When we think of Thanksgiving food, our minds often race to turkey. And sure, turkey is the main event, but for me, Thanksgiving has always been more about the sides. Stuffing, creamed corn, green bean casserole and, if you’re like my Italian-American New Jersey family, some kind of pasta always makes its way to the table—usually baked ziti.
New Jersey is diverse and very densely populated, so Thanksgiving spreads differ across the entire state. This left me thinking” What’s the most popular Thanksgiving side in New Jersey? The answer might surprise you.
The Most Popular Thanksgiving Side in New Jersey
Zippia recently released a data-driven map that outlines the most popular Thanksgiving side in every state. To determine this, they used Google Analytics to find out which recipes are the most searched in each state.
So, can you guess which side reigns supreme in NJ? If you guessed stuffed mushrooms, it might be your time to play the lottery. That’s right, stuffed mushrooms—at least according to Google search trends—are the most popular Thanksgiving side in New Jersey.
I’m not so sure I buy it, though. In previous years, stuffing was NJ’s most eaten side and if I had to guess, that would still be the same today. However, the increase in Google searches might just be due to the fact that less people have a recipe in their memory bank for stuffed mushrooms, while something like stuffing or mashed potatoes they can make blindfolded.
The Most Popular Thanksgiving Sides in the US
Stuffed mushrooms are a perfectly acceptable Thanksgiving side dish—it’s definitely more honorable than some of the other state’s preferred offerings.
North Dakota, for whatever reason, loves fruit salad on Thanksgiving. Isn’t that what cranberry sauce is for? In New Mexico and Idaho, a salad is the go-to side (blasphemy). Lastly, and potentially most disappointing is Delaware, where cauliflower mashed potatoes are the most Googled sides. It almost hurts to even put into writing. Whatever happened to the classics?
Good ol’ mashed potatoes are still the most popular side across the US and I don’t expect that to change anytime soon. Mashed potatoes are nine states’ most searched recipe. In Louisiana, dressing reigns supreme—that’s the Southern translation for stuffing.
The good news is that no matter what side might be on top in your home state, you can have as many sides as you want on Thanksgiving. I know my house always boasts at least six options for sides. So, what’s your favorite Thanksgiving side dish? Let us know in the comments below.
About the Author/s
Peter Candia is the Food + Drink Editor at New Jersey Digest. A graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, Peter found a passion for writing midway through school and never looked back. He is a former line cook, server and bartender at top-rated restaurants in the tri-state area. In addition to food, Peter enjoys politics, music, sports and anything New Jersey.