackers

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Lay your graham crackers tightly across the area of a lightly greased rimmed baking sheet. Trim any crackers to fit the sides of the pan if needed. Set aside. In a large saucepan, bring the butter, sugar and pecans to a boil over medium heat for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Carefully (and evenly) pour boiled mixture over the entire plane of graham crackers, spreading pecans around evenly. Immediately pop graham crackers into the oven and bake for 8 minutes. Allow graham cracker bark to cool completely before breaking into pieces and storing in an airtight container.


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becky garcia
becky garcia
4 years ago

HOLY SMOKES!!!!! I am going to have the best Thanksgiving yet with these recipes. Thank you all and a Happy Thanksgiving

Debra Blansett
Debra Blansett
4 years ago

Trying the cheesecake! Yum yum!

Diane shuman
Diane shuman
4 years ago

Ty Jodie for the pecan pie bark will surly try this love listen to you guys each day and our holiday trAdition is with my grands they always get a book of lifesavers every dine they were little now 26 n 23 and still looks for that each years lol have a awesome blessed thanksgiving all of you

4 years ago

I need the stuffing recipe fro. last year my family loved it. I didn’t write it down.

Linda Lay
Linda Lay
4 years ago

Love,love all these recipes! Especially the pumpkin bread! I just found you guys on my radio, love your show. You guys are a breath of fresh air!! I will be a permanent listener!

1 year ago

Vegan can y’all help me with this I love y’all recipes

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