Follow these easy steps to prep your kitchen for Thanksgiving to ensure a smooth and less stressful event! You'll be happy you did!
Determine your menu. Thanksgiving is all about the meal, and it’s critical that you plan ahead. Many stores will run out of ingredients the day before Thanksgiving, so don’t wait until the last minute to decide you need a pumpkin pie.
Review your recipes and make sure you have every ingredient and tool needed to successfully complete all your dishes. Ingredients you need should go on a grocery list. Any tools, pots or pans should be purchased or borrowed ahead of time.
Prep the fridge – and clean it out! You are going to need as much room as possible for storing food before the holiday, and for storing leftovers after the big meal. Focus the week before the holiday on cooking and prepping meals using ingredients that have had long lives in your fridge. A few days before the holiday, move sodas, wine and beer into coolers in the garage. Throw out anything that has been around a while and obviously won’t be eaten.
Clear all the counter tops and maximize the work space you have to prepare all the food. Move anything that has a standard spot on the counter (bread box, fruit bowl, tea pot) to a location off the counter top. You’ll need all the room you can get!
Set the table the day before. That’s one less thing you have to do on Thanksgiving Day, and one less chaotic task involving people in the kitchen. Make sure salt and pepper are set on the table, as well as a trivet and serving spoon for each dish you’ll be serving.
Do as much food prep as you can ahead of time. Side dishes that need to be baked can often be prepped and refrigerated the day before, and popped in the oven Thanksgiving morning.
Make a schedule. One of the hardest parts about Thanksgiving meals is getting everything cooked or heated and ready to serve at the same time. Prepare a food cooking and heating up schedule ahead of time to make sure everything comes out perfect. Work backwards from the time you want to have the meal ready.
Assign each helper a specific task. Put one person in charge of the food that needs to be heated in the microwave. Someone else can be responsible for pulling things out of the oven at the designated times. The most skilled turkey carver should be responsible for slicing up the bird. Younger helpers are great at keeping drinks full.
Check out these other posts you may like: