It’s hard to believe, but Thanksgiving is right around the corner. But before you can sit down and indulge in some of your favorite dishes, you need to prep. Between cooking, cleaning, or even traveling, Thanksgiving is easily one of the most chaotic days of the year. Here are some steps you can take now to help control the turkey-day chaos and enjoy time with your loved ones instead.
Clean out the Fridge
At least a week before the big day, remove any unneeded items from your fridge. On Thanksgiving Day, have a cooler or two around the house to store food items that need to stay chilled until dinner. That way, you can maximize the space left in the fridge.
Split Up Shopping Trips
Once you decide the menu, split your ingredient list into separate shopping trips. Remember to organize your lists by shelf life. The last thing you want is to open the cooler right before dinner and find that the lettuce you needed for your salad is wilted. By making multiple, smaller shopping trips, you won’t be rushing the day before Thanksgiving when ingredients are less likely to be available.
Don’t spend the morning of Thanksgiving frantically searching for your mom’s famous stuffing recipe. Set aside any recipe cards, make copies, or mark any cook book pages now. This will make your morning routine run a lot smoother. It may even be a good idea to make copies of all of your favorite Thanksgiving recipes and bind them together for future holidays.
There are some items on your table that can be prepared ahead of time and then reheated if necessary. These include things like appetizers, salads (minus the dressing), cranberry sauce, non-custard pies, and extra gravy. This can help increase the efficiency of your cooking schedule.
Make a Schedule
You’re bound to run into some unexpected hiccups on Thanksgiving Day, so it’s best to prepare as much as possible. Make sure all of the appliances you'll need are working and are where you need them to be. All measuring cups and spoons should be cleaned and ready to go.