Happy Thanksgiving, Island Style!  Wait, what does that mean?  Well in the Cayman Islands we observe three Thanksgivings.  Canadian Thanksgiving in October.  American Thanksgiving in November and Cayman Thanksgiving in December.  That’s a lot of turkey!  But that’s what you get from an island that boasts over 130 nationalities.   

What is a Cayman Thanksgiving?

Cayman Thanksgiving differs slightly from our neighbours up north.  This is not an official holiday, but a day observed on the first Sunday in December to reflect on the hurricane season past and give thanks for the safe passage of the hurricane season.  This is quite understandable if you are aware of the vast devastation that took place at the passing of Hurricane Ivan in 2004.  A new holiday: established in 2010, each year the emphasis has been on growing the focus on the Caymanian heritage and culture..


Cayman Thanksgiving is a weekend-long national celebration to honour Caymanian heritage, culture, and way of life.  Their mission is to establish an opportunity for the Cayman Community to give thanks for the blessings of life.

If you are invited to a Cayman Thanksgiving supper here are some of the foods to look out for and try:

Cayman Style Beef

Cayman Style Lobster

Turtle stew

Celebrating The American Thanksgiving

While the Cayman Thanksgiving is a more family oriented and cultural celebration.  However, the island really gets festive and celebrate the American Thanksgiving the fourth Thursday in November.  The local supermarkets will cater a full turkey dinner for any size family saving you the trouble of cooking all day.  It is not an official holiday so having your food catered comes in very handy.  If you choose to dine out, there are several restaurants and hotels that offer special turkey dinners on Thursday.  Cayman Cabana offers a vegan menu with all the trimmings so you can celebrate the day but keep things light.

5 Easy (popular) Vegetarian Thanksgiving sides to make

Chances are if you are invited to a Thanksgiving dinner you may feel the need to bring a dish.  And because Thanksgiving is all about the sides, I found 5 popular and easy vegetarian sides you could make at home (or purchase) to take with you. Click on each for a link to the recipes and directions.

The holy grail, Mashed Potatoes was voted by my American friends as the best Thanksgiving side dish. Want to sneak in some vegetables? Swap out half the potatoes for cauliflower. No one will know 🙂

Coming in second was Stuffing, as a Thanksgiving essential. I enjoy a good stuffing! Anyone knows why this is only a holiday dish? It is way too good to be relegated to once per year.

Cranberry Sauce – please see item number 5 if you cannot make this at home.  Store bought sauce will not make you any new friends.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts – If you can perfectly roast these veggies with a crisp exterior, you will win a few hearts (or maybe just mine) and an invite to next year’s thanksgiving.

And Finally, Bread rolls – feel free to cheat and order some fresh rolls from Captains Bakery on West Bay Road to take with you.  After all, we will need something to mop up all that gravy, and who says no to hot rolls 😊

Every great meal deserves a great cocktail

Every great meal deserves a great cocktail. And if you are not into cooking I hope you in to drinking, or at least making it. If you are wondering what to make, well you in luck! Check out these skinny cocktails that will certainly bring some balance to your thanksgiving meal!


Enjoy and Happy thanksgiving.  Whether you are celebrating with the Americans or both we all have so much to be thankful for.

With Thanks

Enjoy and Happy thanksgiving.  Whether you are celebrating with the Americans or both we all have so much to be thankful for. Thanksgiving should be more than a day but an attitude, a movement. I am thankful that every week you come here and read my stories.