The Best Ways To Avoid Thanksgiving Grocery Shortages In 2021

Thanksgiving just isn't the same without certain staples, like pumpkin pie, cranberries, and of course, turkey. So you don't want to get stuck without your stuffing due to shortages. This holiday, it's going to take some extra work to get what you need for the best Turkey Day ever.

Anyone who's perused a grocery store during this whole pandemic debacle has undoubtedly noticed that some shelves are scantily stocked. According to Eat This, Not That! items like Lunchables, chicken, and even pet food have been in short supply in recent weeks. Unfortunately for Thanksgiving fans, turkeys and canned goods were among the items that were already getting harder to find in late August, which could make it extra-tough to produce favorite holiday dishes like green bean casserole or pumpkin pie by the time late November rolls around.

That doesn't mean Thanksgiving-related shortages are destined to ruin your feast, however. A little planning and flexibility just might help you keep your holiday plans intact.

Here's how to maneuver around Thanksgiving supply shortages

No one is more aware of the out-of-control supply chain shortages than grocery stores. So, many are being proactive this holiday season by ordering seasonal items earlier than normal. To avoid a Thanksgiving bust, Jim Dudlicek from the National Grocers Association recently told Good Morning America (GMA) that would-be chefs should shop early for the holiday dinner. "Consumers should secure those must haves in a timely fashion to ensure favorites for the holiday table, but be mindful of their neighbors and limit their quantities to only what they need," he cautioned. Many non-perishable items will keep just fine until late November on your pantry shelves, and a frozen turkey cooks beautifully, too.

Dudlicek also suggested that people think outside the big box retailer and opt instead for community grocery stores and other providers. He said that "certain items may be harder to get at certain times," so you may have to get creative about replacing unavailable items. With any luck, by this time next year, we'll be giving thanks that the pandemic is over and the supply chain is back to normal.