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Food Network’s Thanksgiving Recipe Search Trends

Food Network’s Thanksgiving Recipe Search Trends

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People are creatures of habit, and Food Network has noticed a pattern in how Americans plan their Thanksgiving menu

Desserts were one of the first things American started thinking about when planning Thanksgiving, and these cheesecake recipe was the most popular.

How do you start planning your Thanksgiving menu? Although the general theme of the meal has been consistent over the years, people are always looking for new ways to serve the classics — a twist on standard mashed potatoes, a deep-fried turkey instead of a roasted one, or subbing in some roasted Brussels sprouts for the traditional steamed green beans. To give us insight into how Americans start planning their Thanksgiving, Food Network turned to the most valuable resource they have: the internet.

Food Network's Thanksgiving Recipe Search Trends

While we know that many Americans rely on family recipes or favorite cookbooks when planning their holiday menus, we also know that the Internet is a huge part of the planning process as well. Weeks, even months, before Thanksgiving, people begin searching holiday recipes online as they start to craft their holiday meal, and while this is no surprise, Food Network picked up on some pretty interesting themes in people’s Thanksgiving search habits.

By examining their site’s search data from 2010 and 2011, Food Network was able to determine what part of the Thanksgiving meal Americans start planning first. While appetizers coming in first on the list may not surprise you, did you know that the turkey is one of the last things people think about?
Here, we share these findings and more from Food Network’s Thanksgiving recipe search trends. These insights will tell you not only what Americans want to serve this year, but how and when they go about deciding what will be on the menu.

Anne Dolce is the Cook Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @anniecdolce

How to Fillet a Whole Fish with Below Deck’s Chef Ben

Ben Robinson shows us how to break down a whole red snapper, then turn it into sushi, sashimi, ceviche — and more!

Ben Robinson Whole Cleaned Snapper, as seen on Food Network Kitchen.

Photo by: Felicia Perretti

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If the idea of breaking down an entire fish terrifies you, know you're not alone.

Before catching Ben Robinson's class on the Food Network Kitchen app, I would have been the first to admit that the whole process seems way too intimidating to even attempt. Granted, I have never gone fishing and grew up in a seafood-less household. I only recently graduated from ordering the occasional salmon dish at restaurants to keeping fish fillets in my freezer at all times.

But that's the beauty of Ben's class. He teaches us how to take a whole red snapper and turn it into tonight's dinner — all while making it feel approachable and (surprisingly) simple. You may recognize chef Ben Robinson from Bravo's Below Deck, the reality series that provides a behind the-scenes look into the lives of the people who work aboard mega-yachts. Ben, of course, serves as the executive chef, creating gorgeous dishes out on the open water. He brought his culinary skills on land (to the Food Network Kitchen studio, specifically) to teach the course Raw Fish Made Easy. Before demonstrating how to make ceviche, fish crudo and sushi, he shows us how to break down a snapper in just three easy-to-follow steps. His class left me feeling far more confident and prepared than frantically Googling "what do I do with this whole fish?!" ever could. Here's how chef Ben preps a whole fish, and how you can, too:


1. Pour 2 cups (500 mL) water into bottom of double boiler. Place on stove over medium heat and bring water to simmer.

2. In top of double boiler combine butter, cocoa and sugar place over simmering water. Heat, stirring, until butter has melted and mixture is smooth.

3. Add beaten egg stir until thick. Remove top of double boiler from heat. Stir in graham wafer crumbs, coconut and almonds.

4. Scrape into parchment paper-lined 8-inch (2 L) square baking dish. Press firmly to create even bottom layer.

5. Tip: If you don’t have a double boiler, half-fill a saucepan with water and heat over medium heat until water begins to simmer. Then, place a metal or glass bowl over the simmering water and proceed as directed.

Middle Layer

1. In bowl, cream together butter, cream and custard powder. Gradually add icing sugar beat until light and fluffy. Scrape over bottom layer, smoothing top with spatula or palette knife.

1. In clean double boiler, melt chocolate and butter together. Remove from heat let cool slightly. When cool, but still liquid, pour over custard layer.

Classic Cherry Pie

Good Enough to Eat

This recipe is courtesy of Carrie Levin of Good Enough to Eat, a New York eatery that has been serving up delicious American home cooking since 1981. A classic like cherry pie is always a winning choice for Thanksgiving, and chef Levin’s recipe is super simple and totally scrumptious.

Pie Dough


  • 1 cup sifted flour
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 to 3 tsp iced water
  • ½ tsp salt
  1. Combine flour and salt. Cut butter into tiny pieces.
  2. Mix flour and butter until it resembles cornmeal.
  3. Sprinkle water little by little on mix until the dough forms.
  4. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Cherry Pie


  • Two 9-inch unbaked pie crusts
  • 2 cans (1lb) of sour cherries in water
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp almond extract
  • Sugar to sprinkle
  1. Line a pie tin with one pie crust
  2. Drain the cherries and reserve 1/3 of the liquid
  3. Combine sugar, salt, and cornstarch in a bowl
  4. Add cherries, reserved juice, and extract. Pour into pie tin and dot with butter.
  5. Roll out a second pie crust.
  6. Cover the pie with the second pie crust, sealing well.
  7. Cut vents on top of the crust.
  8. Brush crust with water and sprinkle with sugar.
  9. Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes, then at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

America’s most googled Thanksgiving recipes

This year, as CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) guidelines discourage the huge potluck holiday parties of past years, Americans are craving traditional holiday favorites. 1

Here are the most popular Thanksgiving recipes ranked by the number of states that like them best:

  • Mashed potatoes: 14
  • Mashed sweet potatoes: 6
  • Sweet potato casserole: 6
  • Jell-O: 6
  • Green bean casserole: 1
  • Sweet potato casserole with marshmallows: 1
  • Roast turkey: 3
  • Pecan pie: 3
  • Cranberry sauce: 1
  • Cornbread dressing: 1
  • Honey-baked ham: 1
  • Candied yams: 2
  • Gravy: 5
  • Classic stuffing: 1

Thanksgiving map shows each state's most-searched recipe

Dr. Nicole Saphier on how long leftover food is safe to eat.

The folks in Kentucky are planning to have themselves one heck of a decadent Thanksgiving.

A new study has revealed the country’s most-searched Thanksgiving recipes by state, and while many of us are preferring to stick to the classics (roasted turkey, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, etc.), the foodies in the Bluegrass State are apparently a little more eager to try deep-fried turkey this year.

The data, provided by Google Trends, was collected by home-maintenance website House Method, which also compiled its results into two delicious-looking maps — one for sweet, and one for savory.

Wait, nobody said "wine"? (House Method)

Among the more interesting findings include Georgia’s preference for honey-baked ham (at least in terms of people searching the recipe) and both Washington and Hawaii’s need for the perfect gravy recipes, making one wonder if their Thanksgiving turkeys are any drier than the rest of ours.

On the sweeter side, House Method was surprised to find that just as many states were Googling recipes for brownies as they were for the more traditional pumpkin pie. However, pie — in general — was the clear favorite, with dozens of states searching for the perfect recipe, be it pumpkin, pecan, sweet potato or, in the case of one state, apple. (Looking at you, Vermont!)

Hope you like pie, America, because that's what you're getting on Thanksgiving. (House Method)

The study’s complete findings can be found at House Method, where, unfortunately, the analysts have already confirmed that pretty much nobody in America wants to eat our extra chunky cranberry sauce.

14 of Ina Garten’s Most Delicious Thanksgiving Side Dishes to Try

There’s one truth that any Thanksgiving aficionado can tell you: The best part of Thanksgiving dinner has nothing to do with the turkey. Why settle for meat that’s usually dry as a bone (unless you rely on some never-fail turkey tips) when a selection of scrumptious sides awaits your taste buds?

That’s right, other than dessert (we’re team pie every time), side dishes are the true stars of this feast. They give us the opportunity to sample all sorts of flavors and textures, from creamy root vegetable gratin to refreshing pear and blue cheese salad. We make it a point to make more side dishes than it seems possible to finish. Because guess what? They get finished every year no matter how many we make. It’s also nice to have leftovers in the fridge all week.

Of course, these aren’t just any sides. They’re recipes from the Barefoot Contessa herself, Ina Garten. No one is better at putting a gourmet twist on home cooking, and these memorable Thanksgiving recipes (paired with must-have kitchen tools and/or ingredients) are no exception.

A version of this article was originally published November 2018. It was updated in November 2020.

Our mission at SheKnows is to empower and inspire women, and we only feature products we think you&rsquoll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale.

Chef John's Best Recipes for Thanksgiving Leftovers

Chef John's Thanksgiving recipes are hard to beat. But don't sleep on his holiday dinner leftovers! You do not want to miss Thanksgiving, the Sequel, featuring recipes that are arguably bigger and better than the originals. That's because Chef John knows the secret to a great Thanksgiving leftover recipe: "Lots of flavor, not a lot of ingredients, and the ability to stand on its own rather than remind us of the meal it came from." Enjoy this diverse selection of recipes for using up your Thanksgiving leftovers!

Recipe Summary

  • 1 (4 pound) whole duck
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • ½ tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 5 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 cups peeled, cored and chopped apple
  • 3 cups cornbread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Rinse duck and pat dry rub with salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning.

Melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Saute onion and celery in butter until tender. In a medium bowl, combine with apple and cornbread crumbs. Mix together to make dressing (if necessary, add a little water to moisten).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Fill the duck's cavity with dressing, and sew shut with kitchen twine. Rub outside of bird lightly with olive oil, and place in a shallow roasting pan or 9x13 inch baking dish.

Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 80 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 180 degrees F (80 degrees C.)

The Top 7 Food Trends of 2021

Speaking of cooking more at home, 47% of Americans surveyed in November by Instacart and Harris Poll report that they plan to continue cooking more themselves for the foreseeable future until the coronavirus pandemic calms down. Here’s what we anticipate shopping for and whipping up.

Next-Level Charcuterie

Hot on the heels of jarcuterie, mail-order charcuterie boards, and charcuterie chalets, Pinterest predicts that fancy boards with unique toppings will continue to rise in popularity throughout 2021. It’s no longer about just cured meats and cheeses: Bagel or pancake-topped breakfast charcuterie boards, colorful candy charcuterie boards, and taco bar-like Mexican charcuterie boards will be the casual family meal du jour.

𠇌harcuterie has taken off for many reasons, but one reason is because it’s highly visual. It’s all over social media and the internet, and Millennials in particular reported even more impact on their diets from influencers and social media over the course of the pandemic,” says Sarah Marion, Ph.D., a Seattle, Washington-based director of syndicated research for the market research company Murphy Research. �k in January a little more than a quarter of Millennials rated influencers and social media networks very influential on their eating habits. As social lives moved online, this number went up, hitting a high point of 41% in September and is currently sitting around 37%.”

Prioritizing Plant-Based Eating

Instead of beef, pork, or poultry, even carnivorous Americans are picking more plant protein sources, including beans, legumes, whole grains, and plant-based meat substitutes. About 28% of people surveyed by IFIC say they’re eating more plant proteins than they did a year ago.

This was boosted by new research that proved replacing red meat with plant proteins may lower risk for heart disease. Referring to the increased availability and improvements in the market for plant-based beef and seafood replacements, Meyer says, “there’s innovation that is happening around this style of eating and it feeds into other important issues such as sustainability and overall health.”

Marion adds that “restricting animal products has become fairly common,” even among those who are more flexitarian than vegan dieters. “What&aposs fascinating is that the number of nutrition-engaged consumers restricting animal products seems to align with the ebbs and flows of the pandemic, hitting a high point in November with 32% of nutrition-engaged consumers avoiding meat, dairy, or animal products. This is a significant increase from January, when 25% were avoiding these things.”

Spicy Sauces, Seasonings, and Condiments

This pantry staple trend is hot. Literally. Instead of seasoning with plain ol’ salt and pepper or drizzling recipes with olive oil, expect to see snappy spices and flavor-boosted sauces, including hot honey, which has seen substantial growth in Yelp review mentions and Pinterest searches throughout 2020. Whole Foods Market and Instacart trend experts explain that this could be a way for home cooks to ensure their basics don&apost taste boring. More than one in five Americans (21%) polled by Instacart say they&aposve tried exotic spices and flavors to add more excitement to their homemade meals. From piri piri sauce (aka peri-peri sauce, a style of Portuguese hot sauce made from peri-peri peppers) to za𠆚tar spice blend, this is not your typical American pantry.

Shopping for Mother Nature

With the economic impact of the pandemic so strong𠅊nd a desire to support our friends, neighbors, and the world at large during this transformational time—more Americans report they’re investing their dollars into brands that support their values. Upcycled products (foods that use neglected or underused parts of an ingredient to reduce food waste) and sustainable sourcing are rising priorities.

“There&aposs been an uptick in consumers buying environmentally-friendly food products, driven by millennials and Gen X,” Marion explains. 𠇏rom the beginning of 2020 to the end, approximately 50% more Millennial and Gen X consumers rated 𠆎nvironmentally-friendly’ among their top four food-purchasing criteria.”

Shopping with Diverse Populations

In light of the racial justice movement and other equality initiatives, supporting female- and BIPOC-owned businesses seems to be more of a consideration than ever before.

“People are now selectively choosing where they spend their money and who they choose to support. As we&aposve seen the collapse of small businesses, many people want to help small businesses get back on their feet so they choose a mom and pop shop over a big corporation to get the owners through this pandemic,” says Mee McCormick, the author of My Pinewood Kitchen and the chef and founder of Pinewood Kitchen & Mercantile in Nunnelly, Tennessee.

An Instacart survey found that 14% of Americans report they’ve sought out brands run or owned by women (including Yes Way Rosé, Noosa Yoghurt, and Simple Mills) and 14% have also prioritized shopping with BIPOC-run or owned brands this year (such as Partake Foods, Pipcorn, and Glory Foods).

Boosted Kombucha

This effervescent, fermented beverage has been taking over an increased amount of refrigerator aisle real estate at health food stores and supermarkets over the course of the past decade. Food brands are taking the gut-friendly drink to new levels of creativity and flavor with soda-like fizzy tonics and booze-infused kombucha.

𠇊s a microbiologist, I’m very excited about this trend. It speaks to peoples’ continued interest in fermented foods, the microbiome, and gut health,” says Megan Meyer, Ph.D., the director of science communications at the International Food Information Council (IFIC).

Hot Breakfasts, Even on Weekdays

As Americans spent more time at home throughout 2020, fewer of us were living on-the-fly. Meals, including weekday breakfasts that were previously rushed, became a mini occasion worth upgrading and lingering over. With a shorter or no commute, we’ve had the opportunity to upgrade from a granola bar and coffee on the go to a warmer, more substantial breakfast such as fully-loaded omelets, protein-packed pancake stacks, keto-friendly egg bites, and Instagrammable breakfast sandwiches. 

“When it comes to meal planning, breakfast varies quite a bit by generation," says Marion. "Boomers and Gen Z have shown stable habits, while Gen X has been increasingly likely to plan breakfast. It&aposs feasible to assume that this trend is related to having more people at home on any given day." 𠇊s young adults have moved back in with their parents, Gen X households have grown, which may be leading to bigger and more planned breakfasts. Similarly, among Millennials, having children around the house all day would likewise prompt an increase in more planned breakfasts.” However, Marion predicts both of these trends will likely change dramatically next year as schools and universities open back up and grown children move out once again.

Few of us could have predicted, or would have asked for, the adventures 2020 had in store for us 12 months ago. Still, these tasty food trends for 2021 make us grateful for the lessons we learned along the way𠅊nd the delicious foods and drinks we can take with us into the new year.

Watch the video: Food Network Thanksgiving Promo 2016 (August 2022).