Alliant Energy: What It Costs To Serve A Thanksgiving Feast? - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Alliant Energy: What It Costs To Serve A Thanksgiving Feast?


You know how much you spent on your Thanksgiving feast, but do you know how much you spend to cook it and clean up after the meal? Alliant Energy, which serves parts of the Quad City area says the good news is the cost for energy has actually gone down this year.

According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, the average cost for Thanksgiving dinner for ten people is $49.48. That's 28 cents, or about 0.56 percent higher from last year. According to Alliant, the price of electricity to make that meal in Iowa decreased by seven cents, or about 4.6 percent compared to last year.

Here's a look at just what it costs to make that meal:

For a 16 pound, stuffed turkey roasted in the over for 3 and a half hours.

Electricity Cost      Natural Gas Cost

$0.82                       $0.32

Large pan of mashed potatoes cooked for 20 minutes

$0.10                       $0.02

Giblet gravy cooked on the stove for 10 minutes

$0.05                      $0.01

Homemade dinner rolls baked for 30 minutes

$0.12                      $0.05

Green bean hot dish baked in an oven for 30 minutes

$0.12                     $0.05

Two pumpkin pies baked in an oven for 1 hour

$0.23                    $0.19

Total Energy Value

$1.43 (electric)    $0.54 (gas)


To save even more money, Alliant offers these energy-saving tips:

· Food keeps cooking even after you turn off the burner. When food is almost ready, turn off the oven or burners and let existing heat finish the cooking for you.

· The turkey is traditionally stuffed early in the morning and roasted for hours. Since it's a long, slow cook, there's no need to preheat your oven, even when the recipe suggests it. This also holds true for a holiday ham. In fact, unless you're baking breads or pastries, you may not need to preheat the oven at all.

· If your holiday cooking doesn't heat up your house, your guests will. Turn your thermostat down 3 to 5 degrees to save energy while staying comfortable.

· When using an electric oven, cook as much of your meal in it at one time as possible. Foods with different cooking temperatures can often be cooked simultaneously - variations of 25 degrees in either direction still produce good results and save energy.

· Shut the door. Resist the urge to open the oven door, as doing so will decrease the temperature inside by 25 to 30 degrees. Use your oven light and look through the window instead.

· Use glass or ceramic pans. They heat faster than metal pans and the cooking temperature may be lowered by 25°.

· Don't overlook the other cooking appliances at Thanksgiving. Fast and efficient microwave ovens use around 50 percent less energy than conventional ovens.

· When cleaning up after dinner, do not use your oven's self-cleaning cycle unless you have a major cleaning job on your hands. Wipe up minor spills and splatters with a damp cloth. If you do use the self-clean, start it while the oven is still hot.

· Running a dishwasher with a full load of dishes usually uses less hot water than doing them by hand.

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