I think as a busy mom with 4 active and busy boys, I have the choice to live in a state of constantly “feeling and being behind – forgetting this thing or forgetting about that event” or always staying “one step ahead.”
I work hard to stay “ahead.” Not only when it comes to feeding my family, but with our schedule, and with my team and in our business.
I just like to be prepared. It helps create breathing room “in the moment” and reduces my overall stress level. And it takes away the “get it done right now” pressure.
The holidays are such a busy and stress-filled time and I like to combat the chaos by making food (side dishes!) ahead of time, so there’s one less thing to do in the moment. (And one less space on the stovetop or in the oven on feast day!)
Here are my favorite side dishes that can be made ahead and put into the fridge or freezer…
10 Make-Ahead Holiday Side Dishes:
Arborio & Mushroom Side Dish ~ Make ahead and chill in the fridge until ready to serve.
Beef and Blue Cheese Bites ~ Make ahead and freeze in a freezer bag. Pop on a baking sheet and reheat before appetizer time!
Butternut Cranberry Rice Pilaf ~ Make ahead, freeze, and reheat for the holiday meal.
Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes ~ Make ahead, freeze, and reheat in oven safe dish.
Four Bean Salad with Quinoa ~ Make ahead and chill in the fridge until ready to serve.
Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts ~ Make ahead, let cool completely, store in fridge, and reheat for the holiday meal.
Pea, Feta and Red Onion Salad ~ Make ahead and chill in the fridge until ready to serve.
Pumpkin Dinner Rolls ~ Make ahead, cool completely, freeze, and then thaw/reheat in microwave before serving.
Slow Cooker Mashed Sweet Potatoes ~ Make ahead, cool completely, freeze, and reheat in oven safe dish.
Wild Rice Stuffing with Pears, Cranberries and Creamy Rosemary Mushroom Sauce ~ Make ahead and chill in the fridge until ready to serve. No need to reheat although you absolutely could.
I know that we are talking about holiday side dishes, but as you get ingredients ready to make things ahead of time, don’t forget about my easy freezer friendly Apple Pie Filling that will help you get ahead on desserts, too!