The holidays bring such excitement and joy as they approach. Just the thought of holidays past, you can actually remember the smell of food cooking in the kitchen. Mmmmmmm, the smell of the food! Growing up, the table would be full of foods from ham, green beans, cornbread bread, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, I mean the list goes on and on.
While this is a common tradition for some, traditions sometimes change. There is so much work that goes into making the perfect Thanksgiving dinner for the family. Recipes have to be pulled out, grocery lists are made, and tables are adorned with the finest Thanksgiving décor.
It can be overwhelming, to say the least. Luckily, other options can present themselves as great opportunities to bypass the stress.
There are quite a few restaurants in the Central Florida area open on Thanksgiving. You can leave the prep and clean up to them!
Rosen Shingle Creek offers a variety of options for your liking.
- Thanksgiving Day Buffet (11:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.): Enjoy unlimited mimosas while indulging in a gastronome feast in Rosen Shingle Creek’s delightful Cafe Osceola, with standouts such as Lobster Bisque, Paella Valencia, Citrus-Brined Turkey and more. Pricing: $59.95 adults, $24.95 children 4-11 (free under 4); 25% discount for Florida residents.
- Thanksgiving Day Private In-Suite Feast (11:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.): Leave the cooking and clean up to the expert Rosen team, while enjoying an intimate holiday meal in the comfort and privacy of one of Rosen Shingle Creek’s luxury suites. Pricing: $50 adults, $22.95 children 4-11 (free under 4); minimum of 8 paid guests.
- Takeaway Thanksgiving Harvest: Impress your guests with a hot, chef-prepared Thanksgiving Day meal from Rosen Shingle Creek’s talented chefs. Orders must be placed by 3 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 23, for pickup between 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 25, or Thanksgiving Day. Pricing: $40 per person.
The Alfond Inn invites you to their chef-inspired Thanksgiving feast. The $69 ticket for adults or $29 ticket for children includes complimentary valet parking, starters, salads, main dishes, and delicious desserts that include pecan and pumpkin pies!
“Your patronage helps fund The Alfond Inn at Rollins College Scholars Program which awards Scholarships to deserving Rollins College Students!”
Universal Orlando Resorts have 4 restaurants hosting Thanksgiving dinner.
- Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando: From 11 a.m. – 10 p.m., enjoy a Thanksgiving Day Family-Style Feast in The Kitchen, plus a live acoustic guitarist starting at noon. Reservations are recommended. Pricing: $59 adults, $24 children 3-9 (free under 3).
- Loews Royal Pacific Hotel at Universal Orlando: This resort’s Thanksgiving Day Buffet will be served in the Islands Dining Room from 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Reservations are recommended. Pricing: $59 adults, $27 children 3-9 (free under 3); adults 21+ can add unlimited mimosa and Bloody Mary cocktails for $15 more.
- Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort: Head to this property’s Bayliner Diner from noon – 11 p.m. for their Thanksgiving Day Meal Special. Pricing: $18.99 adults, $9.99 children 3-9 (free under 3); $3.50 add-on dessert.
- Universal’s Endless Summer Resort — Surfside Inn and Suites: This resort’s Beach Break Cafe will have a Traditional Thanksgiving Meal from noon – 11 p.m. Pricing: $15.99 adults, $8.99 children 3-9 (free under 3).
Another memorable option would be to share your time giving back to those less fortunate. Central Florida has countless organizations that help and gives back to our communities. They often need help from volunteers wanting to make positive changes in the life of others.
The Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida, Salvation Army, Orlando Union Rescue Mission, Heart of Florida United Way, and the Basket Brigade Florida are just a few organizations that you can partner with to help our local community.
While we may have different traditions when it comes to the holidays, one thing is for sure, Central Florida has a lot to choose from, and for that, we give thanks!