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

Loaded Scalloped Potatoes with Bacon, Cheddar & Chives

Rating: 5 stars 2
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.
Hilary Meyer
By Hilary Meyer

Cornbread & Oyster-Mushroom Stuffing

Rating: 5 stars 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.
By Mary-Frances Heck

Beet Salad

Rating: 4 stars 9
This simple beet salad recipe uses just a handful of ingredients to create a delightful side dish. Roasted beets add a sweet, earthy and aromatic flavor that shines in this side salad.
By Bruce Weinstein & Mark Scarbrough

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Onions

Rating: 5 stars 11
Fresh herbs, onion and sautéed bacon flavor this easy Brussels sprouts recipe. This savory dish is delicious in the fall and winter months, when Brussels sprouts are in season. If you can find them still attached to the stalk, don't be intimidated--buy them, as they're likely more fresh. Recipe adapted from The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Oven-Roasted Squash with Garlic & Parsley

Rating: 5 stars 6
Learn how to roast squash in this healthy recipe adapted from Alice Waters. Look for squash varieties, including buttercup, kabocha or hubbard, at your farmers' market and try them in this tasty side dish.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Cauliflower Casserole with Everything Bagel Seasoning

Rating: 4.5 stars 2
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.
By Nora Singley

Easy Scalloped Potatoes

In this easy scalloped potatoes recipe, sliced potatoes are roasted in the oven before being mixed with a simple, creamy stovetop sauce and sprinkled with Cheddar cheese. A few minutes under the broiler turns the dish golden and crispy.
Hilary Meyer
By Hilary Meyer

Cauliflower-Broccoli Gratin

Rating: 3 stars 1
This creamy broccoli-and-cauliflower casserole is a hassle-free side dish that just about everyone loves. 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.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen

Maple-Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Rating: 5 stars 15
In this healthy side dish recipe, sweet potatoes are tossed with maple syrup, butter and lemon juice and roasted until tender and golden brown. The delicious glaze that forms on these maple-roasted sweet potatoes transforms this ultra-simple dish into something sublime.
By Kathy Farrell-Kingsley

Hasselback Potatoes with Cheese

Rating: 5 stars 2
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 sprinkle of paprika on top.
By Carolyn Casner

Creamed Spinach Casserole

Rating: 3.5 stars 2
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.
By EatingWell Test Kitchen
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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.
Wild Rice Stuffing with Apple & Sausage
This amazing wild-rice stuffing recipe is bursting with rustic fall flavors, including rye bread, sausage, apples, dried cherries, pecans and fresh herbs.
Carrot-Parsnip Gratin

Make this creamy carrot-and-parsnip casserole for your next holiday meal--everyone will beg you for the recipe! 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.