Thanksgiving Menu and Plan

by GettingFreedom on November 22, 2011

This year I’m hosting my first Thanksgiving Dinner at my home.  Originally I was nothing more than elated, then I was a little nervous when I began to think about all the preparations.  Now that I’ve nailed down my plan, the nervous-ness has turned back into elation.

I’ve found that an easy way to lead a life that is free from unnecessary stress {well, not completely of course, I have 4 littles at home!} is to plan ahead.  Always. When planning a holiday meal for many different people, planning is key!  Especially if you plan on enjoying your company and your Thanksgiving.

I’ve included my Thanksgiving Meal Plan for those of you who may need to fill in some gaps to your own menu.  I will be the first person to tell you that we’ve planned waaayyyy too much food!  This was an attempt at merging my husband’s traditional Thanksgiving with my family’s.  With our vegetable side dishes, I’m not  making much of either to avoid having a ridiculous amount left over.

Our Thanksgiving Menu


Cheese Ball

Beef and Cream Cheese Pickles

Deviled Eggs


Sweetened Tea



Sparkling Punch {for kids}

Wine {obviously for adults}

Main Course

Brined Turkey


Smoked Pheasant

Mashed Potatoes with Gravy

Wild Rice Stuffing

Green Bean Casserole

Sweet Potato Casserole

Brussell Sprouts with Cheese Sauce

Broccoli with Cheese Sauce

Buttery Crescent Rolls


Pumpkin Pie

Southern Pecan Pie

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Thanksgiving Preparations

Monday Before

Make 3 Batches of Buttery Crescent Rolls {once cooled pop in freezer in Ziploc Bags}

Prepare Pie Crusts {store dough in refrigerator until Tuesday}

Tuesday Before

Peel/Cube Potatoes for Mashed Potatoes {store in water in the fridge–if extra time, cook and store mashed}

Prepare Sweet Potatoes

Chop/Cook celery and onions for stuffing.  Cook Wild Rice {undercook so it doesn’t get mushy}.

Day Before

Prepare Pies {Pumpkin, Pecan, and Pumpkin Cheesecake}

Make Muffins/Granola for Breakfast.

Prepare all Appetizers

Brine Turkey

Thanksgiving Day

Our eating time is around 1pm.

Quick Breakfast of Muffins/Granola.

9:30 am

Remove Turkey from Brine

Begin Smoking Pheasant

10:00 am

Place Turkey into Roaster to Cook.

Put Ham in Oven

11:00 am

Set out Appetizers

Set Table

Prepare Stuffing


Prepare Green Bean Casserole, pop in oven

Prepare Cheese Sauce

Put Mashed Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, and Wild Rice Stuffing in Oven


Cook Vegetables {Broccoli and Brussell Sprouts} on the Stovetop.


Eat until you cannot move.

*Note:: When a dish is done, it will be moved to a serving dish {if needed} and then onto the dinner table to keep room on the counters.

Not only does planning everything ahead of time help maintain my sanity–and good mood–it will also cut down on dirty dishes the day of Thanksgiving.  That means I’ll have time to eat more dessert, right? :)

What traditional foods do you include in your Thanksgiving Menu?

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