Have you noticed your regular grocery bill going up, up, up? I sure have! Everytime I go to the grocery store, it seems that the total cost keeps getting higher. Our budget has sure taken a hit with the higher cost of food. Well, today I am sharing tips about creating a Thanksgiving feast on a budget.
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I know many of you will be heading to the store to purchase many traditional Thanksgiving favorites. Between higher costs and supply chain struggles – this might be the year to swap out, scale back, and make a few changes. A great Thanksgiving meal can be created with a limited budget.
Implement these suggestions to create a wonderful, affordable Thanksgiving dinner:
Look for sale prices. Start by looking through your local grocery store to see what they have on sale. See what items you can add into your menu. Frozen turkeys take a few days to thaw in the refrigerator, but if you plan for the time – they are a great money saver and can often be found on sale. Shop around for a good deal, and you’ll be way ahead of the game.
Purchase items in bulk. If you’re feeding a large group, it can be worthwhile to purchase items in larger quantities. Many of the larger stores have an aisle with bulk items. Of course, there’s also Costco, Sam’s Club, and similar stores that specialize in bulk quantities.
Utilize coupons. Grocery stores are fighting for your dollars this time of year. Start looking before the big day. Even if you don’t typically use coupons, it might be worthwhile around Thanksgiving. And with coupons found on store apps, it’s easy to check out before you head to the store.
Skip the appetizers. Most appetizers are expensive, and the result is a lot of leftovers. Everyone will be well fed soon enough. Let everyone focus on the main meal. Appetizers are intended to make up for a smaller main course.
Consider what items are in season. Brussels sprouts are abundantly available in November, while asparagus is not. Be on the lookout for items that are harvested late in the year. Roasted Brussels Sprouts is a favorite in my home. A sheet pan of roasted root vegetables is also always a favorite.
Be reasonable. Most Thanksgiving meals have excessive leftovers. Try to make a realistic prediction of how much food you’ll actually need. There are calculators online that can help you make an accurate estimation of your food requirements, depending on how many you’re feeding at Thanksgiving dinner.
Do it yourself. Dinner rolls are quite inexpensive in the store, but you can probably save even more money if you just do it yourself. Some items, such as pecan pie, can be expensive to purchase, but cheaper to make. My Fruit of the Forest Pie is very adaptable to the fruits that are in season. It’s a wonderful medley of flavors.
Stick with the basics. Many amateur chefs make the mistake of trying out new dishes that require special skills, expensive ingredients, or both. These dishes rarely turn out well, and the food may go to waste. There’s a reason why the classics became classics. Nearly everyone enjoys eating them and the costs are minimal.
Even Martha Stewart suggests a menu of turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, seasonal vegetables, and pumpkin pie. That’s simple and inexpensive. A great time saver is my Make-Ahead Creamy Mashed Potatoes.
Encourage all guests to bring a side dish. Take care of the turkey and let everyone else prepare and bring the other dishes. Assign responsibilities for the core items and take the time and cost burdens off your shoulders. Someone is sure to bring something unique and interesting. The point of the holiday is to share time together with loved ones. Your guests will be more than happy to help.
Use the leftovers to your advantage. If you have overnight guests, they will need to be fed the following day. Push that leftover turkey on them! Who doesn’t like a turkey sandwich? You already have the food, so put it to good use.
Thanksgiving is a time to create and share memories with your loved ones. It’s not necessary to spend a lot of money to accomplish that. Start planning early and stick to the classic dishes that everyone seems to enjoy at Thanksgiving dinner. You can host a memorable Thanksgiving and keep your budget intact.