The big day is in a little over 1 week and we're all almost prepared with an arsenal of recipes that will get rave reviews from everyone! So, let's pull everything together for the most epic Thanksgiving Menu and then talk prep and making things ahead of time!
Table of Contents
Here's the full Thanksgiving Menu:
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Marshmallow Meringue
I mean, is that not the most glorious Thanksgiving menus you've ever seen!! Gobble Gobble! Thomas and I are going to have leftovers for DAYS.
Here's my basic schedule / prep plan for my Thanksgiving Menu:
- Clean out the fridge
- Stock up on beer and wine
- Make a grocery list
- Shop for all the ingredients
- If you buy a frozen turkey - make sure to put it in the fridge to start thawing out
- Reorganize fridge with all the ingredients
- Make the cranberry sauce and refrigerate until Thursday
- Brine the turkey if you're using my brine recipes
- Make the compound butter for the Turkey
- Make the vinaigrette for the Fall Farmers Market Salad
- Prep carrots for the Charred Carrots with Herbs, wash, trim and clean and refrigerate.
- Make the basil mint topping for the Charred Carrots with Herbs / refrigerate until Thursday
- Cut the bread into cubes for the Wild Mushroom Stuffing - let sit on the counter overnight to harden.
- Make the herb mixture for the Wild Mushroom Stuffing / refrigerate until tomorrow
- Prep ingredients for the Sautéed Brussels Sprouts
- Prep ingredients for the Spicy Garlic Green Beans
- Make the Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes but don't add the chives until tomorrow.
- Make the cheesecake portion of the Pumpkin Cheesecake with Marshmallow Meringue from start to finish. Let cool entirely and the place in the fridge overnight.
- Make the the marshmallow meringue for the Pumpkin Cheesecake with Marshmallow Meringue. Don't top the cheesecake with the meringue yet, instead keep it in the fridge until Thursday. Place the meringue in the fridge, covered until Thursday.
- Make the Cheesy Creamed Kale and let cool, store in an airtight container
- Set the table
Early Morning / 8am-ish
- Arrange all the ingredients for the Fall Farmers Market Salad in a large salad bowl and cover with a damp paper towel and refrigerate. Remove from the fridge just before feasting time and drizzle the vinaigrette on before serving.
- Make the Mac and Cheese but don't bake yet
- Top the Pumpkin Cheesecake with Marshmallow Meringue with the marshmallow meringue topping and torch. Set aside until dessert
- Make the Apple Crisp but hold off on baking.
- Assemble the Thanksgiving Cheese Board and cover with a towel. Leave at room temperature.
- Prep the Herb Roasted Turkey and start roasting
Before the Feast
- Finish making the Sautéed Brussels Sprouts, Spicy Garlic Green Beans and the Charred Carrots with Herbs which can be topped with the basil mint mixture
- Combine the prepped bread and herb mixture for the Wild Mushroom Stuffing and finish following the recipe instructions.
- Reheat the Mascarpone Mashed Potatoes in a 350 degree oven until warm or in a slow cooker. Add the chives before serving.
- Bake off the Mac and Cheese
- Carve the Herb Roasted Turkey, reserve the drippings for gravy and place on an over-proof platter - pop back into a 200 degree oven to keep warm before serving.
- Make the Homemade Gravy
- KICK BACK AND RELAX!
- Bake the Apple Crisp just as you're sitting down to dinner - it will take about an hour so your house will smell like dessert by the time dinner is over.
Have any last minute questions about Thanksgiving, the prep schedule, my Thanksgiving Menu or prep timing...?? Shout them out in the comments below and I'll respond ASAP!
PS – are you thinking of putting this on your Thanksgiving menu? Check out the full What’s Gaby Cooking menu here along with the master prep schedule to keep things organized and on track!
And if you need more Thanksgiving Ideas check out this roundup of 80+ Thanksgiving Recipes and Ideas
Photography by Matt Armendariz / Styling by Adam Pearson / Prop styling by Stephanie Hanes / Light Fixture by Serena and Lily/ Recipes by What’s Gaby Cooking
This guide is soooooo awesome! Thank you!
I’m a mom of 4 and have been pretty much cooking Thanksgiving for 30+ years!
Now one of my twins is hosting in Austin Tx and I am contributing 3 of your recipes-Fall Farmers market salad, chipotle mashed sweet potatoes and roasted butternut squash! I have made Ina’s mashed squash recipe in the past but your recipe is front and center this holiday!
Have a wonderful holiday with your family!
Thank you SO much for putting this together it is pure gold and I use it to a T! What is the best way to reheat the creamed kale on Thursday? Does it have to be in the oven? Thanks for all the help you give us ❤️❤️❤️
I would do it in a non-stick on the stovetop and then add the panko
This guide was such a life saver last year, we are using again this year. I wasn’t sure if you have wine pairing recommendations for serving the meal? Thank you!
This menu looks amazing and well thought out! The timeline is especially appreciated. How many people is the full menu estimated to serve?
How do you warm up the cheesy kale dish?!
I do it in a slow cooker
If you make the compound butter ahead a couple days ahead, do you just store in fridge and then take out Thursday morning and let it come to room temp to soften?
Can the green beans be blanched the day before?? Thanks!
I need to cook and carve my turkey the day before. What is the best way to keep it moist and reheat on thanksgiving??
once you carve and place it on a serving platter, drizzle some extra stock on top and then wrap tight and refridgerate. Day of... reheat in a low heat oven until warm (Add extra stock to keep it moist) and douse with gravy to serve.
love everything - can’t wait to get started - so here is my question
My 21 lb turkey is frozen, do i take out on Saturday and brine on Tuesday for roasting on Thursday???? Please advise. Happy Thanksgiving!
yes! I would def take it out saturday AM to start thawing
Your Prep/Schedule is brilliant!!! A hostess’ lifeline. Every year I struggle with the task of planning and how much time to allow for each task. The struggle is very real! And you include relax time. I’m so impressed!!!
Do you have a printable version of this?
does the cornbread/sausage stuffing hold up well to be prepped in advance? Even early morning prep would be great. thanks!
Can you make the stuffing and Mac and cheese the day before? If yes, do You cook it all the way through and then reheat on Thursday or assemble it refrigerate and cook on Thursday?
stuffing - you could do the day before and par bake. finish baking day of. Mac and cheese - technically yes but it wont be as creamy and gooey
Wow wow wow!!! Awesome job with the recipes, timeline and suggestions! You have made everything very easy follow. Thanks for all your hard work!
I cook and carve my Turkey the day before and cover it with a bit of stock and the skin then foil. Carving the Turkey is time consuming and messy. Also I cook a large Turkey so there’s room in my oven to cook anything else while roasting Turkey. I also make my gravy the day before.