Homemade Roasted Thanksgiving Day Turkey with all the Sides

How Many Steps will it take to Burn off the average Thanksgiving Meal?

The Calories from Your Thanksgiving Dinner Could Take 46,000+ Steps to Burn Off!

Thanksgiving Day is a cherished American holiday celebrated with family, gratitude, and an abundance of delicious food. From the succulent turkey to the indulgent pies, this holiday is notorious for its culinary delights. However, with this feast comes our once-a-year – staggering intake of calories. Let’s delve into the caloric extravaganza of Thanksgiving and explore how much the average person consumes at this holiday meal and the effort required to burn those calories.

The Feast

At the heart of the Thanksgiving table lies the star of the show: the turkey. A typical serving of roasted turkey (about 3.5 ounces) contains approximately 190 calories. But let’s not forget the trimmings—the creamy mashed potatoes, savory stuffing, buttery rolls, and rich gravy. A single serving of mashed potatoes (without gravy) adds around 237 calories, while a single roll can account for 80-100 calories.

And of course, there are the decadent and delicious sides that we look forward to all year and then top it off with a whopping serving of the savory stuffing, where a cup can clock in at around 350 calories, and a generous pour of gravy adds an extra 50 calories per serving. As for the sweet endings, pumpkin pie, a Thanksgiving staple, averages around 320 calories per slice, and if you add a dollop of whipped cream, that’s an additional 50 calories. And don’t forget the ice cream too!

Considering the generous portions and the variety of dishes typically enjoyed on Thanksgiving, the average person can easily consume anywhere from 3000 to 4500 calories in a single meal.

Holiday Libations

Let’s not overlook the festive beverages that accompany this grand meal. Wine, a popular choice during Thanksgiving dinner, contributes its fair share of calories. It is always in abundance and free-flowing at our Thanksgiving Table!

A typical glass of red or white wine contains approximately 120 calories. For those who prefer something more robust, a serving of eggnog can pack a hefty punch, containing about 350 calories per cup, significantly when spiked with rum or brandy, adding more calories to the mix.

The Total Tally

Considering the generous portions and the variety of dishes typically enjoyed on Thanksgiving, the average person can easily consume anywhere from 3000 to 4500 calories in a single meal. Adding a couple of glasses of wine or a cup of eggnog can add an additional 240 to 700 calories plus, depending on the quantity consumed.

The Breakdown

To put this into perspective, an adult’s average daily caloric intake ranges from 2000 to 2500 calories. Thus, a Thanksgiving feast often represents significantly more than a typical day’s worth of calories consumed in just one sitting or while grazing all day during the extended Thanksgiving Day Festivities. This excessive intake can lead to feelings of sluggishness, discomfort, and guilt for many individuals or what many call a food coma from overindulgence.

The Burn

So, what does it take to burn off all those extra Thanksgiving calories? The energy expenditure to burn off these indulgences is substantial and often requires much more effort than anticipated.

To burn off 3000 to 4500 calories, an individual might need to engage in several hours of rigorous exercise. For instance:

  • Running: A person weighing around 160 pounds would need to run at a moderate pace (about 5 miles per hour) for approximately 4 to 6 hours to burn off 3000 to 4500 calories.
  • Cycling: Cycling vigorously could take about 5 to 7 hours to burn off the same amount of calories consumed during Thanksgiving dinner.
  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT): HIIT workouts, known for their efficiency in burning calories, might require 3 to 4 hours of intense exercise to reach the calorie-burning goal.

These estimations can vary based on an individual’s weight, metabolism, and exercise intensity. Burning off the excess calories from a lavish Thanksgiving meal demands a substantial commitment to physical activity. KURU Footwear

Moderation and Balance

Thanksgiving is a time for celebration and enjoyment, including the pleasures of delicious food. However, it’s also essential to maintain a sense of balance and moderation. Here are a few strategies to enjoy the holiday feast without going overboard:

  • Portion Control: Instead of piling the plate high, take smaller portions and savor each bite. Enjoying a taste of everything can be fulfilling without overindulging.
  • Mindful Eating: Pay attention to hunger cues and eat slowly. This can help prevent overeating and allow time for the brain to register fullness.
  • Physical Activity: Incorporate physical activities into the holiday festivities. Take a post-meal walk with family and friends to aid digestion and burn a few extra calories.
  • Healthy Swaps: Consider incorporating healthier alternatives into traditional recipes, such as using Greek yogurt instead of sour cream or reducing sugar in desserts.



With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we’ve got something that’s sure to add some spice to your holiday preparations!

KURU Footwear is excited to announce the release of an eye-opening report that delves deep into the calorie counts of America’s most beloved Thanksgiving dishes. 🦃

Picture this: on Thanksgiving Day alone, the average American indulges in a staggering 3,348 calories! It’s a feast like no other, and we’ve got all the delicious details.

Soon, we’ll gather around the table with friends or family, reminding ourselves again what we’re most grateful for. And if we’re lucky, we may also get to enjoy an extra delectable meal full of the harvest season’s most tasty offerings—and perhaps an extra big one.

It’s safe to say many of us *ahem* not-so-slightly exceed our body’s caloric needs on Thanksgiving Day. But just how many calories do we typically consume during Thanksgiving Dinner? And how many steps does it take to burn it off?

“At KURU, we love the health benefits of walking, so we wanted to find out. We rounded up the most popular Thanksgiving dishes and discovered that the average American could consume 3,348 calories this Thanksgiving dinner alone—over 165% more than the recommended daily intake!”

So, just how many steps would it take to burn off your favorite dishes? Let’s find out.

And here’s the juicy part—they’ve taken it a step further (literally!) by calculating how many steps it would take to burn off those indulgent Thanksgiving calories.

Food for Thought

Let’s remember: calories often get a bad rap, but they are a needed, good thing for our bodies to operate in a healthy manner! They are a neutral metric that measures energy expenditure.

We all have optimum amounts to maintain our body’s composition. While the calories you need to sustain a healthy lifestyle will vary based on your dietary needs and activity level, the general recommendation is 2,000 calories/day.

It’s absolutely OK to indulge on occasion and truly embrace the holidays! Healthy lifestyles are less about avoiding eating “too much”— and more about a balanced approach and a product of what we most consistently do.

So, from a mindset of balance, how many steps would you need to take to burn an equal number of calories as Thanksgiving Dinner, or “burn it off”?

If you were to “walk off” the excess 1,348 calories from Thanksgiving Dinner, it would take the average American 30,223 steps.

View the chart below to find out America’s favorite Thanksgiving foods in 2023! How do they compare to last year’s list? New to the top dishes in 2023: deviled eggs and turkey gravy. The two foods that got knocked off? Green olives and giblet gravy.

Snacks, Appetizers, and Extras

Food Item Serving Size Calories Fat (Grams) Steps to Burn
Cheese Ball (w/ nuts) 2 Tbsp. 246 20g 5515
Crackers 10 177 7g 3968
Potato Chips 1 oz. (10 chips) 150 10g 3363
Deviled Eggs 2 prepared egg halves 134 3g 3004
Apple Cider 1 cup 117 0g 2623
Butter 1 Tbsp. 102 11g 2287
Ranch Dip 2 Tbsp. 70 6g 1569
Raw Vegetables 1 cup 20 0g 448


Side Dishes and Main Course

Food Item Serving Size Calories Fat (Grams) Steps to Burn
Stuffing (Bread) 1 cup 355 17g 7958
Cranberry/Walnut Salad 1 cup 348 12g 7801
Sweet Potato Casserole 1 cup 276 6g 6187
Mashed Potatoes 1 cup 238 8g 5335
Cranberry Sauce 1/2 cup 209 0g 4685
Roasted Turkey (no skin) 4 slices (4 oz.) 190 6g 4259
Green Been Casserole 1 cup 143 8g 3206
Dinner Rolls 1 roll 86 1g 1928
Turkey Gravy 1/2 cup 61 4g 1368



Food Item Serving Size Calories Fat (Grams) Steps to Burn
Pumpkin Pie 1/8 of 9″ pie 323 15g 7241
Whipped Cream 2 Tbsp. 103 11g 2309


Tips for a Healthy and Wholesome Thanksgiving

Know it’s OK… to indulge! A healthy lifestyle is more about what we consistently do than a one-time meal. Enjoy your time with loved ones, and let yourself have some fun.

Moderation is Key. If you want to be conscious of your consumption, start with smaller-than-you-think portions and wait 20 minutes before getting more. You may find you get fuller more quickly than you think!

“Get a Post-Meal Walk-In. A post-meal walk can do wonders for our blood sugar levels and digestion! Strap on a pair of ultra-supportive KURU shoes for some extra spring in your step and even healthier heels.”


(KURU Footwear used Google Trends to determine the most popular Thanksgiving dishes in 2022 and paired that information with serving size and calorie estimates from the Calorie Control Council.)

They used Omni Calculator’s Steps to Calories tool to determine how many steps it would take to “burn” the calories for each dish. They used average body measurements reported by the CDC to make these calculations.


Calorie Control Council – Calories & Fat in Popular Holiday Dishes

CDC – FastStats – Body Measurements

Omni Calculator – Steps to Calories Calculator

Here is the link to their feature – https://www.kurufootwear.com/a/blog/thanksgiving-dinner-calories


“At KURU, we’re on a mission to help you Heel Better™ with footwear technology designed to relieve foot pain so you can live a life you love. Since launching our innovative technology in 2008, we’ve received more than 30,000 five-star reviews from thousands of customers who tell us their KURU shoes helped them with conditions (such as plantar fasciitis) and got them back to doing what they love. Explore our comparison guide to find the best shoes for plantar fasciitis for you.”


Kuru Shoes Research on Thanksgiving Consumption and What it Takes to Burn it Off!