Poll

What is your Thanksgiving meal plan?

Ordering a complete meal in.
1 (2%)
Prepping a complete meal at home.
20 (40%)
Going out to eat.
1 (2%)
Going to friend or relatives.
17 (34%)
Skipping althogether
2 (4%)
We don't do thanksgiving in our country.
2 (4%)
Pot Luck, everyone brings something
7 (14%)

Total Members Voted: 48

Voting closed: December 01, 2014, 10:08:14 AM

Author Topic: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?  (Read 5012 times)

Bob W

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Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« on: November 11, 2014, 10:08:14 AM »
Trying something new this year for Thanksgiving.   In the past we've had 15 or so guests and prepped everything ourselves in the traditional manner.   

This year we will be trying the preordered grocery store feasts.  They come with all the stuff.  We might do a few sides at home just for fun.

Our guestimated price will be around $125.   All we do is order and pick it up!   It seems in the past we have spent more than this while also doing all the work.

Anyone do this?  What's your strategy?   I'm not trying to save money here just reduce the hassle and allow more time for visiting with guests. 

AllieVaulter

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2014, 10:28:50 AM »
As the youngest person in my family, I am still a guest.  While this means I never get to be at (my) home for holidays, it also means that I only have a small portion of the cost to bear. 

My mom used to do all the cooking for holidays, but now that us kids have grown up we've pretty much just distributed the duties to everyone.  Mom still makes the main course (turkey, ham, etc), but my sister brings a side of veggies and some sort of dessert, my brother brings a pie, and I bring rolls and a dessert.  It cuts down on the work our mom has to do, as well as spreading out the financial responsibility. 

forestbound

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2014, 10:33:32 AM »
Yeah, your poll is missing the "pot luck" type of Thanksgiving. There are about 40 people in my extended family, when we get together everyone brings something. Too much food, but lots of fun, and not as much stress. We love it. It is by far my favorite holiday.

horsepoor

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2014, 11:04:17 AM »
I haven't really thought about it, but it will be just the two of us, so I'll probably do a small turkey and some basic sides - mashed potatoes, green beans and a salad, all of which will be supplied out of the garden.  Then we have to buy a loaf of potato bread, some cream cheese and canned cranberry jelly for sammies the next day.  We'll probably be out about $15 on the whole thing unless I decide to go for a fancy pants heritage turkey and some fancy cheeses or booze.

Bob W

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2014, 11:05:18 AM »
Yeah, your poll is missing the "pot luck" type of Thanksgiving. There are about 40 people in my extended family, when we get together everyone brings something. Too much food, but lots of fun, and not as much stress. We love it. It is by far my favorite holiday.

Added. We do that at my sisters as well.

C. K.

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2014, 01:13:38 PM »
At different Thanksgivings,  we have ordered out, catered, enjoyed potluck or taken the guests to a restaurant (one time we all met on the Arkansas Queen - a riverboat in Little Rock).

We've also enjoyed a few old fashioned dinners where Uncle R would slaughter a hog. We were allowed to prepare food only outdoors and burning logs were the only source of heat. We ate burnt mac and cheese one year, but it was fun.

A couple of times we had a dessert competition.

But, yes, ordering is a fine idea.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2014, 01:15:56 PM by C. K. »

Frankies Girl

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2014, 02:41:02 PM »
As we have very limited family (that isn't crazy) around our area, we decided to do a Catsgiving instead the last couple of years and it's fast become one of our favorite holidays. Basically, it is just the husband and me and we stay in our pajamas the whole day. I fix a complete turkey dinner with sides from scratch (green beans with hamhock, mashed potatoes, squash casserole, turkey and gravy and cranberry sauce, cornbread dressing from my grandmother's recipe and either a few pecan, pumpkin or lemon chess pies). And then we eat and nap and putter with books and movies and games - basically we laze around like cats. :D

It costs us somewhere in the neighborhood of $30 and we eat on that for over a week, which is great since we adore leftovers. I also love to cook, so it's not a chore to me- it's actually very entertaining and doesn't seem like work at all.

I totally get ordering out, tho. Especially if you've got a group of people coming over.

Workinghard

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2014, 02:54:16 PM »
Well, since I am working we will be ordering. It may be just my husband and I, or his family might be coming over. We never know with them. Last year they could not give us a definitive answer, so I canceled. This year I decided I would go ahead and if they showed up fine. If not, we would have more leftovers. Food does NOT go to waste in our house.

lizzzi

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2014, 06:35:27 PM »
There have been years when for one reason or another we ordered the complete Thanksgiving dinner from a grocery store, and just went and picked it up. Easy peasy. One year we had just moved into a new place and were not up for a cooking marathon. Another year the reason was a new baby in the house. Both times we had a certain amount of relatives gathering, but the food was good and no one turned a hair that we didn't actually prepare the food ourselves.

johnintaiwan

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2014, 06:57:51 PM »
Thanksgiving is the one holiday i really miss living abroad. Some restaurants have special thx giving dinner, but it is just not the same. It is also nearly impossible to even find all the ingredients to make it yourself, combined with large ovens not really being a thing here. The really bad news is that Costco has told us they wont be stocking any pumpkin pie this year. We will probably just skip it this year.

southern granny

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2014, 08:22:11 PM »
we do the whole thing ourselves. My husband helps a lot.  The menu is always ham, turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potato casserole, green beans, corn, deviled eggs, macaroni and cheese, cranberry sauce, rolls, apple pie, pecan pie, cheesecake and pumpkin pie.  The only things not homemade is the cranberry sauce, the rolls (sister schubert), and the pumpkin pie. It is a lot of work, basically two days of cooking, but it is my husbands favorite holiday.  Plus we have the leftovers to eat on for a week.

Fodder

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2014, 08:27:52 PM »
Canadian here, so my Thanksgiving has passed.

I looked into ordering out turkey dinners, but to get a meal that would have met my standards, it would have been over $200 (close to $300 with the tip, which was not optional).  So I will pass.  I'm a really good cook, so I'm pretty picky about what I will get and where I will get it from.

That said, it is a ton of work.  Now that I'm busy growing my 'stache, I'll be more likely to take people up on offers to help out/bring sides, rather than being a Type A control freak who insists on making every last thing herself.  ;)

I actually (as an experiment) did a four-course turkey dinner for 10 people for less than $50 once.  If you shop sales and buy seasonal, it's pretty easy to do, but I will be honest that the super-sale utility turkey was not nearly as delicious as the organic, free-range bird I normally get.  :)

RetiredAt63

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #12 on: November 12, 2014, 08:33:07 AM »
Also Canadian, I voted on what I did.  DD came home, so we were two for dinner. Roasted turkey breast, homemade apple jelly from a bake sale, vegetables from the garden, wine, pumpkin pie with whipped cream (I whipped it, not out of a can).   I don't eat grains, so I used the whole can and made one crustless for dinner, one with a crust that went home with her, along with half of all the leftovers.  Other years have been other things - larger gatherings, over to a friend's for a potluck, etc.

I don't think Canadians (or at least those I have had Thanksgiving dinner with, and the menus that Canadian Living used to have) tend do do as many side dishes as Americans - a lot of those mentioned are not things I ever see.  Or I do see, but not as standard Thanksgiving items.  But then Thanksgiving also tends to be smaller here, the big travel time to get together with extended family is still Christmas.  Thanksgiving is "close the cottage weekend" or "get the yard ready for winter" weekend.

Bob W

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2014, 08:42:54 AM »
Canadian here, so my Thanksgiving has passed.

I looked into ordering out turkey dinners, but to get a meal that would have met my standards, it would have been over $200 (close to $300 with the tip, which was not optional).  So I will pass.  I'm a really good cook, so I'm pretty picky about what I will get and where I will get it from.

That said, it is a ton of work.  Now that I'm busy growing my 'stache, I'll be more likely to take people up on offers to help out/bring sides, rather than being a Type A control freak who insists on making every last thing herself.  ;)

I actually (as an experiment) did a four-course turkey dinner for 10 people for less than $50 once.  If you shop sales and buy seasonal, it's pretty easy to do, but I will be honest that the super-sale utility turkey was not nearly as delicious as the organic, free-range bird I normally get.  :)

I may have to price this out a bit more --   Could just ask everyone to bring something and then do the mashed potatoes and turkey ourselves.   Probably would cost a lot less personally, but I fell bad about spreading the cost and effort out for guests.  They would probably like a relaxing day as much as us.

eyePod

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2014, 08:55:42 AM »
This is really interesting. We're celebrating with our families (both sets of parents, my brother, two sister-in-laws and a fiance) at our house on SATURDAY. The fiance/sister-in-law love to cook, so they're coming down early and helping out. We're not really worried about the cost yet, but it's so cool that it's not that expensive to order the whole shebang. And there's less dishes to deal with at the end (this is my specialty, unless you want scrambled eggs).

This is one of the first time's that I've been excited about a holiday, and that's probably because it's at our house and we're not driving everywhere.

dorothyc

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2014, 09:03:16 AM »
I've just moved from a three bedroom house to a small apartment so I'm not sure what I am going to do yet. I usually would do the whole shebang from scratch including home made soup and rolls and three kinds of pie with home made pastry. I'm from the UK, so Thanksgiving dinner wasn't a thing when I was growing up, but now I enjoy it if I have enough time to make everything. It's hard work when I am trying to do everything on the day itself. Relatives never bring anything - they are terrible cooks.

One year I did order the grocery meal for four and it was very disappointing. I was expecting hand carved turkey and fresh gravy, but it was the chopped and shaped turkey roll and boxed gravy. I could have sorted that out for myself for much less money. It was from one of SoCal's premium grocery stores too. Maybe it's better if you get the prepared meal for more people, and you get an actual turkey.

Bob W

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2014, 09:12:13 AM »
I've just moved from a three bedroom house to a small apartment so I'm not sure what I am going to do yet. I usually would do the whole shebang from scratch including home made soup and rolls and three kinds of pie with home made pastry. I'm from the UK, so Thanksgiving dinner wasn't a thing when I was growing up, but now I enjoy it if I have enough time to make everything. It's hard work when I am trying to do everything on the day itself. Relatives never bring anything - they are terrible cooks.

One year I did order the grocery meal for four and it was very disappointing. I was expecting hand carved turkey and fresh gravy, but it was the chopped and shaped turkey roll and boxed gravy. I could have sorted that out for myself for much less money. It was from one of SoCal's premium grocery stores too. Maybe it's better if you get the prepared meal for more people, and you get an actual turkey.

Our stores do the real deal.  Turkeys and all the goofy side dishes are real and made at the stores. 

Fodder

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2014, 09:54:18 AM »
Canadian here, so my Thanksgiving has passed.

I looked into ordering out turkey dinners, but to get a meal that would have met my standards, it would have been over $200 (close to $300 with the tip, which was not optional).  So I will pass.  I'm a really good cook, so I'm pretty picky about what I will get and where I will get it from.

That said, it is a ton of work.  Now that I'm busy growing my 'stache, I'll be more likely to take people up on offers to help out/bring sides, rather than being a Type A control freak who insists on making every last thing herself.  ;)

I actually (as an experiment) did a four-course turkey dinner for 10 people for less than $50 once.  If you shop sales and buy seasonal, it's pretty easy to do, but I will be honest that the super-sale utility turkey was not nearly as delicious as the organic, free-range bird I normally get.  :)

I may have to price this out a bit more --   Could just ask everyone to bring something and then do the mashed potatoes and turkey ourselves.   Probably would cost a lot less personally, but I fell bad about spreading the cost and effort out for guests.  They would probably like a relaxing day as much as us.

I think someone else may have hit the nail on the head - maybe Canadian Thanksgiving isn't as extensive as American Thanksgiving.  A typical menu would be turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, squash/sweet potatoes, peas and coleslaw.  Pumpkin Pie for dessert.

As for spreading out cost, I don't ask people to bring something - I just accept offers.  :D It's family, so no one minds sharing the load, especially because I do probably 75% of the hosting.  I generally farm out salad and dessert, and do the main myself.

For Christmas, my SIL is hosting, and I immediately offered to bring dessert, which she accepted.  Now I'll have some time to spend on a nice dessert, and she doesn't need to worry about it.  It's win-win! 

Bob W

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #18 on: November 12, 2014, 11:55:59 AM »
Canadian here, so my Thanksgiving has passed.

I looked into ordering out turkey dinners, but to get a meal that would have met my standards, it would have been over $200 (close to $300 with the tip, which was not optional).  So I will pass.  I'm a really good cook, so I'm pretty picky about what I will get and where I will get it from.

That said, it is a ton of work.  Now that I'm busy growing my 'stache, I'll be more likely to take people up on offers to help out/bring sides, rather than being a Type A control freak who insists on making every last thing herself.  ;)

I actually (as an experiment) did a four-course turkey dinner for 10 people for less than $50 once.  If you shop sales and buy seasonal, it's pretty easy to do, but I will be honest that the super-sale utility turkey was not nearly as delicious as the organic, free-range bird I normally get.  :)

I may have to price this out a bit more --   Could just ask everyone to bring something and then do the mashed potatoes and turkey ourselves.   Probably would cost a lot less personally, but I fell bad about spreading the cost and effort out for guests.  They would probably like a relaxing day as much as us.

I think someone else may have hit the nail on the head - maybe Canadian Thanksgiving isn't as extensive as American Thanksgiving.  A typical menu would be turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, squash/sweet potatoes, peas and coleslaw.  Pumpkin Pie for dessert.

As for spreading out cost, I don't ask people to bring something - I just accept offers.  :D It's family, so no one minds sharing the load, especially because I do probably 75% of the hosting.  I generally farm out salad and dessert, and do the main myself.

For Christmas, my SIL is hosting, and I immediately offered to bring dessert, which she accepted.  Now I'll have some time to spend on a nice dessert, and she doesn't need to worry about it.  It's win-win!

Good point --- Don't forget the green bean casserole,  rolls, cranberry sauce, fancy salad, apple pie, pecan pie, wine, booze, coffee.   Mmm, I'm getting hungry,  must be lunch time!

ruthiegirl

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2014, 02:49:00 PM »
I make a turkey and a couple of sides.  Dh makes pies.  And guests bring salad, appetizers, and other side dishes.  It is really easy and fun. 

No booze since we have a couple of recovering family members.   It turns out to be a rather low-cost, nice day. 


ruthiegirl

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2014, 02:53:09 PM »
My neighbor ordered a whole Thanksgiving meal from Whole Foods once and is was decent.  The food was tasty, portion sizes were smallish.  She said it was kind of a let down though -- half the fun is hanging out while the bird cooks. 

lizzzi

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Re: Anyone ordering out Thanksgiving Feast?
« Reply #21 on: November 12, 2014, 06:10:44 PM »
Most recently when we ordered the grocery store dinner it was from Giant Eagle. Everything was fine--there was no chopped turkey roll or fake gravy or anything other than the usual basics….done quite nicely, although nothing fancy or gourmet. We've ordered from other places without having any problems. I guess the thing to do is ask beforehand, and see exactly what kind of dinner they're preparing.