Like most Pittsburghers, we at Popular Pittsburgh are a practical lot, interested in preparing delicious dishes with the least fuss and with ingredients that don’t require a loan from the bank.

Thanksgiving is a well-known day for eating.  To help you prepare for your feast, we’ve included recipes for some essential dishes.  We’re giving you the easiest, tastiest, and most economical way to prepare them.  This will even leave you plenty of time to make some little pilgrims to decorate your feast-day table!

Mom’s Roasted Turkey and Stuffing

From Diane GliozziTurkey


1 fresh or frozen turkey (approximately 20 lbs.), thawed
8 to 10 onions, chopped
2 whole stalks of celery, chopped
Minced parsley
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
3 eggs
Chicken broth (4 1/2 teaspoon bouillon added to 2 1/2 cups water)
3 bags (10 oz. each) of seasoned bread crumbs (21 cups total)


Cooking the Onions and Celery:Mom's Roasted Turkey and Stuffing

The first step is to cook the onions and celery.  There are two ways you do this.  The first is to cook them in a large frying pan with butter or oil until they are soft. The second is to put the chopped onions and celery in a roasting pan with butter or oil and bake, stirring occasionally, until soft.  The advantage of the second option is that you can do something else while they are cooking in the oven, and your house does not smell of fried onions and celery.

Combining all of the Ingredients:

After the onions and celery are cooked, combine them with the rest of the ingredients in a very large mixing bowl. Mix all of the ingredients together with your hands until thoroughly mixed.  You can do up to this step the night before.  If you do, once you reach this point, cover the stuffing and refrigerate until you are ready to stuff the turkey the next day.

Cleaning and Stuffing the Turkey:

When you are ready to stuff the turkey, make sure you remove anything that may be inside the turkey and wash the turkey both inside and out.  Salt the inside of the cleaned turkey.  Stuff the turkey with stuffing lightly until full.  Place any extra stuffing in a casserole dish to heat later, which you can then mix with the stuffing that was cooked inside of the turkey.

Roasting the Turkey:

Place the turkey in a roasting pan.  Liberally sprinkle the outside of the turkey with seasoned salt or the seasoning of your choice.   Cover the turkey with either the roaster lid or aluminum foil.  For the first 20 minutes of baking, set the temperature to 400ºF.  After that turn the temperature down to 325ºF and bake the turkey, covered, until close to the end of the cooking time.  At that point, uncover the turkey so that it can brown nicely without burning or drying out.   While the turkey is baking, baste it every 30 minutes or so.  You only need to start the basting when you are about two hours into the baking process.  A 21 lb. turkey can take approximately 5-6 hours to cook.

How to Know When it’s Done:  The temperature of the stuffing inside the turkey should reach a temperature of approximately 165ºF.  The temperature of the thigh (try to avoid the bone) should be 180ºF (some guidelines say to cook it to 165 degrees, but I prefer higher) when done.


4 tablespoons fat drippings
4 tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken broth

Stir with a whisk in a saucepan over high heat until boiling and then turn to low and simmer for five minutes.


Candied Yams

Candied YamsOK, just what are yams and why do we want to candy them? Yams are often confused with sweet potatoes, which come in “soft” and “hard” varieties. Yams are native to Africa and Asia, but when slaves were brought to North America, they began calling the “soft” variety of sweet potatoes “yams.” True yams are usually found in international markets, so most likely what you think are yams are just soft sweet potatoes. Now that we’ve solved that mystery, it brings us to the next question: why do we want to candy them? Because at Thanksgiving, we are required to take anything remotely healthy and load on the fat and sugar to make it taste extra good and be extra fattening.

This is the easiest candied yam recipe.  The casserole can be topped with marshmallows if you choose. And no, you are not required to make them from scratch.


1 can of yams (29 oz.)
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cup mini marshmallows (if desired)

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

Put yams in a medium baking dish sprayed with a cooking spray. Scatter pats of butter over the yams. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Cover with mini marshmallows if desired.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until the yams are tender and marshmallows have melted (if you’ve added them).

Serves 6. Can be doubled or tripled if you are cooking for a crowd.


Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean CasseroleThere is no historical evidence that green bean casserole was on the menu at the first Thanksgiving, but for today’s feasters, the meal would just not be the same without this side that has become a staple since the Campbell’s Soup Company created the recipe in 1955.


1  can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed Cream of Mushroom soup
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon soy sauce
Dash ground black pepper
4 cups cooked cut green beans (To make this really simple, you can use canned green beans instead of fresh)
1 1/3 cups French Fried Onions

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Stir the soup, milk, soy sauce, black pepper, beans, and 2/3 cup onions together in a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish sprayed with your favorite cooking spray.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until the bean mixture is hot and bubbling. Stir the bean mixture and then sprinkle with the remaining onions.

Bake for 5 more minutes, or until the onions are golden brown.


Pumpkin Pie

The phrase “easy as pie” is true. Making a pie crust is easy; it only requires a few ingredients, but it is a messy undertaking. For years, one of the chefs at Popular Pittsburgh made her own pie crust just as her grandmother had taught her. That was until the grandmother revealed that ever since refrigerated pie crust came on the market, grandma had given up the hassle of rolling out dough, saying something to the effect of, “Why bother with all of that when these pie crusts turn out just as well?”

We are not purists here at Popular Pittsburgh, so like grandma, we recommend using store-bought refrigerated pie crusts to make your Pumpkin Pies, and your life, easier.

Pumpkin is a healthy veggie, so of course, we must enhance it with some unhealthy ingredients to make a scrumptious pie.

Unlike Martha Stewart, we don’t grow our own pumpkins and process them for pies. We take the foolproof route and use canned pumpkin. We don’t use the canned pumpkin pie filling because it already has the spices added, and we like to add spice to our own preference. Like Campbell’s, Libby’s came up with an award-winning pumpkin pie recipe that has been around since 1950, and we think it’s just dandy.

Do not bake the pie crust first.


3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 large eggs
1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY’S® 100{0d5dd585d9b39b579093aa9482eb8a5d8629194f7aeab9d63fd29672a0772753} Pure Pumpkin
1 can (12 fl. oz.) evaporated milk

Preheat oven 425°F.

Mix sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in a small bowl. Beat eggs in a large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.

Pour into a 9-inch pie shell.

Bake at 425°F in the oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350°F and then bake for 40 to 50 minutes more or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream before serving (optional).

Enjoy your delicious no-muss-no-fuss Thanksgiving feast prepared Pittsburgh-style!