Cooking a small Thanksgiving dinner this year for your family can absolutely be just as special as cooking for a large crowd. Here are 5 tips for hosting a small Thanksgiving dinner.
I’m going to take a wild guess and say that you’re not going to get a 20 pound turkey in 2020. We’re not either, but just the same, I love Thanksgiving so much, whether we host a large crowd, or just us 4. I’m going to keep the spirit just as bright, but sharing 5 tips for a small Thanksgiving dinner. Hosting just your family can be just as special as hosting a large crowd. Here’s how.
Buy A Smaller Turkey.
Or better yet, depending how large your immediate family is, buy a turkey breast. You cook them just the same as a regular turkey, though shorter roast time; brine, baste and you’re good to go. You’ll get that wonderful aroma while it roasts and the flavor is delish. But if it’s the leftovers you’re going for, then buy a 8-10 pounder. A good rule of thumb for serving turkey to people ratio is 1:1.
Set A Pretty Table
Ya’ll know I love to set a pretty table. Heck, I’ll even put it out there that I set a pretty table even if we’re not planning to sit there. I just enjoy the process. But setting a pretty table, especially on Thanksgiving no matter how few will gather, is important. Break out the candlesticks and make those place cards. Create a beautiful centerpiece. All the more reason to make the meal feel special.
Limit The Side Dishes
Pick a couple of the all time favorite side dishes and serve those. There’s no need to serve three different kinds of potatoes (guilty), or two different kinds of dressing (guilty, again). For our family of four, I’m planning to serve one flavor of stuffing, mashed sweet potatoes, and the tried and true green bean casserole. Well, and the cranberry sauce is a must, too. This is a hard choice, but it makes total sense.
Limit The Dessert
I’ve never served a lot of desserts for Thanksgiving, but I’ve always made two options. I’ll be doing the same this year, and absolutely will be making this dessert. But I say limit the dessert because if you’ve traditionally served 4 or 5 different sweets, then you may want to consider making one, two at the most. You can always make more a few days after Thanksgiving.
Bring Back A Family Tradition, Or Start A New One
Growing up, my dad would always throw us a treasure hunt every Thanksgiving. He would write out a rhyming verse that we would have to read aloud, and then go find our treasure, which would be a small tongue-and-cheek thing. A tradition I cherished, and bring to my family every Thanksgiving. It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without our traditional treasure hunt. I think this year, we’ll pick out a favorite holiday movie to watch together as a family. I do love this idea too, and am hopeful that I’ll be able to keep my eyes open during the whole thing. Probably not.