Map Reveals Most Popular Thanksgiving Side Dish In Each State And Who Hurt Maine?

by Julie Scagell
Originally Published: 

A side salad? Really?

Given the pandemic is still raging on in our country, Thanksgiving is going to look different for a lot of families this year. Regardless of how many you are feeding, you likely have a go-to of favorites on your list to cook. While the turkey is the most well-known staple on everyone’s Turkey Day menu, it’s really the sides that keep people coming back for more. Unless, it seems, if you live in Maine.

Career site Zippia recently released a map of peoples’ favorite Thanksgiving sides by state by using Google trends to find out the most popular side dishes in each state. While the overwhelming majority rightly support carbs during their feast, Maine trended towards the dark side with… a side salad?


I mean, there is a pandemic happening so don’t show up at my house period. But in any other year, if you come to my Thanksgiving dinner with a side salad you’ll get laughed right out of the room. This is not the day for salads of any kind unless it’s Watergate salad — a classic side in my family — which consists of Cool Whip, canned pineapples, pistachio pudding mixed together. That’s how we spell salad on Thanksgiving.

Luckily, it seems the rest of the country is pretty on-point for the day’s festivities. Mashed potatoes are the fan favorite — winning out in ten states. Right on mashed potatoes’ heels is mac n’ cheese, which seven states will not sit down to the table without. It’s pasta and cheese mixed with more cheese and some breadcrumbs if you’re fancy, so that just makes sense.

Other top contenders come in the form of green bean casserole (or any type of casserole really), stuffing (or dressing depending on your home state), and bread in all varieties — be it biscuits, rolls, or crescent rolls. Basically, anything you can soak up gravy with is the right choice.

Speaking of gravy, the company did count gravy as a side which I’m not sure I agree with because gravy is Thanksgiving. “Since it’s not a main dish and hopefully isn’t being consumed as a beverage, our hands were tied,” they said of the choice. “Sorry if your family has an uncommon tradition of shrimp cocktails, Red Lobster Cheddar biscuits, or whatever oddity for Turkey day. Your family is weird, and didn’t fall into our data. However, it should be a good representation on what most of us chow down on at Thanksgiving.”

Of course, New Hampshire did stand out with cranberry sauce and a few states picked corn but both of those are acceptable sides on Thanksgiving. At least they didn’t stand out for their love of leafy vegetables on a day meant to need stretchy pants.

Go home, Maine. You’re drunk.

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