Make-Ahead Christmas Side Dish Recipes

Prepping a Christmas dinner can get a bit stressful, but we're here to help! In addition to our make ahead Christmas appetizers, we have a plethora of traditional Christmas sides that can be prepped ahead of time so you don't have to spend your whole holiday in the kitchen.

Staff Picks

Crispy Potato Stacks with Fresh Sage

Rating: Unrated
1
These little cute stacks are everything you want in a potato side dish: tender in the middle, devilishly crispy on the outside, and seasoned with sage and butter throughout. For best results, use a mandoline to slice the potatoes extra-thin.

Loaded Scalloped Potatoes with Bacon, Cheddar & Chives

Rating: Unrated
1
Imagine a loaded baked potato topped with bacon, Cheddar and chives combined with the creamy goodness of scalloped potatoes, and you have the ultimate comfort food casserole. This scalloped potato recipe is made healthier than original versions by using low-fat milk in place of heavy cream, but it still tastes just as rich and creamy.

Cornbread & Oyster-Mushroom Stuffing

Rating: Unrated
1
Mushrooms are a rich, meaty addition in this healthy cornbread stuffing recipe. Here we use oyster mushrooms, but you can use any variety you like. If you have time, bake the cornbread a day or two in advance so it has time to dry out a bit, which lets it absorb the flavors more readily.

Maple-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Rating: Unrated
41
In this easy vegetable side dish recipe, sweet potatoes are tossed with maple syrup, butter and lemon juice and are roasted until tender and golden brown. The delicious glaze that forms on these maple-roasted sweet potatoes transform this ultra-simple dish into something sublime.

Hasselback Potatoes with Cheese

Hasselback potatoes are the perfect side dish for people who love crispy potato-chip-like slices as well as the tender interior of a baked potato. Simple to prepare, these hasselback potatoes look impressive and decadent with melted Cheddar cheese and a spinkle of paprika on top.

No-Sugar-Added Sweet Potato Casserole

Instead of loading up this comfort food side with tons of brown sugar and marshmallows, we have turned to sweet spices, vanilla and inherently sweet dried fruit to enhance the natural sweetness of the sweet potatoes. A topping of pecans and pepitas replaces traditional marshmallow topping to keep it healthy and add texture and color for a beautiful casserole.

Instant Pot Sweet Potato Casserole

Rating: Unrated
1
Use any multicooker or electric pressure cooker to make this classic Thanksgiving side dish. The sweet potatoes get perfectly tender and almost caramelized while cooking under high pressure, plus using your multicooker saves stovetop and oven space.

Oven-Roasted Squash with Garlic & Parsley

Rating: Unrated
23
Winter squash becomes tender and sweeter when roasted--a delicious side for a holiday dinner. Look for interesting squash like kabocha or hubbard at your farmers' market and try them in this recipe. Recipe adapted from Alice Waters.

Creamed Spinach Casserole

Rating: Unrated
5
This creamy spinach casserole recipe is a more sophisticated cousin to creamed spinach. It's perfect for weekend entertaining or as a holiday side dish.

Cauliflower Casserole with Mixed-Seed Crust

Rating: Unrated
1
The cheesy-seedy crust that tops this healthy cauliflower casserole recipe evokes everything bagels. Serve for the holidays or as a hearty side dish with roast chicken.

Cranberry Sauce with Star Anise

Rating: Unrated
5
This cranberry sauce recipe is scented with star anise, which has a dynamic flavor--earthy, spicy and sweet at the same time.

Meringue-Topped Sweet Potato Casserole

Rating: Unrated
18
This lightened-up take on the classic Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole is spiked with crushed pineapple and toasted pecans. We top it with an airy, slightly sweet meringue. You can pipe the meringue to make it look fancy or simply spread it neatly with a rubber spatula.

Inspiration and Ideas

Honey-Glazed Roasted Delicata Squash

Tangy cider vinegar, sweet honey, crunchy pine nuts and fresh mint come together to make an amazing glaze in this healthy roasted winter squash recipe.

Glazed Haricots Verts

Skip Grandma's mushroom-soup-drenched casserole this year and cook this fresher green bean side dish with a tangy shallot and walnut relish instead.

Brussels Sprout Gratin

Rating: Unrated
2

A creamy Brussels sprouts casserole is a delightful accompaniment to any holiday meal. Our healthier version skips the heavy cream and butter found in most recipes--saving about 160 calories and 12 grams of saturated fat compared to a traditional version.