The best part of Thanksgiving is how little it asks of you.

No one is expecting any gifts from you. You spent most of the day sitting, either at the dinner table or on the couch. And even the football schedule is dependable.

But the one thing you should do—scratch that—must do, is bring something delicious to eat.

It doesn’t have to be a 22-pound deep-fried turkey. Or even some kind of slow-roasted covered dish. Someone else will likely have those covered. Do just a little bit better than a bag of chips or a bottle of wine and your host will appreciate the effort.

These simple, one-pan vegetable-based side dishes practically whip themselves up in minutes.


In a large nonstick pan over medium, heat 1 cup chicken stock and 1 Tbsp butter. Add 8 carrots cut into ½-inch circles and cover the pan with a lid. Cook until the carrots are al dente, about 7 minutes.

Remove the lid and cook until no liquid remains, about 5 minutes. Add 1 Tbsp honey and the chopped leaves from 1 rosemary stem and cook until glazed, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Feeds 4.

PER SERVING: 123 calories, 3g protein, 20g carbohydrates (4g fiber), 4g fat


In a cast-iron pan over medium high, heat 1 Tbsp canola oil. Add 6 oz mushrooms (cremini, shitake, oyster, and/or trumpet). Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Add 1 Tbsp butter and 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar. Saute until a glaze forms, about 1 minute.

Remove the pan from the heat, season the mushrooms to taste with salt and pepper, and add 1 Tbsp chopped herbs (thyme, rosemary, parsley). Feeds 2.

PER SERVING: 139 calories, 2g protein, 5g carbohydrates (1g fiber), 13g fat


In a large bowl, toss 1 lb Brussels sprouts (trimmed and halved) with 1/2 cup olive oil, 2 Tbsp honey, zest from 1 orange, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Transfer to a cast-iron pan over medium high and saute till well charred, 6 to 8 minutes.

Add the juice from 1/2 orange and 1 cup chopped walnuts. Cook till glazed, about 1 minute. Add back to the large bowl; season with salt and pepper. Feeds 4.

PER SERVING: 375 calories, 8g protein, 23g carbohydrates (6g fiber), 31g fat

Men’s Health



For more delicious, nutritious one-pan recipes, pick up this cookbook by Men’s Health Food & Nutrition Editor Paul Kita.

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