Spend less time in your kitchen this Thanksgiving season. Do all the Thanksgiving prep ahead of time to actually enjoy your Thanksgiving, talk with friends and family, enjoy a drink or glass of wine, and have time to give a little more gratefulness.

This year we get the pleasure of hosting Thanksgiving at our house. I love entertaining our friends and family during the holiday season, however, it can also be a little stressful having to feed that many people, entertain, and have a clean house.

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I can truly say that I enjoy baking. Note I did not say I was good but instead enjoy baking. However, when it comes to cooking that is somewhat of a different story. If you’re thinking, “oh she is good at cooking” well bless your heart!

I wish I was like my amazing sister-in-law who finds cooking to be therapeutic after a long hard day of work. 

That’s not me. I feel like cooking is a chore. My definition of de-stressing after a long hard day of work is my husband bringing me home Chipotle so I don’t have to cook! 

However, I love to entertain and have people over. I’ve found that a happy medium is if I prep as much of the meals I can ahead of time I get to spend much more of my time socializing and entertaining friends and family. 

First, my Thanksgiving prep ahead of time consists of starting by creating a shopping list.

thanksgiving prep ahead

Our Thanksgiving prep ahead meal will consist of (mostly) vegan recipes that can be made ahead of time and simply reheated on the day of Thanksgiving. Allowing for a stress-free enjoyable holiday season. The menu is (mostly) vegan meaning everything is vegan except for the turkey of course. I think some of our meat lovers might never come over again for a Thanksgiving if I didn’t include a turkey.

The menu is (mostly) vegan meaning everything is vegan except for the turkey of course. I think some of our meat lovers might never come over again for a Thanksgiving if I didn’t include a turkey.




Thanksgiving Prep Ahead Menu

1. Citrus & Herb Butter Roasted Turkey

Thanksgiving recipes

The Suburban Soapbox

To make this recipe dairy-free simply substitute:

 thanksgiving shopping list




2. Creamy Scalloped Potatoes with Thyme

vegan thanksgiving recipes

One Green Planet

3. Green Bean Casserole

thanksgiving meal

Fried Dandelions

4. Classic Traditional Thanksgiving Stuffing

Averie Cooks

 To make this recipe vegan & dairy-free simply substitute:

 




5. Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, & Cranberries

thanksgiving recipes

Julias Album

6. Cranberry, Orange, Quinoa Salad

thanksgiving recipes

Family Spice

 

7. Garlic & Rosemary Skillet Bread

thanksgiving recipes

 

The Food Charlatan

 

8. Vegan Gravy

thanksgiving gravy

This Savory Vegan

 Better Than Bouillon Vegetarian No Chicken Base

 

Dietary Needs

Today many people have different dietary needs. At our Thanksgiving dinner, we will have meat eaters, vegans, dairy free people, and gluten-free people. I’ve created four different menus so each person would know exactly what items fit their dietary needs.

No-Dietary Needs:

For the special ones with no dietary restrictions, they will be given the general dinner menu listing all items that will be served at Thanksgiving dinner.

  • Citrus & Herb Butter Roasted Turkey
  • Creamy Scalloped Potatoes with Thyme
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, & Cranberries
  • Classic Traditional Stuffing
  • Cranberry, Orange, Quinoa Salad
  • Gravy
  • Garlic & Rosemary Bread

Vegan:

  • Creamy Scalloped Potatoes with Thyme
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, & Cranberries
  • Classic Traditional Stuffing
  • Cranberry, Orange, Quinoa Salad
  • Gravy
  • Garlic & Rosemary Bread

Gluten-Free:

  • Citrus & Herb Butter Roasted Turkey
  • Creamy Scalloped Potatoes with Thyme
  • Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, & Cranberries
  • Cranberry, Orange, Quinoa Salad
  • Gravy

Diary-Free:

  • Citrus & Herb Butter (vegan) Roasted Turkey
  • Creamy Scalloped Potatoes with Thyme
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Cinnamon Butternut Squash, Pecans, & Cranberries
  • Classic Traditional Stuffing
  • Cranberry, Orange, Quinoa Salad
  • Gravy
  • Garlic & Rosemary Bread

Thanksgiving Menus




Staying Organized

To make things easier be sure to use a shopping list with everything you need ahead of time. In addition to a shopping list I have also created a cleaning schedule to help get all the cleaning done prior to guests arriving.

holiday cleaning list

Desserts

Don’t forget about your Thanksgiving desserts! Check out this list of 37 amazingly delicious fall vegan desserts to add to your Thanksgiving dinner.

vegan fall desserts

Make Ahead

Next, comes the fun part! First, chop and prep all of the meals two days prior to Thanksgiving. Second, cook everything except for the turkey the day before Thanksgiving. Next, let everything cool and place in an oven-safe casserole dish for warming the next day. Then place in the refrigerator until the next day.

On Thanksgiving simply cook the turkey and reheat on low all your other pre-made food.

Don’t have enough space in your oven? Try using chafer dishes to keep your food warm. If you don’t want to spend too much there are disposable chafing dishes or if you’re planning on needing them for more holidays in the future there are stainless steel chafing dishes.

thanksgiving prep ahead

Save yourself time and stress by assembling these delicious casserole Thanksgiving recipes ahead of time. Be sure to grab your free Thanksgiving shopping and cleaning list to make the prep work even easier this holiday season.