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Would you rather go out than cook on Thanksgiving Day? Here’s what will be open

With Thanksgiving fast approaching, you may want to make a reservation if you plan to eat out

SHARE Would you rather go out than cook on Thanksgiving Day? Here’s what will be open
Boni Contreras cooks meals at the Denny’s in Layton in 2014. Denny’s is one of several restaurants that keeps its doors open on Thanksgiving.

Boni Contreras cooks meals at the Denny’s in Layton in 2014. Denny’s is one of several restaurants that keeps its doors open on Thanksgiving.

Ravell Call, Deseret News

Editor’s note: This story was originally published on Nov. 11. It has been updated with additional information about restaurants’ Thanksgiving hours.

Would you rather go out to eat on Thanksgiving Day than spend the day cooking?

There are restaurants that stay open on the holiday to serve up holiday classics like turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, stuffing, cranberry sauce and more. And if you’re not in the mood for the classic turkey dinner, other restaurants are open with their typical menu items, from pizza to burgers to pasta.

Here’s a look at restaurants that are open on Thanksgiving and what to expect if you decide to go there.

What restaurants are open on Thanksgiving?

For all of these restaurants, check with your nearby location to make sure they are open on Thanksgiving and see if they require a reservation. Not all locations of the below restaurants may be open on Thanksgiving.

Applebee’s: If you’re looking for Thanksgiving dinner, check with your neighborhood grill. Select Applebee’s will be open on Turkey Day and may even be serving up classic holiday dishes, according to Country Living.

Bob Evans: Head on over to Bob Evans for your dinner. Serving up dishes like turkey, hickory-smoked ham, cranberry relish, mashed potatoes and gravy, rolls, house-made bread and celery dressing, and pumpkin pie, you can have a classic dinner.

Buca di Beppo: Spicy Italian sausage stuffing, vegetables, turkey, gravy and other dishes are available at Buca di Beppo on Thanksgiving. You’ll need to make a reservation in order to get your table.

Cracker Barrel: You can get Thanksgiving favorites at Cracker Barrel year-round, but the chain is also open on Thanksgiving depending on your location. Complete with their flaky buttermilk biscuits, you can get the classic Thanksgiving dinner with stuffing, turkey, gravy and more.

Denny’s: Your local Denny’s may be open on Thanksgiving. The restaurant is serving up its traditional Thanksgiving special dinner with a new twist: creamy macaroni and cheese is now on the menu.

Domino’s: If Thanksgiving food isn’t your jam and you prefer pizza, you can place an order at Domino’s. Good Housekeeping reported that your local Domino’s may be open on Thanksgiving. They’ll be serving up pizza, cheesy bread, wings, salads, pastas and their other regular menu offerings.

El Pollo Loco: Your local El Pollo Loco may be dishing out dinner on Thanksgiving. Tamales, tacos and more will be available for you to eat on Thanksgiving. Check with your local restaurant for more details on the menu and if it will be open.

Golden Corral: If you’re in the mood for a holiday buffet where you can choose what you want, check out Golden Corral. The buffet will feature turkey, ham, beef roast, stuffing, sweet potato casserole and other dishes.

IHOP: Stop by IHOP for its turkey and stuffing dinner. It comes with turkey, gravy, cornbread stuffing, mixed berry topping and you can choose two more sides like mashed potatoes, broccoli, rice, French fries, buttermilk pancakes and more.

Little Caesar’s: Are you in the mood for Little Caesar’s crazy bread on Thanksgiving? Stop by your local Little Caesar’s (if it’s open) to get some pizza, crazy bread and other typical menu items to complete your Thanksgiving.

Marie Callender’s: Marie Callender’s doesn’t just sell frozen chicken pot pies; it’s also a restaurant. In 2022, most restaurants were closed during Thanksgiving due to the volume of orders for take-out, but your local restaurant may still be open. Typical offerings include turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, cornbread, cranberry sauce and more.

Red Lobster: Red Lobster will be open on Thanksgiving. You can expect the chain’s typical offerings like rainbow trout, fish and chips, shrimp, cajun chicken linguini Alfredo and of course, the buttery, cheesy biscuits.

Romano’s Macaroni Grill: Stop by Romano’s Macaroni Grill for a three-course meal. You can choose from green salad, Caesar salad, lobster bisque or tomato basil soup to start your meal and then, follow it up with turkey, mashed potatoes, sausage and apple stuffing alongside Brussels sprouts or broccolini. Dessert finishes off the meal. The chain’s regular menu is also available.

Ruby Tuesday: Whether you’re in the mood for holiday favorites or the chain’s usual menu items like rib-eye, crispy chicken tenders or a burger, Ruby Tuesday is open on Thanksgivings and in the past has offered a special menu for Turkey Day.

Sizzler: Green beans with almonds, sweet potato casserole, yeast rolls, mashed potatoes, turkey and gravy are some of the menu items you can expect at Sizzler. The restaurant also typically allows you to order from the regular menu.

Subway: If you want a sandwich instead of a full turkey dinner, you can check your local Subway to see if it’s open. There isn’t a special menu, but the chain offers turkey sandwiches if you’re in the mood for it.

Waffle House: Waffle House stays open on Thanksgiving. If you go, you can expect the chain’s regular menu including the melts, omelets, hashbrown bowls, country ham dinner, biscuits and waffles.

Where to order a Thanksgiving dinner

If you want to order in instead, here are some locations offering pick-up for turkey dinners.

What other restaurants are open on Thanksgiving?

McDonald’s, Starbucks, Taco Bell, Burger King and Krispy Kreme may be open on Thanksgiving, per USA Today. Be sure to check your local restaurants to see their specific hours.