Try using a more unusual variety – say, pheasant sausage – on its own or as a blend with the pork sausage.
--Andrea Beaman, host of the healthy-cooking show "Fed Up!" on Veria TV and a former Top Chef contestant.
Consider adding fresh jalapeno to cranberry sauce and chipotle en adobo to sweet potatoes. "Sometimes we tend to make Thanksgiving so sweet-centric that we forget about balancing every dish with a little bit of spice."
--Claire Robinson, host of "5 Ingredient Fix" on the Food Network
Serve cocktails to a large group easily and affordably by using prosecco, a sparkling white wine, rather than Champagne. To the prosecco, add star anise pear syrup (get Robinson's recipe here) or a splash of cranberry juice. Fancy, but inexpensive.
Try "dirty" mashed potatoes – that is, leaving the skins on the potatoes. It's a time-saving technique with delicious results. Use a medium-size variety, such as Yukon Gold. Cook them whole and unpeeled in a pot of salted water. Meanwhile, heat equal parts heavy cream, milk and butter in a saucepan. When the potatoes are cooked, drain them and return the potatoes to the pot. Using a hand blender or a manual potato masher, work through the potatoes, adding the hot cream and butter mixture to the pot. Mash or blend as much or as little as you like.
--Robb Garceau, executive chef for Union Square Events, the catering arm of Union Square Hospitality Group, which owns Gramercy Tavern and Shake Shack restaurants in New York City
If you have the time, seek out squashes and other vegetables at farmers' markets or from individual farmers. Get to know the source of your ingredients, then share the story with your guests. It will help them connect with and appreciate the dishes on your table.
And you'll see personalized content just for you whenever you click the My Feed .
SheKnows is making some changes!