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20 Most-Asked Thanksgiving Questions, Answered in 20 Words Or Less

Everything you need to know about cooking Thanksgiving dinner—from the turkey to the pie, fixings, sides and more.


What’s the all-time best Thanksgiving tip?

Roast the turkey upside down. It’ll protect the breast from overcooking, and juices will seep down and keep it moist. Make sure you don't believe these common turkey myths that could ruin your Thanksgiving.


I don’t own a roasting rack. Do you have any DIY alternatives I can use instead?

Scrunch foil into a three-foot snake, then coil it into a ring. Or use clean, empty tuna cans. Don't let your turkey basting blunders get you down–these products can fix any Thanksgiving emergency. 


What should I serve vegetarians?

No tofurkey, please! Make a butternut squash lasagna, and all your guests will sneak some, vegetarian or not. These things chefs do on Thanksgiving will make gourmet cooking easy.

iStock/Jill Chen

What’s the best way to reheat cold turkey?

Tastiest is in the gravy. Slice turkey and simmer in a skillet with gravy and some broth or water. Or check out these other recipes for Thanksgiving leftovers.


What size turkey should I buy?

Calculate one pound per adult. If you have a small oven or lots of guests, roast two smaller turkeys. Here are tips for buying the perfect turkey.


How do I defrost a turkey—fast?

Submerge the turkey (still in the packaging) breast side down in cold water. Change the water every hour.


What happens if I start to carve the turkey and it’s still raw?

Discreetly take it to the kitchen, cut into pieces, and spread it on a baking sheet to finish roasting. Here are other fixes for Thanksgiving food fails.


What’s an easy dish I can make with little time and even less skill?

Chop up a bunch of vegetables, toss in olive oil and salt, and roast for 30 minutes in a 400°F oven.


How do I keep pumpkin pie from cracking?

Bake just until the filling is barely set in the center but firm on the edges. Did you know that America's favorite Thanksgiving pie is actually not pumpkin?


How do I keep my piecrust from getting soggy?

Brush the bottom crust with beaten egg white, or partially bake it before pouring in your filling.

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Originally Published in Reader's Digest