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9 Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Foods

The more cooking you can do before The Big Day, the better.

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1. Cider-Sage Gravy


Prepare this earthy gravy as directed, cool to room temperature, and then freeze in freezer-safe ziplock bags. Defrost the day before, and reheat before serving.


1 small bunch sage leaves

3 tablespoons (or more) drippings from turkey

1 cup apple cider

3 tablespoons flour

1 cup homemade or low-sodium chicken stock

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


Add the sage leaves to the roasting pan with the drippings from roasting the turkey. (If you have at least 6 tablespoons of drippings, you can double the recipe.).

Place the pan over medium heat and allow the sage to infuse the fat and heat until the leaves start to stick to the bottom of the pan, about 3 minutes.

Deglaze the pan by slowly adding the apple cider, stirring to scrape up the brown bits. Simmer for 3 minutes.

Whisk together the flour and chicken stock in a separate container until smooth.

Slowly pour the stock/flour mixture into the pan and stir continuously until it reaches the desired consistency, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the sage leaves and add salt and pepper to taste.

Remove from heat and pour into a gravy boat to serve and enjoy.

Save and print the recipe on Food52.

4. Meta Given's Pumpkin Pie


Caramelizing the pumpkin puree means that this is a pie with guts, one that won't just sit there phoning in the pumpkin flavor. And because you blast it at 400 degrees the whole time, it bakes in 25 minutes -- less than half the time of your average back-of-the-can recipe. Make the pie dough and filling up to 2 days in advance and then bake off the pie the night before. Get the full recipe on Food52.


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