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Take the stress out of Thanksgiving cooking with Melissa Clark's make-ahead side dishes

Melissa Clark takes the stress out of Thanksgiving prep with make-ahead mashed potato casserole, cranberry relish and port wine gravy.
/ Source: TODAY

If there was ever a week to prep food ahead of time, this is it. Between frazzled family, travel stress and hours of cooking in the kitchen, Thanksgiving week is a whirlwind of activity. Make it easier to prepare — and enjoy — with delicious make-ahead recipes.

The New York Times' food columnist Melissa Clark is stopping by the TODAY kitchen to share her go-to Thanksgiving dishes that can be made on Monday and served on Turkey Day.

She shows us how to prepare mashed potato casserole with cheese and onions, port wine-infused gravy and cranberry relish with almonds and apricots.

"These rich and cheesy potatoes have plenty of flavor from herbs and the browned onions, and can be made ahead of time," says Clark.

Make-Ahead Gravy with Port Wine

"Port wine gives a light sweetness and deep color to this sophisticated make-head gravy."

Cranberry, Almond and Apricot Relish

"A twist on the classic orange and walnut studded cranberry relish, this one has roasted almonds and dried apricots, which fleck the intense red berries with bits of orange. Cinnamon adds a sweet earthy note."

If you're into make-ahead meals, here are some more ideas:

Vegan Meatball Sliders

Vegan Meatball Sliders

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