The smell of food is in the air. It's time to gather around the dinner table. It looks amazing. The family chefs have really outdone themselves this year. The full spread is on display. Smiles on everyone's faces as they start to dig in. You pick up your plate as you decide what you'd like to dish up first. A slice of turkey? Oh, there is also ham, SCORE! Stuffing looks great, mashed potatoes are always a staple. The cranberry sauce is still in the can form, so that's a little weird. As you grab a roll, something catches your eye and you accidentally say out loud, "What the hell is with the noodles?"

I almost made the first Thanksgiving I ever spent with my in-laws very awkward. My wife is half Asian and having some sort of chow mein is something they've included every holiday. This and the fact that her sister offered me seaweed (dried like jerky) like it was a candy treat still fills me with confusion. I am curious if chow mein is the weirdest of the nontraditional side dishes, so I reached out to the Yakima audience, and these are the results.

Amy Rock, rock’s mashed potatoes, gravy stuffing and rolls. The one thing that stood out to me, “Green Bean Casserole”. A quick google search and it’s a baked dish “consisting primarily of green beans, cream of mushroom soup, and French fried onions.” But it’s also a popular side dish to Thanksgiving according to google. Although, if you’re not use to it, it seems kind of unusual.

Evan Neveu has enjoyed a nice Thanksgiving “Meatloaf”. I asked if he used ground turkey instead of beef for Thanksgiving. His answer seemed to sum it up. “Once!

Kris Zerby commented how his family are “Not turkey fans, so I do a large bone in ham with a cherry glaze over the top.” I’ve seen a lot of hams, but the cherry glaze is a new one for me.

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Annie Piel is on the same page with the glaze but uses a “Huckleberry Pepsi Glaze” on her ham.

Ginger Sparks shared a great memory about her kids:

When my son & daughter-in-law moved away to go to school, her aunt teased her that they would be eating frozen pizza for Thanksgiving. So, every Thanksgiving, it is my kids’ tradition to bake a Digiorno pizza to serve with all of the traditional fare. Turns out, my daughter-in-law is a FABULOUS cook! - Ginger Sparks


Ondrea Machin enlightened me on a side dish her family enjoys called “Corn Pudding”. It contains corn, creamed corn, cheese and is topped with Ritz cracker crust and is also called “Scalloped Corn”. Has anyone informed the “Corn Kid”?

Stephanie DeMoss keeps the side dishes, but replaces the main course. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, my husband and I have started our own tradition of barbequing steaks instead of getting a bird. We still have all the potatoes and stuffing etc. Just a great steak and much less work and clean up since he barbeques.

Growing up on the west side near the beach, molded Laurie Stephenson’s family to include oysters in many of their meals, including Thanksgiving with “Oyster Stuffing”.

On the appetizer side of Thanksgiving, Emily Harris shared the best dip ever (according to her). Cranberry Jalapeno Dip! Cranberries, scallions, Jalapeno’s along with some cream cheese, makes up a majority of the ingredients on this pre-turkey dip.


Several people suggested Mince Meat Pie, but the more I think of that, the more I get Sweeney Todd flashbacks.

Darrell Iness goes very, VERY tradition with his Thanksgiving. Including Fry Bread or Bannock Bread as a side.


Cindy Johnson’s side or topper might be a little greedy. “I make what I call ‘Sweet Gravy’, pretty much is gravy, but I add sugar. I don’t think my family likes it much, but that means more for me!

What are your unusual sides that you plan to make this year? Tap the App and let us know! We’d love to spread the word (b-b-b-b-b-Bird is the Word… sorry, couldn’t resist). Whatever you do decide to put on the side (or in place of) your Turkey this Thanksgiving, just remember to be thankful and stay safe while cooking.

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