It’s the season of giving and being thankful. However, if you’ve ever hosted Thanksgiving dinner for friends and family, you know how the stress of coordinating people, cooking, and the grocery bill can add up.

According to Statista, the average price for a complete ten-person Thanksgiving feast in the U.S. is $53.31. However, you’ve probably spent more than that once you account for extra dishes, decorations, and other necessities.

With the gift-giving season around the corner, here are 5 tips to help you not break the bank this Thanksgiving.

  1. Plan & Shop Early
    Start planning weeks in advance. You will need an accurate count of how many people will be coming, how much food you will need, and ensure you have all the kitchen gadgets you need for the big day.

    Instead of buying new, borrow from family, friends, and/or neighbors. Also, check out your local dollar store for decorations, themed dinnerware, napkins, etc.

    Shopping early is one of the best ways to save money on your Thanksgiving menu. Check your grocery stores for sales a couple of weeks before the holiday. Not only will you scoop up deals, but it will also ensure you find everything you need, and you can avoid the craziness of last-minute shoppers.

  1. Leftovers
    There will likely be leftovers, and that’s okay – there are endless options for what you could do with them! You can freeze it and save it for later or find different recipes to reuse your turkey, stuffing, and cranberries.

    Leftovers can help you stay away from the grocery store just a little longer and not waste the food you spent your time and money on.

  1. Compare Prices
    Check different stores to see who has the best prices and stock up early. Also, check the price difference between name brand and generic. Generic products are typically 25% less expensive than name brands, and your guests will likely not taste the difference.

    Imagine how much you could save if you bought generic for your entire Thanksgiving menu!

  2. Potluck Style
    Another way to save money and time is to ask guests to bring a dish to share. You can also make a list of what everyone’s bringing to ensure no gaps (or duplicates) in the menu.
  3. Mix Things Up
    Instead of cooking a huge Thanksgiving spread, consider volunteering. It lets you skip cooking and allows you to help others in your community. Or you can start your own Thanksgiving tradition.

Thanksgiving is about celebrating with people and not letting Thanksgiving dinner gobble up your money.

The more you plan, the more you save.