Whether your travel plans fell apart due to unforeseen inclement weather or you just plain procrastinated until the last possible moment, it’s now the Monday the week of Thanksgiving, you need to host some friends and/or family, and you still don’t have your holiday shit together. No problem! With the What Goes With Me Survival Guide to a Last-minute Thanksgiving in your back pocket (or on your screen, or whatever), even the most dire Thanksgiving frown can be turned upside down.
Step 1: Delegate
At the end of the day, a Thanksgiving meal consists of one big centerpiece dish (the turkey) and a bunch of side dishes and desserts. Because of that nature, it’s prime pickings for some first degree managerial finagling: namely, delegation! After all, you’re doing most of the work, so why should you have to do it all?
If it’s at all possible, ask your friends or family to bring something with them. It makes for a more interactive and fun meal for everyone, and it helps to minimize the amount of cooking and baking and cleaning YOU need to do!
Step 2: Settle on your menu
Here’s a handful of simple Thanksgiving recipes for you to try out:
The Simplest, Easiest Method to Cook a Turkey
Hands-down the best way to cook a turkey is to roast it in the oven. Whether you brine it or dry brine it or whatever, The Kitchn has you covered with how to handle every step of the way, from the cleaning to the carving. And for the extra lazy among us, they even have a guide on how to cook a frozen turkey! [RECIPE]
How to Make Gravy
One of the biggest benefits to roasting your turkey is that your pan will be filled with all sorts of delicious, concentrated turkey drippings. Whatever you do, don’t throw them away–they’re the key ingredient to boarding the Gravy Train heading to Tasty Town! [RECIPE]
“Simple is Best” Dressing (Stuffing)
For many people, the stuffing is the real star of the Thanksgiving meal. Personally, I think those people are crazy, but I will not disagree that a good stuffing is definitely a requirement. This recipe is simple and easy, and the best part is that it can be made a day in advance! [RECIPE]
Sweet Potato Casserole
Move aside, mashed potatoes! When I think of Thanksgiving, I think of a sweet potato casserole topped with browned marshmallows. This recipe is a close approximation of the one from my childhood, and is a quick and easy method to a guaranteed favorite at the dinner table. [RECIPE]
Simple Sweet Buttermilk Cornbread
Cornbread is a seriously underrated side dish for Thanksgiving. This particular recipe requires a bit of extra work to create the buttermilk the old fashioned way, but the results speak for themselves: this makes some of the best cornbread you’ll ever have! [RECIPE]
I mean, you could make your own. Or you could just buy one from Costco.
Step 3: Eat, Drink, and Be Merry!
Special emphasis on the “drink,” especially during the cooking phase. It makes everything so much more fun!