Thanksgiving Menu and Preparations 2013

Thanksgiving Menu and Preparations 2013 | Cookie Monster Cooking

Gobble gobble! Who is ready for Thanksgiving?? This girl sure is.

Planning and preparations are in full swing at our house … and I figured it was time once again to share my menu with you. Or should I say two menus. Oh right, that whole double thanksgiving thing. So let’s just jump right in, shall we? We’re going to break this down into two parts …

Thanksgiving Number 1: The Pre-Game

The challenge?  Gluten-free diets.  Which are especially hard for my gluten loving / carboholic self.

So, Thanksgiving Number 1. The joys of living far away from family. For the last five years or so, we’ve celebrated Thanksgiving with my husband’s family. So this year we decided it would be fun to have a smallish pretend Thanksgiving with my parents and sister ahead of the real turkey day.

This actually went down this past weekend. We kept the meal on the smaller side since this was just a warm-up of sorts. You know, a little teaser to get you even more pumped for T-day.

Main Dish & Sides:


*For the skillet apple crisp I subbed in almond flour for the all-purpose flour and it worked out great.

Thanksgiving Menu and Preparations 2013 | Cookie Monster Cooking

So let’s move on. To the big kahuna. The turkey bonanza. T-day.

Thanksgiving Number 2: The Real Deal

The challenge?  I’ve got picky eaters on my hands!  And some who don’t like change…

So as of right now, here’s what I have planned:


Main Dishes & Sides:


Whew. I’ve got some cooking ahead of me!

Thanksgiving Menu and Preparations 2013 | Cookie Monster Cooking

Since this is getting long, I’m going to point you to the post I wrote last year, which includes things I consider when making my menus and what I do to get our house ready as well. All those strategies are in full effect this year too.

Thanksgiving Menu and Preparations 2012

So there you have it. Now tell me about your plans. Are you hosting dinner? Making a few dishes? Just along for the ride? Share share!


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  1. Sooooo any chance there’s an extra seat at that table for me?!?! Heehee jk but I would love to try all of those items on BOTH your lists! :D Happy Cooking, Ashley! Your kitchen must smell amazing.

  2. Thanks for sharing your preparations, Ashley! We host a small dinner at our house, but we have many picky eaters among the group so it is always hard. We always end up with way more food than we need.

  3. This year I’m fairly unplanned but starting this week the stress will roll in and the sheets of plans will be made. You are a good lady with all this planning!

  4. Everything sounds wonderful Ashley! I admire you for hosting 2 dinners. I don’t think I can pull it off. I got my eyes on the pumpkin corn muffins and honey butter. Delicious! Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

  5. You are so very impressive. I love that you shared both menus with us (and so many yummy links for me to explore!) Thank you for sharing. They both sound perfect in my book!

  6. I love skillet apple crisps. It is so festive and perfect for Turkey day!! Have a great and delicious weekend, Ash :)

  7. Wow, what an awesome menu! I have full confidence that your big Thanksgiving dinner will be a huge hit because all of your dishes sound amazing! It shows how much thought and work you put into preparing for this and I know your family will definitely be blown away and appreciate all of your hard work and effort :) Great job Ashley and hope you have a great weekend!

  8. The menu looks amazing, everything on that list sounds utterly awesome! You’re such a wonderful hostess, Ashley!

  9. Jo @ The Contented Baker says:

    Gosh, what a great post! I love how organised you are Ashley. The combination of dishes sound fantastic – lucky guests!!

  10. Wow you have quite the plan! Goodluck with everything.. sounds wonderful!

  11. Well, I think both sides of your families are just spoiled!! Haha. I wish I could come to your house for Thanksgiving too. It all sounds so delicious. Especially the rolls. Yes, all the carbs!!

  12. You have such a beautiful taste! It sounds like you are ready for Thanksgiving! <3

    I have a new video up on my blog now, I hope you like it! ;)

  13. I love those festive napkins! How adorable. And, looking at that menu – girl… I am coming to YOUR house – so set another space at dinner, will you? Looks divine!

  14. Sounds like a great menu, with great options even though so many different diets! Happy Thanksgiving to your and your family :)

  15. Wow, Ashley…everything sounds amazing! You are certainly quite ambitious, but I’m sure you’ll pull in off beautifully!

    We’re going to my parents’ house for Thanksgiving. That’s what we do every year. I’m going to make an apple casserole dish and pumpkin pie. Can’t wait!

  16. From now on, I think I will always associate Thanksgiving with you, Ashley! : ) You are amazingly neat and organized. It comes across in your blog and your food and presentation. Everything looks truly great!
    I love the pretend Thanksgiving! And I’m sure your actual Thanksgiving will be a big hit. We’re getting together with my family – everyone cooks something – and it is an eclectic Asian-American feast with my mom leading the way. : ) (PS – I saw your cauliflower mash on TheKitch the other day. I love that site and I was so happy to see your dish featured!)

  17. Your menu sounds great! This year I don’t have to do as much baking and cooking as previous years. I’m kind of enjoying the slower pace! :)

  18. You need to open a business — you’re so organized! It all sounds wonderful, Ashley! My “plan” is still swirlin around in my head and isn’t concrete. I’m going to do a dry brined turkey with gravy, and I’ve enlisted help with a few side dishes so I can get more creative in other areas. I plan to narrow down my menu this weekend — thanks for the inspiration!

    • haha thanks Marcie! My husband tells me I’m too organized sometimes … I must admit I can get a wee bit obsessive… lol

  19. Wow, so you’re just cooking up a few dishes, huh? ;) I’ve actually never hosted Thanksgiving as of yet, but always show up with a couple dishes. I’m having a lot of fun looking through all the dishes on your menu. Thanks for sharing!

  20. Oh my word! That is quite the menu! I am so far behind in getting ready for Thanksgiving. Fortunately we have pretty much the same menu every year, but I do want to try at least one new dish.

    • Our menu is usually fairly similar each year also – I get too much resistance to change it! haha But I do try to sneak in a few new recipes … here’s to hoping certain people don’t notice : )

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