14 Apps to Help You Win at Thanksgiving

Your festivities just got easier with these apps to help with cooking, entertainment, and more.

By Jody Allard

It's almost Thanksgiving, which can only mean one thing: It's time to impress everyone you know with your epic cooking and baking skills. Or, at least prove to your family and friends that you're capable of cooking a turkey without sending them all to the hospital. Whether you're a cooking pro or a kitchen disaster, there are plenty of apps out there to help you level up. Or fake it 'til you make it.

14. Chow Thanksgiving Dinner Coach

If you're new to hosting Thanksgiving dinner, this free iOS app is for you. Chow Thanksgiving Dinner Coach offers up a list of Thanksgiving recipes you can use for your meal, plus it compiles all of the ingredients for the recipes you select into a shopping list you can use at the grocery store. Thanksgiving dinner has never been so simple!

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13. Butterball Cookbook Plus App

Nobody knows turkey like Butterball, and their Butterball Cookbook Plus App will guide you through every step of Turkey Day dinner. Use the turkey calculator to figure out how big a bird you'll need and how long it will take to cook, then print out coupons to help you save money on your turkey. You'll  even find plenty of recipes and videos to help make every part of your dinner a success. It's available for both iOS and Android, and it's free.

12. The Tasting Guide (Android or iOS; Free)

If you don't know your chardonnay from your merlot, Wine Enthusiast Magazine's The Tasting Guide app will help you create a tasting menu that's worthy of your turkey.

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In addition to features and guides on what to drink when, you can browse thousands of reviews or even scan a bottle's UPC code for reviews on-the-go. It's available for both iOS and Android, and it's free.

11. Red Stamp Cards

It may be the digital age, but you can add a touch of extra finesse to your holiday meal by sending out paper invitations. The Red Stamp Cards app helps you design your own cards and print them at home, making mailing out invitations a snap. You can even track responses right in the app, so your guests will have no excuse not to RSVP. It's available for both iOS and Android, and it's free.

10. Evite

If paper invitations are so not your speed, Evite makes it easy to send invitations from your iPhone and track your RSVPs, too. You can even upload pictures before, during, or after your event to share memorable moments with all of your guests. It's free!

9. Table Decorations (Android; Free)

Create a festive table with the Table Decorations app for Android devices. Using everyday items you probably already have at home, the app helps you set a beautiful table that will inspire you and your guests on Thanksgiving. And it's free.

8. BigOven

Once the big day arrives, the BigOven app has you covered. Featuring more than 350,000 recipes, you can browse holiday meal collections, search for recipes, create grocery lists, and even share your shopping lists with other app users (just in case you need Dad to make a quick pit-stop at the store to pick up those last few things you forgot!).

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Plus, after Thanksgiving is over, BigOven helps you create delicious meals using your leftovers that go beyond yet another turkey sandwich. There's a version for iOS, Android, and even WIndows Phone. It's free.

7. More Holiday Dinner! (iOS; $1.99)

Keep the kids busy (and feeling festive) while you're cooking with the More Holiday Dinner! app. Kids can create their own holiday menus, complete with realistic ingredients lists, and cook up their own entrees, side dishes, and desserts while you slave away over a hot oven. It's available for iOS and costs $1.99.

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6. Cookpad

Similar to Instagram for cooking, Cookpad goes a step further by allowing you to include recipes on your food posts. Cookpad makes it easy for you to share your recipes with your guests before the meal so you can make sure no one is allergic to your planned menu. After Thanksgiving dinner is over, upload photos of each dish to Cookpad to easily share your recipes with friends and strangers alike. It's available for iOS and Android and is free.

5. ThingToBring

If you've ever asked your guests to bring a side dish only to watch in horror as everyone unwrapped a bowl of mashed potatoes, then you'll love this free app for the iPhone. ThingToBring allows you to create a sign-up sheet for your event from your phone that can be as detailed as you want it to be.

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While we can't guarantee that this will prevent another mashed potato disaster, if your guests ignore your sign-up sheet, you have our permission to show them the door.

4. AllRecipes Dinner Spinner

If you find out at the last minute that your Uncle Brian is bringing his vegan girlfriend to dinner, don't panic. The AllRecipes Dinner Spinner lets you search for recipes by ingredients to include or exclude, making dishing up a vegan, gluten-free, or allergy-friendly dinner way less stressful, even at the last minute. Get it for free for iOS, Android, Kindle, or Windows Phone.

3. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Every good host knows that Thanksgiving dinner is only enjoyable when the kids are entertained. Get your meal off to the right start with this audio version of the classic tale. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving narrates the story of the first Thanksgiving, and will help your guests make it through at least the first few minutes of the meal in peace. It's available for iOS for $5.99.

2. NFL Mobile

Stay up-to-date on all of your favorite Thanksgiving football games with the NFL Mobile app for iOS, Android, or Windows Phone.

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Featuring news, features, and scores from around the league, it's the perfect companion to your Thanksgiving football games on the big screen (and may even help you find something in common with your football-obsessed niece). Oh, and it's free.

1. Skype

Even if you burn the turkey, you can still save Thanksgiving by focusing on what really matters: your family and friends. When you can't gather around the same table on Thanksgiving, there's no substitute for bringing everyone together with Skype. Plus, your far-flung family members won't even know you burned the turkey! Get it for iOS, Android, Amazon Fire, or Windows Phone--it's free.