Modern Day Thanksgiving

photo by Matt Cornelius
photo by Matt Cornelius

Modern Day Thanksgiving

A Shift from Homemade to Restaurant-Made Feasts

Thanksgiving, a holiday synonymous with the warmth of family gatherings, the rustling of autumn leaves, and tables laden with homemade culinary delights. The traditional image of families uniting to cook and share a meal has been at the heart of this holiday for centuries. However, with modern lifestyles ever-evolving, a new trend is emerging—increasingly, families are turning to local restaurants to source their Thanksgiving meals. What is driving this shift, and how is it influencing our perception of the holiday?


Convenient and Time Saving

One of the primary reasons for this growing trend is the undeniable convenience. In an era where both parents often work and spare time is a luxury, preparing a Thanksgiving feast can become a daunting task. Outsourcing the meal prep to professionals allows families more quality time together, free from the pressures of cooking and cleaning.

Diverse Culinary Options

Restaurants, especially local ones, offer a wide range of cuisines. For families looking to break the mold and try something new, this provides an opportunity to incorporate diverse flavors into their Thanksgiving spread.

Supporting Local

There’s a rising emphasis on supporting local businesses, particularly in the wake of challenges posed by global events like the COVID-19 pandemic. Purchasing a holiday meal from a neighborhood restaurant can be a way to uplift the community.

Eco-Friendly and Sustainable Choices

Many modern local restaurants emphasize sustainability and source their ingredients from local farms. This focus on the environment can be a significant draw. Opting for a restaurant-prepared meal supports sustainable practices and reduces the carbon footprint associated with transporting ingredients long distances.

Nostalgia versus Novelty

The idea of a home-cooked meal is deeply ingrained in our collective image of Thanksgiving. There is nostalgia attached to family recipes passed down through generations and the aroma of a turkey roasting in the oven. But times change, and with change comes a blend of old traditions and new customs.

Choosing a restaurant-made meal doesn’t necessarily mean abandoning tradition. Many families still gather around the table, share what they’re thankful for, and relish the essence of the holiday. It’s merely the source of the meal that’s changed.


While the rise of restaurant-sourced Thanksgiving meals reflects our modern lifestyles and values, it’s essential to recognize that every family’s choice is deeply personal. Some may find joy in the hustle and bustle of cooking, while others may relish the ease of a prepared meal.

Regardless of where the turkey comes from—be it from the family oven or the local bistro—the spirit of Thanksgiving remains intact. It’s a day to express gratitude, to cherish loved ones, and to reflect on the year gone by. As traditions evolve, the core essence of Thanksgiving, one of togetherness and thankfulness, remains evergreen.

Burge’s Hickory Smoked Turkey & Hams
Whole Smoked Turkey
$100.99 14-16 lb serves 15-20

Julie’s Deli
starting at $18

Julie’s Deli
$8 per pint

Virgin Foods
Duck Breast & Risotto
$45 serves 4

Twisted Fork
Brussel Sprouts
$25 serves 8

Newk’s Eatery
Tomato Basil Soup
$12.99  for 32 ounces

Naaman’s Premium BBQ & Prime Steaks
Cheesy Corn Casserole

Newk’s Eatery
Caesar Salad
$28 serves 8-10
$49 serves 16-20

Marjorie Slimer’s Slice of Slimer
Candied Bacon and Jalapeño Pimento Cheese Deviled Eggs

Texas Roadhouse
$4.99 per dozen

Julie’s Deli
Southern Pecan Pie


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November 2023
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