Cut the Cost of Thanksgiving Dinner With These Tips From Sunny Anderson

Your meal will be no less spectacular

Food Network and Cooking Channel star Sunny Anderson (Source: FoodNetwork.com)

Radio host turned Food Network and Cooking Channel star Sunny Anderson is no stranger to creating delicious dishes with a budget in mind. BlackEnterprise.com talked with the Brooklyn-based foodie about how to serve up an appetizing and satisfying meal for the holidays.

Research. Keep an eye out for newspaper advertisements and circulars. You can usually find deals leading up to the big day. Also, ask the butcher, produce stock person, grocery store clerk—and even the supermarket customer service rep—about upcoming deals or items that are under- or over-stocked.

[RELATED: Don’t Wait To Plan Your Holiday Shopping]

Start early. Make your dinner shopping list weeks in advance. Many popular supermarket chains offer the opportunity to shop and gain points toward a free turkey!

Downsize. This rule applies to buying food as well as preparing it. Spice and herb companies now package their products in smaller portions so you don’t have to buy the large or family-sized version, which can be a little pricier. And if you know you’re cooking for fewer people, don’t buy an entire turkey. Opts for breasts or wings instead. Anderson also advises not cooking with having leftovers in mind. Instead, think about making a smaller dish and only your favorite sides. “Cutting a recipe in half can make room for dessert—in the budget and in your tummy!” she says.

Shake things up a bit. Don’t be afraid to buck tradition when it comes to holiday meals. Think about what’s best for your budget and be realistic. “One year I didn’t even have a turkey; I had cheesesteaks,” revealed Anderson. “It was still a special meal and I was very thankful. So truly, the holidays are what you make them.”