Whether you just want a break from the three-day preparations of your traditional Thanksgiving dinner or you are in need of outside help, there are plenty of pickup or delivery options in Santa Monica. Many restaurants and stores offer sides a la carte to supplement your homemade meal or complete packages, giving you and your kitchen a break for the day.
Most meals are ready to serve and just need to be reheated. Some markets and restaurants have a limited number of dinners, so put your order in early; and to avoid the long lines for pickup consider picking up on Wednesday or even earlier.
Unless you have specific dietary needs, I’ve never been the type of dietitian that has messed with traditions. That being said, keep in mind that Thanksgiving dinner is just one meal and not an excuse for a four-day feast. Enjoy your favorite dishes in moderation with more than a garnish of green vegetables, and with all your extra time consider starting your day with a walk, hike or even the annual 5K/10K Turkey Trot in downtown L.A.
Ralph’s offers a turkey package fully cooked with cornbread stuffing, gravy, mashed potatoes and rolls ready to heat and serve for six at $45. Spiral sliced ham or gluten-free meals are available for slightly more. www.ralphs.com.
Whole Foods has a variety of packages and a la carte options. The traditional meal consists of a fully cooked turkey (organic if you wish) with traditional gravy and stuffing. A green bean casserole and roasted vegetables are available a la carte. Meal sizes serve from one to eight and the price range is $9.99 (for a vegan meal) to $110 for the meal for eight. If a customer wants to upszie their turkey they can pay an additional $10 to $30. www.wholefoodsmarket.com.
Bristol Farms allows you to mix and match your meats and sides to create your own meal. Fully cooked meats are sold per pound and include roast turkey, prime rib, honey glazed spiral ham, pork loin, poached salmon fillet, and roasted goose. Three types of stuffings and four kinds of potatoes and vegetables are presented. To round out the meal a variety of sauces, gravy, and desserts are offered. The traditional roast turkey dinner with stuffing, mashed potato, green beans, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie, serving six to eight will cost approximately $140. www.bristolfarms.com.
Restaurant meals to go
Buca di Beppo is offering a Thanksgiving meal to go for 10 or more with an Italian twist at $150. Their traditional meal includes turkey and gravy, spicy sausage stuffing, garlic mashed potatoes, and whole cranberry sauce. Orders must be placed by Monday, Nov. 25, and are picked up hot and ready to serve on Thanksgiving Day. (310) 587-2782.
Thyme Café on Ocean Park Boulevard provides the traditional dinner a la carte for a party of six and gourmet appetizers and desserts. Orders must be placed by Nov. 25 and are picked up Wednesday, Nov. 27. The traditional meal costs approximately $167. www.thymecafeandmarket.com.
Josie Restaurant on Pico Boulevard has everything but the bird (and green vegetable) for your Thanksgiving holiday. A variety of starters and sides will be available for order until Nov. 26 and ready for pick up on Wednesday, Nov. 27. Traditional sides cost approximately $130. www.josierestaurant.com.
Huckleberry Café meals need to be placed by Sunday, Nov. 24 and are to be picked up on Thursday, Nov. 28. Many traditional sides and desserts are available for purchase and serve between eight and 10 people. The main entrees available are free-range braised turkey thighs with wine and mushrooms, free-range smothered turkey and gravy, free-range turkey meatballs, and Creekstone Farms’ beef brisket. The smothered turkey and gravy with all the traditional fixings cost approximately $190. www.huckleberrycafe.com.
Marmalade Café orders must be placed by Nov. 22, and the meal can be delivered before 1 p.m. on Thanksgiving for $15. A 22-24 pound free-range, herb-rubbed turkey, serving 12 to 15 with all the traditional trimmings priced per pound is available a la carte and costs between $210 and $275. www.marmaladecatering.com.
Lori Salerno, M.S., R.D.N, C.P.T. is a registered dietitian nutritionist and certified personal trainer who provides medical nutrition therapy to groups and individuals in Santa Monica and recipe and menu analysis for restaurants nationwide. Learn more at www.eatwelldailynutrition.com.