Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and we’re already craving a plate of turkey with all the fixings. If you’re hosting this year, it can be intimidating and stressful to get everything just right. That’s why we created a one-week Thanksgiving checklist, to make it easy for you to plan and get organized. Follow along to make sure you stay on task, and we guarantee your Thanksgiving will be a delicious success. We’ve also included some of our favorite classic recipes below, because gathering family and friends for a Thanksgiving meal is a truly magical occasion!
One Week Ahead
- Review recipes and prepare a cooking schedule
- Shop for non-perishable food items – canned and paper goods
- Buy a frozen turkey
- Make pie crust and freeze
- Take stock of dishes, glassware, and linens
Three or Four Days Ahead
- Begin defrosting turkey (see below for recommended thawing times)
- Shop for perishable food items, like vegetables and cream.
- Make dough for bread and store in fridge
Two Days Ahead
- Wash and dry vegetables, then refrigerate
- Chill beverages
- Defrost pie dough
One Day Ahead
- Prepare food that can be made ahead of time – Look below for recipes you can make the day before
- Brine turkey
- Chop vegetables needed for any of the recipes
- Set table and set out serving pieces
- Cook turkey according to instructions
- Heat up any side dishes and casseroles
- Bake bread – see our delicious recipe below
- Make any last minute side dishes, such as the Green Bean Skillet recipe below
- Pour drinks
- Make gravy and carve turkey
- Enjoy your meal with friends and family
- Serve dessert
Perfect the Menu
If you’re still finalizing your Turkey Day menu, here are a few of our tried-and-true favorites. Some classics, some creative twists on the traditional. Scroll on for favorite recipes we’ll be serving to our own families this year.
Begin defrosting your frozen turkey in the fridge anywhere from 3-4 days before Thanksgiving. The general rule of thumb is 5 hours per pound, so a 15 pound turkey would need about 3 days in the fridge to thaw. This Roast Turkey recipe walks you through brining the turkey on Wednesday and roasting it on Thursday. Use a GoodCook Turkey Baster to infuse your turkey with a tasty fall-spice marinade.
Thanksgiving wouldn’t be the same without stuffing. This classic Bread Stuffing has all your favorite flavors, and there’s plenty for everyone! Cube the bread on Wednesday and bake it up in a GoodCook 3 Qt Ceramic Dish on Thursday.
Green Bean Skillet
This Green Bean Skillet is a stovetop recipe, so there’s no worry of hogging precious oven space. Trim the green beans on Wednesday and cook them up on Thursday. Use a GoodCook Cast Iron Skillet to bring out all the amazing flavors in this classic side dish.
Twice Baked Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes
You’re going to love this recipe for Twice Baked Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes! New red potatoes start off in the slow cooker, are then mashed with cream and cheese, and piled into a GoodCook Ceramic Casserole Dish to roast until golden and crispy. To get started on Wednesday, slow cook and mash the potatoes, then simply bake them up on turkey day.
Homemade Fresh Pumpkin Pie
You can make the pie crust for this Homemade Fresh Pumpkin Pie weeks ahead of time and freeze it until needed. Defrost the crust on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, and assemble and bake the pie on Wednesday. The GoodCook Ceramic Pie Plate is roomy enough to accommodate your favorite pie!
Herbed Cheese Ball
Serve your guests this festive Herbed Cheese Ball as a pre-dinner appetizer. Wash and dry the fresh herbs and fruit on Wednesday, and assemble the cheeseball on Thursday. This easy, no-fuss appetizer is the perfect pick when you’re short on prep time. Arrange it all on a GoodCook Wood Paddle Cutting Board for a stunning display!
No Knead Overnight Bread
You can be the perfect hostess and serve freshly baked homemade bread! This No Knead Overnight Bread is simple and straightforward to make. Make the dough up to a week ahead of time and store it in the fridge. On Thanksgiving, put the dough in a GoodCook 1.5 QT Ceramic Casserole Dish and bake for 30 minutes. Serve warm with butter to your lucky guests!