MACON, Ga. — Thanksgiving is a holiday about appreciation. However, the grocery bill for the food can turn your gratitude into an attitude. Here are some tips to make sure your Thanksgiving meal can keep your stomach and wallet happy.
1. Reduce your menu size.
If you're the main cook for the big day, keep the menu small. You don't need to have 10 different dishes when you can't fit them all on one plate. Save yourself from cleaning multiple pots and pans and keep the menu simple.
2. Go to your local food pantry for canned goods.
If you qualify for the help, you can save yourself a few $.89 cans and get them for free. Places like Middle Georgia Community Food Bank and Salvation Army hold food drives and will help you feed your family at no cost.
3. Use your leftovers.
Don't throw the extra turkey and collard greens away! You're throwing money away. Macon private chef, Theodorian Tharpe says there are many other foods you can make with the leftovers.
"After Thanksgiving, I always make a burrito or a quesadilla. I make everything in there like a leftover quesadilla or a leftover burrito. I always do that. You got to have turkey, the mac, and the yams with a little cheese on top," Tharpe said.
4. Set a budget.
Avoid overspending in the store by only bringing a set amount of money with you. You will have to put something back if you don't have the money for it.
5. Go for cheaper meat.
The USDA is predicting a turkey shortage which could drive up the price for the big bird. Go for chicken which can be about $8lb. cheaper.
6. Shop at alternative grocery stores.
Places like ALDI have announced their Thanksgiving Price Rewind. They reduce Thanksgiving-related food prices by 30%. Even buying in bulk at Sam's Club or Costco can be cheaper in the long run if you have to feed a large family.
7. Host a potluck.
Save yourself the pots and pans by having other friends and family bring food. You will save money too if you assign others to bring the dish to the table.
8. Use what you have
Buying brand-new seasonings or an extra box of macaroni when you already have it can save you a few dollars. Cheaper substitutes can save you money and still bring great taste to your food, too.