Plan Before Going Shopping This Thanksgiving 

woman wearing mask unloading groceries

If you plan to prepare a Thanksgiving meal this year, make your grocery store trip well in advance of the holiday.   

The CDC advises against going shopping in crowded stores just before, onor after Thanksgiving. This recommendation is to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) among large crowds in grocery stores.   

Here are some helpful tips to keep you safe when shopping for the big day.  

Make a shopping list. 

Efficiency is key. Prepare shopping list before your trip to the grocery store and get out as quickly as possibleThis limits your exposure to others in the store. We know the positivity rate continues to increase in the community. This means there is a higher risk of encountering someone who has COVID-19whether they are symptomatic or asymptomatic 

Wear a mask and practice good hand hygiene. 

Use hand sanitizer frequently during your grocerstore trip. This is important because multiple people are touching the same items in the store. Wear a mask and avoid touching the front of it while shopping. When you leave the store, use hand sanitizer before and after removing your mask.  

Consider curbside pickup or grocery delivery options. 

Checkout lines in the grocery store may be long the closer you get to Thanksgiving. There are other ways to avoid the holiday crowd. Curbside pickup and grocery store delivery are safer options. Avoiding large crowds is especially important if you have a pre-existing medical condition or a medical condition that puts you at greater risk of infection. 

Leave the kids at home. 

If possible, leave kids at home or use a delivery option. Many younger children don’t think about hand hygiene. Others may not be able to wear a mask because they are under two years old. Young children often touch items during the shopping trip and then put their fingers in their mouths. This puts them at risk for exposure.  

Consider grandparents’ risk. 

After you’ve cooked your hearty Thanksgiving meal with all the fixingspackage some for grandparents and deliver it to their home. This is a safer option instead of inviting them inside your home for dinner. A multiple generation gathering makes grandparents more vulnerable to infection.  


Jean Murray is the director of Infection Control at Luminis Health Anne Arundel Medical Center.

Rajesh Shah is the director of Quality/Regulatory Affairs and Infection Prevention at Luminis Health Doctors Community Medical Center. 

Thanksgiving RecipeRoast Turkey and Orange Spice Rub 

Start to finish: 1 hour and 45 minutes 

Servings: 11  

tablespoon grated orange zest 

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 

½ teaspoon ground cumin 

½ teaspoon paprika 

¼ teaspoon ground allspice or ground nutmeg 

¼ teaspoon salt 

¼ teaspoon black pepper 

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper 

5 pounds turkey breast with bone and skin 

1 can of nonstick cooking spray 

Preheat the oven to 325° F. Lightly spray a roasting pan and baking rack with cooking spray. 

In a small bowl, stir together all of the ingredients except the turkey. 

Put the turkey on a cutting board or flat work surface. Carefully loosen the skin from the turkey breast by gently inserting your fingers between the skin and the meat, making a pocket for the orange zest mixture. Don’t break the skin. Discard any fat beneath the skin. Still working carefully, spread the orange zest mixture under the loosened skin as evenly as possible. Transfer the turkey to the rack in the pan. 

Roast the turkey for 1 hour and 45 minutes, or until it reaches an internal temperature of at least 170° F. Be sure the thermometer doesn’t touch the bone. 

Remove the turkey from the oven and let stand for 15 minutes. 

Discard the skin and all visible fat. Slice the turkey and serve. 

Recipe from Diabetes Food Hub.