Thanksgiving is a beautiful time. Family gathers. Cousins play together as adults socialize, watching football, or finishing up dinner. Everyone expresses their gratitude, digs into a huge meal, disperses for a while to chat or play games, and then comes back together for dessert.
Dessert? Who feels like cooking dessert after spending five hours gutting, prepping, and cooking a massive turkey? Don’t forget the rolls, mashed potatoes, corn, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes…the list could go on. To help you stress less this Thanksgiving, we’ve put together a list of our favorite easy peasy Thanksgiving dessert options.
Night Before Pumpkin Pie
For this recipe, you should only need four things: premade pie crust, pumpkin pie mix, eggs, and evaporated milk. Premade pie crust simplifies your life by leaps and bounds. The pumpkin pie mix will come in a can that looks like regular pumpkin, but when it is labelled “mix” it already has all the spices and sugar mixed in. Follow the instructions on the can, but most will require you mix two eggs and a specified amount of evaporated milk. Bake according to instructions, and then refrigerate after it has cooled. The next night you’ll be able to pull it out of the fridge without worrying about any cooking for dessert!
Early in the day, get started on your dessert. The prep work for this fudge shouldn’t take you more than five minutes, while it will set for the rest of the day. First, mix together one 12 ounce bag of chocolate chips, and one 14 ounce can of evaporated milk. Microwave on high, stopping it every forty-five seconds to stir. Once the two are completely melted and combined, pour and spread the mixture into a shallow cake pan. Set in the fridge to cool all day. They should be hardened after dinner, but check about an hour before you serve. If it hasn’t firmed up enough, throw it in the freezer for the home stretch.
Note: If you’re using white chocolate chips, check on your fudge and stir every thirty seconds instead of forty-five. White chocolate burns quicker than semi-sweet.
Cookies for the Win
Don’t feel like cooking at all? Order some first-rate cookies from Cheryl’s. They’re festive, coming in shapes like turkeys, pumpkins, and autumn leaves. You can choose from a wide array of flavors, or get a sampler including Caramel Apple, Pumpkin Praline Pecan, Buttercream Frosted S’more, Buttercream Frosted Cinnamon Pumpkin, Buttercream Frosted Salted Caramel, Oatmeal Raisin, Sugar Cookie, Chocolate Chip, and Devil’s Food. The buttercream is to die for, and so is the prospect of not spending any more time slaving away in the kitchen. Be sure to use promo codes to save money when you place your order.
More Ways to Cut Down on the Stress
Another way to cut down on the stress of preparing the feast is to ask everyone to bring one or two dishes. All you’ll have to do is reheat if necessary, and everyone can focus on doing their one or two dishes well, rather than having one person rushing around the kitchen all day in haste.
If you just can’t stomach the thought of cooking a turkey, you can order one, fully cooked, so you can focus on all those smaller dishes. The convenience will run you a fair amount of money, but you may be able to trim costs with promo codes, like these from Whole Foods, who offers fully-cooked organic turkeys on the big day. It may be worth it to you to be able to skip the gutting and stuffing. Just be sure to allow yourself enough time to reheat it. It won’t take as long as cooking, but could still take up to two hours.