Thanksgiving is about gratitude, cherishing the moment and sharing with family. It may be why Latinos have embraced the tradition and given it our own twist. Each table has a unique way of celebrating, but the fact is that a Latino Thanksgiving dinner outweighs the traditional gathering. From the food to the music, Latinos have got Thanksgiving covered! Let me count the ways. 

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Whether it's making tamales, pasteles or mofongo, every familia has special recipes that loved ones can be thankful for, but it doesn't end with the food. Here are ten reasons Latino Thanksgivings are simply the best! 

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No strangers are invited 1

No strangers are invited

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While some non-Latinnos allow random people to come over to eat with their families, Latinos generally don’t play that. It’s not that we aren’t friendly--we are just cautious. You won’t get invited to a Latino Thanksgiving dinner without being close to the family or having them know you for years and earning the title of “prima” without actually being a cousin. 

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Everyone gets involved 2

Everyone gets involved

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This is the time of the year that mamás and abuelas put the younger generation to work in the kitchen! Whether it’s peeling plátanos or potatoes, everyone has a part in making the Thanksgiving feast, which makes it feel even more about familia

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A telenovela is on at some point 3

A telenovela is on at some point

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There may be a celebration going on, but there is always at least one television in the house that has a telenovela playing in the background. Abuelitas are really thankful for that. 

There are the best kinds of finger foods 4

There are the best kinds of finger foods

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While you wait for the oven timer to go off, mami has the party covered with delectable finger foods like empanadas or bocaditos. No store bought chips and dip here! You aren’t left starving until dinner time, but you’ll want to loosen your pant buttons by the end of the evening! 

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Our stuffing has cilantro in it 5

Our stuffing has cilantro in it

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There's nothing wrong with a traditional turkey stuffing, but we all know that Latin spices, especially cilantro, makes everything better. The Latino turkey stuffing is rich in flavors and just can't be beat! 

There’s turkey AND ham 6

There’s turkey AND ham

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You probably won’t go to a Latino Thanksgiving dinner and just spot a turkey on the table. A roasted pork (pernil) or ham is a must for the relatives that would rather pass on the hot bird. 

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Rice and beans are a must 7

Rice and beans are a must

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Yes, you’ll have the traditional sides like lasagna and mashed potatoes, but rice and beans will not be missing from the table. Thank goodness. 

We have desserts covered 8

We have desserts covered

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Pumpkin and apple pies are delicious, but flan, tres leches or bread pudding always take the cake. Our Thanksgiving Day feasts are all about variety and feature un poco de todo. Of course dessert isn’t complete without a cup of espresso or café con leche

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There's no holding hands at the table 9

There's no holding hands at the table

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Claro, we say a prayer and give thanks, but there is none of that holding hands business at the table. ¡A comer! 

Kids are always the center of attention 10

Kids are always the center of attention

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No matter what, the younger generation is always at the center of the entertainment and the festivities--especially when the dancing begins! They are mini-stars at their best!