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Easy, Budget-Friendly Thanksgiving Dishes

Posted by August on Nov 13, 2020 3:55:20 PM

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, which means it's time to start thinking about what to cook. My mom cooks the turkey in my family, and the rest of us all chip in with different sides and desserts. This year, I asked around the credit union for new recipes to try out. If you're like me, you're probably looking for something that is budget-friendly, easy to cook, and contains minimal ingredients, or at least uses ingredients that you already have. 

I narrowed down my cooking list to an appetizer, side dish, and dessert. Below are the recipes and cooking instructions for each dish that I made. They were super tasty, and the ingredients for all three recipes cost me less than $20. I hope they're a hit at your Thanksgiving dinner, and you're able to make lots of wonderful memories around the table, enjoying them with your family.

Appetizer: Adrienne's Spinach Balls


  • 1 (10 oz.) package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 2 c. of stuffing mix
  • 1/2 c. grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 c. melted butter
  • 3 eggs, beaten

Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Step 2: In a large mixing bowl, combine spinach, stuffing mix, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, black pepper, Italian seasoning, melted butter, and eggs. Shape into walnut-sized balls and place on a baking sheet.

Step 3: Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until heated through and browned.

Spinach Balls


Side Dish: Selma's Sweet Potato Rounds


  • 3 medium sweet potatoes (peeled and sliced into 1/4 rounds)

                *Note: 1 sweet potato yields about 10 rounds

  • 4 tsp. maple syrup
  • 4 tbsp. melted butter
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 10oz. bag marshmallows
  • 1/2 c. pecan halves

Step 1: Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Step 2: Stir melted butter and syrup together

Step 3: Toss sweet potato rounds in melted butter/maple syrup mixture until coated on both sides

Step 4: Arrange rounds in an even layer on a large baking sheet

Step 5: Sprinkle lightly with salt

Step 6: Bake until tender (about 10-12 minutes,) flipping rounds over halfway through

Step 7: Remove baking sheet from oven

Step 8: Top each round with a marshmallow and return to the oven

Step 9: Turn oven to broil and watch until marshmallows are puffed and golden 

Step 10: Remove from oven and top each marshmallow with a pecan half

Sweet Potato Rounds


Dessert: Heidi's Chocolate Eclair


  • 2 small boxes of vanilla pudding
  • 8oz. of sour cream
  • 8oz. Cool Whip
  • 1 box of graham crackers
  • 1 can of chocolate icing
  • 3 c. of cold milk

Step 1: Mix milk and pudding in a medium-size bowl, with mixer for two minutes

Step 2: Stir in Cool Whip and sour cream. Mix well.

Step 3: Layer 8x8 dish with a layer of graham crackers and a layer of pudding mix. Repeat.

Step 4: Put a can of icing into the microwave for 30 seconds to soften. Pour over the last layer of the pudding mix.

Step 5: Cool in the refrigerator approximately 1 hr. before serving.

Topics: Home, Life & School, Seasonal

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