It’s time to begin the official Thanksgiving countdown as Halloween is over. But there’s nothing to be stressed out about. And since it’s never too early to make all the holiday preparations ahead of time, we’ve created a Thanksgiving checklist with tips to help you get everything under control. We’ll go over your indispensable guide for organizing a stressless Thanksgiving dinner.
1 Month Before Thanksgiving
When it comes to hosting a Thanksgiving dinner, you can save yourself some time with a Thanksgiving prep checklist. Planning a menu for dinner is the first step. Make a list of recipe ideas for meals you will serve and draw up a shopping list so you don’t forget the ingredients for holiday appetizers and a main course. Consider differentiating between perishables and non-perishables to make your shopping trips more manageable.
Create a Thanksgiving dinner checklist where you can add traditional dishes and try new delicious recipes you will try for the first time. Apple pie, fantastic turkey made in the oven, fresh bread, fun cheese board, jarred gravy, new side dishes, classic side breads, and other favorite menu items. When creating a menu, consider any special dietary needs your guests may have. Ask about food allergies, vegans, or vegetarians, ensuring that everyone will enjoy a hearty Thanksgiving family gathering.
Plan well in advance for the purchase of beverages. It will save you plenty of time. It could happen that you can’t find drinks that you want to serve in local stores, so you’ll have to order them online. If you are planning some special champagne cocktail or exclusive white wines, you may wait for an order for up to two weeks. Consider that guests will drink at least one hour per hour as a rough estimate.
If you’re planning to serve turkey, do an order at least one or two days before Thanksgiving. The demand for turkey is high, so you can face a lack of it in your local grocery store at the last minute.
Don’t forget you need extra time to thaw the frozen turkey. The best rule of thumb is that for every 4 pounds of turkey, 24 hours should be stored in the refrigerator. You’ll need 4 days of allocated time on a 16-pound turkey.
2 Weeks Before Thanksgiving
With two weeks left before, it’s time to begin the practical preparations from your Thanksgiving feast checklist.
Start cleaning up your house. If a cleaning routine seems a bit hard for you, focus on the rooms your guests will visit: the living room, dining room, bathroom, and guest bedrooms if you’re expecting guests to stay a night.
To make guests feel welcome just after they come to your house, you’ll have to clear the space where they can leave their coats and bags. In general, do a quick cleaning, dusting, and vacuuming. Don’t be afraid not to impress your guest with a perfect cleaning if you don’t have enough time. If so, use lamps and candles instead of the overhead lights. Plus, it will create a comfortable atmosphere in your living room.
Set the dining table, ensuring you have enough plates, napkins, eucalyptus for napkins, cups, glasses, and serving bowls for everyone. Also, check you’ve got enough tables and chairs to sit for your guests. These holiday hassles is a good chance to get rid of all your out-of-date or damaged holiday dishes and tableware that just gathered dust.
1 Week Before Thanksgiving
A week before, it’s time to wrap up the practical tasks from the Thanksgiving day checklist to get a smooth and stressless event.
While there’s no Thanksgiving etiquette for how far in advance you should send invitations, we believe one to two weeks is an acceptable amount of time to allow people to figure out their plans. It doesn’t matter if it’s a phone call, a chat message, an email list, or a beautiful printed invitation sent by post.
Firstly, decide how much money you can spend for Thanksgiving this year and form a calculation of how many people you can handle putting together. According to statistics provided by the American Farm Bureau Federation, the average cost of a Thanksgiving dinner is less than $5 per person. But, of course, this number looks unrealistic for those residing in high-cost-of-living areas. You can also use Thanksgiving food calculators for more accurate results.
Then, make a note in the Thanksgiving checklist printables of who you want to invite. For your convenience, check off when you invite them. After that, you can once again note if they are coming or not after a couple days.
Monday: The Countdown Begins
Well, officially, we’re a week away from Thanksgiving as of Monday. It’s now up to us to ensure everything from the Thanksgiving checklist planner is ready for the big day. Get your turkey outside the fridge since it must sit at room temperature for over an hour before cooking. This helps the slow cooker bird to cook a little more evenly. Wait until it’s time to wrap up the stuffing.
Tuesday: Preparation Continues
We’ll dig a little deeper into preparing your Thanksgiving dinner on Tuesday as a part of the “Thanksgiving checklist: one week before.” Consider prep dessert: baking the sweet potatoes or casseroles you plan to serve. It is a tradition at Thanksgiving to eat these classic foods, which are often accompanied by pecans or marshmallows.
It is also an excellent time to review your dessert so that all the ingredients are available for baking brownies, pumpkin pies, and trifles.
Wednesday: Final Preparations
It’s Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, and you’re at the end of hosting Thanksgiving checklist and your preparations.
It’s time to make sure our dishwasher is clean and ready to handle all the dirty dishes. This preventive step ensures you’ll discover a clean sink later in the evening and allows you to concentrate on the fun parts of the holiday.
When you get ready with a checklist to help, the coming Thanksgiving morning vibes bring excitement.
Take the turkey out of the fridge at least an hour before roasting so you can start your day. Continue to prepare the stuffing while you wait. You’ll soon have a delicious aroma of Thanksgiving dinner coming in your house.
Set the dining table, ensuring every guest has ample space and that you have all the necessary items: napkins, plates, cups, glasses, and serving bowls. Ensure you have enough tables and enough space for centerpiece items and chairs, so your guest can spend minutes before mealtime in comfort.
Once the Thanksgiving dinner is over and your guests have enjoyed a delightful meal, there’s still some work to be done, but don’t be intimidated. It’s time we ended this party by cleaning it up. You’ll wash the dishes, you’ll clean your table, and that house will be cleaned. In order to avoid waste, the leftovers should be properly stored. You spent a lot of time preparing this great meal, so you’re going to want to save the extra portions for tomorrow.
After the meal, spend a fun and lovely time with your friends and family. Play classic board games, see family photos, or watch your favorite movie together.
It’s a good time to start planning next year’s Thanksgiving dinner as you prepare the final touches on your feast. Come up with new ideas for recipes, traditions, and decorations. It’s a time for gratitude and reflection, so appreciate the company of your loved ones and the pleasure of hosting a memorable Thanksgiving.
By following these steps, you can be confident in your ability to hold a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner with no stress. To stay organized and make the holiday merry, your handy companion is a Thanksgiving checklist that you can print out. So, get started early, stay organized, and let the spirit of Thanksgiving shine through. Wishing you a wonderful and stressless holiday season!
Maria is a content maven at Cheqmark and is a regular contributor to our blog and social media.