5 Spiced Side Dishes For Your Holiday Dinner

Planning a holiday dinner can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. This holiday season, let your dinner table shine with delicious and easy side dishes like
  • baked apples,
  • potato dumplings with a surprise,
  • holiday spiced red cabbage,
  • glazed chestnuts,
  • and spiced cranberry sauce.
Choose your favorite side dishes to make your holiday dinner delicious and memorable!

Baked Apples

Baked apples are a classic holiday dish and a great way to use up those extra apples you have lying around. Fill with brown sugar, spices, raisins, nuts, and rum for a delicious and warming treat.

Tip: Place the apples into the BAKING DISH with your turkey or other holiday feast about 30 minutes before the meat is cooked.


  • 6 large apples
  • 3 tbsp rum
  • 1/2 cup nuts (walnuts, hazelnuts or
    your favorite nut), chopped
  • 1/4 cup raisins (optional)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 dash nutmeg


  • Preheat OVEN to 400°.
  • Cut the top of the apples and set aside. Core apples, but leave the bottom closed. Scoop out apple pulp to get enough space for the filling.
  • In a CUP, mix rum with nuts, raisins (optional), 1/4 cup brown sugar, 3 tsp butter and spices.
  • Fill apples with mixture. Cover with tops.
  • Make a few holes in the peel with a fork. 
  • Place the apples in a greased BAKING DISH. 
  • Bake apples for about 30 minutes, depending how firm or soft you want your apples.

Potato Dumplings

Potato dumplings are a delicious, versatile addition to any holiday meal, and sure to bring a smile to everyone’s face. They make a wonderful side dish that can be filled with all sorts of flavors.
If you’re having a traditional holiday dinner, try filling them with savory ingredients like sautéed onions, mushrooms, and herbs.

For a sweeter option, add half apricots or spiced nuts. Or, try diced bread with herbs or leftovers from your turkey stuffing mix. The possibilities are endless!

Tip: Make the dumplings ahead of time and freeze them, so they’ll be ready when you need them on the big day. 


Special Holiday Dishes

For a complete holiday dinner, try these two courses from Europe! The first is a Polish take on the Russian beetroot soup, traditionally served with tortellini style dumplings. It’s hearty, flavorful, and sure to please even the pickiest of eaters. For the main course, you can try a German feast featuring either a roasted goose or duck.  It’s the perfect comfort food for a cozy evening. And of course, no European holiday feast would be complete without a glass of wine or two. So pour yourself a glass, and enjoy! Guten Appetit!

Holiday Spiced Red Cabbage

Serve holiday spiced red cabbage to surprise with a European tradition. Cook shredded red cabbage in mix of spices and with a little orange.


  • 1 lb red cabbages, thinly cut
  • 2/3 cup red wine
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 inch stick cinnamon
  • salt to taste 
  • optional:
    1 orange and/or 1 apple, peeled


  • In a POT, mix cabbage with , lemon juice, red wine, and spices. Mix well.
  • Optionally, add apple and/or orange, cut into bit size pieces
  • Cover and let rest for 30 minutes.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Cook over low heat for about 30 minutes until the cabbage is tender.

Roasted or Glazed Chestnuts

The holiday season isn’t complete without a side dish of roasted or glazed chestnuts! Whether served in their shells or peeled and chopped, these crunchy treats are the perfect addition to your holiday meal. Roasted and glazed chestnuts are incredibly easy to make, and they taste just like Christmas! To get started, simply roast the chestnuts in the oven or on the stovetop until they’re golden brown. For an extravagant festive dish, try glazed chestnuts. Simmer the chestnuts in a spiced sweet glaze.
roasted chestnuts
roasted chestnuts

Ingredients for glazed chestnuts

  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/4 brown sugar
  • 1 lb chestnuts, shelled
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  •  2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 dash cardamom
  • 1 dash allspice
  • salt to taste 

Instructions for glazed chestnuts

  • In a small POT, melt butter. 
  • Add brown sugar and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves.
  • Add chestnuts, broth, and spices.
  • Cook over medium-low heat for about 20 minutes until the chestnuts are cooked. Stir occasionally.
glazed chestnuts

Spice Cranberry Sauced

Finally, the traditional aromatic cranberry sauce adds a festive touch to the feast. It is sure to be a hit with everyone at the table.