Thanksgiving is coming up and hosting the perfect evening might get a bit overwhelming. However, Thanksgiving dinner doesn’t need to be stressful. It’s all about planning! By prepping in advance you will be able to spend more time with the loved ones and won’t need to spend too much time in the kitchen.
Keeping a checklist is a great way to ensure the evening goes a smooth as possible. Here is our checklist with a few most important things to keep in mind to successfully throw the Thanksgiving dinner:
Grocery. Plan your menu in advance and write down all the required ingredients. Stock up on potatoes, cranberries, non-perishables, and vegetables. Most importantly order your turkey in advance!
Tip: Shopping centers will be full of last-minute shoppers, hence to avoid the long lines and stress don’t leave the grocery shopping for the last minute.
Cooking. Do most of the cooking in advance. You can make the gravy and freeze it 1 month in advance. Vegetables, stuffing, and pies (both pumpkin and pecan pies store really well) can be made up to 2 days in advance and simply refrigerated. In addition, it is easy to reheat mashed potatoes as well. Prepping will save the oven space and a lot of time on Thanksgiving day.
Turkey. Cooking a moist turkey doesn’t have to be tricky. Just push some seasoned butter under the skin of the breast, pour some stock to the roasting pan, and set the oven temperature to 325F. It approximately takes 15-20 minutes per pound to cook a turkey. However, it is best to use a thermometer. The temperature should reach 165F in the thickest part of the turkey.
Tip: Smoked turkey is a great way to surprise your guests! Preheat your gas grill to about 325F (don’t forget to set it for indirect heat) and use a smoker box to smoke a perfect turkey.
Last but not least, remember that Thanksgiving is about people, not food. It is time to spend quality time with your loved ones, giving thanks, and remembering how blessed we are. We promise no one will pay attention if you did not use a homemade stock or got a pie from the local bakery.
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