Can you believe Thanksgiving is right around the corner? Having a Thanksgiving meal at your home can be a joyful time spent with loved ones…but it can also be stressful and overwhelming. Let us help you avoid the stress this year and find out how to plan your Thanksgiving meal!
10 Days Before
- Communicate with guests about who is bringing what and what time everyone should arrive.
- Be sure you have enough serving dishes, flatware, glassware, tablecloths, napkins, tables and chairs to accommodate your guests.
- Polish silver, if necessary. Wrap in tarnish-resistant silvercloth and set aside.
- Plan and make decorations, place cards, and wreaths.
7 Days Before
- Clean your refrigerator to make room for your Thanksgiving items.
- Review your recipes and prepare a cooking schedule by day for the days ahead, and by the hour for the day of Thanksgiving (be sure to check the thawing time on your turkey!)
- If necessary, prepare your guest room for any guests who will be staying with you.
- Do any needed outdoor work like raking leaves, sweeping your porch, or cleaning the glass on your front door.
4 Days Before
- Review recipes, determine what ingredients you’ll need, and make a list for the grocery store (it’s helpful to organize it by aisle/section of the store).
- Match up recipes with serving dishes and serving pieces. Put sticky notes onto each bowl and platter according to which dish goes in each.
- Do any major housecleaning and organizing.
- Put up wreaths and nonperishable decorations.
- Plan ahead for leftovers. Organize containers, bags, and wraps so guests can take home what they want.
2 Days Before
- Chill beverages.
- Buy flowers for the table, or put together your centerpiece.
- Go grocery shopping.
- Clean fruits and vegetables.
- Fill salt and pepper shakers.
- Complete light housecleaning.
- If you plan to have a fire, lay a fire in the fireplace, ready to light later.
1 Day Before
- Make all dishes (including sides) that can be prepared ahead. (Don’t forget the desserts and any chopping, peeling, or toasting that can be done ahead!)
- Do spot cleaning of the rooms that will be used.
- Set the table.
- Get out all serving pieces and condiment dishes. Set out on the serving table or buffet.
- Fill condiment dishes with anything you may be serving (pickles, olives, cranberry sauce, etc.) Cover each dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
- Assign specific family members or relatives to be in charge of various tasks (tending the fire, answering the door, pouring drinks, hanging up coats, etc.)
- Preheat oven.
- Put turkey in oven and cook according to your recipe.
- Prepare coffee, if necessary.
- Set out refrigerated dishes including condiments, cranberries, and salads.
- Heat bread or rolls as needed.
- Light fire.
- Pour drinks.
- Carve turkey.
We hope the tips above help you to avoid any Thanksgiving meal-prep stress! For other tips & tricks like these, "like" us on Facebook!