9 Common Thanksgiving Fails + Easy Fixes


We’ve all been there… undercooked poultry, gloopy potatoes, less-than-pretty pumpkin pie…

Yes, Hannah Montana, everyone makes mistakes, but there are easy fixes that can save your rear.

Or at least help cover-up some Turkey Day kitchen flops.

1) Oops, turkey’s still frozen

Take the wrapped bird and plop it in your kitchen sink. Fill the sink with cool (not hot!) water. Be sure to change out the water every 30 minutes–it takes 30 minutes per pound to thaw that sucker. Immediately cook your turkey once it’s completely thawed. Phew.

2) Raw turkey

Carefully cut the turkey into pieces, keeping the legs and breasts whole. Place your sliced up turkey on a baking sheet in a 375 degree oven. Check on your bird every 15 minutes until the internal temp of the turkey is 165 degrees or until the juices run clear. Serve it up!

3) Dry bird

Douse that thing with lots of gravy, plus make your mashed potatoes more creamy and buttery. Or slice up the turkey, put the meat in a pan with stock, then slowly simmer to introduce plenty of moisture. Did we mention butter?

4) Gluey mashed potatoes

Fix em up (or simply hide the problem).

Option one: create a well in the center of the potatoes, add a generous pat of butter, then sprinkle a bit of paprika right on top. Presentation is key, especially when your taters aren’t texturally on point.

Option two: spread your potatoes in a baking dish then sprinkle with breadcrumbs and Parmesan. The pleasant crunch of the breadcrumbs paired with melty cheese will distract guests from the camouflaged layer of goo.

5) Lumpy mashers

Lumpy potatoes call for a strainer or sieve. Things are going to get a bit messy, but you’ve probably dirtied about 37 dishes/utensils/gadgets already, so what’s one more added to the pile? After your potatoes get some strainer action, serve them up with dollops (plural) of butter for additional creaminess. Bonus points if you use browned butter.

6) Gravy shortage

You should always whip up a boatload of gravy. Quadruple your recipe… you can freeze leftovers if necessary. Otherwise, get creative and add a few glugs of wine or stock to stretch out your gravy supply.

7) Cracked pumpkin pie

Just add a generous dollop of whipped cream on top. Voila! Everyone knows it’s the taste that matters most. (Besides, who’s going to turn down pie?)

8) Overcooked veggies

Add some crunch and extra flavor with toasted nuts (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts!), bright lemon zest, olive oil and fresh herbs. And let’s be real, no one is actually excited about the veggies anyway.

9) Cold turkey

To keep your Turkey Day feast nice and warm, have some chicken stock simmering on the stove or lots of hot gravy on hand. Ladle over the turkey, potatoes, and stuffing to add moisture and heat. Problem solved!


And remember…

Create a schedule and plan ahead. Prepare dishes in advance to reduce stress Thanksgiving day.

And if you somehow manage to burn your whole kitchen down, there’s always Chinese food.



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