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How much turkey should you buy per person? And other turkey questions, answered

There are a lot of decisions the Thanksgiving host has to make. Cranberry sauce; fresh or canned? A side of carrots or corn? Pumpkin or apple pie? (That answer there is easy. Both!). But perhaps the most important question of them all: How many pounds of turkey do I need to buy? How much turkey should i buy per person? As a rule of thumb, you should aim for about 1 1/2 pounds of turkey per person. Don’t forget that number takes into considering the weight of the bones, giblets, and a bit of leftovers too. That means, if you’re having 8 adult guests, you’re going to want a 12 pound turkey. Of course, if you have a bunch of big eaters or turkey lovers — or think you might get a few unexpected last minute guests — you’ll want to go up from there. When should you buy your turkey?…

This Turkey Veggie Tray will be the talk of Thanksgiving

Bring this tasty veggie turkey tray to your Thanksgiving Day gathering and everyone will gobble it up! It’s super simple to assemble, and a fun way to snack healthy before devouring what’s likely to be a belt-busting feast. You can get creative and use nearly any veggie you might have on hand, but here’s what I included in mine: Cucumber slices carrots red peppers yellow peppers cauliflower peas Assemble vegetables, in rows, on a large round platter. Then, just pick up a container of ranch dip (or make your own), cut an adorable turkey face, and you’re all set! For more details, watch the how-to video above. Gobble Gobble! Also check out: 17 Thanksgiving recipes you don’t want to miss! Also see, The first TV Dinner was a Thanksgiving feast. Follow us on Instagram.

10 great hostess gifts that aren’t wine

Anyone can run to a nearby liquor store and pick up a bottle of wine, but your hostess will be much more impressed with your thoughtfulness if you opt for something else. Whether it’s something they share that evening with guests, or something they save for themselves, these gifts will be greatly appreciated. Soyil Natural Soy Wax Candles (Starting at $14, everybodyshops.com) Show your smart and savvy hostess you appreciate her hospitality with a dye-free, natural soy wax, small batch candle. Seasonal fragrances can help her warm her home with a welcoming scent, plus, soy won’t mark up walls with that nasty black soot. Wine Glass Mahogany Appetizer plates ($19.99, everybodyshops.com) You can bet your host won’t be able to wait to break these out for guests to use atop their wine glasses as they graze all of the amazing food at the party. Each set includes four plates, and…

8 common stuffing mistakes that could ruin your holiday dinner

Okay, maybe “ruin” is a bit dramatic, but that doesn’t mean you and your guests won’t be disappointed with dry or less-than-stellar stuffing. This classic Thanksgiving dinner dish — with its familiar flavors of onion, celery, and herbs mixing with crispy, chewy, buttery bread — is well-loved, but it’s also easy to mess up, so be sure to avoid these 8 common stuffing mistakes: 1. You make it on Thanksgiving Day Don’t wait until Thanksgiving day to start your stuffing. Your bread base — whether it’s a bread loaf, cornbread, bagels or even waffles — needs to be dry and stale, so let it sit out for at least a day or two before you begin. If your bread is still moist, your stuffing will be soggy. 2. You try to save calories If you’re looking to keep your Thanksgiving meal within a certain calorie count, perhaps you could cut…

Cranberry crockpot turkey meatballs

Looking for an easy way to feed a crowd this holiday? This delicious recipe makes for a fantastic appetizer or a tasty twist on your classic meatball sandwich. Turkey meatballs swimming in a sea of cranberry chili sauce is the new must-make recipe of the season. These meatballs are tangy, sweet, and oh-so-addictive! Guests can pick them with toothpicks or plate them for a fancier affair. And the best part? You — you fabulously smart and savvy holiday host — just dump three ingredients into the crock pot, walk away, and about two hours later, you have a hot and hearty snack everyone will love. Now that’s a happy holiday. Also try this Warm brie with cranberry jalapeño jam recipe.  Note: I use turkey meatballs since a lot of people shy away from red meat. Plus, the turkey and cranberry combo is obviously a classic. But feel free to use whatever kind…

Beet apple walnut fall harvest salad

Farmers markets everywhere are still brimming with vibrant beets and crunchy apples. Put them together in this delicious Beet Apple Walnut Fall Harvest salad. See what else is still in season in November.  The crisp combo of tart apples and earthy sweet roasted beets is the perfect way to continue to enjoy the best flavors of fall as we head into the second half of the season. Serve as a side salad to your weeknight meal or earmark this one as a fresh new surprise for the Thanksgiving table. It’s easy enough and pretty enough for just about any occasion. But don’t think this salad is just about looks. Beets are a low calorie root veggie with an impressive record: they can help keep your blood pressure in check, improve athletic performance, fight inflammation, improve digestion, support brain health, and they may even have some cancer fighting potential thanks to…

Everything you need to know about freezing cookies

Nothing is better than freshly baked cookies. But during the holidays when fresh, homemade cookies matter most, we’re also needing to split our time between cooking, hosting, shopping, and celebrating the season, leaving little time to spend rolling out and filling dozens of dainty little cookies. This is when having a magical holiday depends on the magic of the freezer. Freezing cookies or cookie dough now can save you later when you’re just too busy to bake. Just follow these tips and you’ll be good to go. What types of cookies can I freeze? Lots of cookies are great candidates for the freezer. Cutout cookies, slice and bake (icebox) cookies, drop cookies, and biscotti are all excellent choices. Any cookie with a lot of butter or fat will freeze well. Try to avoid freezing cookies that are decorated, filled, or delicate — like meringues — since they would loose a…

17 Thanksgiving recipes you don’t want to miss

This year, make Turkey Day more delicious than ever. Even if you’ve hosted the holiday for decades and think your menu is as good-as-it-gets, it could be time for a refresher. For the ultimate holiday feast, try a few recipes from this Thanksgiving recipe roundup. Stuffing in the crock pot Who has oven space for all of those side dishes? Plus, cooking stuffing in the bird might not be the best idea anyway. http://craves.everybodyshops.com/crock-pot-stuffing-saves-time-on-thanksgiving-day/ Roasted butternut squash It’s delicious and healthy. Plus is will ad a splash of color to your table. What more could you want? http://craves.everybodyshops.com/roasted-butternut-squash-with-cranberries-and-goat-cheese/ Cheesy broccoli casserole Make room for a new tradition at the table. These cheesy broccoli casserole is a win with kids and adults alike. http://craves.everybodyshops.com/thanksgiving-day-broccoli-cheese-casserole/ Baked brie with cranberries and jalapeños How fast can an appetizer disappear? Just don’t blink! This cranberry brie will be gone in seconds. http://craves.everybodyshops.com/baked-brie-with-cranberry-jalapeno-jam/ Layered pumpkin delight…

Festive olive wreath holiday appetizer

You did it! You just found the prettiest way to serve olives this holiday season. Welcome the holiday olive wreath to your table this year. It’s amazing how ordinary olives go from drab to centerpiece status with just a few springs of rosemary. Add some fresh mozzarella pearls and some sweet and tangy pepper drops for color, and you have an appetizer platter that’s ready to party. What’s better still? This olive wreath can be assembled in just a few minutes, so no need to save it for special occasions. Throw one together for your couples holiday movie night-in, while you’re decorating the house for the holidays, or anytime a friend stops by to chat this season. I fill the middle of mine with crackers — especially when I can find adorable shapes like these stars — but feel free to leave the center open. You can always serve crackers…

How to host a stress-free Thanksgiving feast

Whether you’re a first time host or a seasoned veteran, whipping up a Thanksgiving dinner is no easy task. Add in a bit of forgetfulness, a touch of poor planning, and some overly eager houseguests, and you could quickly find yourself in the middle of a full-blown holiday disaster. But don’t fret! A little preparation and a few reminders, and you can be on your way to a totally stress-free Turkey Day. Here are 10 tips for a stress-free Thanksgiving: 1. Planning is the name of the game The best way to reduce stress on Thanksgiving Day is to have a plan made well in advance (we suggest preparing at least two weeks in advance). That includes knowing how many people you’re cooking for, writing a grocery shopping list (don’t forget the wine!), and a schedule of how you’ll actually manage your time on the big day. 2. plan out…