Thanksgiving Countdown: What to Do Two Weeks Ahead

Cyd Converse

If you're hosting Thanksgiving this year, follow along with our Thanksgiving countdown so your holiday feast goes off without a hitch.

Ready or not, Thanksgiving is almost here! But don't panic. You still have a full two weeks to pull together this most epic of holiday feasts.

That said, I am a firm believer that a little prep in advance goes a long way toward enjoying a relaxing and stress free Thanksgiving.

This is not the kind of meal you want to pull off last minute, trust me, because who needs that kind of extra stress in their lives? Not me!

Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Photo

Preparing Thanksgiving dinner gets a bit of a bad rap for being overly complicated and stressful, but does not need to be the case.

It all comes down to timing! Now having hosted several Thanksgiving dinners, my husband and I have a solid process for making it all happen.

Today, the countdown begins where I'll be sharing all of my best Thanksgiving dinner tips and tricks with you. So let's get into it!

Vanilla Pumpkin Skillet Cornbread Picture

Plan for Cooking a Turkey

If you haven't cookined one before, now is perfect timing to read up on cooking a turkey. Having an idea of what to expect will prove very helpful. 

Now is also a good time to either buy a turkey or turkey breast or make plans to do so in the next few days so you can check that box.

If you're buying a frozen turkey, you'll want to make sure you know how to thaw a turkey so you don't find yourself in a bind at the last minute.

Take a few minutes to look up how long it takes to roast a turkey, so you can decide how you'd like to prepare your bird on Thanksgiving. 

To keep things simpler, you could try our Instant Pot turkey breast recipe or our one pan honey roasted turkey breast recipe with Brussels sprouts.

Bourbon Ginger Cranberry Sauce Image

Finalize Your Guest List

At this stage in the game it's important to finalize your guest list as best you can so you have adqueate time to make preparations.

  • Confirm with guests that they will be attending and consider asking them to bring along a side dish or dessert if you'd like.
  • Check to be sure there are no dietary restrictions or food allergies of which you might not already be aware. When hosting I like to accomoodate our family and friends' preferences and needs as best I can to make the holiday as enjoyable as possible for everyone.
  • Make sure you have enough seating and place settings for everyone on your guest list or make arrangements to borrow or rent what you need for the day if you do not.
Cranberry Pecan Roasted Brussels Sprouts Image

Plan Your Thanksgiving Menu

If you're anything like my husband and I, you probably start talking about your Thanksgiving menu months in advance. Yes, I said months.

The planning and prepping and plotting things out is so much of the fun for us when it comes to hosting big holiday dinners.

No worries! If you're not the same kind of extra that we are, two weeks out from Thanksgiving is the perfect time to plan your menu.

Gluten Free Pumpkin Pie Pic

You'll want to plan for the following when it comes setting a Thanksgiving menu:

Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes Picture

Once you have plans for cooking a turkey, have your guest list finalized and your menu set, you're in good shape. Check back in next week when we'll cover what you should tackle next in the countdown to Thanksgiving!

Planning a dinner party and need some inspiration?

How about looking for a new slow cooker dinner idea?

We’ve got you covered in our ever-growing Facebook group! If you’re not a member yet, why not?!


We’re chatting cooking techniques, dessert ideas, and everything in between. If you’re already a member, invite your friends to join us too!

Cyd is a native of Upstate New York, born to a family of women who love to cook and host parties. She shares her love of all things food, home and entertaining on her blog, The Sweetest Occasion and on Instagram.

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