The holiday season is officially here and with major holiday dinners approaching like Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner, consumers are going to be seeing higher prices. In fact, this Thanksgiving might just prove to be one of the most expensive holiday meals in the nation’s history thanks to a number of factors. But don’t lose hope in your dinner plans just yet, because there are ways to make it cheaper.

Firstly, why is this Thanksgiving going to be so expensive? As we’re all aware, the nation is experiencing a phenomenon known as the “Great Resignation“. People across the nation are tired of working the jobs they have and are looking for better options that allow them more freedom. It’s a phenomenon that is being seen across all sectors but has particularly impacted the food sector.

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It means that food prices across the board are increasing from the food you buy at the store to what you buy at restaurants. Additionally, it means that the supplies you need to cook are also in greater demand and therefore more expensive. So much so that grocer purchased foods have increased “1.1 percent from August 2021 to September 2021 and are 4.5 percent higher than August 2020” according to the USDA ERS.

When it comes to food from restaurants prices have increased “0.5 percent in September 2021 and are 4.7 percent higher than September 2020.”

For now, it doesn’t look like increases will be slowing down anytime soon. The United States is continuing to experience massive supply chain issues due to “the lingering effects of COVID-19 mitigation strategies”. These supply chain issues are part of the multifaceted situation that is continuing to drive up food prices both nationwide and globally.


As Chief Financial Officer François-Xavier Roger of Nestlé has stated, “it is likely that the input cost inflation will be higher next year than it is this year…If we look at 2021, it was much more about dairy, meat, and grains.” And you know what meal has a lot of dairy, meat, and grains? Thanksgiving…

So what can you do about it? Firstly, if you’re cooking at home, check your pantry for what you already have. Second, consider buying locally from farmers’ markets or co-ops. Prices will be a bit higher than say QFC but with inflation, it might be cheaper than you think. After all, by purchasing locally you are mitigating a potentially huge transportation and packaging cost while also supporting local businesses and farmers.

Lastly, consider spending Thanksgiving at a local restaurant. We’ve created a list of Thanksgiving dinners that you can enjoy in both dine-in and takeout formats. Prices range from as low as $48 a person up to hundreds of dollars.