This All-In-One Thanksgiving Casserole recipe is made with everyone’s holiday faves — turkey, stuffing, green beans, sweet potatoes, cranberries — and drizzled with a quick homemade gravy.
For those years (oh hey, 2020) when you might not be feeling up for cooking your usual dozen Thanksgiving dishes — or those days any other time of the year when you find yourself craving those nostalgic holiday flavors — I have a fun and simple new recipe for you to try.
Meet my All-In-One Thanksgiving Casserole. ♡
It’s basically exactly what it sounds like — a cozy, hearty, festive casserole that celebrates everyone’s favorite Thanksgiving dishes. It is made with a classic mix of turkey (or you can choose to use chicken or omit the meat entirely), herbed sourdough stuffing, sweet potatoes, green beans and dried cranberries. Then while the casserole bakes up to hot and golden perfection in the oven, I recommend whipping up a quick batch of mushroom gravy (or whatever kind of gravy you love best) to drizzle generously atop each serving. And in just a small fraction of the time it usually takes to prepare your Thanksgiving dinner, a beautiful and delicious bowl of this Thanksgiving casserole will yours to enjoy in no time!
As we all know from years and years of piling our plates high on Thanksgiving, the brilliance of these traditional dishes is that their flavors all pair perfectly together already. So, you know, just think of this casserole as that colorful plate already deliciously overlapping and ready to go!
As always, feel free to play around with this recipe too and make whatever ingredient substitutions sound best. (For example, you could swap in all sorts of other veggies, or make a few easy changes to make the casserole gluten-free or vegetarian.) Or if you happen to be making this casserole after Thanksgiving, you can also use the recipe as a guide for how to turn those leftovers into a delicious casserole too.
Bottom line, anytime you find yourself craving those nostalgic flavors of Thanksgiving…but maybe don’t want to spend the entire day doing the usual Thanksgiving cooking marathon…this casserole is here for you, friends. ♡♡♡
Thanksgiving Casserole Ingredients:
Before we get to the full recipe below, here are a few notes about the ingredients we will need to make this Thanksgiving casserole recipe:
Veggies: I used a mix of sweet potato (or you could use another type of potato), chopped fresh green beans (or you could use frozen), celery and onion. But feel free to toss in whatever Thanksgiving-y veggies you love best!
Garlic: This ends up being a pretty big casserole, so I recommend adding in lots of garlic for seasoning.
Salt and pepper: Don’t forget to generously season the veggie mixture with salt and pepper, as well as do a quick taste test after combining all of the casserole ingredients to see if the whole mixture needs extra salt and pepper as well.
Bread: I highly recommend using some quality crusty bread (I used sourdough) to make the croutons for the “stuffing” part of the casserole. It’s best to use dried-out leftover bread, in order to avoid the stuffing getting soggy. But if you are pressed for the time, you can dice the bread into croutons and let it bake/dry out in the oven as it preheats.
Turkey: You can use any sort of ground, diced, shredded, cooked turkey or turkey sausage for this recipe. Or alternately, you can use chicken instead, or just omit the meat entirely to make this casserole vegetarian.
Dried cranberries: I love the hint of sweetness that the dried cranberries add to this casserole! Alternately, you could use fresh cranberries, which would be much more tart. Or you could add in any other dried berries or raisins that you prefer.
Fresh herbs: I also recommend adding lots of chopped fresh herbs to season the casserole. (I used a combination of fresh rosemary, sage and thyme.) Or if you don’t have fresh herbs on hand, you could add in a few tablespoons of your favorite dried herb seasonings.
Stock + eggs: We will also use a combination of chicken or vegetable stock plus eggs, to create the “stuffing” part of this casserole and bind all of the ingredients together.
Nuts: I also love sprinkling the top of the casserole with some toasted nuts (such as pepitas, pecans or walnuts) to add some extra flavor and crunch.
Gravy: And the final but very important ingredient — gravy. I made a batch of my favorite mushroom gravy recipe to drizzle atop this casserole, but feel free to use any gravy recipe you love best.
How To Make This Thanksgiving Casserole:
Here is a quick overview (see below for the full recipe) of how to make this Thanksgiving casserole:
Sauté the veggies. First, we will sauté the onion and sweet potato, followed by the green beans, celery and garlic until mostly softened. (Don’t forget to generously season the veggies with salt and pepper too!)
Combine everything. Then we will combine the veggies with the cooked turkey, bread, dried cranberries, fresh herbs plus a mixture of eggs + chicken (or veggie) stock, gently toss the whole mixture until it’s evenly mixed, and transfer it to a greased 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
Bake. Next, we’ll bake everything uncovered until the casserole is cooked through and nice and golden on top. (Although keep an eye on the top of the casserole — if it starts to brown too much, just gently lay a sheet of aluminum foil on top of the casserole until it has finished baking.)
Make the gravy. While the casserole is in the oven, we’ll whip up a quick batch of gravy.
Serve. Then once everything is ready to go, drizzle the casserole with gravy and a sprinkle of nuts, serve warm and enjoy!
As I mentioned above, there are endless ways that you could customize this Thanksgiving casserole to your liking. So please feel free to experiment with the recipe and have fun with it! A few suggestions could be to…
Make it vegetarian: Just omit the meat completely, and feel free to add in some vegetarian sausage (I’m partial to Field Roast) and sautéed mushrooms in its place.
Add cheese: Feel free to sprinkle some shredded cheese (such as Parmesan, Monterrey Jack, Mozzarella) into this casserole if you would like to make it cheesy too.
Add corn (or creamed corn): In keeping with the tradition of Thanksgiving, some corn or creamed corn would also be a delicious addition to this casserole.
Add other veggies: Feel free to also add (or swap) in any other Thanksgiving-inspired veggies that you love, such as carrots, butternut squash, mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, etc.
Use mashed potatoes: If you happen to have leftover mashed potatoes on hand, you could choose to add them as a base layer to this casserole (and omit the sweet potatoes, if you would like), and then layer the rest of the ingredients on top.
More Thanksgiving Recipes:
Looking for more Thanksgiving recipes? Feel free to look through our full Thanksgiving recipe collection, or here are a few of my faves that would also go well with this casserole:
optional: chopped toasted nuts, for sprinkling (such as pepitas, pecans, walnuts, etc)
Prep the oven and pan. Heat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Mist a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Sauté the veggies. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large non-stick sauté pan. Add the onion and sweet potato and sauté for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sweet potato is mostly softened. Add the green beans, garlic, celery, and season the mixture with a few generous pinches of salt and pepper. Sauté for 2 to 3 more minutes, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is fragrant.
Combine everything. Transfer the cooked veggies to a large mixing bowl. Add in the bread, cooked turkey, dried cranberries, and fresh herbs. In a separate bowl, briefly whisk together the stock and eggs, then pour the mixture into the large mixing bowl. Very gently, use a spatula to toss the mixture until it is evenly combined. Transfer it to the 9 x 13-inch baking dish and spread the casserole out in an even layer.
Bake. Bake the casserole uncovered for 40 to 45 minutes, or until it is cooked through and the top is nice and golden. (That said, if the top turns too brown or looks like it is about to burn, just gently lay a layer of aluminum foil on top of the casserole until it is done baking.)
Make the gravy. While the casserole is in the oven, make the mushroom gravy according to recipe instructions.
Serve. Once the casserole is ready to go, remove the dish from the oven and garnish with a drizzle of gravy and a sprinkle of chopped nuts, if desired. Serve warm, drizzling each individual serving with extra gravy, and enjoy!
Turkey options/alternatives: You can either dice or shred some pre-cooked turkey. (I used some leftover baked turkey breast that I made using the method for this recipe.) Or you could cook up a pound of ground turkey or some turkey sausage. Or you could use diced or shredded chicken instead, or omit the meat entirely to make this casserole vegetarian.
Dried-out bread: Stuffing is always best when made with leftover, dried-out bread (so that it does not become soggy). I recommend dicing the bread into small cubes and leaving them out on the counter to dry out overnight before making this bread. Or if you’re in a hurry, you can spread them out in a single layer on a baking sheet and let the bread bake and dry out a bit in the oven as it preheats.