What Is Friendsgiving? A Guide to the Ultimate Friendsgiving.

updated May 24, 2019
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(Image credit: Rachel Joy Barehl)

It’s not always possible to go home to see your family for Thanksgiving, and thus Friendsgiving was born. Getting together with your friends to eat lots of delicious food and drink lots of delicious drinks might sound like an average Saturday night to some, but this is different. There’s way more planning involved to pull off a great Friendsgiving, and with it comes more potluck-style food, pitcher drinks, and maybe even place settings.

What Is Friendsgiving?

Friendsgiving is exactly what it sounds like: It’s when friends get together to celebrate Thanksgiving. It can be on the actual day of Thanksgiving, or before or after the big day. It’s usually way more relaxed than the family Thanksgiving you might have grown up with. It’s more of a potluck situation; the host typically makes the mains, while everyone else pitches in with sides and desserts. The food tends to not be as traditional and there’s typically way more alcohol involved (Thanksgiving jello shots, anyone?)

Everything You Need to Plan Friendsgiving

Convincing people to come over to your apartment or home for a party full of food shouldn’t be hard. It’s everything else that might be a little tricky. How far in advance do you need to meal prep? What if you’re working with a teeny, tiny budget? Do you need to fancy up your place? (Spoiler: yes.) We’ve got you covered!

55 Recipes for Friendsgiving

When it comes to the best recipes for Friendsgiving, think outside the box. The traditional pumpkin pie is great, as is the roasted bird, but Friendsgiving is really a time to get creative. This is not your mother’s menu. Here are some of our favorite recipes to make for the occasion.

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The Most Essential Recipes for Friendsgiving | Turkey Meatballs with Parmesan and Sage (Image credit: Diana Yen)

The most essential recipes for Friendsgiving are a lot more relaxed than the traditional fare. Instead of pecan pie, make pecan pie bars. Instead of green bean casserole, try something without the cream sauce. Appetizers should be covered in bacon (because of course).

For the main dish, turkey is of course traditional, but that shouldn’t stop you. You can also try your hand at ham or a vegetarian Thanksgiving lasagna. And if you do decide to make turkey, why not wrap the whole thing in bacon?

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5 Friendsgiving-Friendly Pitcher Cocktails | Super Budget Thanksgiving Sangria (Image credit: Rachel Joy Barehl)

Let’s get something straight: Friendsgiving usually involves quite a bit of booze. Make things easier on yourself by getting your wine from Trader Joe’s and then making one or two of these budget pitcher cocktails.

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Instead of apple pie, why don’t you try making an apple tart made out of “roses?” Or “magic” pumpkin and chocolate cake? Have fun with this and don’t take it too seriously.

What are you making for this year’s Friendsgiving? Do you have any smart tips we didn’t cover here?