Tips & Trends

Thanksgiving made easier: 5 essential tips

November 16, 2011 by
Thanksgiving 2008 by St0rmz, on Flickr

With Thanksgiving just a little over a week away, we’re starting to think about entertaining our relatives and preparing for a busy (and fun!) day of cooking. Since the preparation process can get a little hectic, we searched the web for ways to make Thanksgiving easier and found a handful of tips we love.

Thanksgiving 2008 by St0rmz, on Flickr

Thanksgiving 2008 by St0rmz, on Flickr

1. Prepare what you can ahead of time. Many desserts can be made the day before, and cranberry sauce can even be made several days in advance. Vegetables can also be prepped prior to Thanksgiving – you might consider washing and chopping them the day before. For more ideas, has several suggestions to make food preparation much easier!

2. Print out your recipes. You can save quite a bit of counter space by making copies of the recipes you’ll be using, instead of having your cookbooks out. The copies can then be taped at eye level to your cabinets, or affixed to your fridge using a magnet. When you’re finished cooking, place your recipes into a binder so they’ll be ready for next year!

3. Have your kids pitch in. These easy turkey napkin rings are fun for even the littlest crafters! Plus, they’ll add a festive accent to your table. What could be better?

4. Take a couple of shortcuts. If you’re strapped for time, don’t stress about making everything from scratch. Real Simple readers recommend taking boxed stuffing or store-bought gravy and adding pizzazz with vegetables or spices. Your guests will never know!

5. Make simple side dishes. Love mashed potatoes but don’t like to peel? Try an easier recipe, like this one in Good Housekeeping, where there’s no peeling necessary. With a few quick substitutions like this, you’ll have much more time to enjoy the day.

Tell us, what’s your tip for a fantastic, stress-free Thanksgiving? We’d love to hear!

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