This Study Revealed America’s Favorite Thanksgiving Dishes and You May Be Surprised by the Results

published Nov 17, 2021
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Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Barrett Washburne; Prop Styling: Stephanie Yeh

As Thanksgiving is on its way to making its entrance, everyone will be busy creating their showstopping menus. From Ina Garten and Giada de Laurentiis to Thanksgiving Food Fest participants like Yasmin Fahr and Alexander Smalls, everyone has been sharing their most favorite recipes for the big holiday.

While everyone has their own personal favorites that they like to see on the table for Thanksgiving, a recent survey done by puzzle manufacturer Bits and Pieces has revealed the exact dish that Americans are most excited about for the day. And the rankings might not be what you’d expect.

According to the survey, which polled over 3,400 Americans, the top dish that guests look forward to each year is none other than the star of the show: the turkey or — in some cases — the ham. Ranking high among 29.5 percent of people, it really is no surprise that this is what guests get the most excited about each year for the Thanksgiving holiday. After all, the holiday does carry the nickname Turkey Day. Nabbing 15.4 percent of the interest was mashed potatoes, and coming in closely behind are pies (no specific flavor indicated) with 12.7 percent of surveyors marking that as their favorite.

What may surprise you, however, is how low on the list both rolls and green beans land. Only getting the attention of 3.5 percent and 2.5 percent of people, the usual side-dish staples fall well under mac and cheese, casseroles, and even cranberries! Talk about an unexpected twist.

Credit: Bits and Pieces

Other topics such as the popular holiday rituals for each state, ideal Christmas gifts, a timeline of how long you should date someone before bringing them home for the holidays, and more are also included in this graph. And just in case you were wondering, yes, watching holiday movies is the most popular holiday ritual as it nabbed the number one spot in 24 states total.

So, if you’re still trying to figure out what to add to this year’s menu or want to know which side dish you should opt to take off, this survey may help you gauge how your guests will react to your offerings. Or, at the very least, you may be able to cut back on the size of your portions this year to keep the food waste down.