In the best case scenario, Thanksgiving means a couple days off work to relax and eat — unless you’re the one hosting a houseful of friends and family, then Thanksgiving is just an extension of your full-time job. Fortunately, there are helpful restaurants across Texas that will do the heavy lifting for you, cooking turkeys and baking pies so you don’t have to.
The best part: These meals, entrees, sides and desserts will come straight to your door, so you can spend less time cooking and more time doing what matters most: watching football, or spending time with loved ones. Your choice.
If you want to keep things simple this year, just get everything you need from Feges. The popular Houston barbecue joint is offering “The Whole Shebang” Thanksgiving Dinner, which feeds six to eight people and comes with turkey and gravy, cornbread, pimento mac and cheese, mashed potatoes (loaded with sour cream, cheddar cheese, bacon and green onions), Korean braised greens and Moroccan glazed carrots. That’s a lot to be thankful for.
With “turkey” right there in the name, you know the centerpiece will be sorted. But this North Texas operation will pair its famous Cajun-spiced, deep-fried turkeys with all the necessary sides, including mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, crawfish étouffée, sweet potato souffle, and turkey and giblet gravy. It’s enough to feed eight. Good job, you did it.
This Central Texas barbecue joint has been featured on Chef’s Table and is a regular on Texas Monthly’s top 50 list, but it plays hard to get, only opening on Saturdays. If you don’t want to make the drive and get in line before sunrise, you can still taste the goods via the magic of shipping. They’ll send you brisket, sausage and this 3.5-pound turkey breast, which has been seasoned and then smoked for six to eight hours. Maybe you didn’t cook it, but you did order it, and that counts for something.
James Beard Award-winning pitmaster Aaron Franklin launched his food trailer in 2009 and opened his restaurant two years later. Today, it’s still one of the best barbecue spots in Austin and therefore the world. Eat this brisket and you’ll see why: Black Angus beef is seasoned to perfection and smoked low and slow until it’s sporting crispy bark and a succulent texture. One caveat: Serve this on Thanksgiving, and you may be asked to host every year.
Continue your alternative entrees with Perini Ranch, the Buffalo Gap steakhouse that’s had an outsized influence on Texas cuisine — and the state’s reputation around the world — for the past 40 years. Their famous mesquite-smoked peppered beef tenderloin is probably the best beef tenderloin to ever show up in the mail. It’s fully cooked, so all you have to do is thaw, slice and serve.
If it’s ham you’re after, try this hefty smoked ham from Fort Worth’s Heim Barbecue. It clocks in around 5.5 pounds and feeds eight to 10 people, and it’s easy to heat on Thanksgiving Day by following the instructions, which simply involve your oven, pork stock and a stick of butter.
The Scientific Argument for Eating Whatever the Hell You Want This ThanksgivingGluttony should be a virtue this Turkey Day
Keep it easy with this cornucopia of side dishes from Terry Black’s. We’re talking a quart each of macaroni and cheese, creamed corn, pinto beans and green beans, so there’s something for everyone.
This Austin-based outfit doesn’t deliver everywhere, but if you’re in or near any of Texas’s major cities, you’re in luck. They’ve got all manner of mains, sides and desserts, but since it’s not technically Thanksgiving without potatoes, start with these fluffy, buttery mashed potatoes loaded with whole roasted garlic cloves.
This traditional cornbread dressing is just like the one your grandma used to make, assuming your grandma was the type to make cornbread dressing. It’s full of onions, spices, garlic and celery seeds, and all it needs is a quick turn in the oven before it’s ready to go.
Weikel’s is best known for its kolaches, but they enlist that same soft, sweet Czech dough to make these dinner rolls. Although, you might as well throw in a few kolaches for good measure.
Texas Tamale Company was founded in 1985, when the small business began shipping “survival kits” of tamales, chili, queso and other essentials to displaced Texans. The Houston-based company is still at it, which means you can order some husk-wrapped delights right to your dinner table. Choose from options including pork, beef, chicken and black bean. If you’ve got a big extended family, get the 72-count variety pack.
Texas pecans are annoying when they’re falling on your head from the trees above, but turn them into a pie and you’ll get a whole new appreciation for those pesky nuts. Goode Company’s version is one of the best you’ll find anywhere. It’s chock-full of pecans pulled from around the Brazos River, with a rich, gooey filling. It also comes in a wooden box, which adds to the presentation when you pull this out for guests.
The Dallas-based pie shop has been slinging creative pies since 2011, and you’ve got a lot to choose from. But come Thanksgiving, you can’t go wrong with Lord of the Pies. Ten apples are peeled, chopped and then soft-baked with house-made caramel. The filling is stuffed into a buttery, flaky crust, and the whole thing is topped with a crispy cinnamon streusel.
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