2022 Thanksgiving Recipes from Esker Employees

Hannah Denning

It’s that time of year again! Getting together with friends and family means good food, laughter, and fun. It’s been our tradition for the past couple years to share Thanksgiving recipes from our employees. We hope you enjoy and have a safe and happy holiday!

Thanksgiving Recipes from Esker Employees

  • Coconut Bourbon Sweet Potatoes
  • Mac & Cheese (Crockpot edition)
  • Zuppa Toscana Soup
  • Cajun Turkey
  • Italian Steak – Palermo Style
  • Smoked Turkey Brine
  • Fish Cutlet Indian Fish Cakes
  • Roasted Sweet Potato & Banana Casserole
  • Homemade Apple Pie
  • Tandoori Chicken
  • Hearty Bean Casserole
  • Leftover Thanksgiving Sliders
  • Tukey Stuffing

Coconut Bourbon Sweet Potatoes

Recommended by Jody Trochlell-Derr. “I came across this recipe years ago… super rich and I love it!”


8 cups mashed sweet potatoes
¾ cup half-and-half cream
½ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup bourbon
2 large eggs
½ cup honey
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon molasses (optional)
½ teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
¾ cup golden raisins
1 ½ cups miniature marshmallows


½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 cup chopped pecans


In a large bowl, combine the first nine ingredients; add molasses and cardamom if desired. Stir in coconut and raisins. Transfer to a 13×9 baking dish; sprinkle with marshmallows. Bake uncovered at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until heated through and topping is golden brown.

Mac & Cheese (Crockpot edition)

Recommended by Jordan Walczak. “My fiancé and I just started this tradition last year and will continue to make it for many years to come!”


1 pound cooked elbow pasta
2 ½ cups milk (whole is best)
12 oz evaporated milk
3 cups shredded sharp cheddar
1 cup shredded American cheese (or Monterrey)
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon dry ground mustard
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
Dash of cayenne pepper (to taste)
¼ cup butter, cubed


Add all ingredients to the crockpot on low heat for one hour. Stir occasionally.

Zuppa Toscana Soup

Recommended by Elly Klawitter. “My family has always loved Olive Garden’s version of this. Now we recreate it as a cozy Thanksgiving dish. It’s amazing and tastes just like Olive Garden’s!

Click here for the full recipe.

Cajun Turkey

Recommended by Rodney Rodgers.

Click here for the full recipe.

Italian Steak – Palermo Style

Recommended by Dani Pasano. “This year we are doing Italian steaks, coated with bread crumbs and other Italian seasonings!”

Click here for the full recipe.

Fish Cutlet Indian Fish Cakes

Recommended by Narain Ganesan-Pillay. “This is a side dish. It’s a staple at my family’s thanksgiving dinners and other get togethers. We have other regular dishes but we like to add an Indian twist.”


1 tbsp oil
1 1/2 cups onions, finely chopped
2” ginger, minced
2 green chilies, chopped
2 sprig curry leaves, chopped
1/2 tsp ground turmeric (turmeric powder)
425 g canned tuna, drained
1 tsp ground black pepper (black pepper powder)
3 large potatoes, boiled and mashed
1 tsp garam masala
Salt to taste
2 eggs, lightly whisked
2 cups breadcrumbs
Oil, to deep fry


Heat oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add onions, ginger, green chilies, and curry leaves. Sauté, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes or until onions start to brown. Add ground turmeric. Fry, stirring, for a few seconds.

Add drained tuna. Sauté, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes. Add ground black pepper and heat through. Remove from heat. Leave to cool.

Add potatoes and garam masala to the cooled tuna mixture. Season with salt. Make 26 small balls out of the mixture and press down lightly to form round or oval-shaped patties or cakes. Set aside.

Place eggs and breadcrumbs in two separate bowls. Dip each cake or cutlet in the egg and then roll in breadcrumbs.

Meanwhile, heat oil for deep frying in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add cutlets (in batches) to the hot oil and deep fry. Flip over to cook both sides. When the cutlets turn golden, remove them from oil with a slotted spoon, and drain on an absorbent towel. Serve with onion salad (challas) and ketchup.


Make the cutlets and deep fry them just before serving.
Add more or less ground black pepper depending on your taste.
Add more or less green chilies depending on your taste.
When frying, don’t let tuna dry too much.
If you want to add coriander leaves, add them along with mashed potatoes.
To freeze patties after coating in breadcrumbs, arrange the cutlets on a tray in a single layer. Freeze for 4-5 hours. Then transfer to ziplock bags to save space. About 30 minutes prior to deep frying, remove from freezer and thaw. Uncooked cutlets can be frozen up to a month.
If using fresh fish, steam the whole fish and separate into tiny pieces. If the fish has bone, debone them. Make sure you remove all the tiny bones.

Roasted Sweet Potato and Banana Casserole

Recommended by Kay Dzwonkowski. “I saw this on a cooking show and really liked the idea of adding in the banana, I tried it last year and there were no leftovers so I did something right. I’ve made it since then for just a cozy fall side dish in a smaller portion.”

Click here for the full recipe.

Smoked Turkey Brine

Recommended by Collin Meinen. “I started using this turkey brine when I needed something fast and simple. Turns out it is delicious and works just as well if you are going to cook your turkey in the oven!”

Click here for the full recipe.

Homemade Apple Pie

Recommended by Nicolas Polin. “This kind of pie isn’t common at all in Europe and I love it.”

Click here for the full recipe.

Tandoori Turkey

Recommended by Radnee Dighe. “I love giving an Indian twist to the usual Thanksgiving staples – including turkey where a toasted blend of more than a dozen spices are ground into a fresh tandoori blend, then mixed with yogurt, ginger, and garlic to create a marinade for our Indian-inspired Thanksgiving turkey. It’s the perfect addition to every Indian who is celebrating this holiday away from their homeland and often, loved ones.

Click here for the full recipe.

Hearty Bean Casserole

Recommended by Heidi Reeter. “Makes for a delicious side dish!!”

Click here for the full recipe.

Leftover Thanksgiving Sliders

Recommended by Madi Vierling. “My Thanksgiving take on classic ham and cheese sliders. Great way to ear your Thanksgiving leftovers.”


1 pack of Hawaiian Buns
Leftover Turkey
Cranberry Sauce or Gravy (or both)
Cheese slice of your choice (I recommend sliced swiss or gouda)
Butter (5 tbsp melted)


Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly spray the bottom of the baking dish with cooking spray. Cut your Hawaiian buns crosswise creating 1 large top and bottom half. Place bottom half in baking sheet and add your Turkey, stuffing, and cheese. Add top half of buns then brush your melted butter on top of buns. You can add seasoning of your choice on top of buns.

Bake for 15 min covered and 3-5 min uncovered until cheese is melted. Take out of oven and serve with a side of gravy or cranberry sauce to dip in (or both sauces).

Turkey Stuffing

Recommended by Kristina Buth. “My great-grandmother wrote this recipe down for my mom on an index card. We laminated the card and reference it each year.”


2 packs cornbread mix
10-12 biscuits
3 slices of bread
1 cup minced onions
1.5 cups chopped celery
1 tablespoon sage
3 eggs beaten well
Pepper to taste


Mix well and add broth. Split between two pans and bake at 325° for 1 hour or until golden brown.

If you try any of our Thanksgiving recipes, let us know how you liked them!

Author Bio

Hannah Denning

As the Digital Brand Marketing Specialist at Esker, Hannah focuses her time around content creation for the Esker blog and social media pages. In her free time, she enjoys spending time outdoors with her puppy, Queso.

Author Photo: