No matter how much you plan ahead, preparing a Thanksgiving feast is always a massive undertaking.

Cooking, cleaning, decorating and hosting while staying within budget and time constraints is a lot to balance during the holiday season.

While it’s easy to stress about these things, there are a few simple tricks you can utilize to make this Thanksgiving a little easier on you and your wallet.

Go Potluck

Thanksgiving is a lot more fun with a little help from your friends. Instead of preparing a dozen dishes and a turkey all on your own, ask if your friends can each bring a side dish or two. This way, you can divide the labor (and the cost!) of a big, tasty holiday meal. Not to mention you can share all of your favorite family traditions with your friends!

Stick to Your List

Make a list before heading to the grocery store, and stick to it. Pick simple ingredients with realistic recipes, and you—and your wallet—will thank you later.

There’s no reason to make a dozen complicated dishes and desserts when you’re preparing a a large meal the day before Thanksgiving. 

Reuse Decorations

Buying new decorations for every holiday can really add up. Simply reuse decorations from Halloween and last year’s fall holidays this Thanksgiving. Your friends will remember the conversation and memories made at your dinner—more than your fancy, expensive tablecloth.

Besides, there will be more time to shop for food and cook if you’re not stressed about finding decorations. 

Check Out the Frozen Aisle

Pre-prepared freezer food is a great way to save both time and money. Check your grocery store’s freezer section for bagged ingredients that won’t sacrifice flavor, like peeled vegetables or pie crusts.


Don’t forget to take a break from the stressful preparations to enjoy the holiday. Although the smallest details may seem like a big deal now, memories made with family and friends are the most important part of the experience.

Happy Thanksgiving!