How To Host The Perfect “Friendsgiving”

Thanksgiving is typically a time for family to get together around the dining room table and give thanks. But the fourth Thursday in November doesn’t have to be your only turkey feast, or even with your family. That’s because your friends can be like family, too. This year, gather your favorite people together and create a new tradition by splurging on food and drink, all while feasting with friends, with kids or without.

Who Wants To Host?

Photo Credit Thinkstock

Photo Credit Thinkstock

When your friends decide to throw a Friendsgiving shindig, one of the first considerations is who’s going to have everyone over. The host should have enough room to accommodate everyone, even if that means bringing out a card table or two. If they don’t have enough chairs —folding chairs or otherwise—another friend should simply be tasked with bring some with when they come on over. If a few people want to host, and you can’t decide who gets hostess honors? Draw straws and, since you’re going to make this a tradition anyway, decide to rotate who hosts each year.

The Invite List

Photo Credit Thinkstock

Photo Credit Thinkstock

This step seems simple: Ask your friends. But also consider the amount of space in the host’s home, and how well your different groups of friends get along. On this day of thanks, there’s no need for unnecessary drama. Pare down your list accordingly! How you then invite those friends is up to you. A simple email can work well, or send out an Evite or Facebook event, which will make it easy for everyone to RSVP.

Picking A Date

Photo Credit Thinkstock

Photo Credit Thinkstock

Next step: choose a time for the big Friendsgiving. If you’re not having it on Nov. 27, you’ll have to decide whether you want it before or after. Large turkeys should be available either time, as long as you don’t plan too early. If you plan too late though, you run the risk of having fewer people come because it’s too close to the December holidays, when everyone is busier with parties!

What’s On The Menu

Photo Credit Thinkstock

Photo Credit Thinkstock

For Friendsgiving, you’ve got a whole variety of options. The host could cook everything, but unless they absolutely love to cook an abundance of food—and with Thanksgiving, that may require a few days of cooking—then you may want to divy up the responsibilities. If you go the potluck route and the host decides to cook the main bird, then perhaps the guests can bring side dishes and appetizers, and someone else can take charge of dessert. Perhaps also have one or two friends bring the alcohol, too. In this case, keep track of who’s going to bring what, and share that list with others, so that you don’t get too many sweet potatoes topped with roasted marshmallows. Even though they’re plenty delicious, you’ll want variety!

Are your friends not a fan of cooking? No problem! Many restaurants offer to-go menus or catering, so that not one of you or your friends have to cook. Last but most certainly not least, enjoy the festivities and give thanks you’re spending times with your favorite friends!

Elizabeth SanFilippo is a freelance writer, who enjoys trying new foods from all over the world. But her favorite city for culinary treats will always be Chicago. When not writing about food, she’s writing about a variety of topics for numerous websites and blogs, and working part-time at a culinary vacation company based in the Windy City. Some of her work can be found at


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