TODAY   |  November 24, 2013

Millions expected to eat out for Thanksgiving

According to a recent survey, more than 14 million Americans will dine out at a restaurant for Thanksgiving dinner this year, giving the classic holiday meal a new twist. TODAY’s Lester Holt reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> national restaurant association , as many as 14 million people could be letting someone else slave over the stove putting a new spin on an old holiday tradition.

>> everybody in his own way knew what he had to be thankful for.

>> traditionally thanksgiving is a holiday featured as a feast at home. this morning nearly 145 million people are expected to trade in the home cooked meal for a hand crafted one at restaurants across the nation.

>> thanksgiving is a labor intensive meal. it makes sense if you want to gather with a bunch of friends or family, that you go out.

>> giving them plenty of time to talk turkey. chef nicholas wilbur of new york city 's the east pole has been preparing for his guests for more than a month.

>> we'll see about 300, 400 people. thanksgiving is a great experience. we want them to come here, feel at home and relax.

>> at seasonal restaurant, turkey and all the trimmings come with a twist.

>> thanksgiving this year we'll be serving a three course thanksgiving dinner , but not traditional american thanksgiving . we'll celebrate the holidays by doing some of our austrian classic dishes.

>> the trend is people are cooking less at home, even on thanksgiving.

>> reporter: at home, the average cost of a full turkey dinner is roughly $49, enough to feet ten people. out dinners can expect to spend more than that per person.

>> i prefer to eat out. it's easier for cleanup.

>> bringing new traditions to a classic holiday feast.

>> if you don't want to do this, you can always order a restaurant meal and bring it to your home so you get the best of both worlds .

>> or just parts of it. i'm ordering a cooked turkey. just the turkey.

>> you saw how my house was when we had the dinner party with the four of us. i have 13 people coming down, all my in laws are coming down which i'm loving, but i can't have dinner at my house.

>> you may look into the camera and go i'm loving -- well played.

>> i love it. i'm very happy for them all to come because we'll see the parade and everything. i can't cook and i do like to cook.

>> you're a fantastic cook.

>> i'm doing the lester order-in suggestion.

>> there you go.

>> and you're cooking, right?

>> we -- wife is cooking,