10 Hosting Essentials to Make Your Thanksgiving Table Shine
Wow your guests with a chic holiday table that's perfect for year-round use.
Some of us spend weeks searching online, trying to put together the perfect Thanksgiving dinner menu. But even if you know exactly what you want to serve, it’s important not to forget about all of the essentials that will help make everything on your table look beautiful.
Whether you’re hosting a big crowd or just a few friends and family members, we’ve rounded up all of the things you’ll need to help make sure your holiday dinner goes off without a hitch.
1: Copper Flatware
This slim-line, copper flatware would add a beautiful metallic pop to any Thanksgiving holiday table. Copper works with most colors so it should fit in well with any dishes you already have.
2: Leather Napkin Rings
Leather napkin rings will work whether your table is dressed up or down. The leather belt-like napkin rings have an equestrian vibe, and they will work well whether you have light or dark linen napkins.
3: Linen Napkins
These napkins come in a variety of neutral colors, including this pretty ocean blue. Made of 100-percent cotton, the napkins can easily be thrown into the wash. Choose the blue if you want to bring some color to your table, or go for the platinum or natural hue if you’re looking for a more subdued color scheme.
4: Salt + Pepper Shakers
If you have space on your table, it’s nice to make sure that each guest has their own little salt and pepper shakers. This adorable whiteware porcelain set leaves no room for confusion, with each shaker labeled "salt" and "pepper."
5: Wood Serving Bowl
One of the best parts of Thanksgiving dinner is all of the delicious side dishes. Pick up a few of these wood serving bowls and you’ll be all set. Made of natural root wood, each bowl is a little different, adding some unexpected variety to your holiday tabletop.
6: Metallic Table Runner
Keeping with our metallic theme, this stylish table runner would really make a statement on your holiday table. Hand-blocked and painted, the runner features a bold metallic stripe right down the middle. You can choose metallics or traditional gold and silver in order to best match your existing serving pieces.
West Elm, $39
7: Beverage Dispenser
This beverage dispenser would be a fun addition to the kids' table at your Thanksgiving dinner. You can fill up each section of the dispenser with a different beverage, such as a selection of lemonades or fresh fruit juices.
Z Gallerie, $69.95
8: Serving Trays
This serving tray set would be perfect for your turkey and a smaller side dish. Or, you can use the smaller tray for rolls and the larger tray to create a big cheese board for some pre-dinner snacking.
Bed Bath & Beyond, $31.99
9: Place Card Holder
For larger groups, using place cards on your table eliminates the headache of everyone playing musical chairs when you sit down for dinner. These place-card holders feature the Chinese symbol for double happiness, which is a sweet sentiment for all of your guests as you celebrate during the holiday season.
10: Gravy Boat
You can’t have turkey without gravy, which means you need something special to serve it in. This gorgeous gravy boat is hand-painted and would look beautiful on almost any tabletop.
Something for Everyone
When cooking for a crowd, from the smallest dinners to guests who follow special diets, it's important to please everyone's palate. Be sure to ask friends and family in advance if they have any menu requests, or allow guests to bring their favorite dishes potluck-style, so everyone leaves the meal satisfied.
Curried Butternut Squash Soup With Fried Sage Leaves
Warm up your fall guests with this creamy and oh-so-satisfying soup. Great as a first-course or as a healthy, light meal when served with rustic bread and artisanal cheeses. Get the recipe
Sage-Roasted Turkey With Crunchy Maple Crust
Fresh sage and pure maple syrup give this Thanksgiving turkey a savory-meets-sweet flavor that's a cut above the rest. Forget about post-turkey-day leftovers, friends and family will gobble this moist bird up. Get the recipe
Cornbread Stuffing With Dried Fruit and Pecans
Dried apricots, apples, cranberries and golden raisins combine with toasted pecans and fresh herbs to create a sweet, savory and crunchy cornbread stuffing. Get the recipe
Mediterranean Chicken and Quinoa Salad
Citrus and Herb-Roasted Turkey and Gravy
With a sweet-meets-tangy citrus flavor plus a healthy helping of herbs, this savory and moist turkey is destined to be the star of your Thanksgiving table. Get the recipe
Sauteed Brussels Sprouts With Cranberries and Pine Nuts
Treat your Thanksgiving guests to a side dish that's both tasty — and — healthy. The addition of cranberries and pine nuts lend the earthy Brussels sprouts a bit of sweetness and crunch. Get the recipe
Brussels Sprouts With Red Onions and Hazelnuts
Topped with sauteed onions and crunchy hazelnuts, these Brussels sprouts are so tasty that your family won't realize they're gobbling down a good-for-you roasted veggie. Get the recipe
Southwestern-Style Poblano Cornbread Stuffing
Forget storebought mix — with toasted pumpkin seeds, sweet potatoes and just the right amount of kick from roasted poblano peppers — this homemade stuffing is destined to become your family's new favorite. Get the recipe
Sourdough Stuffing With Parmesan and Leeks
This sourdough stuffing is a delicious break from the norm. Made with fresh leeks, onions, butter, olive oil and Parmesan cheese — it's a savory addition to your Thanksgiving table. Get the recipe
Thyme-Roasted Carrots and Parsnips
Roasted root vegetables are a hearty seasonal staple of many tables in the fall. Seasoned with olive oil, thyme and citrus, this fresh take is sure to become one of your family's favorite dishes. Get the recipe
Wild Mushroom, Herb and Pecan Stuffing
Fresh chanterelle, oyster and shiitake mushrooms give this homemade cornbread stuffing an earthy, rich flavor while toasted pecans add just the right amount of crunch. Get the recipe
Roasted Butternut Squash With Sage and Pumpkin Seeds
Savory and flavorful, butternut squash tops the list of favorite fall side dishes. As a tasty twist, top this healthy comfort food with toasted pumpkin seeds for crunch. Get the recipe
Creamy Macaroni and Cheese
A combination of three tasty cheeses — white Cheddar, Gruyère and Swiss — make this mac 'n' cheese a creamy comfort food that's destined to become a go-to indulgence. Get the recipe
Maple Glazed Brussels Sprouts With Toasted Walnuts
Roasted in olive oil and maple syrup, this healthy side dish will earn a thumbs-up (and requests for seconds!) from even the most finicky of Thanksgiving guests. Get the recipe
Old-Fashioned Homemade Gravy
Skip the packaged mix this year and make gravy from scratch that will complement the rest of your Thanksgiving meal. Garlic, chicken stock and red wine combine to create a rich, full flavor your friends and family will love. Get the recipe
Always a crowd-pleaser, this healthy dish is especially tasty with fresh asparagus. To create: Wash and trim 1 pound of asparagus spears. Pour 2 teaspoons olive oil into a baking dish, add asparagus and toss in oil. Sprinkle spears with kosher salt and shaved Parmesan cheese then bake for 20 minutes at 375 degrees Farenheit.
Thyme and Parsley Stuffing
Mild and savory, this herbal stuffing pairs well with turkey, ham or even roast beef or pork — or serve this meat-free recipe as a holiday main course to vegetarian friends and family. Get the recipe
Tasty Chicken Stock
As a base for homemade soup or as an ingredient in comfort food favorites like Thanksgiving stuffing, starting with a high-quality stock will make all the difference. Get the recipe