America's Favorite Thanksgiving Sides, According To Campbell's

This map of America's most popular Thanksgiving sides by state reveals some 2023 shakeups.

Another Thanksgiving is coming, and for the second year in a row Campbell's has released its State of the Sides report. The Thanksgiving-themed data comes from a survey of 5,000 Americans (conducted in partnership with market research company OnePoll), and the results reveal how we're thinking about side dishes this holiday season. It turns out we're all ready to shake things up this year.

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Let's be honest: Side dishes have always been the true stars of the Thanksgiving spread. In fact, Campbell's 2023 report found that 67% of Americans prefer side dishes to the entree, up 1% from 2022, and 54% would be perfectly happy with only sides on their Thanksgiving plate, no turkey—a 17% increase from last year.

The most popular Thanksgiving sides in every state

First and foremost, there has been a complete upset in the most popular Thanksgiving sides by state compared to last year.

For starters, mashed potatoes have overtaken stuffing as the most popular side dish of Thanksgiving—last year, stuffing had potatoes beat by a margin of five states. Meanwhile, mac and cheese has entered the top five, coming in third place, with 27% of Americans noting it as their favorite side dish. This pushed both yams and green bean casserole down a peg, to fourth and fifth place, respectively. Washington was, however, the only state with green bean casserole as a favorite dish, and no state fully committed to yams.

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We're not sure which specific "breads" are being referred to here—maybe dinner rolls? Or biscuits?—but respect to Colorado for being a lone wolf on that one. See also: Virginia's apparent love for salad. (Then again, "salad" could mean a lot of things.)

How Thanksgiving sides will be different in 2023

Americans are clearly looking to zhuzh up their side dishes. In accordance with grocery store trends, 33% of Americans plan to add spicy ingredients to their spread this year to make each dish hotter.

Outside of upping the temperature, though, people generally want to add a little something new to the table. The report found that 20% hope to incorporate new ingredients like cauliflower rice or non-dairy milk, and 18% want to offer more plant-based options. Some (18% of respondents) would even go so far as to add tinned fish to a side dish for more flavor.

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From ghost pepper mashed potatoes to traditional green bean casserole, Thanksgiving menus are pretty forgiving, and they can stretch to meet anyone's definition of delicious. Sounds like a beautiful feast in the making.

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