Besides what we see while scrolling on the 'gram, I'm sure we've all wondered exactly what Thanksgiving dinner looks like at our favorite athletes' and celebs' houses. Or, better yet, how they cook and load up their plates! Does Beyoncé like mac and cheese? Who inspired Oprah's famous skillet cornbread? Would Serena Williams pick pumpkin pie over sweet potato pie? All good questions we're dying to know. In the meantime, we've rounded up five A-list approved sides and desserts — from Lisa Leslie's green bean casserole to Tia Mowry's collard greens and cornbread — that you might consider adding to your own holiday menu. Warning: Don't be surprised if friends and fam ask you for all the recipes! Yes, they're just that good.
1. Laila Ali's Cornbread Dressing
Former professional boxer and entrepreneur Laila Ali knows her way around the ring AND the kitchen. One dish you can always find on Ali’s table during Thanksgiving is her knockout cornbread dressing!
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 large onions, chopped
4 celery ribs, chopped
2 to 14 ounces ground turkey
2 teaspoons black pepper
1 tablespoon sea salt
2 teaspoons paprika
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh sage, chopped
2 packages cornbread mix, baked and broken into pieces
3 cups chicken broth
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Heat coconut oil and sauté onions and celery until tender.
3. Add turkey and cook on medium heat until browned.
4. Sprinkle in spices and herbs and stir. Remove from heat and combine cooked turkey with pre-baked cornbread (follow instructions on the package).
5. Add chicken broth and mix well.
6. Pour stuffing mixture into a casserole dish, cover in foil, and bake for 30-45 minutes.
Recipe courtesy of Thrive Market.
2. Lisa Leslie’s Green Bean Casserole
Off the court, WNBA legend Lisa Leslie is a cooking connoisseur. A few years ago, Leslie teamed up with Boston Market to create a personalized recipe list of dishes she loves to cook up for her family members during the holidays. Her green bean casserole was a huge smash!
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup yellow onion, minced
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
2/3 cup red bell pepper, diced
1 pound button mushrooms, quartered and stemmed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups 2% milk
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
6 cups Boston Market® Green Beans
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1/4 cup parmesan garlic bread crumbs
1/2 cup fried onions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter.
3. Add onion and garlic and sauté until both begin to soften, about 2 minutes.
4. Add bell pepper and mushrooms, and cook until softened and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 6 minutes.
5. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, to taste. Set aside to cool.
6. Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add 1/4 cup flour, whisk constantly until mixture begins to turn a light almond color, about 2 minutes.
7. Pour in milk, and continue whisking until mixture has thickened, about 3 minutes. Stir in cayenne pepper, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, to taste.
8. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
9. Add mushroom and bell pepper mixture. Toss with green beans.
10. Butter a 6” x 12” x 2” casserole dish. Spread half the green bean mixture over the bottom. Sprinkle on half the shredded parmesan cheese, and spread with the remaining green beans.
11. Combine the remaining Parmesan and breadcrumbs, and sprinkle over casserole.
12. Place in preheated oven. Cook covered until mixture is bubbly and heated through, about 10 minutes. Uncover, and cook until top is golden brown, about 30 seconds.
13. Top with fried onions and serve immediately.
Recipe courtesy of JET.
3. Gwen Jorgensen’s Pecan Pie
American distance runner and former professional triathlete Gwen Jorgensen is just as passionate about food as she is sports. Jorgensen revealed to ESPN Women her love affair with savory sweets and tasty bites — including one dish you can expect to find at her family’s Thanksgiving affiar aka her mother’s famous pecan pie.
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup shortening
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup corn syrup
1/3 cup melted butter
3 whole eggs, beaten
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup (heaping) chopped pecans
1. First, make pie crust. Measure flour and salt into bowl. Cut in shortening.
2. Make a well in flour mixture and add egg and vinegar, so flour is moistened and dough cleans side of bowl. Makes two 10-inch crusts.
3. Next, mix sugar, brown sugar, salt, corn syrup, butter, eggs and vanilla together in a bowl.
4. Pour chopped pecans in the bottom of the unbaked pie shell.
5. Pour syrup mixture over the top. Cover top and crust lightly/gently with foil.
6. Bake pie at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove foil, then continue baking for 20 minutes, being careful not to burn the crust or pecans.
7. Allow to cool for several hours or overnight.
4. Tia Mowry’s Collard Greens and Cornbread
Anyone who follows actress Tia Mowry knows she can COOK! In a recent upload on her YouTube channel, Mowry showed two of the many dishes she’ll be feeding her family during their upcoming holiday celebrations. What's on her menu? A southern staple: collard greens and cornbread!
Bacon Collard Greens
4 lbs collard greens cleaned and cut
1 lb bacon, cut into 1/2 strips
1 large onion, small diced
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
3 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon black pepper
1. Remove rib from collards and tear them into 2-inch pieces.
2. In a large dutch oven, on medium high heat, cook bacon until fat is rendered. Remove bacon to a towel-lined plate.
3. Add onion and 1 teaspoon salt to bacon fat. Sauté for 5-7 minutes, until onions are tender.
4. Toss in collard greens and sauté until wilted.
5. Pour in chicken stock and apple cider vinegar. Sprinkle with remaining salt and pepper. Toss until fully coated.
6. Cover pan, reduce heat to low and let cook for 40-45 minutes.
7. Stir occasionally. Serve.
2 cups yellow fine cornmeal
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons bacon fat (rendered from cooked bacon in bacon collard greens recipe)
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Add bacon fat to a 9-inch cast-iron skillet. Place in the oven for at least 10 minutes.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, salt, baking soda, baking powder.
4. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add buttermilk, egg, oil, and honey. Whisk wet ingredients until is fully mixed, stir in cheese.
5. Remove cast iron from oven. Swirl melted bacon fat to coat the pan. Pour batter into cast iron, spread evenly.
6. Bake 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
7. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes before cutting.
8. Serve with bacon collard greens, or butter and honey.
Recipe courtesy of YouTube.
5. Ayesha Curry’s Mac and Cheese
From launching meal subscription services to opening her restaurants, Ayesha Curry is quickly building her name as the HFIC (Head Foodie in Charge). Just one look at the meals she shares on her Instagram will make your mouth drool, and her mac and cheese recipe is no different!
3 cups shredded aged or extra-sharp cheddar cheese
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 pound elbow macaroni
2 1/2 cups whole milk
1 large egg
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup pancetta, finely diced
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Butter a 9" x 13" baking pan. In a large bowl, combine the cheddar, butter cubes, sugar, ground mustard, and salt.
3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook until al dente, a minute or so less than the recommended cooking time on the package. Drain well.
4. While the noodles are still hot, dump them into the cheddar-butter mixture and toss to mix well.
5. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring the milk to a bare simmer over medium heat. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg briefly to break it up. Temper the egg by drizzling 1/2 cup of the warm milk into the egg while whisking until incorporated. (This will prevent the egg from scrambling.)
6. Mix the tempered egg and the remaining warm milk into the macaroni, and then stir well until everything is evenly coated.
7. Pour the contents of the bowl into the prepared baking pan, spreading the macaroni and sauce evenly.
8. In a medium bowl, toss together the parmesan, pancetta, panko, and parsley. Sprinkle the crumble over the top of the macaroni. (This will create a yummy crust.)
9. Bake until the top is golden brown and bubbling and the pancetta is crispy, 25-30 minutes. Serve warm.
Recipe courtesy The Seasoned Life.
After checking out these mouth-watering recipes, which ones will you be making for Thanksgiving dinner? Let us know in the comments BELOW, Sweat Sisters!