Feasting with your benefit

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Remember your commissary for Thanksgiving savings

Thanksgiving is almost here and for most of us, that means family, football and an epic meal. Turkeys and pies, casseroles and cakes can cause your grocery bill to quickly spiral out of control.

“If you’re in charge of the Thanksgiving spread and have a smaller budget than you would like, you’re not alone,” said Tracie Russ, the Defense Commissary Agency’s sales director. “The good news is that your commissary can help you have an amazing holiday meal on a budget.”

With these simple tips and money-saving promotions, your commissary will help you lay out a Thanksgiving spread to be proud of while not busting your budget:

Make a list and stick to it.

The commissary website has lots of holiday recipes. Go to the Recipes page, select the “Holiday” category and click “Apply.” Use these recipes to help make your grocery list. At the store, don’t get distracted by impulse buys that can destroy your budget.

Shop your pantry.

Plan dishes around ingredients you already have on hand.

Load commissary coupons

Load commissary coupons onto your Commissary Rewards Card before you shop. Don’t have a rewards card yet? Pick one up at your local commissary and register your card.

Check out the savings on your commissary website.

Visit the Savings Center for coupons, sales flyers and featured items.

Get your turkey free.

One of the commissaries’ largest promotions is the worldwide “Your Turkey Could Be Free” recipe/coupon booklet. Available in commissaries, this 24-page recipe booklet has coupons valued at more than $40, and they’re good through Dec. 31. The coupons provide commissary shoppers significant savings when purchasing holiday meal essentials, with the opportunity to earn a free turkey. Look for these booklets in your local commissary beginning Nov. 1.

Mix do-it-yourself with store-made foods

From appetizers to apple pies, your commissary can help save you time and money with their prepared foods.

Buy produce that is in season.

Using fruits and veggies that are in season and readily available will save you money. See a list at the USDA’s Seasonal Produce Guide page.

Take advantage of the “Celebrate the Holidays” promotion

General Mills’ promotion features high-value in-store coupons on holiday cooking and baking items.

“The holidays are busy times and can be expensive,” Russ said. “Your commissary is the solution for a great Thanksgiving meal on an affordable budget.”