Tip #8: Prepare desserts, vegetables, and cornbread dressing a day or two ahead to save time and energy on Thanksgiving Day.
When roasting a turkey, the general rule of thumb is 20 minutes per pound. I preheat my oven to 450 degrees and roast the turkey uncovered for 25 minutes to provide the base for a dark, rich gravy; then cover, reduce the heat to 350 degrees and roast until the meat is done. Remove it from the oven when the leg moves easily and a meat thermometer registers 180 degrees when inserted into the thigh. If the turkey is stuffed, the thermometer should register 165 degrees when inserted into the center of the stuffing. In the absence of a meat thermometer, the meat juices should run clear when the meat is pierced with a fork. Once the turkey is removed from the oven, cover it with foil and set it aside 30 minutes to rest.