hide from home

20 Holiday Side Dishes to Bring That Will Showcase Your Latinidad

This year don’t bring some basic bland food to Thanksgiving. Bring something that will surprise your jefitos, impress your primos, nourish your vegan/vegetarian friends, and showcase your Latinidad. Forget boring mashed potatoes, over-salted, cream-sauced vegetables, store-bought pie, or being afraid of vegan/vegetarian dishes. You’re an adult now, this is your chance to show your love through home-made food like your family has done all these years.

1. Tamales de Green Chile y Queso


There’s nothing more festive than tamales over the holidays, and you don’t have to wait until Christmas. Prepare a dozen or so of these for yourself and anyone else who’d rather fill up on hearty Mexican food than dry turkey. This recipe is vegetarian if you make your own masa as instructed, but if you don’t care if they are fully vegetarian, or you just don’t have much time, you could buy prepared masa con manteca from any Latin American food market. Some of us never make our own masa!

2. Brussels Sprouts with Mexican Chorizo


If you want to bring something a bit more traditional, or you’ve been asked to bring a vegetable side-dish, try these Brussels sprouts. Don’t be afraid that people don’t like Brussels sprouts, cooked this way in the fat from the cooked chorizo, they are sure to impress. The red Mexican chorizo will turn the light part parts of the sprouts red, resulting in a festive, and Mexican flag-colored, green and red dish.

3. Sqirl’s Brussels Sprouts

Thanksgiving Side Recipe: Sqirl’s Brussels Sprouts

Or maybe you’d rather put chicharron powder on your Brussels. Cooked in butter, sherry vinegar and fleur de sal. Sqirl LA’s food is so good people from all over the country, often come straight from the airport to eat there. It happens so often that the restaurant will happily store your luggage in their stock room. Bring this Latin flavored recipe to Thanksgiving and show your friends what all the fuss is about.

4.  Tropical Chipotle Cranberry Sauce


Many think that this Thanksgiving staple shouldn’t be messed with, but I can assure you that American Indians and English settlers didn’t eat cranberry sauce out of the can. That said, why not try something different and add some chipotle and pineapple to some fresh cranberries for sweet, sour, and spicy version.

5. Apple Chorizo Cornbread Stuffing


Thanks to all the Latino’s in the US, chorizo is making a strong showing in Thanksgiving dishes. If you’ve been asked to bring stuffing not cooked in the bird, make this savory cornbread chorizo stuffing. This recipe also calls for cumin, oregano, and cilantro to help round out the Latin flavors.

6. Abuelo’s Papas Con Chile or Mexican Mashed Potatoes


These mashed potatoes use Velveeta, but people all over the internet swear by this recipe. If you were asked to bring the papas try this dish. Tell us how it went.

7. Empanadas de Camote


This recipe combines sweet potato, bacon, and queso fresco. Hearty and filled filled with protein and iron, these empanadas are a lighter alternative to bringing masa heavy tamales. With pretty folded edges, these empanadas will look pretty on any Thanksgiving table.

8. Pan Amasado or Chilean Bread Rolls


So you’ve been asked to bring some rolls, but you don’t want to just go to Safeway and grab whatever they have, why not make Pan Amasado? The recipe, only calls for nine every-day ingredients, including shortening, egg, and butter. Sabroso!

9. Blistered Peppers with Lime


Blistered Padrón or shishito peppers topped with spicy sea salt are common now on menus in upscale restaurants all around the country. They are super easy to make too. Bring this to Thanksgiving at your adventurous family/friend eaters, as in the same batch, one pepper can be quite mild and the next one quite hot.

10. Puerto Rican Mofongo


If you’re looking to bring a taste of the island to Thanksgiving make this traditional style mofongo. Made of plantains, garlic, and pork rinds, this dish is an adaptation of a West African slave dish by Taino Indians made with ingredients available on the island. A similar dish is made by Dominicanos.

11. Vegan Potato Adobo Tamales


If you’re a vegan attending a non-vegan Thanksgiving, make yourself these hearty tamales. This recipe will show you how to make both the vegan masa (made with coconut oil instead of lard) and the adobo potato filling. The recipe also calls for garlic, oregano, clove, cinnamon, and cumin. Tamales without masa are lower in calories and saturated fat.

12. Vegan Chile Rellenos


Okay, so many of the vegan recipes here are from the same person, Dora of Dora’s Table. This mujer, Dora, who was born and raised in México and to culinary school in New York, works extra hard to create vegan versions of traditional Mexican dishes, using traditional Mexican ingredients. Her Vegan Chile Rellenos use poblano chiles and vegan cheese. On her website, Dora warns that this recipe isn’t what she’d call healthy.

13. Empanadas de Argentina


If you’re looking to bring the taste of South America to Thanksgiving dinner, make these Argentinian Tamales. They are made with ground beef, bell pepper, and latin-flavor spices. You’ll save time on the dough too because it’s made with store-bought puff pastry flour.

14. Flour Tortillas Made By You


Flour tortillas made by hand are simple but some of the best comfort food you can make, and they taste great with any kind of meat. Maybe don’t expect them to be round the first time you make them unless your used to working with dough. Some recipes call for lard or vegetable shortening, but vegetable or canola oil works just fine, and we prefer the recipe off the back of the bag of La Piña flour. This one is good too.

15. Sopa de Zapallo or Squash Soup


A little bowl of soup might be a nice starter dish. This squash soup uses fall/winter vegetables like butternut squash or pumpkin. This recipe is garnished with avocado and queso fresco.

16. Majarete or Corn Pudding


Majarete, a common dish in Cuba, is made of fresh sweet corn, whole milk, cinnamon, and nutmeg, so the spices common in holiday desserts. This recipe will only take you about an hour to make.

17. Mexican Bread Pudding


Mexican bread pudding, or Capirotada, is one of those recipes that many Latinos remember their abuelitas making for them. It’s best made with stale bread, Oaxacan cheese cinnamon and brown sugar. Many recipes call for nuts, but remember that many people are allergic to nuts.

18. Mexican Chocolate Cake


If you’re bringing a dessert for a chocolate lover, you can’t go wrong with this Mexican chocolate cake. Made with regular unsweetened cocoa, this recipe gets it’s Mexican flavor from cayenne pepper. The total time to make this dish is two hours and fifteen minutes, so plan your time carefully.

19. Vegan Mexican Chocolate Pie


Don’t worry, vegans, we didn’t forget you in the dessert category. This vegan chocolate pie is made with silken tofu which works great for making all sorts of vegan chocolate dishes. This recipe calls for cinnamon, vanilla, and chile powder.

20. Mulled Wine

Mulled Wine

Some of us just need mulled wine for dessert. Mulled wine is like hot sangria made with red wine, brandy, cloves, star anise, and fresh orange, blood oranges are best, this wine turns out less boozy than uncooked red wine. Your tía will love it because it won’t give her so many hot flashes.

Read: 11 Latinas That Boldly Embrace Natural Body Hair From the Past And Present

Recommend this story by clicking the share button below! 

Notice any corrections needed? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com