One-Pan, One-Pot Thanksgiving Dinner
Perfect for a small gathering, this streamlined Thanksgiving meal is cooked in one medium pot and on one sheet pan (and OK, yes, it also calls for an extra bowl). It has all the traditional flavors of the classic menu — juicy turkey, crisp-topped stuffing, cranberry sauce, gravy, roasted brussels sprouts and marshmallow-topped sweet potatoes — but with a fraction of work (and far fewer dishes).
- Serves: 3 persons
- 1(2- to 2 1/2-pound) boneless turkey breast
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- 2large garlic cloves, finely grated
- 1tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 1tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1tablespoon mayonnaise
- 8ounces bacon (not thick-cut)
- 1pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- ½teaspoon coriander or caraway seeds, lightly crushed
- 4small, slim sweet potatoes or garnet yams (about 8 ounces each)
- 2tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
- 4teaspoons molasses
- Freshly grated nutmeg
- Kosher salt
- ½cup mini marshmallows
- ¾cup granulated sugar
- ⅔cup fresh squeezed orange juice (from 2 oranges)
- 1(2-inch) cinnamon stick or 1 star anise pod
- 1(12-ounce) bag fresh cranberries or thawed frozen cranberries (3 cups)
- ¼cup unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
- ½small onion, chopped
- ¼cup all-purpose flour
- ¼cup dry white wine
- 2to 2 1/2 cups turkey or chicken stock
- Kosher salt
- 3tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for topping
- 1small onion, diced
- 1celery rib, diced
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- 2teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 1 ½teaspoons chopped fresh sage
- 1quart torn day-old white or whole-wheat bread, not too crusty (see Tip)
- ¾to 1 cup turkey or chicken broth
- 1large egg
- 2tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Step 1Marinate the turkey: If the turkey breast comes tied, untie it. Pat the meat dry with paper towels. Season the turkey all over with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, then rub with garlic and thyme leaves. Place turkey on a plate or in a container, cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24.
Step 2Place a rack in the top third of your oven and another rack in the bottom third. Depending on your pace, you might want to have two timers at the ready.
Step 3As the turkey marinates, start the sweet potatoes: Heat oven to 400 degrees. Wrap potatoes individually in two or three layers of foil so they don’t leak, and place them on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake on the top rack until very soft when you squeeze them (use oven mitts), 45 minutes to 1 hour. Let potatoes cool in the foil and reserve the sheet pan for the turkey.
Step 4While the sweet potatoes bake, make the cranberry sauce: In a medium pot, combine sugar, orange juice, 1/4 cup water and cinnamon stick or star anise. Bring to a simmer and add cranberries. Cook until the cranberries burst and the sauce starts to thicken, 12 to 18 minutes. It will be thin, but will thicken as it chills. Transfer to a serving dish and let cool at room temperature, then refrigerate until serving. Remove cinnamon stick or star anise before serving.
Step 5Clean out the pot and make the gravy: Melt 1/4 cup butter over medium heat, then add the onion and cook, stirring, until pale golden brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the flour and cook until the flour turns golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in the wine and cook until it mostly evaporates, another 30 seconds to 1 minute. Whisk in 2 cups stock, letting it simmer until thick, 4 to 6 minutes. If the gravy gets too thick, add more stock as needed. Season with salt to taste. Transfer gravy to an insulated container, like a lidded coffee cup or Thermos, to keep warm.
Step 6Make the stuffing in the same pot: Melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Stir in onion, celery and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook until soft and just starting to brown, about 15 minutes. Stir in thyme and sage and cook 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in bread and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Step 7In a medium bowl, whisk together 3/4 cup broth, egg, parsley and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Fold gently into bread mixture, letting the bread absorb the liquid. If the mixture seems dry, add more stock a little at a time, using up to another 1/4 cup. Dot the surface of the stuffing with a few thin pieces of butter. Cover pot with a lid (or foil) and bake the stuffing on the bottom oven rack until lightly springy, about 20 minutes. Uncover and continue to bake until golden brown, another 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer stuffing to the top of your stove, off the heat, and re-cover to keep it warm until the turkey is ready. Wash the bowl and set aside for the sprouts.
Step 8While the stuffing bakes, roast the turkey: Brush or spread the mustard all over the turkey, then brush with the mayonnaise. Wrap the turkey in bacon and place on a rimmed baking sheet pan. Roast turkey on the top oven rack for 20 minutes.
Step 9Put the brussels sprouts in the medium bowl and toss with enough olive oil to coat, coriander and a pinch of salt. Add the brussels sprouts to the sheet pan with the turkey. Continue to roast until the sprouts are golden and tender, and a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the turkey registers 145 degrees, 20 to 30 minutes longer (for a total roasting time of 40 to 50 minutes). If the turkey is done before the sprouts, use tongs to transfer it to a cutting board and lightly tent with foil. Leave the sprouts in the oven until done. (If the bacon isn’t as brown and crisp as you like, broil the bacon-clad turkey — but not the sprouts — for 1 to 3 minutes.) Allow meat to rest 10 minutes before slicing.
Step 10Finish sweet potatoes: Cut a long slit in the top of the sweet potatoes, leaving them in the foil. Push their ends toward each other so that the middle opens up. Use a fork to mash their centers. Then mash 1/2 tablespoon butter, 1 teaspoon molasses and some grated nutmeg and salt into each potato. Divide the marshmallows among potatoes and place on the sheet pan after the turkey is done. (The potatoes can share the pan with the brussels sprouts if they need more time.) Bake for about 5 minutes while the turkey rests. Serve.