Thanksgiving meals are a lot to tackle. There’s the turkey, of course, which is a day-long task in and of itself. Then, there’s the roughly five to ten sides that are customary to tackle, as well as dessert. There are things you don’t have to make from scratch this Thanksgiving, though.

The meal requires a lot of work, a lot of food, and a lot of patience. If you’re taking it on by yourself, you may feel super overwhelmed, especially if it’s your first time.

I’m letting you know that the meal can be made easier. There are components of it that don’t require you to be a chef or use a cookbook. Your meal can still taste gourmet, even with pre-made ingredients that make your life easier.

You want to relax and enjoy a holiday with your family. That’s the point, right? The holiday is for giving thanks for all you have and cherishing those in your life.  You don’t want to spend the entire day in the kitchen stressing over how much flour should go in your gravy and your pie crust cracking. You want to make the meal, eat it, and watch football with your family on the beach.

So here are 8 things you DON’T have to make from scratch in your Thanksgiving feast:

  • Stuffing

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    Stuffing is an easy one. There are tons of brand that offer easy-to-make stuffing. It only requires water, butter, and can even be made in a MICROWAVE!

  • Cranberry Sauce

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    Canned cranberry sauce is perfectly acceptable. Jellied or whole, it doesn’t matter. Open the can, throw it in a bowl, or slice it up and put it on a plate. Serve. Happy guests.

  • Pie Crust

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    Pre-made pie crust makes life so much easier. It requires no rolling pins, no messy flour, and no arm workout. Just unroll it out of the package and it tastes just the same.

  • Any Dessert

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    It’s completely fair to straight-up pick up a pie or some cookies from the grocery store the day before your Thanksgiving dinner. Sometimes, baking a dessert is more trouble than it’s worth. The bakery section of your local grocery store works just fine to provide sweets for your feast.

  • Rolls

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    Companies like Pillsbury are your best friend when it comes to rolls. They have tons of pre-made dough for your bread needs. You can also just buy pre-baked rolls from a bakery. Don’t waste your precious turkey-cooking time kneading bread!

  • Corn Or Green Beans

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    No, not green bean casserole. Green beans. Or any veggie you can get from a can, for that matter. Just throw them in a pot to heat them up and season them to your liking, no peeling, cutting, or prepping involved (unless you count a can opener).

  • Gravy

    It’s customary to use the drippings from the meat you cook to make gravy, but sometimes there is simply no time. Sometimes, the drippings aren’t enough to make a decent amount of gravy. Glass jars of gravy work way better. Pick up some pre-made turkey gravy, heat it up, and serve it in a gravy boat next to your glorious turkey. It tastes the same.

  • Cocktails

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    The food is the star of the day, so it’s easy to let drinks go by the wayside. If you want to serve cocktails, it’s definitely a hassle to make a whole drink each time someone wants one. There are tons of canned and bottled cocktails on the market these days to serve to your guests. They won’t be disappointed if you aren’t pretending to be a mixologist all day, they just want a drink.

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