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Cooking for just a couple this year? Skip the turkey and prepare a pair of Cornish hens with stuffing. I’ve also scaled down the most important side dishes, and you can complete your meal with two mini pumpkin pies. It’s a perfectly proportioned feast for you and your plus one.
Thanksgiving for Two was a big deal during the pandemic, but long before that, cooks were preparing small Thanksgivings. Maybe you work on the holiday (as so many do), or family isn’t close by, or you’re in a country that doesn’t celebrate Thanksgiving at all.
There are so many reasons why a table for two at Thanksgiving makes sense (and it might even be a table for one with ample leftovers). My passion (and my job) is to connect you to your favorite food memories or help you build new ones. And if a 20-pound turkey isn’t on the menu, perhaps a couple of Cornish hens could be.
Table of Contents
Cornish Hens with Stuffing
Roasted Cornish Hens with Stuffing make Thanksgivings extra special. An easy apple mustard glaze takes the place of gravy, and a classic bread stuffing soaks up all the flavors.
Mashed Potatoes for Two
My Best Mashed Potatoes recipe – scaled down for 2! They are just 3 ingredients (plus salt and pepper) and so simple they barely even need a recipe.
Green Bean Casserole for Two
Green Bean Casserole is a must-have at any holiday meal, and this scaled down version makes the perfect amount for a hungry couple. Made from scratch, just like the original recipe; every forkful is so good you might wish you had more.
Cranberry Sauce for Two
The best, easiest Cranberry Sauce recipe you’ll ever make flavored with fresh orange juice and just a little sugar. This classic version makes enough for two people and is ready in under 10 minutes.
Mini Pumpkin Pies for Two
Tiny and irresistible, Mini Pumpkin Pies come in handy for smaller gatherings or sharing with friends and family. They’re easy, creamy, and perfectly spiced, just smaller and cuter.
More Thanksgiving Side Dishes for Two
These recipes can easily be scaled down for your fun-sized feast (just use the servings slider in each recipe card).
Side Dish Recipes
Side Dish Recipes
Cornbread Dressing with Sausage
Baked Mac and Cheese
Roasted Butternut Squash
Green Beans with Bacon
Roasted Root Vegetables
Side Dish Recipes
Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Big batch bread-making (freezer friendly!)
From-scratch bread-making is always easier in a full batch (or a double batch). Luckily, the extras can be frozen for future meals.
Single-serving cocktails for a small Thanksgiving
If you’re craving something more labor-intensive than opening a bottle of wine, these delicious cocktails are made by the glass. You and your partner can each toast with your favorite.
Brandy Apple Cider Slush
The Best Moscow Mule
I love a board for all-day grazing. They are fun to explore, easy to restock, and perfect for small hands. Customize with seasonal ingredients or whatever looks good at the store. The best part? You can buy dips if you want or make them yourself, and same with all the rest of the components. Get creative and have fun.
How to Set a Table
Whether it’s a quiet supper for one or a dinner party for 12, setting a pretty table makes the occasion even more special. Break out your best china and polish the glassware; here’s a breakdown…View Recipe
I hope wherever you are, and whoever you are with, you have a wonderful, safe, and happy Thanksgiving!
Meggan Hill is a classically-trained chef and professional writer. Her meticulously-tested recipes and detailed tutorials bring confidence and success to home cooks everywhere. Meggan has been featured on NPR, HuffPost, FoxNews, LA Times, and more.
Dear Meggan, I have been scooping up your recipes for several years, and they are among the most reliably tasty of all the sources I consult. But. The Thanksgiving for Two vegetable casserole. Velveeta? Seriously? Kraft isn’t even allowed to label it as ‘cheese,’ because it is so heavily processed. The rest of the dish looks so good, can you provide me an alternative using real cheese, as opposed to slabs of ‘cheese food?’ Either a cheese sauce made separately, or a particular type of cheese which would substitute well for the… other stuff? Kids are scattered across three other states, so Thanksgiving for Two will prove a real help this year. Thanks for any help you may have in mind.
Hi John, thank you for the question! I recommend substituting with a homemade cheese sauce. Here’s the link to my recipe: https://www.culinaryhill.com/homemade-cheese-sauce/