Thanksgiving is happening on November 25th in 2021, and it so happens that it’s only ten days away. If you want to have a stress-free day full of delicious food and family fun, you should follow our foolproof countdown guide and start your Thanksgiving preparations.
We assume you have already created your guest lists and got all your family and/or friends to confirm. So all the plans we are going to finalize now will be food-related.
This is crucial. If you get too small of a bird, you will end up with grumpy dissatisfied guests, but if you get the one that’s too big, you will be stuck with leftover Thanksgiving turkey sandwiches and croquettes till Christmas (which is not that big of a problem, but still).
Let’s average the perfect amount of turkey to 1.25 lbs. per person (600 grams). That guarantees no one will be left hungry, and you most probably still have enough leftovers for that leftover turkey sandwich and croquettes we mentioned earlier.
To make it easier for you, we got an easy-to-follow Thanksgiving turkey ratio chart you can save and use every holiday season.
If you are hosting a major Thanksgiving dinner for 15 people or more, get two medium-sized turkeys. It will be easier to thaw and cook two regular-sized birds instead of struggling with a 25-pound pterodactyl-sized monster.
You can also prepare a few extra turkey breasts or legs instead of making a whole extra bird if you’d like to make it even easier.
Once you have determined the size of the turkey you need, it’s time to choose the cooking method. There are several ways to cook it, and they require different amounts of time. And we know that time is our most precious asset when it comes to Thanksgiving planning.
The time needed for deep frying a turkey is calculated using this formula: 3.5 minutes/per pound. So, an average-sized 15-pound turkey should be ready in about 52 minutes or when the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F (70 degrees C).
The Thanksgiving table is all about the sides for many of us, so take your time figuring out which side dishes you want to make this year and how many would be your perfect number.
So, choose some sides you can make ahead of time and either freeze or refrigerate for a couple of days, some sides that don’t require cooking at all (like green salads, for instance), some that can be cooked on the stove, and some that will need the oven. Don’t forget about some fun bite-sized Thanksgiving appetizers, either.
Not to mention it’s no fun to make a trip to an emergency room on Thanksgiving day because someone forgot to mention their shellfish allergy.
To make this process easier, we got another helpful chart ready for you.
You have finalized the menu by now, so let’s check if you have everything to execute it without any last-minute surprises.
Don’t forget about trays for serving your appetizers or desserts.
Yes, shopping lists, as in two grocery shopping lists. It’s best to either make two trips to the grocery store or order your groceries online.
Put all the dry, jarred, and canned goods on this list. Include kitchen supplies on it if needed as well.
You will need aluminum foil, parchment paper, plastic wrap, extra food storage containers, etc.
Stock up on non-alcoholic drinks, mixers, wine, and liquor.
After your first round of shopping is done, recheck your second list and add whatever items you might have forgotten to pick up.
Follow your first shopping list and do your first round of Thanksgiving shopping.
Most of us will opt for a frozen turkey, so you must give it enough time to thaw.
Don’t underestimate the amount of time needed to thaw the bird properly. Unless your turkey is closer to a big chicken in size, you should start thawing it now.
If you have any questions about how to thaw a frozen turkey for Thanksgiving, this this article will answer all of them.
You can save yourself a lot of trouble and start making some of your Thanksgiving menu items now.
Check everything that can be made ahead of time and frozen, and get to it.
Now it’s time to stock up on all the fresh produce and see if you have forgotten to pick up anything on your first trip.
You’re all set for this week! Thanksgiving 2021 is guaranteed to be a success!
If you have taken your time to prepare, the actual week of Thanksgiving should be relatively smooth. Just a few more things to double-check and prepare.
Having done all the preparation, Thanksgiving day should be planned around the turkey.