Thanksgiving usually means two things: lots of family and lots of food. If you’re hosting, you shouldn’t have to do all of the cooking yourself. There are more than a few places around the state that are willing to help you out with one of the biggest meals of the year, and you won’t have to sacrifice quality for ease. Our local restaurants, caterers, bakers and butchers understand that what they do isn’t always easy, and they want you to enjoy the best foodie holiday in style. Here is where to go.

For a few other ideas from years past, check this out: Best Places To Get A Prepared Thanksgiving Meal

The Best Things About Thanksgiving

The Little Venetian
2900 Rice St. #240
Little Canada, MN 55113
(651) 486-7719
www.littlevenetian.comFor decades, this Little Canada restaurant has packed up the holiday dinner to go, and this year is no different. Yes, it is an Italian restaurant (and the Italian food is oh-so-good as well), but The Little Venetian has been operating just north of St. Paul since 1928 so it knows a thing or two about Thanksgiving as well. You can get the goods, the turkey, the whipped potatoes, the cranberry sauce, the green beans, as well as Italian bread on the side and, of course, pie for dessert. It will satisfy the way that mama’s cooking should.

Heartland Farm Direct Market
289 E. 5th St.
St. Paul, MN 55101
(651) 699-3536

Enjoy a homemade Thanksgiving, just not made by you. You can find all of your gravy, sauces and sides, as well as meats and fish and even dessert at this Lowertown market attached to renowned Heartland Restaurant. Everything is made by the hard-working hands of Heartland’s butchers and chefs, so you won’t have to sacrifice that home-cooked goodness just because it wasn’t you that spent hours preparing dinner.

Multiple locations including
115 E. 10th St.
St. Paul, MN 55101
(651) 999-1600

You can access this upscale grocery chain in both downtowns, as well as in the suburbs. You’re never far from the quality products available on these shelves, much of which is sourced from local purveyors. The downtown St. Paul Lunds, for example, has greens and produce from Urban Organics, the organic aquaponic growers from the city’s east side. You’ll be able to get everything you need for Thanksgiving dinner here, and much more.

Related:  Wander Minnesota: Thanksgiving Feasts, Traditional & Not

Lake Elmo Inn
3442 Lake Elmo Ave. N.
Lake Elmo, MN 55042
(651) 777-8495

The most classic of Thanksgiving dinners is available for pickup at Lake Elmo Inn. Every year the deft hands at this little, elegant restaurant put together a whole turkey with mashed potatoes, dressing, gravy, cranberries, green beans and your choice of two delectable pies. You can swing by and grab it hot on Thanksgiving day and show up to the festivities with a guaranteed delicious dinner that will warm the hearts and stomachs of the whole family.

The Best Things About Thanksgiving

Bars Bakery
612 Selby Ave.
St. Paul, MN 55102
(651) 224-8300

For the all-important after-dinner dessert, head to St. Paul’s Bars Bakery and pick up one of its delicious, handmade pies. The bakery is sweet on local ingredients, and the masterful bakers create a product so good that you’ll find that there is always more room for another slice. You can get bourbon pecan, classic pumpkin and apple and other seasonal ingredients to top off a hearty meal. And if you’re looking for more than pie, Bars’ bars (like the maple nut), scones, cookies and more make a great addition to Thanksgiving as well.

Related: The Secret To Delicious Thanksgiving Turkey: Brining

Adrian Schramm is a resident Saint Paul writer with a passion for all things local. Through his work with Saint Paul Almanac and Minneapolis Examiner at, as well as in the kitchens of bars and restaurants around town, he has discovered what truly makes the Twin Cities tick.