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When we think of the holidays, it’s hard not to imagine big, bustling parties with tables so covered in food you can’t see the surface. But a lot of people I know don’t travel home to see family in the dead of winter, so they end up hosting small-scale gatherings with friends instead. As much as we all love leftovers, sometimes cooking for 12 when you’re only entertaining four doesn’t make sense—especially if you ever want to see your collection of plastic takeout containers again. That’s why this $25 bundle from Target might be a good idea this year: It’ll cover all the basics and give everyone plenty to fill up on.

What you can get with Target’s $25 Holiday Meal Setup:

Target, you’ll recall, had a very similar Thanksgiving bundle where $25 would get you almost everything you needed for an affordable feast. It seems to be the new trend in retail: package up everything on the shopping list and take away the guesswork for customers. For this next go-round, here’s what you can pick up for a holiday meal for four (via this link):

  • Market Pantry Hickory Smoked Spiral-Cut Bone-In Ham: Starting at $0.89/lb
  • Campbell’s Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup: $1.39
  • Favorite Day Wheat Dinner Rolls: $3.99
  • Good & Gather Cut Green Beans: $0.55
  • Good & Gather French Fried Onions: $1.99
  • Good & Gather Golden Sweet Whole Kernel Corn: $0.55
  • Good & Gather Russet Potatoes: $2.99
  • Favorite Day Vanilla Bean Ice Cream: $3.19

Granted, prices will vary by location, but the total cost should hover somewhere around $25, depending on the size of your ham. With this kit full of items from Target’s house brands, you’ll get a ham dinner with green bean casserole, corn, and mashed potatoes, which sounds like a full plate to me. Vanilla ice cream for dessert doesn’t sound terribly exciting, but if one of your guests brings a pie, it’d make a nice pairing. Alternatively, since you’re saving money on the mains listed above, you could splurge on some dessert from a local bakery—or if you have a Costco membership, you can buy an enormous pie for $16. If you do go the store-bought route, here are some solid options.

As idyllic as we’d like our holiday dinners to be, just being gathered with loved ones really is the important part, especially after the past few years. I know, that’s cheesy. But this really is the perfect time to relax on the elaborate food.

Other easy alternatives to holiday cooking

Target’s holiday bundles are a clever response to brutal ongoing grocery inflation and other supply chain issues causing prices to soar. But if you’re less financially constrained, it’s worth noting that a lot of chain restaurants are also offering meal kits that you can just bring home and eat. Knowing how worn out everyone gets by this point in the year, that might be the perfect solution. Or you know, you could skip the traditional celebrations altogether and maybe just head to Disney World; we hear the food’s pretty good right around now.

 

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