Planning and Preparing Your Menu
We suggest starting early. Give yourself plenty of time to plan your menu, organize seating arrangements, and put together a guest list. Now’s a great time to decide if you want to try a new recipe and maybe give it a test run. There’s nothing worse than trying a new recipe the day of, only to realize it’s awful!
While turkey is the traditional Thanksgiving dinner, many households serve ham, chicken, and even vegetarian or vegan options. Once you have your main course (or courses) figured out, choose a few side dishes. Some popular options include mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, and green bean casserole. And while gravy isn’t technically a side dish, it’s a big part of the meal for many. Be sure to have a few desserts on hand as well.
Pumpkin pie is a classic, but you can also serve other desserts like cakes, bars, trifles, or cookies. Apple, maple, and cranberry are popular fall ingredients that make great dessert flavors. Now’s also the perfect time to look through your drawers and cupboards to make sure you have all the cookware, bakeware, and kitchen tools and gadgets you need. While you’re checking to make sure you have all your supplies in order, be sure to check that your toaster oven, microwave, electric tea kettle, and air fryer are in good working order, too. If not, check out our high-quality appliances at an incredible value.
Accommodating dietary restrictions like nut allergies, gluten sensitivities, or lactose intolerance can be easy with a few simple switches. Thicken sauces or gravy with cornstarch instead of flour, and use plant-based milk in place of cow’s milk.
If you’re hosting a large crowd and start to feel overwhelmed with all the cooking, consider asking your guests to bring a dish to share. This can help to lighten the workload on you and ensure that there’s plenty of food for everyone. Asking people to bring a dish can also help make your guests feel less uncomfortable about bringing something if they have picky eaters in their family who don’t like the traditional turkey dinner.