Category Archives: Thanksgiving

MagicKitchen.com: Taking the Stress out of Your Thanksgiving

scared-cartoonThey’re coming.  They wait for no man (or woman, for that matter).  Can you hear them?  They’re like the far off sound of an oncoming locomotive, growing louder with each passing day.  Of course the “they” to which I refer are the holidays, and the first of those holidays is Thanksgiving (and not Halloween, as some members of the retail community would have us believe).  And as always, if you’re hosting the big dinner, stress is on the menu along with turkey, mashed ‘taters and gravy.  Why not take stress off your menu with the help of MagicKitchen.com?

If you really dread the grocery shopping, food prep, getting up before the sun to put the bird in the oven, having to leave thrilling family conversations to run back into the kitchen, wesand/or listening to snide remarks about the shortcomings of your cooking skills, then do something about it this year.  And no, I’m not suggesting you go in search of some lame turkey give-away such as the one that took place on that classic 1970s sitcom, WKRP in Cincinnati.

In that episode, the radio station’s manager, Arthur Carlson, tossed live, farm raised turkeys from a helicopter above a shopping mall.  However, as we know, and he did not, farm raised turkeys cannot fly (although wild turkeys can) and they fell to the earth like “sacks of wet cement,” to use the words of newscaster, Les Nessman.  (If you’d care to watch this classic episode, simply Google “WKRP Thanksgiving).

See? Even well-intentioned turkey giveaways can go awry.  So why not allow MagicKitchen.com to delete stress from your Thanksgiving menu, or from the menu of a friend or family member?  We will soon offer a variety of Thanksgiving bundles to serve 6, 4, or 2 people.

thanksgiving-holiday-dinnerThese bundles will include delectable, pre-cooked turkey breast, mashed potatoes, green beans, stuffing, gravy, and, of course, pumpkin pie.  Or, if you prefer to cook your own bird (that hasn’t hit the parking lot of your local mall from 2,000 feet), simply order the sides and dessert.

Think of it…all you need to do on turkey day is heat up the delicious food that’s been delivered to your door and serve.  No shopping, no prep, and no missing family time…unless you want to- and there will be enough for leftovers. So check our website in the coming days for full details of our Thanksgiving bundles and plan for a stress-free Thanksgiving Day with friends and family.

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Cook Less and Enjoy Your Family More This Thanksgiving

thanksgiving-dinner
Relax and enjoy the meal!

If you’re in charge of the big meal on Thanksgiving Day, you’ve got a lot to worry about. Planning and grocery shopping alone can take hours, especially when you add up the amount of time you’ll spend traveling to the store and waiting in line. And when it’s time to start heating things up in the kitchen, you can expect cooking the turkey and all the other dishes to take most of the day. Sounds like a lot of work, doesn’t it?

If you’d rather enjoy more of this national holiday with family and friends than stress out over baking times, obscure ingredients, and a last-minute dash to the store, you can. And you can still celebrate in style with moist, mouth-watering turkey and ubiquitous side dishes like mashed potatoes, cranberry orange sauce, buttered carrots, pumpkin pie, and more.

Leave the Cooking to the Professionals

If you really want to celebrate Thanksgiving Day with a tasty and stress-free meal, leave the cooking to the MagicKitchen.com chefs. Our professional chefs have invested hours of cooking, taste-testing, and perfecting the most popular Thanksgiving dishes and made them available in family-sized packages, and dinner for two, along with 18 al a carte options to build your own Thanksgiving meal just the way you want it. It’s also a great way to supplement your menu, if your guests include people with special dietary needs.

Among the many offerings available in our selection of Thanksgiving meals, you’ll also find favorite foods like 9 Grain Rolls, French Bread, French Green Beans with Mushrooms and Cream Sauce, sweet potatoes, and gravy. And the choices don’t stop there. In less than 30-minutes, you can pull a hot pie from the oven. Choices include pumpkin pie, Dutch apple pie, and raspberry rhubarb pie, all available in two different sizes.

Our Moist, Succulent Roasted Turkey Slices
Our Moist, Succulent Roast Turkey Slices

Serve a Stress-Free Thanksgiving Meal

If you’ve been dreading the fact that it’s your year to host the big meal on Turkey Day, and would rather enjoy the time visiting with family and friends than stressing out in the kitchen, you can. Let us help you, and you’ll realize that serving a tasty and healthy Thanksgiving meal couldn’t get any easier. Just pick out what you want to eat, and leave the rest to us. There will be plenty to eat, so you’ll even be able to enjoy leftovers for another day.

Order Thanksgiving Meals online >>

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Ideas for Thanksgiving for One or Two

1st -thanksgivingWhen Pilgrims and Indians celebrated the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts, in 1621, about 140 people were there. Most were members of the Wampanoag Indian tribe, and the rest were Pilgrims who had made their way across the Atlantic on the Mayflower. That first Thanksgiving meal literally lasted for days, and included a lot of people. And it’s no-doubt the origin of hosting a big meal to celebrate this national holiday. But not everybody celebrates Thanksgiving with a big group of family and friends.

In facts, lots of people enjoy Thanksgiving Day on their own, or celebrate the bounty of the season with dinner for two. If you’ve been thinking about what to do on Thanksgiving Day and know the feast won’t include a huge group of people, you may not want to take the time to cook a turkey and all the trimmings that go with it.

Our Moist, Succulent Roasted Turkey Slices
Our Moist, Succulent Roasted Turkey Slices

And you don’t have to. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a healthy, tasty, and traditional Thanksgiving meal at home. In fact, the first meals we created at MagicKitchen.com a decade ago were designed to make sure seniors and people living alone could enjoy nutritious food without a lot of effort in the kitchen.

We’ve created two Thanksgiving meal options perfect for serving 1 to 2. Put your microwave and oven to work, and in just a few minutes in the kitchen, you can enjoy a Thanksgiving Day feast.

The Thanksgiving Dinner for 1-2 includes Sliced Turkey with Gravy, Apple Sage Stuffing, Magic Mashed Potatoes, Cranberry-Orange Relish, Multi-Grain Rolls, and Pumpkin Pie. Or Choose the Deluxe version and you’ll get all the same, tasty, and healthy ingredients, along with two additional sides: Mashed Sweet Potatoes and French Green Beans in Mushroom Cream Sauce. Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?

Take care of your Thanksgiving Day meal plans for 1 or 2, and place your order for a MagicKitchen.com meal. You’ll be glad you did. When you sit down to enjoy the meal, enjoy every bite, and be sure to save some leftovers for later.

A Portrait of a happy senior woman at homeOther Ways to Enjoy Thanksgiving
If you’re on your own, or celebrating Thanksgiving with just one other person, there are still many things you can do to enjoy this holiday.

  • Write letters to family and friends
  • Call someone who lives far away to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving
  • Try setting up a video chat with extended family members or friends who don’t live in the area
  • Play card games for one or two. Read a good book. Or plan to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV or even a football game.
  • Attend a Christmas tree lighting ceremony or other holiday event
  • Volunteer to help out at a shelter and serve the Thanksgiving meal to others
  • Brave the shopping crowds the day after Thanksgiving with the goal of spreading good cheer with a smile, kind word, or helping hand
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Renal Diet? Ideas for the Thanksgiving Meal

home-page-thanksgivingIf you’re on a renal diet, you might wonder how to choose the right foods for the big Thanksgiving meal that won’t compromise your health. And if you’re cooking dinner and expect to host a guest with renal disease, you might be wondering what kind of food you should make. Planning ahead and knowing what to eat and what to prepare can make the celebration enjoyable for everyone.

When you have renal disease, it’s important to limit foods high in sodium, potassium, phosphorus, and protein. So what kind of food can you enjoy on Thanksgiving Day? Fortunately, more than you might think. If you’re a dinner guest, these tips will help you make smart food choices. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  1. Limit salt. Limiting salt and high-sodium foods reduces hypertension, assists blood pressure medications to work more effectively and treats fluid retention. For Thanksgiving, there are lower-sodium turkeys for sale, and pick side dishes from Davita for kidney-friendly recipes.
  1. Keep track of fluids. It’s important to control the amount of fluids you drink. But there’s more to it than just limiting the amount of water you have. Even gravy and gelatin count as fluids. Pay attention to the amount of fluids you’re drinking and eating at the Thanksgiving meal.
  1. apple-pieChoose low-potassium desserts. The Thanksgiving meal wouldn’t be complete without dessert. You can still enjoy a treat after the big meal, but be selective. Choose a low-potassium dessert like carrot cake, apple pie, or cherry pie, instead of desserts higher in potassium like rich, chocolate desserts, pumpkin or pecan pie, or fruitcake.
  1. Eat healthier potatoes. Most Thanksgiving meals include mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes or both. But they’re high in potassium. Fortunately, there’s an easy way to make them healthier for those following a renal diet. Peel and cut the potatoes, then leach them in water for at least four hours, before baking or boiling. Sweet Potatoes have about half the potassium of white potatoes, so they are the wiser choice.

If you’re cooking for a crowd on Thanksgiving Day, you don’t have to cater the entire meal to meet the needs of someone on the guest list who needs to follow a renal diet. Simply preparing a few dishes with them in mind, or picking from healthier options available at MagicKitchen.com will make the meal more enjoyable for you and your guests.

Keeping a close eye on your diet and food choices is important when you have renal disease. On Thanksgiving Day, enjoy a small sample of foods that look good and fit your plan to follow a renal-friendly diet. But don’t overdo it. Controlling portion sizes is another important part of following a renal friendly diet.

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Diabetic Ideas for the Thanksgiving Meal

thanksgiving-dinnerWhen you have diabetes, managing the disease means you need to be mindful of what you’re eating. Stick to eating healthy meals at regular intervals and it’s doable. But how do you handle eating when it comes to the big Thanksgiving Day meal? And if you’re cooking for guests who have diabetes, what do you need to know?

With an estimated 29 million people in the U.S. with diabetes, and another 79 million with pre-diabetes, looking for ways to eat healthier to control blood sugar levels makes sense for most people. Show up to enjoy the feast or get cooking in the kitchen with a plan in place, and the big meal will be enjoyable for everyone, even those with diabetes. Here’s how to navigate the Thanksgiving feast.

Create Your Plate with Diabetic-Friendly Foods
If you’re not sure what to cook for Thanksgiving, or what to eat, follow the Create Your Plate! model designed by the American Diabetes Association. This healthy eating plan gives you a visual of what to eat to manage your diabetes. Half your plate should include non-starchy vegetables like carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, and tomatoes. Some healthy protein (turkey makes the list), whole grains, and starchy vegetables are good for you too. Follow this basic plan, and you’ll be on track to control calories and limit carbohydrates, important for managing diabetes.

thanksgiving-dinner-platedEnjoy the Turkey
After filling half your plate with vegetables, be sure to enjoy a serving of turkey. It’s high in protein and doesn’t contain carbs that can elevate blood sugar levels. But a serving is all you really need, which is about the size of your palm. If you’re cooking the turkey, it’s healthier to roast it in the oven than deep fry it. And when it’s ready to eat, remove the skin, which contains a lot of calories and fat.

Sample the Stuffing
If you’re a true traditionalist, you can’t have a Thanksgiving meal without stuffing. But if you have diabetes, you’ll probably only want a small sample of stuffing. Why? It’s generally made with white bread and is high in carbohydrates. If you’re in charge of making the stuffing, use whole wheat bread and add more non-starchy vegetables to the stuffing mix. Doing this will make the stuffing more diabetic-friendly, take longer to digest, and do a better job at regulating blood sugar levels than traditional stuffing.

MagicKitchen.com French Green Beans with Mushroom Sauce
MagicKitchen.com French Green Beans with Mushroom Sauce

Pay Attention to Potatoes

If you showed up as a guest at the first Thanksgiving, potatoes weren’t on the menu. Yet today, mashed potatoes and gravy, and sweet potatoes are a common side dish that goes with the turkey. If you plan to eat potatoes, only eat a small serving. They’re a high-carb food that can cause rapid changes in blood sugar levels. Check out some recipes to make a healthier version of mashed potatoes, or try our Magic Mashed Potatoes or Mashed Sweet Potatoes.

Enjoy the Green Beans
If you’re following the Create Your Plate! advice to choose diabetic-friendly foods, green beans are a good choice. And they’re often served steamed, sautéed, or added to a casserole for the Thanksgiving meal. They taste great seasoned with onions, herbs, and other spices. Or you can try our French Green Beans with Mushrooms and Cream Sauce. Other diabetic side dishes on our menu include decadent Creamy Spinach and Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, two classic sides that will make you forget about potatoes.

Save Room for Dessert
Pay attention to the kind of foods you’re putting on your plate and be aware of the amount of carbs you’re eating to manage your diabetes. Doing this will help you make smart food choices, and even have room for dessert. You’ll want to skip, rich, decadent desserts made with lots of sugar and flour. But there are lots of healthy options that can be your sweet treat after the big meal like cinnamon roasted pears, quinoa dessert pudding, or even some healthier items from our dessert menu.

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Dialysis Ideas for the Thanksgiving Meal

thanksgiving-dinnerWhen you’re making the best of being on dialysis, your food choices and healthy habits make a difference. But just thinking about how to handle the Thanksgiving meal, might stress you out even more than your kidneys already are. After all, it’s the most celebrated holiday in the United States that involves huge amounts of food. And you know you need to follow a carefully-controlled diet to protect your health. If you’re cooking for a guest required to follow a dialysis-friendly diet, you might be worried about making the right food, too.

Fortunately, cooking in the kitchen or dishing up a plate of food for Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be stressful, even if you’re on dialysis. If you’re uber-worried about what to eat, or what to prepare, try the dialysis-friendly recipes on Davita.com!

If you’ve got a handle on what foods to eat and what foods to avoid to manage your kidney disease, or you’re willing to cook up some foods with a dialysis-friendly diet in mind for the big meal, here are a few things to keep in mind:

Face the Facts about Fluids
Gobble too much, and you’re going to be thirsty. And that’s a problem when you’re on dialysis. Drinking too much can create problems when it’s time for your next treatment. Face the facts, that you’re likely to eat and drink a little more on Thanksgiving Day than usual, and plan ahead by eating and spoonsfuldrinking less beginning the day before.

Try Small Spoonful Samples
One way to ruin a delicious-looking Thanksgiving meal is to sit around the table watching everyone else eat, while you try to find some merriment in eating another pile of vegetables. Forget about total deprivation, and recognize the fact that you need to limit sodium, potassium, and phosphorus in your diet. Instead, try small spoonful-sized samples of the so-called bad foods and savor every bite.

Go Easy on the Alcohol

Many people serve wine and other alcoholic drinks as part of the Thanksgiving meal. If you’re going to have a drink, stick with a small serving or shot. But don’t overdo it. You know too much alcohol can lead to other problems. Even drinking too much water when you’re on dialysis can be harmful to your health.

pushawayPut Down the Fork and Step Away from the Table

When your doctor or dietitian told you about the changes you needed to make to your diet when you started dialysis, you agreed. Why? Managing your food choices is one of the best ways to protect your health when you have kidney disease. That means you need to exercise self-control when it comes to eating, especially on Thanksgiving Day. When it’s time for dinner, have a plan for what you’ll eat, how much, and when you’ll take your last bite. When you’re done, put down your fork, clear your spot, and step away from the table.

Your Plan for Potatoes and Turkey

Dialysis patients generally have higher protein needs than others. That means you can dig into the roasted turkey and enjoy. As for the potatoes, ask the cook ahead of time to soak them in water to reduce potassium levels, or bring your own to add to the feast.

Whatever you do, enjoy the holiday and don’t get stressed out. After all, it is more about family and friends then food, in the larger scheme of things.

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Diabetic Ideas for the Thanksgiving Meal

thanksgiving-dinnerWhen you have diabetes, managing the disease means you need to be mindful of what you’re eating. Stick to eating healthy meals at regular intervals and it’s doable. But how do you handle eating when it comes to the big Thanksgiving Day meal? And if you’re cooking for guests who have diabetes, what do you need to know?

With an estimated 29 million people in the U.S. with diabetes, and another 79 million with pre-diabetes, looking for ways to eat healthier to control blood sugar levels makes sense for most people. Show up to enjoy the feast or get cooking in the kitchen with a plan in place, and the big meal will be enjoyable for everyone, even those with diabetes. Here’s how to navigate the Thanksgiving feast.

Create Your Plate with Diabetic-Friendly Foods
If you’re not sure what to cook for Thanksgiving, or what to eat, follow the Create Your Plate! model designed by the American Diabetes Association. This healthy eating plan gives you a visual of what to eat to manage your diabetes. Half your plate should include non-starchy vegetables like carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, and tomatoes. Some healthy protein (turkey makes the list), whole grains, and starchy vegetables are good for you too. Follow this basic plan, and you’ll be on track to control calories and limit carbohydrates, important for managing diabetes.

Our Moist, Succulent Roasted Turkey Slices
Our Moist, Succulent Roasted Turkey Slices

Enjoy the Turkey
After filling half your plate with vegetables, be sure to enjoy a serving of turkey. It’s high in protein and doesn’t contain carbs that can elevate blood sugar levels. But a serving is all you really need, which is about the size of your palm. If you’re cooking the turkey, it’s healthier to roast it in the oven than deep fry it. And when it’s ready to eat, remove the skin, which contains a lot of calories and fat.

Sample the Stuffing
If you’re a true traditionalist, you can’t have a Thanksgiving meal without stuffing. But if you have diabetes, you’ll probably only want a small sample of stuffing. Why? It’s generally made with white bread and is high in carbohydrates. If you’re in charge of making the stuffing, use whole wheat bread and add more non-starchy vegetables to the stuffing mix. Doing this will make the stuffing more diabetic-friendly, take longer to digest, and do a better job at regulating blood sugar levels than traditional stuffing.

Pay Attention to Potatoes

MagicKitchen.com French Green Beans with Mushroom Sauce
MagicKitchen.com French Green Beans with Mushroom Sauce

If you showed up as a guest at the first Thanksgiving, potatoes weren’t on the menu. Yet today, mashed potatoes and gravy, and sweet potatoes are a common side dish that goes with the turkey. If you plan to eat potatoes, only eat a small serving. They’re a high-carb food that can cause rapid changes in blood sugar levels. Check out some recipes to make a healthier version of mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes.

Enjoy the Green Beans
If you’re following the Create Your Plate! advice to choose diabetic-friendly foods, green beans are a good choice. And they’re often served steamed, sautéed, or added to a casserole for the Thanksgiving meal. They taste great seasoned with onions, herbs, and other spices. Or you can try our French Green Beans with Mushrooms and Cream Sauce.

Save Room for Dessert
Pay attention to the kind of foods you’re putting on your plate and be aware of the amount of carbs you’re eating to manage your diabetes. Doing this will help you make smart food choices, and even have room for dessert. You’ll want to skip, rich, decadent desserts made with lots of sugar and flour. But there are lots of healthy options that can be your sweet treat after the big meal like cinnamon roasted pears, quinoa dessert pudding, or even some healthier items from our dessert menu.

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