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Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

Last post 10-15-2013 7:13 PM by BargainBistro. 43 replies.
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  • 10-15-2008 9:09 AM

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
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    Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Holidays in our society have gone in hand with spending money for years. If you find yourself believing you have to spend to enjoy a holiday...

    STOP!

    Holidays can be warm and memorable times without financial grief. Start with frugal fare to tempt the palates of those celebrating:

    10 steps to a frugal Thanksgiving

    Hosting a frugal Thanksgiving dinner

    Make your own mixes for delicious dishes

    Frugal Feasting

    Choosing a turkey

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 10-15-2008 9:39 AM In reply to

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    My Thanksgiving menu is going to be A LOT more frugal this year, for more than the obvious economic reasons.

    For the last ten years I have taken over Thanksgiving dinner, so my elderly mother will not have to deal with it. She just isn't able. However the family that used to be about 8 -10 people has now grown a generation and is up to 24 people. My 2 sisters may --or may not--bring a side dish, which is irritating enough. BUT, now their children (who have small children) and are all 30ish, just walk right in, wish everyone a happy holiday and dig right in. They feel no need whatsoever to bring ANYTHING. It is as if they are still 8 years old. They have all started to grate on my nerves so that this year it will be turkey (if the white meat runs out, too bad), stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans, and rolls. I will make some special side dishes for my parents to eat through the weekend, bless them, they have done their part...and I'm starting to feel like I've done mine too. But I will continue as long as they are around to enjoy it.

    Sorry to rant or hijack, but this year WILL be more frugal.

    jane b 

     

  • 10-15-2008 9:52 AM In reply to

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Part II of my previous post:

    What I'm leaving off the menu:

    green salad, deviled eggs, cranberry apple sauce, candied sweet potatoes?, shrimp cocktail, and 2 kinds of dessert. Also will cook one large whole turkey, instead of two turkey breasts so there would be enough white meat, ..oh, and no ham biscuits. I haven't calculated the savings yet.

  • 10-15-2008 9:54 AM In reply to

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Jane_b:
    However the family that used to be about 8 -10 people has now grown a generation and is up to 24 people. My 2 sisters may --or may not--bring a side dish, which is irritating enough. BUT, now their children (who have small children) and are all 30ish, just walk right in, wish everyone a happy holiday and dig right in. They feel no need whatsoever to bring ANYTHING. It is as if they are still 8 years old.

    The time to act is now.  Start out with the economic factor and everything being more expensive.  Tell them all that they are welcome to come, but it is potluck style this year, so if they want to eat they must bring something to contribute to the meal.  They can bring a side dish, stop at a bakery shop and buy a pie, etc.  It's not hard to do broccoli with cheese sauce in the microwave, bake up a potato casserole with cheese and corn flakes, etc.  There are plenty of crowd-pleasing recipes out there.  Either that or suggest reservations at a buffet. 

    Good luck and let us know how it goes.

    Lynnea the Dogmom
  • 10-15-2008 9:58 AM In reply to

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Jane b, I understand your frustration. Could you put it out to your family that since the group has doubled, you just don't have time to "do it all" and ask for someone to help with salads, rolls, desserts? That way, you can focus on the turkey, stuffing and gravy?

    For my parents, since I'm an only child, our Thanksgiving is not as grand b/c we just don't have the people. My parents, DH and myself and our 2 boys. My mom often invites a friend or neighbor who will be alone so we do sometimes have 5 or 6 adults. But we don't even get a full turkey, just a breast, potatoes and stuffing, relish tray, rolls and dessert. And a can of cranberry sauce for my dad and me, lol. My mom does the breast, potatoes and stuffing and I do the rest. I would never just show up at someone's home without anything. Even though my mother in law refuses to let anyone help in the kitchen and wants to do it all herself (I've been doing it for 40 years, she says), I show up with something for Thanksgiving.

    I agree with Brandy and those web sites are correct, you can be frugal on Thanksgiving. We are getting a free turkey with grocery points (and may offer it to my folks), gravy doesn't cost much of anything to make with drippings and cornstarch or flour, stuffing can be frugal with saved bread, relish trays are inexpensive if you purchase the pickles and other canned items on sale ahead of time, carrots and celery can be inexpensive and canned pumpkin goes on sale soon. Potatoes and butter may be the most expensive part of the holiday this year. If I bake rolls it's another savings but I can get rolls on sale or use a coupon for something refrigerated.

    Erika
  • 10-15-2008 10:16 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Jane_b:
    the family that used to be about 8 -10 people has now grown a generation and is up to 24 people.

    Good grief!

    Now might be a good time to motivate others to assist with meal ingredients or preparation.

    An invitation to a Thanksgiving potluck with a note about needing to respond on the dish they intend to bring, more personal phone calls asking for some assistance with the meal, an invitation much like the one I already mentioned but where you list the menu as Turkey and mashed potatoes only and hope they get the hint and bring dishes?

     

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 10-15-2008 10:19 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    We are planning a Thanksgiving at home for just our family so there will be four of us. I am working on my menu now so that I can pick things up when I see them on sale.

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 10-15-2008 10:23 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    I found a site with some recipes that look easy and affordable:

    A Frugal but Elegant Thanksgiving Buffet

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 10-15-2008 10:31 AM In reply to

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Thanks for the support guys! I hate to feel angry on a holiday, or feel like a grinch, but really!

    I will send out cards to each family, they never seem to have "gotten" my emails concerning things like this before. My 2 sisters, 2 nieces, and all three nephews with girlfriends will be getting a copy of "the new deal." My parents are still off the hook, though Mom will always make a pie or two. Mom even is disgusted with the way they act, and offers me money to make up for their lack of action. But then I just feel like a caterer.....

    I'll let you know how it works, and how much I save.

    jane b

  • 10-15-2008 10:48 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Frugal Thanksgiving Menu

    Jane_b:
    Mom even is disgusted with the way they act,

    Is it worth having the large family meal with all these people?

     

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



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