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Meatball Jell-O … What?! – “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving” Memory

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  • Sara Willis
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It’s almost time to tune in to Arkansas PBS and gather around for one of my favorite family traditions: watching “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.” My kids always loved that the meal ends up being toast and popcorn and jellybeans but, even so, it’s still a proper Thanksgiving. That’s truly what it is all about, right? Gratitude for what we have, understanding for what didn’t turn out just right and being together. 

Over the years, our Thanksgiving dinner has changed a lot. I’ll never forget the first year I was entrusted with the turkey and dressing. I was so nervous. I was in luck, though; it all turned out fine. As the older generations have passed down the tasks of preparing the holiday dinners, we’ve found new favorites to squeeze onto that groaning table between the must-have, traditional dishes. Meemaw’s oyster dressing is always there but, now, there’s also Emma’s favorite scalloped potatoes and our favorite oddball tradition, Meatball Jell-O

I know; sounds crazy, right? But, trust me, it’s so good. There’s the recipe card below for you to print and try. I think you’ll love it. And the kids will have so much fun with it.  While you’re here, tell us about your wildest or funniest – or just plain strangest – Thanksgiving dish that is always on your holiday table.  I can’t wait to hear about them!


Download the Meatball Jell-O printable here.

Want to create your own Charlie Brown-esque Thanksgiving feast? Check out these PBS Food options:

Smoky Texas Toast

Avocado Sesame Toast

Homemade Kettle Corn

Salted Caramel Popcorn

While we don’t have recipes for jellybeans, we do have some fun jellybean learning and activities from PBS KIDS to try!

“Peg + Cat: Double Jellybeans”

“Design Squad Global: Jellybean Tree – Draw Your Own”



Sunday, Nov. 21, 2021

“A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving,” 6:30 p.m.

Available on broadcast only; streaming and on-demand content is only available via AppleTV.