Turkey Day is only a few weeks away and now that Arizonans have cast their votes in two of the most contentious political races in the country, assuming they’re still not re-counting votes for weeks, it’s time to get behind other Arizona choices — that of their favorite Thanksgiving side dishes.
In order to get in the festive spirit of overeating, arguing politics, and watching football, before we sink into a turkey tryptophan haze, we thought we’d take a break from Arizona sportsbooks to look at the most popular plates on the table next to the turkey.
As expected, it was a close contest. Thankfully, mashed potatoes are not claiming voter fraud.
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Arizona's Favorite Side Dishes
Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes Lead The Way
Coming in at No. 1 is stuffing. Stuffing has a huge advantage in the survey because it can be made hundreds of ways — vegan, with sausage, with cherries, raisins or apples, with white, challah or sourdough — and many Thanksgiving tables often have two types of stuffing. Stuffing was voted the No. 1 side dish in Phoenix and Tucson.
Next on the list are mashed potatoes. You can actually grow potatoes in Arizona over two short seasons and a popular variety in the heat has smooth yellow skin and a yellowish flesh. There’s also a potato variety called the Arizona ... but it doesn’t grow in Arizona.
There is, however, a dish called Arizona Potatoes, which adds cream, mushroom soup and corn flakes to hash browns for a dish that could be delish. Mashed potatoes also have many varieties, as different cooks have different potato preferences.
Potatoes are a relatively bland vessel for flavor, so the quantity of added cheese, butter, cream or chives, can completely change the dish. That also goes for the quality of the mash — smooth or chunky? I like mine with a little body and a hint of garlic.
Also In The Mix...
In third place in Arizona is green bean casserole. Green bean casserole has always been a dish I thought Campbell’s invented in order to sell more cream of mushroom soup, and in researching this article I learned the dish was invented in a Campbell’s test kitchen in 1955.
I like it with a topping of crinkled fried onions. Green bean casserole was the top choice in Yuma.
Next comes macaroni & cheese, a classic side dish for any holiday — and a main dish at the children’s table. I just can’t fathom the pilgrims and Indians sitting down and eating pasta.
In fifth place, with only 11% of the vote, is cranberry sauce. I have to take issue with the survey here, because cranberry sauce is not a side dish — it’s a Thanksgiving condiment.
Over the years cranberry sauce has grown from the gelatinous form still in the shape of a can, to a fancy recipe with fresh cranberries, orange zest and sprinkled nutmeg, but it remains a food where the canned version is king. It’s a tart table complement to the sweet stuffing and turkey gravy.
Utilizing Google Trends, BetArizona.com analyzed the most popular Thanksgiving side dishes of Arizona residents by looking at the search results of each side dish from Nov. 1, 2021 to Nov. 30, 2021.
The dishes analyzed were the most in total searches in the United States, including mashed potatoes, stuffing, mac & cheese, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, candied yams, brussel sprouts and cranberry sauce.
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