Hosts and attendees are considering how to balance the festivities and holiday cheer with quite the opposing force: COVID-19. While nothing is fool proof – wearing a mask, social distancing, and spending time with just your close family are the recommended steps you can take to mitigate your risk.

 

Creative solutions and smart tips to consider as you plan

Rethink Grocery Shopping

Rethinking grocery shopping can help minimize your exposure to Covid-19. Avoid going into crowded stores during busy times. Online shopping is a great alternative and most of your favourite stores will probably have an online delivery service.

 

Add To-Go Boxes to the List

Spread the holiday cheer with holiday meals for guests who may decide not to attend your gathering due to Covid-19 concerns. This is an especially friendly gesture for elderly family members. Pack their servings in recyclable plates and deliver them.

 

Keep It Cleaner Than Ever

Anyone preparing food should wash their hands for at least 20 seconds before and after preparing, serving, and eating food. Keep sanitizer bottles in the kitchen, bathroom, and areas where guests gather.

 

Avoid the Buffet

Reduce the number of people handling the food and serving utensils to prevent spread of Covid-19. While there is no current evidence that COVID-19 is transmitted through food. It is a good idea to assign one person to serve the meal and consider a plating strategy during menu planning.

 

Communicate

Part of organizing holiday meals is communicating with your guests. Be sure to let guests know in advance of the precautions you are taking to protect everyone against COVID-19. If there are any precautions you’d like to follow, share that information ahead of the gathering.

 

Customize your menu

Set a suitable menu for the number of guests you will have this year. Keep everyone safe, fewer people will travel and meet in person this holiday season. Smaller crowds mean smaller menus. Narrow down the classic recipes to serve the right number of people or search for new recipes that are better suited for smaller gatherings.

 

Rely on make-ahead dishes

Holiday cooking can be stressful. Choose smart recipes that can help minimize the number of people in the kitchen. Pre-cook your potatoes and other foods that can be easily re-heated.