Smart Ways for Moms to Prepare for Thanksgiving


Are you ready for the year’s biggest formal meal? It’s coming soon to a kitchen near you. The good news is there is a right way and a wrong way to prepare for Thanksgiving dinner, so check out the tips below and you’ll be ahead of the game. Plus, you won’t have to endure the stress and drama that often comes with preparing a meal for a dozen or more of your closest friends and relatives.


Know What You Can Freeze

Experienced cooks know all about freezing. Three major candidates for sub-32-degree temperatures: dinner rolls, mashed potatoes, and gravy. Ironically, all three are also hugely time-consuming and are best dealt with on Tuesday or Wednesday, then popped into the freezer. If this is one of your favorite tactics for feeding the masses, make sure you’ll have enough freezer space to handle the culinary traffic jam next to the ice cubes. If not, knock on a friendly neighbor’s door and see about renting a square foot or two.

Set the Table Wednesday Night

Every seasonal meal includes time-wasting chores, like table-setting, potato mashing, pie baking and countless others. By far, the easiest trick of all is setting the table the night before the big dinner. If you are entertaining the whole family or just a bunch of friends, setting everything up exactly the way you like it on Wednesday night is a time-saving move that should go into the Holiday meal Hall of Fame.

Learn at Least Two Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes

If you try out vegan Thanksgiving recipes, you’ll win a lot of new friends because many people are secretly vegan. Every year, it seems like more guests at holiday meals ask, “Is there meat in this?” or “Is this plant-based?” That’s why it makes sense to put out at least two vegan-friendly main dishes if you host a big seasonal meal. For some excellent ideas, search for vegan Thanksgiving recipes and you can then whip up a juicy beet salad, mouth-watering roasted squash, and a nifty little apple pie, on your own.

Make Pies Ahead of Time

Pies are delicious and a core part of so many seasonal festivities. But those tasty pastries are also major time-wasters and deserve special treatment. The secret maneuver? Make pies in advance and shove them into the frig until they’re needed. For menu items like pies, mashed potatoes, most desserts, punch and gravy, do the hard work well before Thursday arrives and you’ll be free to enjoy the party, eat and otherwise relax.

Make a Detailed, Timed List of the Big Day’s Happenings


Leverage the power of your computer and make a spreadsheet for the big Thursday event. Try to use as much detail as possible for maximum efficiency. Use columns for time, exactly what should be going on during that period, who will be doing it, and whether you need to enlist more help. A trip-sheet like this can really make the day flow and helps avoid those intervals when everyone seems to be going in five different directions at once. A schedule is the answer.

What are some of your tips for a stress-free Thanksgiving?
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1 comment

  1. These are excellent tips. I love doing as much as I can ahead of time.

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