10 Tips for Planning a Perfect Thanksgiving Dinner



Thanksgiving is almost here, and if it’s one of your favorite holidays to celebrate, welcome to the club, you certainly aren’t the only one! Here are ten amazing tips for planning a perfect Thanksgiving dinner, so check them out and do it like a pro this year. Enjoy!

First of all, write down a guest list

Writing down a guest list is an important step you shouldn’t skip, so start with it and think about how many people you can accommodate in your home. Of course, the final number of guests will significantly differ depending on the type of dinner you’re planning. For example, if you decide to have a buffet potluck dinner, you’ll probably be able to accommodate more guests – especially when compared to a sit-down dinner where you’ll have limited space to work with. 

Pick your turkey

Needless to say, turkey is the key ingredient you’ll need for your Thanksgiving dinner, so make sure to order it at least a week in advance. You can either call your local store or find a turkey online, so do it now and you won’t make a mistake. If you fail to do so, you’ll be driving from one grocery store to another on Thanksgiving Eve, looking for a perfect turkey, which is when everyone starts to freak out. So, choose the right Thanksgiving turkey and you’re good to go!

Carefully plan your menu…

According to the majority of ladies, planning the menu is the best part of planning a Thanksgiving dinner, so grab a pen and a piece of paper and start brainstorming. Of course, your holiday favorites should find their place on your menu, as well as some new recipes you’ve wanted to try out for a long time. Generally, 2-3 appetizers, 3-4 sides, 1-2 mains (including the turkey), and 2-3 desserts will be more than fine to keep everyone full and happy. 

… As well as the appetizers and sides

Even though appetizers and sides aren’t really the stars of your Thanksgiving dinner, they certainly play a huge role in it. As for the appetizers, we must say that mushrooms stuffed with goat cheese are always a good idea, as well as deviled eggs with relish. When it comes to sides, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, and pan gravy are the timeless classics, so don’t skip them and you’ll make your Thanksgiving dinner unforgettable!

Come up with a detailed plan of action

Once you’ve created your menu, you should also come up with a detailed plan of action that’ll save your time, nerves, and money. Firstly, you’ll have to create your shopping list and make sure that you have all the necessities to prepare Thanksgiving dinner, including carving knives and a meat thermometer. Besides that, you’ll have to check if your turkey roasting pan fits in the oven and if you have enough plates and flatware for everyone. 

Do grocery shopping

Grocery shopping is the next step, and we highly recommend planning for two separate shopping trips. The first should be done a week before the dinner, to stock up on items with longer expiration dates, and the second one a couple of days before Thanksgiving, to buy all fresh and last-minute ingredients. Just ensure to stick to the list, so that you don’t overspend unnecessarily. 

Don’t forget to buy drinks

Drinks are another Thanksgiving necessity you need to take care of in advance. For example, wine is one of the most popular alcoholic drinks the majority of people enjoy, so be sure to buy burgundy wine online and get it delivered to your address. Rose wine is also a good choice, as well as sparkling wine, so give them a fair shot, too. Besides these, you can also make some signature Thanksgiving cocktails that features pumpkins, cranberries, or any other fall ingredients.

Make ahead everything you can

Preparing your food in advance is a great way to save time and make your Thanksgiving Day stress-free. In order to make that happen, you should opt for appetizers, sides, and desserts that can be easily warmed up while your turkey is cooking. For example, cranberry sauce and deviled eggs with relish are a good choice, as well as other cold dishes such as jello salads. All you need to do is to prepare them a day in advance and you’ll have enough time for everything else on Thanksgiving Day. 

Tell your guests what to bring, if anything

If you’re planning to have a Thanksgiving dinner where your guests will be bringing food, the best way to pull it off without duplicated dishes or omissions is to tell them what to bring. As simple as that! Even though this probably seems a bit too bossy, this is the only way to do it right, so don’t be afraid and let everyone know what they need to bring, as well as how many guests their dish needs to serve, if necessary.party

Relax, put your smile on, and be a good host

When everything is done and every little detail is taken care of, the only thing left to do is to relax, put your smile on, and be the best host out there. Yes, we know that it’s easier said than done, but you know what? If you’ve followed every single step of the preparation process, you’ll realize that this actually is the last one to take, so take it easy and you’ll have a fabulous time with your family and friends!


As you can tell, planning a perfect Thanksgiving dinner doesn’t have to be as challenging as you probably thought. Just stick to our tips, follow our guidelines, and you’ll get everything right, without a shadow of a doubt!


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