The holidays are an exciting time for everyone. With friends and family coming together to celebrate, parties and dinners of all sizes will be planned and delicious food and drinks will be had. Unfortunately, when it comes to cooking a feast like Thanksgiving, it is a given that your electricity bills may also be impacted. Direct Energy provides some beneficial tips that all families can use to stop gobbling extra energy while still being able to enjoy the holidays and their favorite meals.
The National Turkey Federation estimates that 46 million turkeys were consumed last Thanksgiving with the average turkey weighing in at 16 pounds. It is recommended to cook a thawed, stuffed turkey of that size for at least 4-4.5 hours in an electric oven set at 350 degrees. An electric oven set at 350 degrees for an hour uses 2 kWh of electricity… If you do the math, that means you could be consuming roughly 8 kWh of electricity just to cook your turkey, without including side dishes and desserts! Loosely translated, that’s nearly 27 million turkeys that may be roasting along in electric ovens this year, using more than 213 million kWh of electricity to cook the grand marshal of the holiday meal!
With all of the other additional expenses that you will incur over the holidays, you shouldn’t also worry about your monthly electricity bill. Check out these tips to avoid gobbling up extra energy while still enjoying all of the food and fun!
- Use an ice chest or cooler for drinks if you’re hosting a large group. This cuts down on wasting electricity when the refrigerator door is opened and closed frequently.
- If possible, use a crock pot or microwave for side dishes.
- Take advantage of the pre-heated oven by preparing your cakes, cookies and side dishes while others are cooking.
- Turn the thermostat down to 68 degrees or lower. You can enjoy the warmth being emitted from the oven and stove.
- Since heat rises, switch the blades of your ceiling fans upwards to draw heat down into the rooms you’re using.
- Consider an alternate method of cooking your turkey, like grilling or frying it outside. These methods will cut down on cooking time as well so that your turkey can make it to your table faster.
- Use energy efficient LED lighting for decorating.
- Close doors and leave off lights and ceiling fans in rooms you’re not using
We hope these tips carve down your kWh usage this Thanksgiving! Before you head off to your planning, cooking and feasting, we want to leave you with something tasty and sweet! Here is a recipe for the Perfect Pecan Pie, courtesy of our very own Direct Energy employee Trish Bower.
- 9 inch pie crust (unbaked)
- 3 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 sugar
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon-ish Vanilla extract – a little extra never hurt!
- 1 heaping cup of pecans
- 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Roll out pie crust into pie pan. In mixing bowl, combine eggs, corn syrup and sugar. Stir in vanilla and then pecans. Finally, add butter. Pour into unbaked pie crust. Bake for 10 minutes at 425 degrees. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and continue to bake for 45-60 minutes. Pie is done when the center has reached 200 degrees (or when a knife inserted in the center comes out with clear liquid – no sugar granules). Cool for at least 2 hours on a wire rack before serving.
Now, go forth and eat some turkey!