10 Tips for the Most Amazing Friendsgiving Feast

Whether you can't make it home for the holidays or just want to spend extra time with friends, Friendsgiving will be your new favorite holiday.

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People Celebrating Thanksgiving Holiday

Wondering what Friendsgiving is all about? Friendsgiving lets people enjoy all the best parts of Thanksgiving—fantastic food, easy desserts, football games and lots of laughs—with their closest friends.

Since we can’t always make it home for the holidays to celebrate with family, this holiday gives folks a different way to enjoy the day. For first-time hosts and guests, here are some Friendsgiving ideas to make sure it all goes as smoothly as possible:

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Friendsgiving invite
Photo: joliejoliedesignery

1. Have someone take the lead

Do you have a “mom” in your friend group (you know the one!) or someone whose organizational game is truly on point? These folks are your best bet for hosting a good party—or, at the very least, ensuring Friendsgiving runs smoothly. Appoint someone (or volunteer yourself) to send invites (we love these!) and coordinate food and drinks.

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Friendsgiving planning.
Photo: clara_gram

2. Let friends pick their dishes

Whether they’re armed with a tried-and-true family recipe or terrified of serving an undercooked pie, give your friends a chance to stake their claim on a dish. A Google Doc or other shared spreadsheet (with categories like appetizers, side dishes, veggies and desserts) will make planning so much easier: Friends can simply add their name and what they plan to bring.

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Friendsgiving cooking.
Photo lizschardt / Instagram

3. Assign turkey duty to the host

Transporting a fully cooked turkey all but guarantees a cold supper, so the bird and gravy should be make at the host’s place. This means the host is pardoned from making or preparing anything else. If you or your host needs some tips, don’t worry–we’ve got you covered with our handy turkey how-to.

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Friendsgiving wines.
Photo: bottle_rocket / Instagram

4. Don’t forget the drinks

If your friends like to indulge in a glass of wine or other celebratory beverage, make sure one person doesn’t get stuck with the whole haul. Instead, have each guest bring a favorite drink or festive holiday cocktail (or mocktail) to share.

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Friendsgiving table.
Photo: studentbydayandnight / Instagram

5. Make sure there’s plenty to go around

After confirming guests and significant others, the Friendsgiving organizer should send out a serving chart to make sure no one gets short-changed on mashed potatoes come dinnertime.

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Friendsgiving pie at table.
Photo: whitneychiu / Instagram

6. Arrive ready

You definitely don’t want too many cooks in the kitchen. Make sure your dish is as close to finished as possible before heading over to the festivities. With oven space at a premium, slow cooker dishes are a great choice. We’ve got plenty of Thanksgiving options to share.

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Friendsgiving dessert table.
Photo: sarah_turk / Instagram

7. Check the counter space

With so many dishes, make sure there’s enough counter space to fit them all—especially if certain dishes, like gravy or mashed potatoes, need to be kept warm. If more space is needed, look into temporarily storing appliances such as coffeemakers and toasters in another room. Otherwise, ask around to see if one of your guests can bring a folding table.

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Friendsgiving decorations.
Photo: thenewbaguette / Instagram

8. Don’t sweat decorations

The hostess does not have to present the “most-est” decor. With all the prep, planning and cleaning, hosting a dinner party is hard work, so don’t sweat making your tablescape look like the set of a photo shoot. A harvest-colored tablecloth, some glowing candles and a few gourds are plenty festive, and they don’t take much time to arrange.

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Friendsgiving basic utensils
Photo: libbyshoneybeebakery / Instagram

9. Stock up on the basics

More people in the house means going through basics like toilet paper, paper towels, garbage bags and soap more quickly. Shop ahead to make sure you won’t run out—and while you’re at the store, it’s not a bad idea to grab some paper plates and utensils for backup.

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To go box at Friendsgiving.
Photo: paperandtaigh / Instagram

10. To-go containers are a must

Don’t let the leftovers go to waste! Ask someone to bring to-go containers for the group, or remind guests to bring their own to make sure everyone gets a serving for the road.

With these handy tips, you’re ready to get the gang together, dig into some great food and enjoy your new favorite holiday…Friendsgiving!

Caroline Stanko
As Editor, Caroline writes and edits all things food-related and helps produce videos for Taste of Home. When she’s not at her desk, you can probably find Caroline cooking up a feast, planning her next trip abroad or daydreaming about her golden retriever, Mac.