I hate to be stuck in the kitchen while everyone else has fun. I hate more that guests feel like they have to help me when I'm in there! I want to enjoy the holiday, have a few Bloody Mary's, and kick back while things cook themselves.
After cooking Thanksgiving dinner for 20+ people for the past 15+ years, I've learned that nearly everything can be made ahead and just stuck in the oven at the proper time (don't laugh, but I actually have a timeline written down on paper so I can keep track of all the baking times. It's like a science!)
Here are all the recipes I actually make every Thanksgiving and their make-ahead instructions. The only thing I really worry about on the day is the Martha Stewart Parchment Turkey.
I add all the ingredients but the baking powder and put in an airtight container and refrigerate. Stir in baking powder when ready to bake, pour in prepared pan and bake!
I make this entire recipe ahead of time using a bread pan. Keep in fridge until ready to bake covered in foil. Uncover and bake Thanksgiving morning.
I have used this recipe since I started cooking Thanksgiving dinner 15+ years ago! I actually make it near the beginning of the month and put it in the freezer until the day before. Thaw and heat - add some juices from the bird at the end. Easy Peasy!
We still all love this classic green bean casserole. Mix and cover and refrigerate. Put onions on just before baking or they will get soggy!
These potatoes can be made the day before and put into the crock pot to reheat. If you put a liner in, you don't even have to wash the pot!
Make this up the day before but add an egg in addition to the ingredients listed, cover and refrigerate. Before baking, drizzle a little more warm broth, recover and bake. If you want crispy edges, uncover the last 15 minutes of baking. If you like it soft and pudding-like, add more broth and reheat in crock pot!
Make up the bottom of the casserole and spread in pan. Mix the topping and place in a ziploc baggie. Stick the casserole, covered, in the fridge and sprinkle with topping right before baking.
This pie is to-die-for! My absolute fave Pumpkin Pie! You can make the crust the day before and form in to discs and wrap in plastic wrap and store in fridge overnight. Whip up the filling in the morning and bake. I like to serve at room temp with freshly whipped cream.
Pop open a can of cranberry sauce and you're good to go! I'm always game to add something new to my lineup, what is your favorite Thanksgiving recipe?