10 dishes you should never make on Thanksgiving

Jellied cranberry sauce is jut not worth it.

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Jellied cranberry sauce is jut not worth it.
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Flickr / Mr.TinDC

  • Thanksgiving is the best time to be around the people you love and enjoy some wholesome, homecooked food.
  • With so much emphasis on the food, Thanksgiving is truly a time to stick to the basics and save the experimenting for a different day.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Thanksgiving is arguably the best food holiday in the US.

From turkey to stuffing to sweet potato casseroles, there are a lot of fantastic dishes to choose from. So why waste time making sides that no one wants?

Here are 10 dishes you should never serve on Thanksgiving.

Trust us, leave the raw vegetable tray behind.


1. Canned cranberry sauce

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Canned cranberry sauce.
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Getty Images

There’s something about 21 grams of sugar coagulated into the shape of a can that is a major turn off. Plus, the texture just seems questionable.

At least spruce it up by adding orange juice and zest, or stick to a homemade recipe. Cranberries are relatively inexpensive to buy from the store, and making a homemade sauce is well worth it.


2. Green bean casserole

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Green bean casserole.
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Getty Images

Although you’d think green beans are a healthy dish, once you add heavy cream, fried onions, and cheese, they turn into one of the most caloric items on the Thanksgiving table.

Save your calories for pie.


3. Pecan pie

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Pecan pie.
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Getty Images

Speaking of pie, almost everyone prefers pumpkin pie over pecan pie. Even worse, pecan pie has the most calories, with almost 500 per slice. Health aside, there are tons of other fun Thanksgiving desserts that people love that are much easier to make. Try a simple chocolate pumpkin bread of decorated sugar cookie!


4. Ambrosia salad

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Ambrosia salad.
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Flickr/Steven Depolo

Anything that includes Cool Whip has no business calling itself a salad. Let’s face it, ambrosia salad is never a fan favorite. If you want to serve fruit, serve it as-is.


5. Jell-O salad

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Jell-O salad.
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Getty Images

With all the delicious Thanksgiving desserts out there, why would you make a Jell-O salad? It seems like a terribly antiquated dish, and also has no business calling itself a salad.


6. Vegetable tray

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Vegetable tray.
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Shutterstock/Dream79

With so many delicious dishes to nosh on, each of which you have lovingly put your blood, sweat, and tears into, why would you fill up your guests with raw veggies? Pass.


7. Corn pudding

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Corn pudding.
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Gary Friedman/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The perfect corn pudding can be really tasty, but, let’s face it, getting the texture right is tough to pull off. It’s pretty likely you’ll end up with something that’s either too gelatinous or too runny. Since you’re already busy cooking a variety of foods all day, save your energy for a different dish.


8. Giblet gravy

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Giblet Gravy.
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Flickr / Martin Bowling

Seeing the turkey’s liver, heart, and other internal organs may make some of your guests lose their appetite.


9. Puréed squash

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Puréed squash.
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Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post/Getty Images

Sure, squash is a great dish to enjoy during the fall season, but leave this bland side off the Thanksgiving table. It will be the last thing left.


10. Dinner rolls

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Dinner rolls.
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Getty Images

Dinner rolls are delicious, but between the cornbread and stuffing they will get overshadowed. Save the rolls for another night, no one is looking for plain bread with all the wonderful flavors around them.