Thanksgiving Is Hard, Here's How to Get Some Help

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A Thanksgiving spread from Luke’s Local. Photo courtesy of Luke’s Local.

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An array of the beautiful pies from Three Babes Bakeshop. Photo courtesy of Three Babes Bakeshop.

Whether you’re attempting to host a Thanksgiving (or Friendsgiving) meal at your tiny apartment, or perhaps you’re a guest and need to bring something but you can’t cook to save your life (I am not judging, just here to help!), here are some ideas of how to round out your holiday table. Pro tip: you can even order some of these items so you can enjoy leftovers and turkey and stuffing sandwiches all week. Or pie for breakfast (the best). Ask me how I know.

Our friends at ~LUKE’S LOCAL~ do a really nice job with their Thanksgiving options, from their house-smoked BN Ranch Turkeys to sage sausage and spinach stuffing (you want this), and they deliver all over the Bay Area! They sent me a preview kit and I’ve been eating turkey and stuffing sandwiches all week with their spiced cranberry sauce on Starter Bakery Parker House rolls, and let me tell you, my lunch has rocked.

You can also get all kinds of vegetable sides, a Black Jet pumpkin pie (mmmhmmm!), and they even have a lovely bouquet from Flowers by Carra to grace your table (or someone else’s). There’s even a complete Thanksgiving kit for $199. Or come to their Cole Valley market (960 Cole St.) in person to do your shopping.

The fine folks at ~BI-RITE~ (who are also kindly sponsoring the tablehopper newsletter this week, thanks for the support!) have all kinds of options for you, from a small “Friendsgiving in a Box” for 4-6 guests to full meals for bigger groups, as well as plenty of their kitchen’s awesome side dishes—all made with quality ingredients. And don’t forget the pie…or pumpkin cheesecake ice cream! And you know they will hook you up with the best wines to pair with your meal. 3639 18th St. and 550 Divisadero St.

CUESA will be hosting a special pre-Thanksgiving Ferry Plaza Farmers Market on Wednesday November 22nd, where you can pick up heritage turkeys from Mountain Ranch Organically Grown and seasonal desserts from Three Babes Bakeshop, Crumble & Whisk, and Marla Bakery.

If you’re in the East Bay, of course ~MARKET HALL FOODS~ has your back, from meal kits to awesome sides—and pie! And truffles, if that’s how you roll. All orders must be placed by 3pm on Saturday November 18th.

Want to take a break from the turkey? You can order a smoked duck from ~THE MORRIS~, half ($40) or full ($80), and it comes with roasted root vegetables and potatoes in a honey-espresso duck jus—you roast it at home. For Thanksgiving pickup on November 22nd, please place your order by today, November 14th. For Christmas Eve pickup, please place your order by December 15th. Pickup before Christmas Eve is available upon request with adequate notice. (Please note that The Morris is closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.) 

Pie pie pie! Not the easiest thing to make. Here are some of the best pies in town:

The pies from the Three Babes are legendary, which is why they’ll be making more than 4,000 pies Thanksgiving week out of their little kitchen in the Bayview! Incredible. Their classic pumpkin is best in class, such a great crust, and the filling is so custardy, but if you happen to be gluten-intolerant, there’s a sour cream pumpkin. And then there’s bourbon pecan, salty honey walnut, bittersweet chocolate pecan, and even blackberry crumble, also available in vegan and g-f versions! And there’s delivery, whew.

Of course ~TARTINE BAKERY~ has all kinds of treats, from pumpkin pie to country bread, you’ll want on your table (just don’t fill up!).

~MISSION PIE~ is here for you, with all kinds of pies available for preorder and pickup.

Need a vegan pie? ~CHILE PIES~ has you covered. Plus they have pumpkin, pear, and others.

Want to learn how to make your own pie? Join pastry chef Lori Baker of ~BLUESTEM BRASSERIE~, who is hosting a pie-making class as part of an Airbnb Experience this Friday November 17th and on Friday December 8th, 3pm-5pm. You’ll learn how to make a perfectly flaky dough with a rustic yet impressive crust, plus you will enjoy some bites and a cocktail, and bring home a personal 6-inch pie.

You a fan of the ~FRANCES~ lumberjack cake? Uh-huh. You can order it for Thanksgiving! $40.

Want to try something a little kooky? Leave it to the creative minds at ~SALT & STRAW~ to go into overdrive with five new Thanksgiving ice cream flavors: sweet potato casserole with maple pecans, persimmon walnut stuffing, salted caramel Thanksgiving turkey, spiced goat cheese and pumpkin pie, and the kicker: buttered mashed potatoes and gravy. Whoa. Bonus: Salt & Straw will donate a pint of one of the Thanksgiving flavors to Food Runners for every Thanksgiving pint purchased. Available through Wednesday November 22nd at both their SF locations.

And if you’re looking for a place to dine out with the family, here are five spots I’d consider:

~NOMICA~ will be open on Thanksgiving, and they are offering a special dinner all week (November 20th-25th). Chef Hiroo’s Thanksgiving dinner includes 9-10 family-style dishes broken up into four courses, like koji brined and slow-poached turkey breast and crispy confit leg with shiso chimichurri-turkey essence, dashi no. 1 mashed potatoes, and more (details on their website). $75 per person.

~THE CAVALIER~ has an $85, three-course, prix-fixe menu, 11:30am-8pm.

~PRESIDIO SOCIAL CLUB~ is offering a family-style Thanksgiving dinner for $65 per person. They also have pies you can preorder and bring home, like chocolate bourbon pecan.

The spread at ~MKT RESTAURANT-BAR~ includes an appetizer buffet table and a choice of entrée, such as Willie Bird organic turkey with all the fixings or rib-eye with Yukon gold potato purée. And of course, there’s a dessert buffet table. $115 for adults, $55 for children ages 5-12. 12pm-7pm.

It’s tough to beat the cozy interior of ~POGGIO~ in Sausalito, which is hosting a three-course Thanksgiving prix-fixe dinner; $60 for adults and $25 for kids (not including tax and tip). 5pm-9pm.

Need more dining out ideas? Check and see what’s available on OpenTable. And check the reservation apps, like Resy.

I hope you all have a lovely Thanksgiving meal, no matter where you are (and even if the turkey is dry!).