If you’re anything like me, then you cannot believe that Thanksgiving is just one week away and you’re busy making travel plans, getting ready to visit or receive Family members and planning your Thanksgiving “feast-ivities.”

For anyone coming up short on meals to prepare for the big day, I wanted to share some of the things that my Family likes to prepare for the holiday.

Corn casserole

For the past eight years or so, I’ve been preparing a corn casserole recipe that I got from the Pioneer Woman website at www.thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/fresh_corn_cass/. It is super simple and extremely tasty. The hardest, or rather, most tedious part about this recipe is taking the kernels off the cob, and yes, using fresh corn is absolutely necessary.

Throughout the years I’ve tried different techniques including special tools to remove the kernels but, honestly, nothing works better than a good, sharp knife. I’ve also found that it’s easier to cut the kernels from the cob over a clean kitchen towel. The towel keeps the kernels from bouncing all over the place and you’re not restricted in your movements by cutting directly into the bowl. Once the kernels are cut, simply fold the towel and dump the kernels into your bowl. For this recipe you also have to “milk” the corn. My sister and I always think that term sounds kind of gross, but essentially you’re squeezing all of the corn juices from the cob by sliding the back of your knife down the cob.

Mac and cheese

Mac and cheese is a staple for a lot of Thanksgiving meals, but by far our favorite is a recipe by Martha Stewart, found at www.marthastewart.com/957243/macaroni-and-cheese. I will say the ingredients for this mac and cheese can be pricey, especially if you have to double the recipe for feeding a large crowd, but it is extremely worth it. The recipe is pretty straight forward. The only deviation we make is not making our own croutons. We usually just steal bread crumbs from those my mom has on hand for the stuffing.

Salad

We discovered several years ago that salads go over very well on our Thanksgiving buffet. The first year we served a salad we weren’t sure how our meat-centric Family would take to it, but since we started serving a salad, it’s become a staple. Our salad is simple, mixed greens, apples, cranberries, pecans, feta or cheese and bottled cranberry vinaigrette. It offers a flavorful yet light option during the meat and starch-heavy meal.

Pecan tassies

We are not bakers in my Family. Our desserts are never the stars of the show. If we have a store bought pumpkin pie and a can of Reddi-Wip, we call it a win. But on occasion, when time permits, I do make pecan tassies from www.myrecipes.com/recipe/pecan-tassies-0. These can be extremely time-consuming, especially if you double the recipe but they are a delicious, little, one-bite treat.

These are some of our tried and true recipes that I hope will bring as much tasty joy to your Thanksgiving feast as they do to mine.