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20 side dishes that will steal the spotlight this holiday

20 best holiday side dishes

Steve Krug Author: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen

Our Best Collections

20 side dishes that will steal the spotlight this holiday

Sure, the main dish may get all of the glory, but your holiday feast is only as good as its sidekicks. Here are 20 of our favourite festive side dishes to round out your special meals.

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20 best holiday side dishes

Slow Cooker Scalloped Potatoes

Stovetop space is often limited when preparing big meals, so avoid the crunch and make this classic creamy side in your slow cooker, instead! Bacon makes this dish extra-indulgent, but you can easily omit it if you prefer to keep it vegetarian.

Read more: Get the recipe: Slow Cooker Scalloped Potatoes
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Steve Krug

20 best holiday side dishes

The Ultimate Potato Gratin

The combination of a creamy potato filling and cheesy breadcrumb crust makes this recipe one of our favourites. Gruyère cheese is notoriously strong-smelling, but it mellows nicely as it melts.

Read more: Get the recipe: The Ultimate Potato Gratin
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Yellow Bean and Rapini Salad

While it may look similar to broccoli, rapini has a distinct and assertive taste that many find bitter. Here, we’ve tossed the green with a sweet and savoury dressing, sweet yellow beans and nutty toasted almonds for a perfectly balanced blend of flavours.

Read more: Get the recipe: Yellow Bean and Rapini Salad
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Ryan Brook

20 best holiday side dishes

Roasted Garlic Potato and Turnip Mash

Roasting the garlic takes some time, but it’s well worth the reward. The tender, golden cloves give a deep caramelized flavour to the dish, which pairs nicely with the sweet and peppery turnips that are mixed into the mash.

Read more: Get the recipe: Roasted Garlic Potato and Turnip Mash
Image by: Jeff Coulson By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Sweet Potato Mash With Pecan Streusel

Sweet potato casserole is a must on holiday tables in the United States, but the traditional marshmallow-topped side doesn’t always have the same appeal here in Canada. For our Canadian twist on this dish, we’ve swapped out the marshmallows for a crunchy pecan and brown sugar streusel that’s the perfect balance of sweet and savoury.

Read more: Get the recipe: Sweet Potato Mash With Pecan Streusel
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Yvonne Duivenvoorden

20 best holiday side dishes

Twin Peas With Roasted Garlic Butter

A mix of fresh and frozen peas gives this bright dish the best texture. If fresh sugar snaps aren’t available, simply double the frozen peas or substitute with broccoli or green beans, instead. The three-ingredient garlic butter is a great condiment to have on hand—simply toss with hot pasta or gnocchi and steamed veggies and you’ve got a meal in minutes!

Read more: Get the recipe: Twin Peas With Roasted Garlic Butter
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Steve Krug

20 best holiday side dishes

Creamed Brussels Sprouts

This creamy dish is a cross between decadent creamed spinach and lighter slaw, making it a crowd-pleasing side to satisfy many palates. To make this vegetarian-friendly, simply use vegetable broth.

Read more: Get the recipe: Creamed Brussels Sprouts
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Kohlrabi, Red Apple and Walnut Salad

Toasted walnuts, tangy blue cheese and crisp kohlrabi converge in this simple autumn salad. A slightly spicy, creamy dressing is the perfect balance to the peppery arugula.

Read more: Get the recipe: Kohlrabi, Red Apple and Walnut Salad
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Joe Kim

20 best holiday side dishes

Chestnut and Mushroom Stuffing

Adding Parmesan cheese to stuffing might seem unconventional, but it helps to keep this dish moist and gives it a nice crisp crust. Oyster mushrooms are an elegant addition, but you can easily use inexpensive cremini mushrooms if you prefer.

Read more: Get the recipe: Chestnut and Mushroom Stuffing
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Mixed Rice Stuffing With Caramelized and Crispy Shallots

This rice-based dish is a great gluten-free alternative to traditional bread stuffing. Tossing sliced shallots with cornstarch before frying makes them extra-crispy, making for a delightfully crunchy topping.

Read more: Get the recipe: Mixed Rice Stuffing With Caramelized and Crispy Shallots
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Ryan Brook

20 best holiday side dishes

Stuffed Roasted Artichokes

Artichokes may seem intimidating, but they’re actually quite simple to prepare. To prep them, first cut off the sharp tips of the leaves, then slice off the top of the artichoke to remove the fuzzy centre. Simmering in water loosens the remaining tough leaves, making them a cinch to pull off. It’s best to do this work a day ahead so that all you have to do the day of the meal is make the topping and roast the artichokes until crispy. The show-stopping end result is well worth the effort.

Read more: Get the recipe: Stuffed Roasted Artichokes
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Joe Kim

20 best holiday side dishes

Garlic Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes

Goat cheese lends extra creaminess and a hint of tangy flavour to classic garlicky mashed potatoes. Heating the drained potatoes for a minute cooks off any excess liquid, which yields the fluffiest mash.

Read more: Get the recipe: Garlic Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Honey-Lime Carrots With Cipollini Onions

The trick to giving this simple side dish a company-worthy look is all in the way you slice the carrots. Rather than cutting them in standard coins or sticks, we’ve sliced them on the diagonal to add a hint of drama to your holiday spread.

Read more: Get the recipe: Honey-Lime Carrots With Cipollini Onions
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Steve Krug

20 best holiday side dishes

Sautéed Spinach and Mushrooms

Delicate oyster mushrooms add easy elegance to this simple sautéed spinach dish, which takes only 20 minutes to make!

Read more: Get the recipe: Sautéed Spinach and Mushrooms
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

The Ultimate Crispy Roasted Potatoes

The secret to these crispy roasted potatoes is a dual cooking method—you simmer them first, then finish them off in the oven with goose, duck or beef fat. Look for the fat in the gourmet section of major supermarkets or in specialty markets, or simply reserve the drippings from cooking duck, goose or beef.

Read more: Get the recipe: The Ultimate Crispy Roasted Potatoes
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Crunchy Parmesan-Topped Double Potato Mash

No holiday meal would be complete without a heaping dish of mashed potatoes, and this one, with its delicious blend of fluffy russets and colourful sweet potatoes, is sure to fit the bill.

Read more: Get the recipe: Crunchy Parmesan-Topped Double Potato Mash
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Roasted Leek and Endive With Citrus Dressing

Endive can be bitter when eaten raw, but roasting the leafy vegetable mellows the flavour and brings out its sweetness. An herbaceous and zesty dressing adds a welcome hit of freshness. Be sure to rinse the leeks well after halving them, as sand and grit can hide within its layers.

Read more: Get the recipe: Roasted Leek and Endive With Citrus Dressing
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Roasted Cauliflower With Parmesan and Capers

Flavour-packed capers are an effortless way to punch up the flavour of any side, and they work especially well with mild roasted cauliflower. If you find capers to be overly salty, simply give them a rinse before using.

Read more: Get the recipe: Roasted Cauliflower With Parmesan and Capers
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

20 best holiday side dishes

Roasted Squash and Brussels Sprouts With Bacon

Tender, sweet acorn squash and crisp bacon add extra appeal to Brussels sprouts. For even cooking, trim the thick bottom end of the sprouts, remove the outer leaves and halve them lengthwise so they’re about the same size as the squash cubes.

Read more: Get the recipe: Roasted Squash and Brussels Sprouts With Bacon
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Ryan Brook

20 best holiday side dishes

Roasted Chili Lemongrass Squash

Spicy, aromatic infused oil adds unforgettable flavour to pepper (a.k.a. acorn) squash, especially when finished with a squeeze of lime juice. Make the oil up to five days ahead so you can prepare this dish in just 30 minutes.

Read more: Get the recipe: Roasted Chili Lemongrass Squash
By: The Canadian Living Test Kitchen Source: Jeff Coulson

 

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20 side dishes that will steal the spotlight this holiday

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