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Thanksgiving Schedule and Recipe List

She’s hereeeeee! I’m providing you with my recipe list as well as my Thanksgiving preparation schedule. Obviously, this is very tailored to the recipes I’m using, but it gives you an idea of what can be made ahead of time as well as what your cooking times are looking like. This is also a good way to figure out what things you may want to buy pre-made.

Some really safe things to buy pre-made are rolls, gravy, microwave steamed vegetables and desserts. So, if this all sounds like a lot, don’t feel like you can’t buy some things already made! If you’re worried about appearance, then first of all know you’re doing a great job (I mean look at all this stuff you’re doing! You’re having people over to your house!), second, throw societies weight out that window and then third, you can take whatever it is out of the packaging and put it on a plate or in a cute basket.

I would say the following recipes amount to a pretty safe amount of food for a group of 4-6 adults, with potential for some leftovers.

The recipes I picked for our Thanksgiving are linked below:

Cranberry Sauce (THE BEST SAUCE EVER)

Stuffing (I’ll tell you right now, this is a time consuming one. If it doesn’t sound amazing to you when you look at this link just skip it and do something else! It’ll take a big chunk of time out of your schedule. I splurged on it because I thought it sounded good. Here’s a quicker recipe I found just in case and it’s good for vegetarians. )

I did not provide a recipe for mashed potatoes, but in the schedule, I give you an idea of what you would do for mash. You just have to figure out how many potatoes you would need for your group.

I also did not provide a recipe for gravy because I feel like you can find a good premade gravy to use. I don’t feel like homemade gravy is at all a good use of your precious time.

A good resource for any vegan/vegetarian friends you may be cooking for is Minimalist Baker. I was going to put a list of things, but honestly, the whole website is gold so just check it out! You can set it to only show fall recipes if you want to make sure your menu is seasonally prepared. You can find the website here.

Okay! Now let’s get into it!

Look at the weight of your turkey. The general consensus is you should thaw your turkey 24hrs per 4-5lbs. You will also want an additional 24hrs to season your bird. So, for example, if you have a 12lb turkey, start thawing it four days ahead of cooking it. You have three days for the turkey to thaw and one for it to be seasoned.

24hrs per 4-5lbs

_+24hrs to season_

THEN cook it

So, just plan accordingly! It’s nothing to stress about, because you’re not really doing anything but letting your turkey sit in the fridge.


30 mins – make pie dough, wrap tightly in cling film and store in fridge

TWO DAYS BEFORE (about 3hrs)

40-50 mins – dry out the cornbread for stuffing, as directed in the recipe.


25 mins – make cranberry sauce

5 mins prep

15 mins cooking on the hob in a small saucepan. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

15 mins – peel and chop potatoes. Fill a large bowl with enough water to submerge the potatoes, put potatoes in and store, covered, in the fridge.

About 2 hours - Remove cornbread from oven, then assemble and cook stuffing

8 mins cook sausage for stuffing, place in a bowl and set aside

18 mins cook vegetable mixture

5-10 mins combine all parts and add in egg mixture, as directed

40-45 mins bake stuffing in 13x9x2 pan, covered. (DO NOT do the additional 15-20 mins mentioned in the recipe. You’ll do that on Thanksgiving)

30-60mins Let the stuffing cool and store in fridge.

THE DAY BEFORE (about 1 hr 50 mins)

20-30 mins – Cut turkey into pieces as directed in the recipe and then season and store in fridge, uncovered for 24 hours

80 mins – Make rolls

10 mins – prep time of combining ingredients and kneading dough

30 mins – Let dough rise, covered

(Meanwhile, while dough rises)

25 mins – Prepare sprouts by cutting off ends, then cutting into halves. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

35 mins – Divide roll dough into 24 balls and place into greased sheet pan. Rise, covered, another 30 mins.

(Meanwhile, while dough rises the second time)

30 mins – Make mashed potatoes

12 mins- place your prepared potatoes in a large pot of salted, boiling water, and let boil about 12 mins. Check to see if the potatoes are ready by cutting one with a knife; if it cuts with little effort, they’re ready, if not let them go longer until they cut as described.

10 mins – Take the pot off of the heat and drain your potatoes. Place potatoes back into the pot, still off heat, and mash with a potato masher. Add splashes of milk and butter, while mixing with the masher, until you reach your desired texture. Salt to taste.

12-15 mins – Bake your rolls at 375, let cool and then store in an airtight container.

Make your apple pie the night before Thanksgiving or the morning of. But watch this video of how to do it. I feel like it explains way better than I could ever do.

After making the pie let it cool and then cover with tin foil. It’s about 1-1 1/ 2 hrs assembly and 2hrs baking.

THE DAY OF ( 2hrs 30 mins – 3hrs)

2 hours – take turkey out of fridge and let sit out at room temperature

(Meanwhile, one hour before the turkey is ready)

1 hour – reheat stuffing 40mins at 350 covered, then remove foil and bake another 20 mins at 425.

(Meanwhile, while stuffing is reheating)

10-12 mins – make turkey glaze in a small saucepan

After two hours at room temperature, start cooking turkey.

25 mins – cook at 425

50-70 mins – reduce heat to 300 and glaze turkey every 20 mins until the thickest part of the thighs are at 170 degrees and the breasts are at 150 degrees.

30-60 mins – let the turkey rest at room temperature before carving.

(Meanwhile, while turkey rests)

25 mins – roast brussels sprouts as directed in recipe

(Meanwhile, all of the following will go on while sprouts roast)

10 -15 mins – make the brussels sprouts glaze

15 mins – reheat mash potatoes then keep on low heat until served

8-10 mins – boil baby carrots until desired consistency, then season

5 mins – heat/cook gravy

There you go! The formatting I created kind of was lost in transferring everything to the website so please let me know if you have questions! I hope you find this useful! I know it helps me to see other people’s ideas. Let me know if you have any questions or notice anything I may have slipped up on!


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