Putting Together a Thanksgiving Dinner for Under $5 with Coupons

It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a day away!  It takes a lot of ingredients to make a Thanksgiving dinner, but with proper planning and coupons you can keep it (and all meals) affordable.

This year, I will be spending Thanksgiving at my friend’s house and we’ll be trying out a Turducken for the first time!  However, I decided to put my couponing skills to the test and see what I could get on a budget.

I spent under $5 and put together a menu consisting of:

  • Stuffed Roast Turkey Breast
  • Mashed Potatoes w/ Gravy
  • Cranberry/Pineapple Sauce
  • Green Bean Casserole
  • Steamed Vegetables
  • Caesar Salad
  • Rolls
  • Cheesecake w/ Raspberry Coulis

I plan on making all of the above items; if not tomorrow, then sometime later in the week to showcase just a few of the things we can do with items we get with couponing.

Here’s a systematic breakdown of how I got all of the ingredients for FREE or near-zero out-of-pocket:

Stuffed Roast Turkey Breast:

This year at Albertsons, we had a great deal on Butterball Turkey Breast Roasts (found here).  I noted that it was as low as $1.97, but I had CATs from shopping on the 13th that made it a near-zero out-of-pocket.

These breasts are only about 3 lbs. each, but the above scenario rolled meaning you could pick up as many that you wanted at the aforementioned price.  Sometimes eating on a budget means cooking with the deals and I figured a stuffed roast turkey breast would be perfect use:

Note: There are deals on whole turkeys too!! If you’re adamant about having a whole turkey, then here was another great deal you can reference to help with your shopping in the future.  Buying FREE items to hit thresholds for$X off XX coupons is a viable strategy in couponing: 37.5¢ per Pound is hard to beat.

The Stuffing:

One of the staple stockpile items that we can get for FREE during the Thanksgiving and holiday season is stuffing.  When cooking per directions found on the box it can taste very ordinary, but you can give it new life by embellishing it before you tie it up in the turkey breast.

The most important addition to the stuffing is sage.  This is the absolute perfect (earthy/savory) seasoning for stuffing.  You can either grow it or buy it at the store, but I recommend getting it fresh.

I also came up with a list of following ingredients to add to the stuffing:

  • Mushrooms (Any kind, but I’m using porcinis)
  • Bacon (FREE/cheap throughout the year and can freeze unopened)
  • Shallots/Onions/Celery
  • Cranberries (FREE at Albertsons or 25¢ currently at Walmart)
  • Parsley (FREE at Safeway w/ this deal)
  • Canned Chicken Stock (Another FREE stockpile item)

Mashed Potatoes w/ Gravy:

Bags of potatoes are cheap! They frequently go on sale for 99¢ per 5-10 lbs. bag.  However, rather than spend money, I’m going to use a few boxes of Betty Crocker potatoes that I stockpiled (with this deal) when they were FREE + MONEY MAKER!  You could even use pasta (FREE time and time over w/ coupons), rices, or just about any starch in place of potatoes.

Making a gravy is fairly easy, but there’s so many ways to make it.  The way I prefer to make it is similar to the way espagnole/demiglace is prepared.

However, you can just keep it simple and simply use the packets that were FREE + MONEY MAKER at Walmart earlier this month.  That deal can be found here.

Cranberry/Pineapple Sauce:

Fresh cranberries should have a sour, bitter taste.  That is why a lot of recipes call for a lot of sugar when you prepare them fresh.  However, instead of using sugar, why not use the canned pineapples that have been FREE at Albertsons (with this deal or last week with overage) to sweeten and add texture to our cranberry sauce?

By the way, if you still need cranberries, Walmart has a deal going on:

Ocean Spray Fresh Cranberries, 12 oz. $1.25 (Rollback)
Use: $1/1 Ocean Spray Fresh Cranberries (Printable Coupon)
Final Price: 25¢

Green Bean Casserole:

Again, this is another dish that is simple to put together w/ canned goods found in our pantry stockpile.  You just need green beans, cream of mushroom soup, a bit of grated cheese, and French-fried onions which you can make yourself.

Steamed Vegetables:

Buy them canned or frozen when they’re FREE or cheap with coupons.  For steaming, I prefer frozen vegetable and brands like Birds Eye and Green Giant come to mind for deals we’ve seen in the past year.

Caesar Salad:

I picked up a couple bags of Fresh Express Hearts of Romaine (using the coupons I posted about here)  to put together a simple caesar salad.  This will go perfectly with the Ken’s Salad Caesar Dressing (my favorite!) that is FREE with coupons a couple times each year.  If you want to see all the Ken’s deals we’ve had just click here.


Pillsbury Rolls and King’s Hawaiian are always good choices when we have coupons.  Oftentimes, stacking coupons with deals or working them into transactions that yield overage are a good way to get them FREE!

Cheesecake w/ Raspberry Coulis:

Making a cheesecake is probably one of the fastest ways you can use up all the Philadelphia cream cheese that has been cheap (with this deal) at Albertsons.  Graham crackers for the crust we get cheap/FREE with s’mores deals and there are plenty of deals on butter and sugar (just stock up when it’s FREE).

The coulis can be made with just about any fruit, but raspberry goes great with cheesecake!

I’m so ready for Thanksgiving and Black Friday/Cyber Monday and  looking forward to bringing you the best deals I find.  Please be sure to check back here and on Facebook!

I hope everyone, whether they used coupons or not for their shopping this year, has an amazing Thanksgiving!



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