12 Make-Ahead Holiday Side Dishes

green bowl filled with Parsnip and Carrot Puree
Photo: Allrecipes Magazine

Wouldn't it be great if your holiday dishes were already prepared, just waiting to go from the fridge to the oven? Give yourself the gift of a few extra hours of sanity with these make-ahead Christmas side dishes.

01 of 12

Skillet Braised Brussels Sprouts

skillet braised Brussels sprouts tossed with bacon and garlic cloves

Perfectly browned Brussels sprouts are tossed with garlic cloves and crisped bacon. To make ahead, cool bacon and sprouts in separate containers, then reheat and add finishing touches the day of.

02 of 12

Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes

Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes in casserole dish
Lorem Ipsum

A great alternative to standard mashed spuds, this rich side dish can be refrigerated until ready to bake. Mascarpone's decadence is the perfect way to mark a special occasion.

03 of 12

Apple Cranberry Relish

apple cranberry relish in a large white bowl with citrus peel garnish

Dress the turkey differently this year. "A unique alternative to traditional cranberry sauce. I've made this a number of times now and always get much praise for this recipe," says CurvyChef.

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Roasted Carrot Salad

roasted carrots tossed with cranberries, blue cheese, almonds, and arugula in a colorful display
Greg Scheidemann

Roast carrots and prepare other salad ingredients the day before, then toss when the time comes for a vibrantly colored salad that is sure to please. This salad would pair well with ham, turkey, or an all-veggie holiday feast.

05 of 12

Scalloped Potatoes II

Scalloped Potatoes II in a blu and white bowl

A classic comfort food that can be reheated when it's time to celebrate! Potatoes and butter always work when gathering with family and friends.

06 of 12

Awesome and Easy Creamy Corn Casserole

Awesome and Easy Creamy Corn Casserole
My Hot Southern Mess

A cross between corn soufflé and a slightly sweet corn pudding. Easy to prepare with a great flavor that everyone will enjoy. Note: The ingredients can be doubled and baked in a 9x13 inch baking dish in almost the same amount of cooking time.

07 of 12

Mushroom Cream Gravy Sauce

Mushroom Cream Gravy Sauce drizzled over steak on white plate

Perfect to pair with turkey, mashed potatoes, or roasted vegetables. This beautifully flavored gravy gets its holiday-friendly richness from white wine, rosemary, and cream. Your guests will be pouring the love on thick if this gravy is on the table.

08 of 12

Broccoli Cheese Bake

Broccoli Cheese Bake

In a world full of carb-heavy holiday sides, be this delicious broccoli cheese bake. Simply steam broccoli and make cheese sauce the day before your event. Bubbling Swiss cheese baked over broccoli and onion is sure to be a winner.

09 of 12

Sweet Potatoes with Brandy and Raisins

serving dish and plate of Sweet Potatoes with Brandy and Raisins
Mackenzie Schieck

Rich brown sugar and brandy-soaked raisins are baked atop sweet potatoes for a layered, impactful flavor profile. Fill your home with the aroma of the season when you take this dish from fridge to oven.

10 of 12

Oyster Stew Christmas Eve Recipe

creamy oyster stew in bowl

This stew is traditionally served in the southeastern United States, dating back to the mid-1800s when Catholic settlers abstained from eating meat on Christmas Eve. Honor tradition and indulge your senses with this flavorful stew. Combine all ingredients except oysters, adding them and simmering for 10-15 minutes when guests arrive.

11 of 12

Muffin Tin Potatoes Gratin

four individual servings of cheesy scalloped potatoes on a rectangular white platter garnished with a sprig of parsley

Tasty and portion-controlled gratin in a cup. Easily made before the celebration begins, this recipe utilizes muffin pans for easy serving and cleanup. "We found this style led us to eat fewer potatoes," says lovestohost. "The leftovers heated up well for lunch the next day."

12 of 12

Parsnip and Carrot Puree

green bowl filled with Parsnip and Carrot Puree
Allrecipes Magazine

Tender parsnips and carrots are pureed with butter and chives for a natural accompaniment to roasted meats. A light, creamy alternative to traditional mashed potatoes, this blend has a hint of sweetness from fresh parsnips. Great for combining conventional holiday dishes with unexpected ingredients!

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