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The Real Cost of a Thanksgiving Dinner

By Ben Steverman and Yvette Romero - 2012-11-19T22:20:01Z

Photograph by StockFood

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Turkey Prep

Before you can serve the perfect turkey, it needs a lot of TLC so that it not only tastes good, but has that rich, golden color. "Brining adds flavor but can dry out the turkey," warns Colicchio. "I don't do it."

$3: Butcher's twine -- Trussing a turkey ensures that it cooks evenly.

$13: Bulb baster -- Basting keeps the bird moist and helps brown the skin.

$20: Flavor injector, Williams-Sonoma -- Looks threatening but it'll make your turkey more moist and tender.

$10: Turkey brine and bag, Crate & Barrel -- Brining the bird can firm up the breasts and add flavor.

Running Tally: $123