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Thanksgiving Menu & Survival Tips

For the first time in my adult-life, I will be hosting Thanksgiving at my house this year. Our typical celebration, surrounded by 20 people, will now be whittled down to six - my family and my parents, but that doesn't mean I will be preparing any less food! Lots of leftovers are about to happen - ha!

If you're looking for some Thanksgiving menu inspiration, here's what I plan to make:

Starters, Sides & Main:

Traditional Deviled Eggs - you can find my recipe here.

Cranberry Sauce (from the can - gasp) - sorry about it, I like it better!

Slowed Cooked Garlic Mashed Potatoes - you can find Ambitious Kitchen's recipe here.

Turkey Gravy - I kind of just wing this one, but can find something similar on Ambitious Kitchen's website here.

Green Bean Casserole - you can find my recipe here.

Cinnamon Sugar Baked Yams - you can find my recipe here.

Warm Brussels Sprouts Salad - you can find Ambitious Kitchen's recipe here.

Spicy Macaroni & Cheese - you can find my recipe here (that I shamefully stole from a friend)

Parmesan Bacon Sourdough Stuffing - you can find my recipe here.

Smoked Turkey - you can find my husband's recipe here.


Almond Toffee Pie (a pecan pie replacement) - you can find Crazy for Crust's recipe here.

Tart Cherry Pie - you can find Ambitious Kitchen's recipe here.

Apple Pie - you can find Cooking Classy's recipe here.

Pumpkin Pie - you can find Libby's recipe here.

Here are a few tips and tricks to keep the day running smoothly!

  1. Make your grocery list and shop as early as you can.

  2. Pre-cook what you can ahead of time. For example, the green bean casserole can be made 1-2 days in advance and can finish cooking in the oven on the day of. The pies can be baked 1-2 days in advance (no need to reheat). The deviled eggs can be made a day in advance.

  3. Whatever you can chop/prep ahead of the day, do so - shred your cheese, pre-cut your potatoes (I do this the night before and store submerged in water in the fridge), chop your veggies, boil your eggs etc.

  4. Get all your dishes out ahead of time. There's nothing worse than scrambling to find the right dish just as you're trying to serve a hot meal.

  5. Get your tablescape setup and cleaning done earlier in the week. This way it’s done and it's out of the way so you can worry about other things!

  6. Map out how the schedule is going to look on the day - when you plan to cook and prep each dish, when you plan to get ready, and when you plan to serve. This avoids running into any issues with the cooking time and temps for each dish, and it will also ensure you have time to get ready. Nobody wants to look a hot mess on Thanksgiving! 😂

Looking for even more tips? Check out my Dinner Party How To post here.

Happy Thanksgiving, friends!


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