November 2010

How much do we actually eat on Thanksgiving?

Of course the only real answer to that question is to record how much food actually ends up  on the plate and run the numbers.

But to have some fun speculating, calorie numbers as high as 4000 have circulated on the Internet now for a couple of years.  If this number sounds excessive, you are in good company.

Here is a selection of estimates starting with a gluttonous spread down to a very austere setting.

  •  2486 calories from Tara Parker Pope’s Gluttonous Thanksgiving, published in  The New York Times 2012.
  • 1895 calories for a Thanksgiving spread from the forward thinking book The Good Housekeeping All-American Cookbook published in 1989.
  • 1300 calories if you add up the calorie levels from the Thanksgiving 2012 Penzey’s catalogue “Share a fantastic feast with family and friends” section, then add the numbers for apple cider or beverage of choice.
  • 1240 calories for my Thanksgiving offering posted in 2010.
  • 1074 calories, the most austere offering, calculated from “A Simple Celebration” in the December 2012 issue of Eating Well, Where Good Taste Meets Good Health.