The Foobooz Guide to Cooking Nothing on Thanksgiving

Where to buy everything you could ever need for a perfect 2021 Thanksgiving so you don't have to cook a single thing.

Urban Farmer’s Thanksgiving spread | photo provided

After last year’s sad Thanksgiving, this year is all about gathering everyone we know and throwing a party. But as the pressure builds, all the old anxieties are returning: Will my turkey be too dry? How am I going to fit all of this food in my oven? How, exactly, do I make pie crust that doesn’t have the texture of cardboard? The planning can quickly eclipse the excitement … unless you do what we should really all do and let the professionals do the cooking. It’s been a terrible 18 months for restaurants (which you already knew) so this is a great holiday to lean away from cooking at home and go out, or order out. Here are the places doing Thanksgiving dinners that we’re excited about.

Takeout

Huda
We’d order Huda’s Thanksgiving menu for the milk bread stuffing along, but the mustard glazed turkey and pumpkin cinnamon milk buns for dessert are a pleasant bonus. Menu here.

 

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Fitz & Starts
Fitz & Starts does the kind of elevated American food that we wish we could cook ourselves every day, so it makes sense that their Thanksgiving dinner for four is basically just the platonic, classic ideal meal: half a glazed roasted turkey, roasted squash, sourdough stuffing, ramp butter mashed potatoes, and (a lot!) more. Add on a couple of pies, or bring your host some pastries to eat for breakfast the morning after. Order here.

Fiore Fine Foods
As usual, Fiore seems to know exactly what we want to eat before we even thought of it. In addition to their full Thanksgiving dinner for $64 per person (Biscuits! Honeynut squash with n’duja vinaigrette! Sage rubbed turkey!) they’ll take care of your pie needs, gelato needs, and even are serving up 16oz mason jars filled with Italian drinking chocolate, Averna-spiked chai, and dark rum filled eggnog, all of which would make excellent hostess gifts (just saying!) Dinner and beverage order here. Pastry order here. Orders must be placed by Thursday 11/18.

 

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Forsythia
If classic Thanksgiving doesn’t do it for you, we get it. Forysthia goes appropriately fancy and French with turkey leg confit, kale and fregola sarda salad, lobster and pumpkin bisque, and more.

Porcos
Changing up the meat for Thanksgiving is tough to pull off, but if you were to show up to your Thanksgiving feast with an entire porchetta, ready to slice and drizzle with jus, we’re 99 percent sure that no one would actually be mad. For the other one percent, there’s the turketta roast, which is a whole turkey breast rubbed with lard, and slowly roasted. If these seem like the right move to you, turn them into the whole feast by pairing them with Porcos’ stuffing, vegetable sides, and salads. They’ve also got plenty of pies and other sweets. Order here.

 

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Kouklet Bakehouse
Coconut pie may not be traditional, but Kouklet’s version elevates it to the level of a new holiday standard. Rather than cream filling, their coconut filling is rich with coconut flakes, for an amped up flavor and texture. Really, though, any of their desserts would be a welcome addition to the classic line up of apple, pecan and pumpkin pies. Order here.

Garces Trading Company
Garces Trading Company knows what they’re doing with heat and serve meals: as a catering company, it’s their job to be good at this (very specific) style of cooking. Their menu, which runs $45 a person, includes rolls, salad, mashed potatoes, challah stuffing, green bean casserole, and your choice of pie. As an added bonus, they’ll deliver anywhere within a 15 mile radius of Center City. Order here.

Positano Coast
The best part of Thanksgiving to get creative with is the appetizers, in our opinion. Let Positano Coast cover yours by ordering one of their party trays. We’re leaning toward the cold antipasto tray, which includes meat, cheeses, olives and roasted vegetables. Menu here, call to order.

Miles Table
Based in the Bok Building, Miles Table is offering a full Thanksgiving dinner to serve up to ten people, for $289, which is honestly a great deal. It includes a whole turkey, gluten-free gravy, your choice of soup or salad, three sides and a pie. For a smaller group, opt for their Friendsgiving menu, which serves up to five. Delivery is available. Order here.

Vanilya Bakery
Let’s just admit it: Dinner rolls are a pain in the butt to make. Let Vanilya make them for you this year, and while you’re there, get a dozen autumn leaf sugar cookies, a pie, and maybe a tray of tiramisu because there’s no such thing as enough dessert! Order here.

 

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Mighty Bread
The key to great stuffing is great bread, and Mighty Bread knows this, which is why at Thanksgiving they offer bags of perfectly portioned, pre-cut, sourdough bread chunks. It sounds simple, but cutting bread into stuffing-ready chunks is a ton of work, so these bags sell out fast. They also have pies (gingerbread pumpkin!), cookies, and quiches, in case you need a little help with breakfast.

High Street Philly
A beautiful crudité platter is the perfect appetizer before a huge Thanksgiving meal, but it can be a lot of work to source perfect produce, make a delicious dip, and get the whole thing ready to serve. Let High Street take care of it this year, along with their broad menu of a la carte selections: stuffing, whole turkeys, and lots of baked goods. Order here.

Dine-In

Le Cavalier, Wilmington, DE 
Make a reservation for Le Cavalier’s elegant dining room on Thanksgiving and you won’t have to listen to any disagreements about classic versus modern: Some people can opt for oysters Rockefeller and a bavette steak, while others can have salad, roast turkey, and brioche stuffing. $65 per person. Le Cavalier is also offering takeoutReservations here.

Steak 48Center City
Go a la carte at Steak 48 so no one is limited: In addition to their classic menu of steaks and raw bar selections, they’ll be serving Thanksgiving classics like turkey, mashed potatoes, and praline-topped sweet potatoes. Reservations here.

 

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The WaywardCenter City
The Wayward will have special Thanksgiving additions to their menu, but we suggest celebrating the holiday with a seafood tower and a few glasses of wine, because nothing is more festive than a whole lot of seafood on ice.

a.kitchenRittenhouse Square 
Thanksgiving at a.kitchen promises to be excellent because a.kitchen always is: The food is special without being over the top, the service is always friendly and attentive, the wine pairings are spot on. The prix-fixe is $85 per person and includes freshly-baked buns, soup, and your choice of turkey, beef or vegetarian main served alongside all the classic sides. Chocolate, pumpkin, and apple pie are available for dessert. Reservations here.

Bridget Foy’sOld City
For something a little more casual and family-friendly, head to Bridget Foy’s. At $30 per person, there’s something for everyone: turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy and more, plus a la carte desserts including pumpkin cheesecake, pecan pie, peanut butter kandy kake, and apple pie. They’re also offering takeout. Reservations here.

 

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Fork, Center City
Fork’s elevated, classic food is perfect for a celebratory Thanksgiving with a few twists. $95 per person includes four courses of curry squash soup, Brussels sprouts salad, mackerel crudo, farm salad, heirloom turkey or whole trout with all the sides, and plenty of pie for dessert. Reservations here.

Twisted TailOld City
Southern-inspired works particularly well for Thanksgiving, which is why Twisted Tail’s menu sounds just about perfect: cornbread stuffing, turkey, glazed ham, roasted sweet potatoes, and pie. Reservations here.

Urban FarmerLogan Square
Urban Farmer’s Thanksgivings prix-fixe strikes the perfect balance between classic and elevated: there’s turkey, prime rib, risotto, roasted cauliflower soup, and bourbon pecan pie. Reservations here.