If you've ever tackled the birdlike beast that is hosting Thanksgiving dinner, you're familiar with the elaborate ceremony of shopping, chopping, stuffing, and basting that occurs before the arrival of a pack of hungry guests. While there's no handbook to guide you through this pre-feast ritual, the year-long anticipation for perfectly glazed yams and a turkey cooked just right can be the ultimate recipe for pressure when you're the one responsible for it all. But according to Jessica Alba, you don't always have to follow the rules, and she's here to make things a little easier this Turkey Day.
“I wanted to do something that meets the needs of busy people," Alba tells us over the phone. Even though the actor, best-selling author, and founder of The Honest Company is no stranger to a hectic schedule herself, she's adding one more thing to her plate to take a little off of ours: a Thanksgiving Box launched with food subscription service HelloFresh to bring "a little bit of vibe” and a lot less stress to your meal prep.
For the traditionalists among us, there's the turkey meal kit complete with everything you'll need for creamy mashed potatoes, a crispy green bean casserole, cranberry sauce and beyond. But Alba has also concocted a peppercorn-crusted beef tenderloin option for the host that dares to be a bit different. Known to friends and fans as an early advocate for the DIY cupcake sandwich (“it's so you get the icing in the middle of the bite!” she says), Alba is a seasoned home cook that knows her way around a turkey, and she’s spilling some seriously — and literally — hot tips for reimagining the classics.
"My dad and I always do the turkey together. We do one with jalapeños in the brine and then we do one that’s more traditional,” she says, nodding to her Mexican-American heritage. “It’s just something that we tried once and it was so bomb that now this is what we always do.”
Even if the closest we can get to dining with the Alba clan is in the form of this spicy add-on to her ciabatta chicken sausage stuffing recipe (yum) we'll take it — but she also encourages drawing from your own family history to really personalize any recipe. Even the most doomed culinary experiment can be saved with "enough butter and love," so don't be afraid to play with the spices and flavors that feel most like home. Just allow yourself enough time to fully enjoy your guests when the big day rolls around. It's something Alba has learned from experience: "I have made the mistake of getting ready when all the guests are there and my hair is wet and I’m trying to throw my red lip on and it’s just stressful."
While there's no lipstick inside the HelloFresh Thanksgiving boxes, each order does include a special offer from The Honest Company for your baby, beauty, body and home needs. Click ahead to see a full list of what's inside each box and place your order from now through November 21 for an easier way of doing Thanksgiving dinner — no stress or subscription required.
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