A make ahead Thanksgiving dinner will be your saving grace come holiday season. Whether you're hosting your entire extended family or just a few friends, each of these delicious Thanksgiving meals can be made or prepped 24+ hours in advance to help relieve day-of kitchen chaos. We have make-ahead Thanksgiving dinners to cover all your holiday favorites, including turkey (complete with make-ahead turkey gravy), make-ahead mashed potatoes, and holiday pies.
1 1/2 - pounds fresh green beans, trimmed
1 - cup boiling water
1/2 - ounce dried wild mushrooms, such as morel, chantarelle, oyster, and/or porcini mushrooms
7 - 8 - slices bacon (8 ounces), cut into small pieces
12 - ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
2 - cloves garlic, minced
3 - tablespoons butter
3 - tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 - cups half-and-half or light cream
2 - teaspoons snipped fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1 - teaspoon salt
1/2 - teaspoon ground black pepper
In an extra-large skillet cook beans in boiling lightly salted water about 3 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain. Transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Drain again; set aside. Meanwhile, in a small bowl pour the 1 cup boiling water over the dried mushrooms. Cover and let stand for 15 minutes.
In the same extra-large skillet cook bacon until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a small bowl lined with a paper towel; crumble bacon. Reserve about 1 tablespoon of the bacon drippings in skillet; discard the remaining drippings. Cook cremini mushrooms in the reserved drippings over medium-high heat until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in garlic. Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Remove from heat. Stir in green beans.
Meanwhile, use a fork to remove the dried mushrooms from the water (do not discard liquid). Chop the mushrooms; add to green bean mixture.
For sauce, in a medium saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour. Cook and stir for 1 minute. Stir in all but about 2 tablespoons of the mushroom liquid (discard the liquid at the bottom of the bowl, which may be gritty). Stir in half-and-half. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Remove from heat. Stir in rosemary, salt, and pepper. (To serve today, omit Step 5 and continue as directed in Step 6.)
Transfer crumbled bacon, green bean mixture, and sauce to separate airtight containers. Cover; chill for up to 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Stir the sauce into the bean mixture. Spoon into a 2-quart square baking dish. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until bubbly. Top with bacon. Bake for 5 minutes more.
NUTRITION FACTS (Bacon-Topped Green Bean Casserole)
Per serving: 334 kcal , 24 g fat (11 g sat. fat , 2 g polyunsaturated fat , 9 g monounsaturated fat ), 67 mg chol. , 1045 mg sodium , 14 g carb. , 3 g fiber , 2 g sugar , 16 g pro.