Lonely Planet Writer

Astronauts will celebrate Thanksgiving with a turkey dinner in space this year

If you think you’re too far from America to enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, take some inspiration from the astronauts who will be enjoying turkey and trimmings in space this year.

Thanks to scientists at the Space Food Research Facility at Texas A&M University, astronauts will be having a traditional meal in a very non-traditional setting. Since 2007, the university has created more than 50 menu items for astronauts at the International Space Station and throughout NASA’s spacelift programme.



The university released a video of the university’s chancellor, John Sharp, meeting with food scientist Brian O’Neill and a former astronaut and current Texas A&M professor Dr. Bonnie Dunbar at the Space Food Research Facility, to test out a bit of the food.

The food pouches, or MREs (Meal Ready to Eat), are prepped, heat-sealed inside of a pouch and sterilised to give them a long shelf life. This year, the holiday food pouches for astronauts will be filled with holiday favourites like sliced turkey, candied yams, apricot cobbler, and more.

To get people excited for the holiday, NASA has even been sharing some insight into enjoying a holiday meal in space, from heating up the food to a recipe for cornbread.