Do you prepare Thanksgiving for your crew? Or does the thought of creating a meal of so many things for so many people make you want to hide and down a pumpkin pie?
This year will be the 10th time in my adult life that I have made Thanksgiving dinner (with guest lists ranging from 4-27) and I have definitely refined my process along the way.
In a nutshell, I break my Thanksgiving meal plan down into 3 parts (see video below for full breakdown):
1. Must Have Menu Items...these are the things that you and/or your spouse must have for Thanksgiving (or any holiday you may be preparing a large, traditional dinner for). List not only what you are making, but where it will cook. This will help later on when you are trying to figure out how to get it all to the table in a timely manner.
2. Fill In Your Menu and Evaluate Your Tools...The turkey, which most people serve for Thanksgiving, will take up a majority of the cooking time and your oven space for the day. So what other tools do you have that can help you feed the masses??? A crock pot? An Instant Pot? The Stovetop? If you are worried you can't cook everything in the oven without the turkey going cold, research ideas for side dishes that can be prepared in some other sort of equipment you have around your kitchen (or could borrow.)
3. Schedule Your Day...I like to plan my cooking day starting backwards from when we want to eat. That way I can figure out when items need to go into their respective cooking vessels AND when I need to start prepping them so they are ready to go at the right time.
With some forethought and a bit of organizing, your Thanksgiving dinner doesn't have to be scary. I'm not able to guarantee it won't be stressful or scary, but if you have a good plan in place (and a bottle or two of wine), I think you can tackle it spectacularly.