No matter what you’re serving, experts say avoiding food waste is key, and not a bad thing to consider year round. After all, there are only so many times you can eat leftover-turkey sandwiches before you need to pitch the lingering bird. Consider paring down your menu; do you really need five sides and two kinds of rolls? Is there a dish that only one family member likes? (In my family, Dad was the only one who ate the mincemeat pie, but we had it every year.) If so, maybe drop it.
And think through your bird size. Many people go too big. The Agriculture Department suggests one pound of turkey per person. “American households waste a lot of food, especially around the holidays,” says Jessie Fan, chair of the University of Utah’s Family and Consumer Studies Department. “The portions are so big, and there are lots of dishes.”
Limiting the number of dishes and portions, she says, could be a win-win-win for your budget, the environment and your health.