Personal Thanksgiving Dinner Coach for your iPhone

A free iPhone app that walks you through making Thanksgiving dinner is something to be thankful for.
Written by Denise Amrich, Contributor

Everybody looks forward to Thanksgiving, but some of us have noticed that our grandmothers seemed to have a special, secret Thanksgivng-dinner-making knowledge that didn't quite get passed down to us.

If this applies to you, and you've been yearning to try your hand at making a complete but basic Thanksgiving dinner, you won't need to go over the river and through the woods -- you simply need to turn to a higher power. By that, I mean your iPhone.

As it turns out, other sites on the CBS Interactive network have editors just as brilliant as the ones we have here, and the CHOW team put together a wonderful iPhone app that is sure to make your Thanksgiving successful.

It's like having your own personal Thanksgiving coach standing by to cheer you on and help you out.

The CHOW Thanksgiving Dinner Coach app has a friendly, accessible feel. It takes you by the hand and leads you through the Thanksgiving process. First, you you choose from eight dishes (plus the turkey, of course) to grace your feast table.

The app then gives you a shopping list based on those choices. The list even includes the cooking equipment you'll need to pull off a great meal. You can go over the list ahead of time and check off the stuff you already have, so you don't need to overbuy.

After that, the app tells you what to do each day leading up to Thanksgiving. For example, if you bought a frozen turkey, you'll want to put it in the fridge to defrost on Monday. You can precook some foods on Wednesday, leaving the turkey to take up the oven on Thanksgiving Day.

I really like this app. Although it isn't uber-gourmet, and there seems to be some dispute among reviewers over the very best way to make gravy, it does teach basic, simple ways to make the popular Thanksgiving foods, pretty much from scratch, with real ingredients. That seems pretty healthy to me! It beats the instant mashed potatoes, for sure.

Also, anything that provides encouragement while cooking, helps with specific step-by-step instructions along the way, and lets us de-stress about something that's supposed to be fun but is often dreaded and scary has got to contribute to a healthier experience.

But wait, there's more! There is also a contest. If you visit the Secret Smartphone Sweepstakes Page and Like the app on Facebook, you'll be entered for a chance to win a brand new smartphone.

Oh, and did I mention that the CHOW Thanksgiving Dinner Coach app is free? Now that's something to be thankful for.

Editorial standards