Ways to Set Your Thanksgiving Dinner Apart From the Rest

For many folks across the United States, the fourth Thursday of November is a day to look forward to – it’s Thanksgiving! Not only is this holiday an opportunity to give thanks for loved ones and all the good things in life, but it’s also a time to feast on a great meal. Thanksgiving comes but once a year, but if you’re feeling blah about this year’s itinerary, you owe it to yourself and your guests to make this year’s offering a bit different from the rest. Here are a few ways you can really make your Thanksgiving a memorable one.

Put a Twist on the Turkey Dinner

The image of a big turkey in the oven is one that’s tied inextricably to Thanksgiving. However, that doesn’t mean that that’s the way things have to be, end of story. If you want to keep the turkey, but you want to change up your dinner offerings, consider offering up a unique dish that uses turkey as an ingredient. Turkey ramen, turkey tacos, turkey pizza – it might sound silly, but if you can anticipate your guests’ preferences and find a good recipe or two, you’ll have a meal they won’t soon forget. Best of all, you’ll probably still have some bird left over for any strict traditionalists you invite over.

Skip the Bird Altogether

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? That’s kind of a boring way to live, so if you really want to change things up this Thanksgiving, consider doing without the turkey altogether. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean you should go no-effort and order in a few pizzas. If you’re going to go this route, spend a little time coming up with a main dish that’s unique and bound to impress. You could go with another, less traditional meat such as ham or duck, or even go meatless if you’d like to host a vegetarian or vegan meal. Just be sure to inform your guests beforehand, as some might balk at this kind-of crazy idea.

Make the Sides and Desserts the Main Attraction

Thanksgiving isn’t all about the turkey. While it does indeed get all the attention on this holiday, everyone knows that the sides are just as important. Variety is the spice of life, and with this knowledge, put more focus on the other options at your Thanksgiving table. Now, you shouldn’t be expected to provide your guests with a ton of sides without any help. Rather, encourage a group effort by asking each guest to bring their own dish or two, no matter how small. A potluck Thanksgiving will not only take some of the burden of cooking off you, but it’ll also provide a more eclectic assortment of food for everyone.

Have Some Real Fun Together

Thanksgiving is all about appreciating all the things you have going for you, but nobody ever said it has to be a solemn recognition. While you and your guests might feel the sleepy effects of a full meal and a few drinks, make an effort to have some pre- and post-dinner activities planned that everyone will enjoy. Whether that’s playing a board game or settling in to watch the big game, don’t rely only on polite talk to carry out the rest of the evening. In the end, even if the food turns out to be a disaster, everyone will consider your dinner a success if they had a great time!

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