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Thanksgiving Sides to Make with Your Kids • Cooking with Catholic Kids

Peanut Butter & Grace’s resident chefs share their favorite Thanksgiving sides that even little hands can help prepare.


by Ryan Langr and Theresa Wilson


Christian Brothers Cranberry Sauce

by Ryan Langr

Cook Time: approximately 22 minutes

Your kids will enjoy stirring and smashing up the cranberries for this delicious twist on traditional cranberry sauce. Cranberries are pretty sour, but if you add in the right ingredients and an open mind, with a little heat they can be something amazing. Named in honor of the Christian Brothers Catholic lay religious order, it includes Christian Brothers Brandy. If you’re uncomfortable using alcohol in a recipe with your kids, substitute with apple cider.



  • 12 punces fresh cranberries (1 bag)
  • 2 tbsp Christian Brothers Brandy (Any brandy will work. Substitute an equal amount of apple cider if you want to go non-alcoholic.)
  • 1 tbsp filtered water
  • 1 inch piece orange peel
  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg



  1. In a medium pot, add all ingredients. Cook on low heat for 10 minutes and stir constantly until the sugar melts.
  2. Increase heat to medium and cook for another 10-12 minutes. Smash the cranberries with a wooden spoon or other utensil while it cooks.
  3. Refrigerate for 4-6 hours if you prefer it thicker, or serve and enjoy immediately.


Sour Cream and Onion Mashed Potatoes

by Theresa Wilson

Cook Time: approximately 45 minutes

The sour cream and onions put a fun, but familiar twist on a classic dish. Your kids will enjoy pulling out their arm muscles to help with the mashing.




  • 2 1/2 lbs red bliss potatoes
  • 1/2 cup 2 percent milk
  • 3 tbls butter
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup green onion plus extra for garnish, thinly sliced  
  • 2 tsp salt, plus more for boiling water
  • 1 tsp fresh ground pepper



  1. In a large pot, cover potatoes with cold, salted water.
  2. Cook the potatoes at a high simmer until a knife can easily slide into the middle of the larges one. Try to avoid a hard boil, as the skins of the potatoes are more likely to bust and become water logged.
  3. Drain all of the cooking water and put the potatoes back into the pot over low heat. Allow any excess water to evaporate.
  4. With a potato masher or heavy whisk, crush the potatoes and mix in the milk, butter, salt and black pepper. To allow for a younger helper, this can also be done away from the stove.
  5. Once the milk, butter and potatoes are thoroughly mixed together and most lumps are mashed out, add the sour cream and green onions and stir until evenly incorporated.
  6. Garnish with extra onion slices.


Breaking Bread Crockpot Stuffing

by Ryan Langr

Cook Time: approximately 4-8 hours

Bread is a symbol of our Eucharistic thanksgiving and our solidarity as the body of Christ. It’s also one of the most common Thanksgiving dishes. Break bread together with this stuffing recipe that won’t take up more room in your oven!



  • 1 cup butter or margarine
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 ounces sliced mushrooms
  • 12 cups dry bread cubes
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning (can substitute an additional ½ tsp thyme, ¼ tsp marjoram, and ¼ tsp dried sage)
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried sage
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 4 1/2 cups chicken broth, or as needed
  • 2 eggs, beaten



  1. Melt butter or margarine in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion, celery, mushroom, and parsley, stirring frequently until the onions are soft.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, spoon the cooked vegetables over bread cubes in a very large mixing bowl. Season with all the spices.
  4. Pour in 1 cup broth (enough to moisten), and mix in the already beaten eggs. Once well mixed, Transfer to slow cooker, and cover.
  5. Cook on high for 45 minutes, then reduce heat to low, and cook for 4 to 8 hours.


Roasted Radishes with Parsley

by Theresa Wilson

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Roasting radishes brings out their natural sweetness and softens the spicy pepper flavor of raw radishes. The fresh parsley brings a brightness to the dish.




  • 2 lbs radishes, trimmed and cut
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped



  1. After trimming the radishes of their greens, cut the larger radishes into quarters; the medium sized ones into halves. The small radishes can stay whole.
  2. In a bowl, drizzle the radishes with the olive oil and cover with salt and pepper and stir to evenly coat the radishes.
  3. Spread the radishes onto a cooking tray lined with foil, making sure not to overly crowd the tray.
  4. Roast in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.
  5. Toss the radishes with the chopped parsley and enjoy!


Roasted Asparagus with Pomegranate and Goat Cheese

by Theresa Wilson

Cook Time: 15 minutes

The pomegranates in this dish bring vibrant color and a sweet, juicy tartness that compliments the creamy goat cheese.




  • 2 lbs asparagus , woody end of the stem trimmed
  • 1/8 cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 3/4 cup Pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese, crumpled



  1. Lay the asparagus out on a cooking tray lined with foil, making sure the asparagus isn’t over crowded on the tray.
  2. Drizzle the olive oil over the asparagus and season them evenly with the salt and pepper. Gently rolling them around a little with your fingers will help this.
  3. Roast in a 375 degree oven for 15 minutes.
  4. When the asparagus are cooked, place them onto your serving tray.
  5. Evenly sprinkle the goat cheese over the asparagus and then top with the pomegranate seeds.


Theresa Wilson is an alumnus of Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, New York. After pursuing her passion for all things food, she quickly rose the ranks in fine dining cuisine as a professional chef, and as a chef instructor and assistant director at a culinary institute. She is now a busy stay-at-home mom and short order cook to her amazing, energetic young daughter and son.

Ryan Langr is a former faith formation coordinator, youth minister and music minister. Currently, he is a full-time stay-at-home dad to a preschooler. He has a wife, two cats, and growing little girl. He enjoys reading, writing, games of all kinds, spending time with his family, and cooking. He primarily contributes to Cooking with Catholic Kids. Occasionally, he blogs about parenting at Caffeine and Grace.





Follow Jerry Windley-Daoust:

Publisher, Gracewatch Media

Jerry Windley-Daoust is a writer, editor, and father of five. He writes essays and stories at Windhovering and is the show-runner for Gracewatch Media, a small Catholic publisher. You can follow his latest publishing projects at gracewatch.org.

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