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Thanksgiving Day Feast on the Cheap

SS Member Image By drodriguez 11.19.08
Thanksgiving Day Feast on the Cheap
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The idea of cooking a Thanksgiving dinner for a veritable army of family members is bound to be causing some worry during these tough economic times.  What if you just can’t afford it this year?  Planning a potluck dinner where all of the guests bring an assigned dish, henceforth splitting the grocery bill is a great way to save this year. 

But what if you have relatives coming from out of town or your own brood at home is big enough to send you into the red?  A recent article from offers some great tips on how to save on your Thanksgiving dinner this year.  If you can follow these tips, you can make a meal for 8 people for well under $100.

One helpful tip is to purchase produce that is in season.  Veggies like asparagus and artichokes will be off limits, since they are out of season and likely to be overpriced.  Also, buying a bunch of fresh herbs rather than dried and jarred herbs can save you a good deal. 

When it comes to the bird, it is best to go with supermarket brand turkey.  You can still find a free-range or organic turkey and it will cost loads less than a more prestigious brand.

Another tip offered from Epicurious is to feel free to bend the rules when you are following a recipe.  If your recipe calls for three different kinds of herbs, don’t be afraid to just choose one.  Substituting water for canned stock in a soup works, as well as using flour and water to thicken gravy rather than making turkey stock.

No matter how much you spend this year on your Thanksgiving dinner, we all know what really matters is the togetherness we’ll share with friends and family.  The most memorable moments on holidays usually have little to do with the food on the table but rather the people sitting at it.

For a complete list of Epicurious’s money saving tips or to check out the menu for the under $100 Thanksgiving meal you can visit:

What do you think of the tips listed above to help you save on your Thanksgiving meal this year?

Do you have anything special you will be doing this Thanksgiving as a way to cut down on costs?

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  • lisa619 By lisa619

    great tips!

  • Moggy08 By Moggy08

    jerilgm, I eat brussel sprouts and love them, especially roasted. They have turkey here locally for 39 cents a pound! Harris Teeter has asparagus for 1.99 a pound right now, that is cheap! You just have to watch the grocery ads. We went out and collected a bunch of black walnuts from a wild tree and spent several hours cracking and picking them over the weekend. I'll be using them in several different dessert recipes over the holidays. We ended up with a quart of nuts and at just under 4 bucks for 2 ounces at the store, we really racked up the savings.

  • fawn80 By fawn80

    I'm so glad I found this article. I'm not doing my Thanksgiving dinner until Saturday, and these tips will help a lot! The twist is I'm not asking anyone to bring food - instead they are helping hang Christmas Decorations!

  • TamaraSeward By TamaraSeward

    We started getting Safeway meals when we got together. A good price for what you get, pretty much everything including a pumpkin pie. Since my mom will be in the hospital this year my brother & I are getting together with are significant others & making our "Thanksgiving" dinner this Sunday. So it's my first year buying a turkey. We awill be getting it tonight. Hope I find a good deal. LOL!

  • am_i_lost By am_i_lost

    I thought that the grocery prices I my area were high but they are "out of this world" where ever they researched to do this artical! I bought turkey for .79/ lb and you can by or make pies and dessersts for $5 or less. The same goes for almost all of the side dishes and cassaroles I make. Things don't have to be high priced or fancy; just taste good and be family favorites! Thats what matters in my house!!!

  • jerilgm By jerilgm

    Do people really eat brussel sprouts? I've seen them listed on several Thanksgiving day menus but don't know anyone who eats them. Maybe it's just us midwesterners that avoid brussel sprouts at all costs.

  • jamiesmom By jamiesmom

    I read the article but really, who in their right mind would spend $50 on a pecan pie? I don't see spending $15 on ingredients instead of $50 on a premade as a money saving tip. Wal-mart sells premade pecan pies for ~$5 every day... And $2 a lb for a turkey seems steep too. I bought a butterball for .89 cents a lb. Maybe I'm just cheap though...

  • jojostarbuck By jojostarbuck

    I loved this article. Thanks for pointing it out to us in these turbulent times.

  • thecouponsista By thecouponsista

    Good article full of useful tips. Thanks!

  • MSauerbrei By MSauerbrei

    Great article. This is my first Thanksgiving as Hostess and I'm having 12 people over. I keep forgetting that the most important thing is the people you're with and not how many side dishes I can fit on the table.

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