In our series “Expressions of Emotion,” we show you how to tell others how much you love and care for them. This year, show your friends and family how grateful you are with one of these classic, funny, or food-themed Thanksgiving quotes.

It’s hard for us to choose what we love most about Thanksgiving. Maybe it’s the mashed potatoes, cranberry relish, roast turkey, or stuffing, or pumpkin pie, or the triple helping of football, or the parade… There’s so much to love about the holiday, but the one thing we always come back to is the gratitude.

It has long been a tradition to express gratitude around the Thanksgiving table, but there’s more to it than just saying “thank you.” Research shows that practicing gratitude is consistently and strongly associated with greater happiness (as is an extra piece of that pumpkin pie!).

This is an image of Thanksgiving quotes. Plate of sliced ham.

“Gratitude” is derived from the Latin word gratia, which translates to gratefulness, grace, or graciousness, depending on the context. Practicing gratitude is an all-encompassing act that shows appreciation for everything a person receives or experiences. Gratitude helps people improve their health, feel more positive emotions, bask in good experiences, handle adversity more smoothly, and build strong relationships.

The tradition of gratitude will lift the spirits of people from all walks of life and it doesn’t — and shouldn’t — stop at Thanksgiving. To get the turkey wings flapping, we’ve compiled some of our favorite Thanksgiving quotes that will inspire you to count your blessings, and maybe even make you laugh. And to be grateful for a certain kind of pie…

Thanksgiving quotes

1. “Thanksgiving Day is a good day to recommit our energies to giving thanks and just giving.” – Amy Grant

2. “Not what we say about our blessings but how we use them is the true measure of Thanksgiving.” – W. T. Purkiser

3. “I love Thanksgiving because it’s a holiday that is centered around food and family, two things that are of utmost importance to me.” – Marcus Samuelsson

4. “I am happy because I am grateful. I choose to be grateful. That gratitude allows me to be happy.” – Will Arnett

5. “We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.” – Frederick Koenig

6. “Gratitude is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.” – Lionel Hampton

7. “Thanksgiving is an emotional holiday. People travel thousands of miles to be with people they only see once a year. And then discover once a year is way too often.” – Johnny Carson

8. “Always have an attitude of gratitude.” – Sterling K. Brown

9. “Wear gratitude like a cloak, and it will feed every corner of your life” – Rumi

10. “Good mashed potato is one of the great luxuries of life.” – Lindsey Bareham

11. “The turkey. The sweet potatoes. The stuffing. The pumpkin pie. Is there anything else we all can agree so vehemently about? I don’t think so.” – Nora Ephron

12. “If there’s one thing I’ve learned over thee eons, it’s that you can’t give up on your family, no matter how tempting they make it.” – Rick Riordan

13.”Thanksgiving is the meal we aspire for other meals to resemble.” – Jonathan Safran Foer

14. “For me, every hour is grace. And I feel gratitude in my heart each time I can meet someone and look at his or her smile.” – Elie Wiesel

This is an image of Thanksgiving quotes. Family eating Thanksgiving dinner outdoors.

15. “Showing gratitude is one of the simplest yet most powerful things humans can do for each other.” – Randy Pausch

16. “Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse.” – Henry Van Dyke

17. “Thanksgiving was never meant to be shut up in a single day.” – Robert Caspar Lintner

18. “If you want to turn your life around, try thankfulness. It will change your life mightily.” – Gerald Good

19. “He who thanks but with the lips thanks but in part; the full, the true Thanksgiving comes from the heart.” – J.A. Shedd

20. “Give thanks not just on Thanksgiving Day but every day of your life. Appreciate and never take for granted all that you have.” – Catherine Pulsifer

21. “Appreciation can change a day, even change a life. Your willingness to put it into words is all that is necessary.” – Margaret Cousins

22. “There is always, always something to be thankful for.” – Rhonda Bryne

23. “No one has ever become poor by giving.” – Anne Frank

24. “We must find the time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives.” – John F. Kennedy

25. “Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” – Charles Dickens

26. “Thanksgiving is a joyous invitation to shower the world with love and gratitude.” – Amy Leigh Mercree

27. “The more you practice the art of thankfulness, the more you have to be thankful for.” – Norman Vincent Peale

28. “When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.” – Willie Nelson

29. “What if, today, we were just grateful for everything?” – Charlie Brown

30. “The thankful receiver bears a plentiful harvest.” – William Blake

31. “I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual.” – Henry David Thoreau

32. “Thanksgiving isn’t just a day. It’s a way we can live our lives every day.” – Katrina Mayer

33. “We should certainly count our blessings, but we should also make our blessings count.” – Neal A. Maxell

34. “If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.” – Meister Eckhart

35. “I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.” – Erma Bombeck

36. “I can’t cook a Thanksgiving dinner. All I can make is cold cereal and maybe toast.” – Charlie Brown

37. “Thanksgiving is so called because we are all so thankful that it only comes once a year.” – P.J. O’Rourke

38. “A new survey found that 80% of men claim they help cook Thanksgiving dinner. Which makes sense, when you hear them consider saying ‘That smells good’ to be helping.” – Jimmy Fallon

39. “The Thanksgiving tradition is, we overeat. ‘Hey, how about at Thanksgiving we just eat a lot?’ ‘But we do that every day!’ ‘Oh. What if we eat a lot with people that annoy the hell out of us.'” – Jim Gaffigan

40. “For those of you who cannot be with family this Thanksgiving, please resist the urge to brag.” – Andy Borowitz

41. “There are only two ways to live your live. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other as is though everything is a miracle.” – Albert Einstein

42. “The real gift of gratitude is that the more grateful you are, the more present you become.” – Robert Holden

43. “Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.” – Eckhart Tolle

44. “Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.” – William Shakespeare

45. “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” – William Arthur Ward

46. “Let us remember that, as much has been given us, much will be expected from us, and that true homage comes from the heart as well as from the lips, and shows itself in deeds.” – Theodore Roosevelt

47. “Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out.” – John Wooden

48. “Gratitude is a quality similar to electricity: It must be produced and discharged and used up in order to exist at all.” – William Faulkner

49. “Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

50. “Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is.” – Ernest Hemingway

51. “If you stand in the meat section at the grocery store long enough, you start to get mad at turkeys. There’s turkey ham, turkey bologna, turkey pastrami. Someone needs to tell the turkey, ‘Man, just be yourself.'” – Mitch Hedberg

52. “The Thankstini: A fun and delicious new novelty drink I invented. Cranberry juice, potato vodka, and a bouillon cube. Tastes just like a turkey dinner.” – Barney Stinson, How I Met Your Mother

53. “It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without a little emotional scarring.” – Friends

54. “It’s not too much food. This is what we’ve been training for our whole lives. This is our destiny; this is our finest hour.” – Lorelai Gilmore, Gilmore Girls

55. “Overeating at Thanksgiving is a case in point. It’s a national tradition.” – Eric Samuel Timm, Static Jedi: The Art of Hearing God Through the Noise

This is an image of Thanksgiving quotes. Thanksgiving turkey and side dishes.

56. “Coexistence: What the farmer does with the turkey — until Thanksgiving.” – Mike Connolly

57. “I suppose I will die never knowing what pumpkin pie tastes like when you have room for it.” – Robert Brault

58. “An optimist is a person who starts a new diet on Thanksgiving Day.” – Irv Kupcinet

59. “I’m looking forward to seeing pie this Thanksgiving more than members of my own family.” – Damien Fahey

60. “Thanksgiving is America’s national chow-down feast, the one occasion each year when gluttony becomes a patriotic duty.” – Michael Dresser

61. “I like football. I find it’s an exciting strategic game. It’s a great way to avoid conversation with your family at Thanksgiving.” – Craig Ferguson

62. “Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread, and pumpkin pie.” – Jim Davis

63. “If you think about a Thanksgiving dinner, it’s really like making a large chicken” – Ina Garten

64. “But see, in our open clearings, how golden the melons lie; enrich them with sweets and spices, and give us the pumpkin-pie!” – Margaret Junkin Preston

65. “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.” – Melody Beattie

66. “It has been an unchallengeable American doctrine that cranberry sauce, a pink goo with overtones of sugared tomatoes, is a delectable necessity of the Thanksgiving board and that turkey is uneatable without it.” – Alistair Cooke

67. “Cooking tip: Wrap turkey leftovers in aluminum foil and throw them out.” – Nicole Hollander

68. “Thanksgiving Day, man — not a good day to be my pants.” – Kevin James

69. “Pie makes everybody happy.” – Laurie Halse Anderson

70. “Thanksgiving: Bringing out the best in family dysfunction since 1863.” – Unknown

71. “Thanksgiving — when the people who are the most thankful are the ones who didn’t have to cook.” – Melanie White

72. “After a good dinner, one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relations.” – Oscar Wilde

This is an image of Thanksgiving quotes. Roasted Thanksgiving turkey and side dishes.

73. “Thanksgiving is a lot like Christmas, except you don’t get any presents for holding in your familial rage.” – Unknown

74. “People who love to eat are always the best people.” – Julia Child

75. “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” – Oprah Winfrey

76. “What I love about Thanksgiving is that it’s purely about getting together with friends or family and enjoying food. It’s really for everybody, and it doesn’t matter where you’re from.” – Daniel Humm

77. “The roots of all goodness lie in the soil of appreciation for goodness” – Dalai Lama

78. “I celebrated Thanksgiving the old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.” – Jon Stewart

79. “I approximated the Black Friday experience at home by hurling myself into a wall a number of times and then ordering online.” – Kumail Nanjiani

80. “It took me three weeks to stuff the turkey. I stuffed it through the beak.” – Phyllis Diller

81. “Thanksgiving is a time to count your blessings, one by one, as each relative goes home.” –Melanie White

82. “At some point in life the world’s beauty becomes enough. You don’t need to photograph, paint, or even remember it. It is enough.” – Toni Morrison

83. “Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns; I am thankful that thorns have roses.” – Alphonse Karr

84. “Gratitude opens the door, the power, the wisdom, the creativity of the universe. You open the door through gratitude.” – Deepak Chopra

85. “In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.” – Elizabeth Gilbert

86. “The thankful heart opens our eyes to a multitude of blessings that continually surround us.” – James E. Faust

87. “Most turkeys taste better the day after; my mother’s tasted better the day before.”– Rita Rudner

88. “We’re having something different this year for Thanksgiving. Instead of a turkey, we’re having a swan. You get more stuffing.” – George Carlin

89. “Even though we’re a week and a half away from Thanksgiving, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.” – Richard Roeper

90. “You can tell you ate too much for Thanksgiving when you have to let your bathrobe out.”– Jay Leno

91. “You can’t have Thanksgiving without turkey. That’s like Fourth of July without apple pie, or Friday with no two pizzas.” – Joey Tribbiani, Friends

92. “Archeologists 10,000 years from now will believe this was a sacred feast where gravy boats were worshipped.” – Just Bill

93. “An attitude of gratitude goes a long way when it comes to physical and emotional healing.” – Jill Bolte Taylor

94. “Gratitude is the closest thing to beauty manifested in an emotion.” – Mindy Kaling

95. “Gratitude is the ability to experience life as a gift. It liberates us from the prison of self-preoccupation.” – John Ortberg

96. “Even in the trials of life, if we have eyes to see them, we can find good things everywhere we look.” – Joanna Gaines

97. “I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

98. “Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.” – Voltaire

99. “When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies only in yourself.” – Tecumseh

100. “Gratitude is a divine emotion: it fills the heart, but not to bursting; it warms it, but not to fever.” – Charlotte Bronte

101. “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” – Epictetus

102. “The heart that gives thanks is a happy one, for we cannot feel thankful and unhappy at the same time.” – Douglas Wood

103. “We are all more blind to what we have than to what we have not.” – Audre Lorde

104. “The older you get, the more fragile you understand life to be. I think that’s good motivation for getting out of bed joyfully each day.” – Julia Roberts

105. “Be consistent in your dedication to showing your gratitude to others. Gratitude is a fuel, a medicine, and spiritual, and emotional nourishment.” – Steve Maraboli

106. “If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.” – W. Clement Stone

107. “You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.” – Amy Carmichael

108. “Make it a habit to tell people thank you. To express your appreciation, sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return.” – Ralph Marston

109. “At whatever straws we must grasp, there is always a time for gratitude and new beginnings.” – J. Robert Moskin

110. “Thanksgiving reminds us that no matter what befalls us in life, we can take the charred remnants and we can reconstruct a life unimaginably richer than that from which the shards and pieces fell.” – Craig D. Lounsbrough

111. “When it comes to life, the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude.” – Gilbert K. Chesterton

112. “I feel a very unusual sensation — if it is not indigestion, I think it must be gratitude.” – Benjamin Disraeli

Harry & David banner for meat and cheese.

113. “‘Thank you’ is the best prayer that anyone could say.” – Alice Walker

114. “Let me encourage you to get up every day and focus on what you do have in life. Be thankful for the blessings of the little things, even when you don’t get what you expect.” – Victoria Osteen

115. “Yesterday’s the past, tomorrow’s the future, but today is a gift. That’s why it’s called the present.” – Bil Keane

116. “Kindness is always fashionable, and always welcome.” – Amelia Barr

117. “Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.” – Omar Khayyam

118. “The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched — they must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller

119. “There is always, always something to be thankful for.” – Unknown

120. “Thanksgiving…humbug. What good is it if you’re on a diet?” – Garfield


Autumn Micketti is a graduate of Southern Oregon University where she studied Communication with a focus on social media and public engagement with a minor in English. When she's not writing about Oregold® Peaches, you can find her exploring mountains, listening to the latest album release of her current musical obsession, or spending time with her extended family.

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