Prices for turkey, likely the most expensive item on your Thanksgiving table—not counting booze, of course—are down just 4% this year. That puts the average at $1.30 per pound, according to the American Farm Bureau. But the cost of a full Thanksgiving meal has held steady since last year. Before we reveal that figure, give us your best guess of how much the average Thanksgiving dinner for 10 people costs.
Now the reveal: Per the American Farm Bureau’s tally of common Thanksgiving foods, the average cost of a Thanksgiving meal this year is $48.91. If that seems low, the Farm Bureau assures you its calculations included turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, rolls with butter, peas, cranberries, a vegetable tray, pumpkin pie with whipped cream, and coffee and milk sufficient to feed 10 people with leftovers. I guess they didn’t splurge for the organic pie?
$50 for Thanksgiving for 10 sounds impressively thrift, but it’s doable if you buy boxed stuffing, the least expensive rolls, and a generic vegetable tray. It’s those higher-end ingredients that really add up: the $12 piece of good Parmesan, the $7 block of grass-fed butter, ingredients to make cornbread stuffing with sage and sausage. Whatever tier of ingredients you buy for your meal this year, hopefully you reap the benefits in terms of delicious food and happy, satiated guests. (Don’t worry, this cheese is free.)