6 Simple Breakfasts to Serve on Thanksgiving Morning

Thanksgiving is usually all about a big feast at lunch or dinner, but many people also like to serve up a special breakfast on turkey day, and that’s where simple, yet decadent recipes come in. Many morning meal formulas are complicated, requiring yeast or a significant amount of prep time, but these Thanksgiving morning breakfast recipes found around the web are no-nonsense and low-maintenance — the perfect appetizer for the turkey, stuffing, and cranberry sauce that will be consumed later in the day. This year, lure your house guests or visiting family members out of bed with a seasonal special breakfast that will start the day right. These recipes won’t stress you out, and they’ll keep your guests satisfied until dinner time.

1. Pumpkin Scones with Cinnamon Butter

Pumpkin scones

Pumpkin scones | iStock.com

Our first recipe comes from Bon Appétit and is featured in its Thanksgiving issue. If these pumpkin scones complemented with cinnamon butter won’t lure your sleepy kids or house guests out of bed, we don’t know what will. This is a special breakfast worth waking up for. Make your scones fresh the morning of, but make your cinnamon butter ahead of time if you want to save yourself from added stress. These seasonal and sophisticated baked goods come together in no time and will get your Thanksgiving off to a sweet start.


Cinnamon Butter

  • ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt


  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks) chilled unsalted butter
  • ½ cup chopped fresh (or frozen, thawed) cranberries
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup canned pure pumpkin
  • ¼ cup buttermilk, plus more for brushing
  • 2 tablespoons raw sugar

Head to Bon Appétit for the full recipe.

2. No-Yeast Cinnamon Rolls

cinnamon rolls

Cinnamon rolls | iStock.com

Cinnamon rolls are also the perfect treat to eat while watching the Macy’s Day Parade, and this recipe from Food.com doesn’t even require yeast. Coming together in only 1 hour, you won’t have to worry about hungry, impatient house guests on your hands as you prep this morning feast. And even better, all the necessary ingredients are probably already in your pantry. Spoil your loved ones with this morning meal and they’ll stay out of the kitchen until dinner.



  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ¾ cup milk


  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar or 1 cup white sugar
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon


  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup milk

Head to Food.com for the full recipe.

3. Sweet Potato Pecan Pancakes

Pancakes, walnuts

Sweet potato pecan pancakes | iStock.com

To get your breakfast guests prepped and ready for their fall feast, serve them these sweet potato pecan pancakes from Cooking Light in the a.m. These hot cakes are quick, simple, healthy, and are the perfect precursor to the ever-enjoyed Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole. While typical pancake recipes call for a significant amount of butter, these only enlist 1 tablespoon of oil and make the naturally sweet yams do the rest of the work. Start your day off the healthy way and leave room for indulgences later on.


  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans, toasted and divided
  • 2¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin-pie spice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fat-free milk
  • ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 (16-ounce) can sweet potatoes or yams, drained and mashed (about ¾ cup)

Head to Cooking Light for the full recipe.

4. Cheesy Breakfast Casserole

Cheesy breakfast casserole

Cheesy breakfast casserole | iStock.com

If you want to serve up a savory breakfast rather than a sweet one, try this cheesy breakfast casserole from Gimme Some OvenThis crowd-pleaser can easily be made the night before and baked the morning of, and it makes 8 servings. Sausage, cheese, and hash browns are the stars of the show in this casserole dish, and of course, eggs also make a special appearance.


  • 1 pound Italian sausage
  • 1 medium white onion, peeled and diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and diced
  • 6 eggs
  •  cup milk
  • 1 (20-ounce) bag frozen hash browns, thawed
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper

 Head to Gimme Some Oven for the full recipe.

5. Pumpkin French Toast Bake

French Toast, bread pudding

Pumpkin french toast bake | iStock.com

Another breakfast you can make on Thanksgiving Eve and simply bake the next morning is this pumpkin french toast bake from Minimalist Baker. It’s the season for pumpkin and what better way to pregame your big meal than with this sweet and seasonally appropriate breakfast. Made with the bread of your choice, eggs, milk, pumpkin pie spice, and pumpkin butter, this morning indulgence knocks it out of the park, and will prime your stomach for the next round of eating.


  • 5½ – 7½ cups 1-inch bread cubes
  • 7 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  •  teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ¼ cup pumpkin butter
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons brown sugar for topping
  • nuts, like pecan or walnuts

Head to Minimalist Baker for the full recipe.

6. Slow Cooker Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oatmeal

Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

Pumpkin pie oatmeal | iStock.com

And just in case you’re trying to start your Thanksgiving day out the healthy way, here’s a recipe from Closet Cooking you can feel good about. Slow cooker pumpkin pie steel cut oatmeal can be cooked over night and ready to eat the morning of. Tapping into the traditional flavors of pumpkin pie, this recipe enlists pumpkin purée, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, ginger, and cloves to make the breakfast taste decadent even though it’s deceptively healthy. Have oatmeal for breakfast and stay satiated until your big holiday meal.


  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 dash nutmeg, grated
  • 1 dash ginger
  • 1 dash cloves
  • milk to taste

Directions: Place the steel cut oats, water, milk, pumpkin purée, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves in a slow cooker and set it to cook on low for 4 hours. Mix the oatmeal up, optionally adding milk to bring it to the desired consistency and sweetener to bring it to the desired sweetness, and serve topped with any desired toppings.

Head to Closet Cooking for the full recipe.