These Wonderfully Horrific Thanksgiving Disaster Stories Will Make You Feel Better About Your Cooking

So there I am, casually trolling the interwebs for a spectacular, knock-my-in-laws’-socks-off pecan pie recipe, when I discover this comment on a Paula Deen Bourbon Pecan Pie recipe:

It brings up so many questions, right? Specifically: what the heck happened that this pie — which otherwise holds a five-star rating with 239 reviews — turned out to be such an epic disaster that Anonymous labeled it “deeply upsetting?” Did it somehow morph into Anonymous’ past relationship? Was the face of a demon revealed in via arrangement of the pecans? Did it spew racist propaganda throughout all of dessert in true Paula Deen fashion?

All Deen jabs aside, the Thanksgiving table looks a lot different than it did twenty years ago, what with the internet and its ability to yield thousands of results for anything you might be searching for. Last week, I was getting a haircut and my stylist (I’m super fancy, yo!) began chatting with me about the twice-baked sweet potatoes with bacon brittle she makes every year. So of course I looked up the recipe when I got home and yup — there it was, along with a stylized photo rendered in glorious RGB on my screen.

How does one sift through all this recipe overload? By reading the comments, of course. Comments sections on recipes are vital to weeding out the good from the bad, the tasty from the bland. Comments sections are where home chefs offer up helpful tweaks and spin tales of food triumphs and failures alike. And, as evidenced, sometimes those failures can be spectacular.

But it’s not just comments sections that the internet so generously gives us. It also gives us the ability to share stories with millions of others out there, via glowing screen and clacking keyboard.

In the spirit of the holiday — and because there’s nothing I’d rather do less than argue about politics around the dinner table, so maybe this can serve as some sort of a distraction or a topic change — I posed a question via AskReddit, asking for users’ most fantastic Thanksgiving kitchen or recipe fails.

User FirstForFun44, spoke of the perils of letting someone into your circle of kitchen trust with unknown cooking abilities:

I let someone else into my kitchen, specifically a friend’s hookup / SO. She just fucked up everything she touched. The green bean casserole was raw, the stuffing was mushy, the bread was under-cooked… Anyways, I don’t trust people but I can’t do it all alone… I trust my mother the most and very few others; when I find a girl who can hang with me in the kitchen and be on my level I’ll get married.

TheDefiniteIntegral’s tale is the perfect combination of family politics and senility:

Grandma forgot that she was going to a niece’s for dinner, and started thawing a bird. Remembered her plans, then decided to cook the bird anyways and bring it.

Might not have been a big deal, except 1) she was losing her faculties so no one knew how long it was in her freezer, how long it sat out before cooking, or if she cooked it enough. 2) The niece decided to have fish, not turkey so it seemed like grandma was passively aggressively stealing her dinner.

All the guests got to choose between offending the host, or offending grandma.

User atworknotworking89 was so emotionally scarred by a burnt turkey that Grandma never got to live it down:

One time my grandmother burnt the turkey. It was disastrous to me as a kid, because I hated crispy food. It was such a huge deal to me that every year for like 5 years, I would hover over my grandma in the kitchen and ask her if she was burning it again.

Poor grandma :( I woulda killed me.