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Smart Ways to Save Money on Thanksgiving Dinner: Even on Tight Budget

Thanksgiving dinner will cost Americans an average of 14% more this year, the highest annual increase in 31 years, though shoppers can still save money on Thanksgiving dinner by looking for bargains in grocery stores.

Thanksgiving inflation has arrived, but that doesn’t mean you have to splurge on your holiday favorites but rather you can save money on Thanksgiving dinner.

As the Corona Virus Pandemic ,food items such as turkey, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and cranberry sauce are being hit by a variety of labor and supply shortages, driving up prices.

Experts say that with some planning and flexibility, you can mitigate the impact of grocery store price increases.

It’s difficult to keep track of your spending when you’re eating and shopping.

Those quick trips to the store for another forgotten ingredient quickly add up!
You usually end up spending a lot of money in a short period of time.

Only to be filled with regret when you wake up from your turkey-induced stupor.

Basic Kitchen Essentials for Hosting Thanksgiving Dinner

Here are some expert-recommended ways to save money on Thanksgiving without sacrificing joy.

Make it a Potluck Dinner

It’s no secret that a potluck is one of the best ways to prepare for a large dinner party.

Potlucks distribute the cooking duties among all guests.And each one leaves with a plate full of interesting and diverse foods.

You can offer to handle the main course and have your guests bring the sides and desserts as the host.

Make your budget and stick to it 

Create your budget now, making sure to include all of your holiday plans as well as how much you expect to spend on each event or gift.


If you’re going over budget, now is the time to make some adjustments.

Remember that cutting back on some things to make more room for what matters to you is perfectly acceptable.

Because you’ve already made those difficult decisions.

Sticking to your budget while shopping for groceries or looking for good deals online will be easier.

Make your menu/shopping list early, prioritize and stick to it

Draft a grocery shopping list for Thanksgiving, double-check it, and stick to it.

Prepare a shopping list to avoid impulse purchases and plan ahead of time.

I recommend starting your list as soon as possible, preferably before the end of October.

The goal is to save money on Thanksgiving dinner, and the best way to do so is to buy only what you’ll need.

This allows you to compare prices and look for bargains.


Spend some time right now thinking about what you want to make and making a list of ingredients, checking off what you already have at home.

This gives you an idea of what you’ll need to buy and allows you to start looking for bargains on your regular grocery runs.

You should make a list of everything you intend to do that day.

From the appetizers to the desserts, there’s something for everyone. Make a list of everything you’ll need so you’ll know exactly what you’ll need.

Don’t forget about the snacks, beverages, and appetizers.

If you plan on inviting guests, now is a great time to ask them to bring a dish.

You can either make the decision for them or ask for their help in directing them to a specific part of the meal.

Keeping track of what your guests bring will help you avoid becoming too heavy in one area, such as having too many desserts, as your guest list grows.

Be a smart shopper 

Make a shopping list to keep you on track and do some research in advance to find the best sales.

If you don’t have a game plan when you get to the store, it’s easy to get distracted by a flashy “75 percent Off” sign. And there is no deal worth going into debt for.


You’ll be fine if you get good deals, buy things you already planned to buy, stick to your budget, and don’t use your credit card.


Before making a purchase, compare prices at various stores.

Also, look for online coupons, read the store circular for special offers, and double-check signage and prices.

Cook Turkey Parts Instead of a Whole Turkey

If you’re cooking for a smaller group, opt for turkey breasts instead of the whole turkey and make Roast Turkey Breasts with Gravy.

They’ll be less expensive than a whole bird and much easier to roast. (When comparing the price of turkey parts to the price of a whole turkey, the whole turkey will be less expensive.)

However, you’ll be purchasing far fewer pounds (which makes sense if you’re only serving a few people).

Cooking turkey breast cutlets or tenderloins, which are also less expensive than a whole bird and just as easy to prepare as chicken, is another option.

There’s no need to spend a lot of money on a fancy pan to cook the turkey.

Keep decorations simple 

Even if you don’t want to spend a lot of money on decorations, you can still make your home feel festive.


Rather than going to a store to buy these nature-inspired shades, go to your backyard or a nearby park to find them.


Pine cones, acorns, leaves, and other natural elements make excellent décor.

It makes an inexpensive centerpiece or mantel piece.

And remember that the essence of the festive is good company and good food.

Keep it simple and involve the whole family

Less is more in this case. You can also use disposable plates and pans instead of expensive casserole dishes and fine china (bonus: easy cleanup!).

Simply keep things simple and you’ll save a lot of time, money, and stress.

If grocery store sales aren’t enough to cover costs, families may want to consider giving up Thanksgiving staples.


Start a new tradition, such as making your own napkins or tamales.

A time-consuming labor of love that yields a delicious, filling meal, allows everyone to work together, and is dirt cheap.

Make a plan for how you’ll use the leftovers

According to a SWNS poll, nearly 70% of Americans believe that Thanksgiving leftovers are better than the holiday meal itself.

Why not stock up by purchasing a few to freeze for later use, and then plan ahead:


Many people happily eat the leftovers from the big feast for days after the event.

Whether it’s turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, or pumpkin pie.
Simply repurpose leftovers to save money in the long run.

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