These Are The Must-Haves For A Great Thanksgiving Dinner, According To Jon Taffer - Exclusive

Jon Taffer is well-known for his work on "Bar Rescue." Now in its eighth season (per Paramount Network), he's helped hundreds of bar and restaurant owners revitalize their businesses to help them succeed. He's also a podcast host, a business consultant for a number of food chains, the founder of the Taffer's Tavern franchise, and he most recently launched a new line of restaurant-quality products to cook at home through Costco (per his official website). So, it's safe to say Jon Taffer knows a thing or two about food and beverage.

But, with so many years of hospitality experience under his belt, and years of experience trying delicious food and drinks, what does Taffer enjoy during a holiday meal? We went straight to the source to find out. In an exclusive interview with Mashed, we asked Taffer all about his favorites for Thanksgiving, and his answers are very similar to what many of us are probably planning to make. Here's what Taffer says are the must-haves for a great Thanksgiving dinner.

Jon Taffer loves traditional Thanksgiving foods - and extra meat

It may seem like hospitality industry experts and television celebrities would host an over-the-top Thanksgiving dinner. But for "Bar Rescue" host Jon Taffer, he's all about honoring tradition.

According to him, the first rule for a great Thanksgiving is getting family to come together around the table. And then to avoid any controversial discussions. "Let me start with what you don't want — politics. No political discussions this year, I think, is a very smart way to start it," he said. And as for the food? Taffer says he's a traditionalist: "I love the green beans with the onions on it. I love the sweet potato with the marshmallow on top," he said. "There are certain times in our life where tradition really works well, and I think Thanksgiving dinner is all about tradition."

And while Taffer loves to follow tradition with cooking up a turkey for Thanksgiving dinner, he's also a big proponent of adding a second protein into the mix. "I'm a big believer in that second protein, whether it's a ham, whether it's a tenderloin roast, whether it's a beef shank," he said. And as for the pie? If he had to choose between pecan and pumpkin, he'd go with pumpkin. But it's not necessarily his favorite. "To me, the greatest, most American thing of all, of course, is a great piece of apple pie," he said.

You can now find the first dish from Jon Taffer's new "Enjoy at Home with Taffer's Tavern" line, the Signature Beef Shank, at Costco.