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Best Thanksgiving meal kit and turkey delivery services for the holiday feast

Skip the line at the grocery store this Thanksgiving and let the turkey come to you.

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You don't have to slave away to get a turkey on the table.

Porter Road
This story is part of Holiday Survival Guide 2019, featuring tips on the best ways to manage the holiday season.

What are we thankful for this year? Besides the Thanksgiving turkey with gravy, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie for dessert and delicious snacks that make the perfect Thanksgiving dinner? We're thankful for the amazing Thanksgiving meal kit and grocery purveyors that deliver them straight to our door, so we can focus on the seating chart and keeping Aunt Janet away from the liquor closet.  

If you committed to cooking Thanksgiving dinner, we commend you. It's no small feat. Cooking a traditionally fussy turkey with herb stuffing, mass amounts of sides, appetizers, desserts -- all with their own long lists of ingredients -- and more is a task complicated further by the fact that everyone else is trying to cook the exact same meal on the exact same day. 

Not to frighten you, but depending on the scene at your local markets, there is a real risk grocery stores will run out of things like Thanksgiving turkeys and fixings for sides. And even if they don't, supermarkets leading up to the holidays start to resemble the streets of Philadelphia after one of their sports teams wins a title. Riotous. Imagine literally fighting someone for that last can of pumpkin puree -- it's chilling. 

That's why we're truly thankful for home delivery for the all-important turkey, as well as ingredients to make fabulous Thanksgiving side dishes -- even vegan ones -- with surefire recipes. Plus an amazing holiday box with all you need for amazing appetizers and cocktail hour snacks before the main event -- convenience and variety all wrapped into one. 

The beauty of these outfits is that you can preorder your organic, heritage or pasture-raised turkey now, ahead of time, but have them shipped for the week of or days before Thanksgiving because, honestly, who has extra room for a 15-pound turkey in their fridge or freezer?

So take a deep breath (you totally got this) and check out the best turkey delivery and meal kit services for getting your Thanksgiving food delivered this year. And for even more Thanksgiving tips, check out this guide to surviving Thanksgiving 2019.

  • Best for quality turkey delivery: D'artagnan
  • Best newcomer for turkey delivery: Porter Road
  • Best for complete Thanksgiving meal kit (turkey and sides): HelloFresh
  • Best for a vegan Thanksgiving: Purple Carrot (currently sold out)
  • Best to score a free turkey: ButcherBox
  • Best for a complete (almost) ready-to-eat meal: Home Chef
  • Best for pre-Thanksgiving dinner apps and snacks: Rastelli's

Read more: The best healthy meal kits in 2019Our favorite direct-to-consumer cookware brands of 2019 | Our favorite meal-prep containers will get you excited to make lunch | The best meal kit delivery services of 2019

D'artagnan

This ain't your store-bought frozen butterball turkey. For the all-important bird, D'artagnan is one of the best options for getting a turkey delivered. In operation for more than 30 years, it works with small farms with humane practices to offer heritage, organic and even wild turkeys that can be preordered now and shipped nationwide in time for the big day. 

Heritage: These free-range turkeys don't get as large as conventional birds but make up for it with dense, dark, rich meat and big flavor.

Organic: USDA-certified organic, which ensures some standard of care both during the bird's life and after. Expect these to be far more moist and flavorful than your average Butterball.

Wild: These are raised in upstate New York in conditions that mimic the wild, with the birds foraging on native grasses, seeds and grains. Slightly gamey, these birds will be smaller than your average farm-raised turkey (especially in the breast) but make up for it with rich, flavorful dark meat.  

Porter Road

Porter Road is one of our favorites for high-quality meats delivered to your door. While dry-aged beef has been its go-to, this year the Nashville-based purveyor is getting in on Thanksgiving festivities with pasture-raised turkeys delivered to your door in time for the big feast.

The turkeys, which come in two sizes (10-12.5 lbs or 12-15 lbs) depending on your group, start at $120 and come from Jolly Barnyard Farm near Nashville, Tennessee, where they're raised in a natural setting without antibiotics or hormones.

You can also get your turkey as part of the Holiday Turkey Box ($148), which includes a pound of loose sage sausage for stuffing, a pound of pork bacon ends for sides and veggies and a pound of ham bacon for hors d'oeuvres.

HelloFresh

HelloFresh has one of the most complete Thanksgiving meal kit packages you can order direct to your door. Serving 8-10 hungry people, this soup-to-nuts bundle is about $152 (roughly $15 per person) and includes a whole (uncooked) turkey and most of the ingredients to make four traditional sides, plus one apple ginger crisp. That last item is essential for people who don't want to make their own dessert.

The HelloFresh Box includes:

  • Garlic and herb-roasted turkey with demi-glaze gravy
  • Garlic mashed potatoes, green bean casserole with crispy onions, ciabatta stuffing with chicken sausage and cranberries, cranberry sauce with orange, ginger and cinnamon
  • Apple ginger crisp with cinnamon pecan crumble

Note: Be sure to order your Thanksgiving meal kit at least five days before you want it to arrive.  

Purple Carrot

Leave the tofurky for someone else. There are plenty of delicious Thanksgiving foods that never had parents and Purple Carrot, one of our favorite healthy meal kit delivery services, is offering a Thanksgiving Box with delish and easy-to-make vegan meals to satisfy the most ravenous of revelers. 

Purple Carrot's vegan Thanksgiving box requires no subscription and includes: 

  • Hasselback butternut squash with cider glaze & rosemary pecan dukkah
  • Rustic ciabatta stuffing with root vegetables & herb "sausage"
  • Roasted brussels sprouts with oyster mushrooms & garlic kimchi butter
  • Classic (vegan) gravy 
  • Cranberry citrus cake with coconut whipped cream   

(Note: the Purple Carrot Thanksgiving box is currently sold out. We will update this article if it is re-stocked.)

Butcher Box

ButcherBox is another one of our favorite services for meat delivery, and not just around the holidays. You can customize and then optimize your monthly box of quality steaks, pork ribs, ground beef, chicken and more and if you place a new order in the next few weeks, ButcherBox will throw in a 10- to 14-pound turkey to arrive before the big day.

To get this free bird there are five different boxes to choose from (starting at $129), including a beef-and-pork box, beef-and-chicken box, all-beef box, mixed box with beef, pork and chicken or a custom box. The best part? You can cancel anytime (Note: if you don't cancel, the orders will keep coming) so this is a low-risk way to try a great butcher delivery and score a free turkey while you're at it!

Home Chef

Full disclosure; we haven't had a chance to try Home Chef's Thanksgiving offerings as they are not yet available for delivery, but you can order/reserve a Thanksgiving meal fit with roast Turkey ($50) or sides ($24.96 each) to feed roughly six people. Sides, like green bean casserole and mashed potatoes, require a little assembly and preparation but not much, and as you might have guessed it's not a whole turkey showing up at your door so you'll lose a little of that Norman Rockwell magic. But as far as convenient options for those with no access to a kitchen or much cooking ability and want food that's practically plated, this is about as good as it gets.

Rastelli's

Rastelli's is a staple in New Jersey for meats, cheeses, snacks and more but it'll ship its amazing selections nationwide, and this year it has got a fantastic holiday box perfect for the host or hostess expecting a small army to feed. From cured meats and lots of fabulous cheese as an appetizer, to chocolate cherries for dessert, the massive box goes for $150 and includes the following:

  • Barbers cheddar, aged 12 months (7 oz)
  • Marich triple chocolate toffee (4.25 oz)
  • Marich chocolate cherries  (4.25 oz)
  • Divina fig spread (9 oz)
  • Agriform Parm Reggiano (5.3 oz)
  • 6 month aged gouda (5.3 oz)
  • Manchego (5.3 oz)
  • Bread Meliora Bruschette (5.3 oz)
  • RMF Dried Apricots (5 oz)
  • Cranberry Health Blend trail mix
  • Licini Sweet Sopressata (6 oz)
  • Volpi Salame (8 oz)
  • Greek olive mix (13 oz)
  • Traditional crostini

Originally published earlier this month.