It’s that time of year again–Thanksgiving, Christmas caroling, presents, and oh the food!
If you’re hosting a holiday party or, like me, have a large number of family members coming in for the holidays, preparing that holiday dinner may seem daunting. I know I had grand plans of creating an elaborate menu from scratch. But . . . 16 is a large number of mouths to feed and I don’t really want to spend the entire day cooking. So . . . here’s a holiday meal hack that will save you on time and keep your sanity in check.
1. Order the main dish and fixings.
This time of year, several grocery stores create an affordable limited holiday meal of cooked or partially cooked turkeys, prime ribs, hams, and traditional sides. The entrees are typically pre-seasoned and all that’s required of you is sticking the pan in the oven for a set period of time. A few stores that provide this service include:
If none of those suit your fancy, call local stores in your area to see if they offer a similar service (many do!).
2. Create your signature salad, soup or side
With someone else doing the majority of the work for you, feel free to actually cook one side you’re known for and that everyone loves (just to add that touch of “I did it myself”-ness). For me, it’s my pear and goat cheese salad and my famous lean butternut squash soup. Okay, “famous” may be a bit of an exaggeration, but it is highly requested by my family. 😁
If you’re not really known for any side dishes and cooking to you sounds as complex as solving a differential equation, here are two fail-safe and easy recipes that will be sure to make your family and friends wonder if you secretly took classes at Le Cordon Bleu:
- Roasted brussel sprouts by The Cooking Channel (with bacon–who doesn’t love some variety of bacon?!? I substitute with turkey bacon)
- Honey glazed carrots by Damn Delicious
By the time dinner rolls around, you’ll be the champion of the holidays! 😉
Be sure to let me know how it turns out if you try this hack, and which service you used.