The Ultimate, Foolproof Guide to Thanksgiving Dinner

This guide is a mash-up of our absolute favorite Thanksgiving recipes, tips, and tricks, courtesy of both the Plated cookbook and our esteemed chefs. We adore Thanksgiving, but we also know that few cooking adventures are more daunting than Turkey Day: high expectations, guests with various preferences, the prospect of roasting a giant, whole bird… However, with just a bit of planning, it doesn’t have to be so crazy. (It’ll still be kind of crazy. Wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without a few burnt edges.)

The menu

Turkey with citrus herb butter and apricot glaze
Cognac gravy
Crispy brussels sprouts
Spiced mashed sweet potatoes
Epic pecan pie

The timeline

The Day Before

  • Mentally prepare yourself; it’s going to a big two days.
  • Prepare your compound butter and your ingredients for the stuffing and sides.
  • Cook and assemble your stuffing.
  • Prepare and bake the pie.

Thanksgiving Day

  • Pour a stiff drink.
  • Prepare and roast the turkey.
  • Bake the stuffing; when the top is crunchy (but not before!), steal a taste.
  • Make the glaze and be thankful you’re not sitting in traffic today.
  • Roast the vegetables while the turkey finishes roasting.
  • Glaze the turkey.
  • Make the Cognac gravy (have a sip or two) and rest the turkey.
  • You made it! Eat everything!

Need more recipes?

If you’re missing a few of your other Thanksgiving favorites, don’t fret. Get your cranberry sauce fix here, then take the edge off with these stiff cranberry cocktails. Oh, and don’t forget the mashed potatoes.

Pro tip: if you’re trying to lighten things up a bit this year, we put together recipes for that, too.

Extra tips + tricks

Whether you’re wondering how many pounds your turkey should weigh or are looking for a few more goodies to fill out your table, you should read this. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the number of ingredients you’ll need to buy, we’ve also compiled a few 3-ingredient recipes that’ll do the trick if you’re in a tight spot. Last but not least, you’re probably fretting (at least a little bit) over your Thanksgiving table. Which flowers? Should I buy some mini pumpkins? Does everything need to be color coordinated? It’s okay, this helpful guide has all the answers you need.

How does Plated celebrate?

Just because it’s Thanksgiving doesn’t mean we take a break from creating delicious, seasonal recipes for you! In fact, our Thanksgiving menu is chock full of perfect options for the big day. Looking for a new side dish? Try our Creamy Pumpkin Rigatoni. Not feelin’ the whole “cook a whole bird” thing? Make these turkey thighs. Or, if you really want to go outside the box, impress everyone with a Thanksgiving Cheeseburger.

And finally, if you can even think about it, there are all the leftovers. So, instead of eating boring turkey sandwiches for two weeks, you will absolutely love Chef Michelle‘s Thanksgiving Leftover Pizza.

Love experimenting in the kitchen? Try Plated!

Get 25% off your first four weeks of Plated!

On the List?

Subscribe to Plated's Newsletter

Thanks for signing up!

There was an error signing you up.
Please check that your email is valid. Try again