Trying to plan a Thanksgiving or Christmas meal?
Here are some tips, calculators, and checklists.
- What size turkey should I buy? How much turkey per person?
- What’s the easiest way to roast turkey?
- How to carve a turkey?
- Save yourself last-minute panic with this make-ahead turkey gravy recipe. I’ve used it; it works!
For any meat, a meat thermometer is the essential gadget to make sure your meat comes out perfectly every time.
|Image from farmflavor.com|
- How much ham should I buy?
- What temperature should ham be cooked to?
- How far ahead should I buy the ham?
|Image from campbellskitchen.com|
- Make-ahead crockpot green bean casserole. Save your oven for other things, and save some day-of panic: Here’s the classic green bean casserole that everyone wants for Thanksgiving, tweaked to work in a crock pot / slow-cooker, and with optional make-ahead instructions. Classic green bean casserole for crockpot.
- Low-carb substitute for mashed potatoes. If you’ve tried mashed cauliflower and been disappointed, maybe you just didn’t add enough fat! Try this recipe.
- Roasted vegetables timetable. The number one must-do side dish at our house — besides the turkey, of course. Oh, and pumpkin pie! Okay, the third-most popular dish: roasted vegetables. A slow roast works oven magic, turning onions, carrots and bell peppers into sugar-free candy-sweet goodness! Here’s a timetable for roasted vegetables: what goes into in the oven when, to make everything come out perfect.
This is my favorite pan for roasted vegetables, and anything else that can be made on a rimmed cookie sheet: USA Pan Jelly Roll Pan.* LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS PAN!!! Bakes evenly, rinses off like brand-new teflon every time. Everyone in my house has been threatened to not even think of co-opting this for some craft or garage project!
All foods: How much per person?
- Here’s a thorough chart from Good Housekeeping, showing per-person serving recommendations for 8, 10, 12, 16, 20 and 24 people, for 10 popular holiday foods. It includes turkey, stuffing, potatoes, green beans, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, pie, and more. View the pdf.
Holiday meal planning checklists and calculators
- A one-month to day-of Thanksgiving meal planning list from Food Network.
- An Excel spreadsheet that you can plug your number of guests into (including how many are vegetarians!), and it tells you how much food to buy. The page where you download it is a little confusing; just scroll down until you see this:
Would you rather have pictures?
Here’s a well-done info graphic from The Savory, showing turkey thawing time, brining time, brining recipe, roasting time, and more. This image is only one small part of it:
|Image from The Savory|
Pin it for later!
* Note: Product links in this post are to my Amazon store where I get a smidgen of the sales, but I truly use and fanatically love every product I link to.
Tabletop photo by Gabriel Garcia Marengo on Unsplash
Turkey photo by Alison Marras on Unsplash
Baking photo by Gaelle Marcel on Unsplash