Menu

Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Gather your closest pals for a feast of great food and fun! Whether you’re hosting or just bringing a dish to share, we’ve got some delicious ideas.

Feast with Your Friends
Give thanks for great friends…and eat some delicious food while you’re at it! Friendsgiving is a time to gather your closest pals and share a meal together. Check out lots of inspiration to make this fun holiday memorable and tasty!

Whether you’re hosting or bringing a dish to share, make sure the eats (and drinks!) are out of this world. Kick the party off with delicious Cranberry Whiskey Sours and Apple Cider Mimosas, along with appetizers like Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus and Spiced Cranberry Salsa with Homemade Cinnamon Chips. And since Friendsgiving is a little less traditional, try something different for the main course like Butternut Squash Lasagna or Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown Butter Sage Cream Sauce and Parmesan…both are vegetarian friendly, too! For sides, we’ve got some crowd-pleasing recipes like Corn and Bacon Casserole, Orange Citrus Salad with Cranberry Orange Dressing, and a must-try festive Vegan Roasted Vegetable Thanksgiving Bowl (it works great as a side or a main dish!).

Plus, we’ve got all the tips you need to make sure your Friendsgiving is as smooth, organized and creative as can be! Start with this eye-catching Friendsgiving Fringe and Watercolor Invitation DIY and 10 Tips to Host the Perfect Friendsgiving, then check out crafty touches like Buttermint-Filled Tin Place Cards and a Pumpkin Ice Bucket. Your friends will be remembering this night for years to come!

Spiced Cranberry Salsa with Homemade Cinnamon Chips

Spiced Cranberry Salsa with Homemade Cinnamon Chips

Created by: Nellie Tracy, Butter With a Side of Bread

Chips and salsa is a favorite snack of mine, so I thought I’d try inventing one with all of my favorite fall flavors! This salsa comes together very quickly and is absolutely amazing when paired with homemade cinnamon chips!

Ingredients:
  • 1 tsp. ground cinammon
  • 1 can (14 oz.) Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce
  • 1 orange, zested
  • 1 apple, skinned and diced
  • 1 pear, skinned and diced
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 10 flour tortillas (8” diameter)
  • 2 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup ground cinnamon
Directions:
  1. In a medium bowl, use a spoon to mix together the cranberries, apple, pear, orange zest, ground cinnamon and nutmeg. Squeeze the orange to add a little bit of fresh orange juice as well!
  2. Refrigerate salsa until ready to serve.
  3. Add cinnamon and sugar together in a small bowl, mixing until well combined.
  4. Butter one side of each tortilla and then sprinkle generously with the cinnamon sugar mixture.
  5. Use a pizza cutter to cut each tortilla into 8-10 equal triangles. Place triangles on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F for 5-6 minutes until crisp.
  6. Refrigerate salsa in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Brown Butter Apple and Mascarpone Tart

Brown Butter Apple and Mascarpone Tart

Created by: Nicole Leggio, Cooking for Keeps

This gorgeous apple and mascarpone tart is the perfect way to impress your friends at Thanksgiving. A store-bought pie crust is a great shortcut to justify a two-part filling that’s worth every bit of effort you put into it.

Ingredients:
  • 1 pre-made pie crust
  • 3 large granny smith apples, cored, peeled and sliced into ¼” slices
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • ¼ cup bourbon
  • 5 oz. mascarpone cheese
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp. almond extract
  • Powdered sugar for dusting
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F and grease a 9” tart pan.
  2. Place piecrust in tart pan. Par-bake the piecrust for 10 minutes. Cool completely.
  3. While the crust cooks and cools, make the apples and filling. Heat a large non-stick skillet to medium heat. Add in butter. Once butter melts, add in apples, brown sugar and lemon juice. Cook until apples are slightly softened, but still have a bite to them, about 3-4 minutes. Add bourbon, and let alcohol cook out, about 1 minute. Turn the stove off and set aside.
  4. In the bottom of a food process, add mascarpone, cream, egg, vanilla and almond extract. Pulse until smooth.
  5. Pour filling into tart crust, and then arrange apples decoratively on top. First overlapping each other in a circle around the outside, then the inside.
  6. Bake tart for 35-40 minutes, or until filling is golden brown and cooked through (it should not jiggle).
  7. Cool to room temperature and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
  8. Store leftover tart in the refrigerator for up to three days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Butternut Squash Lasagna

Butternut Squash Lasagna

Created by: Krissy Allori, Self Proclaimed Foodie

Creamy butternut squash lasagna, with a white bechamel sauce, is a delicious fall dinner as well as a perfect vegetarian Thanksgiving main dish.

Ingredients:
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled and cut into ½” cubes (about 5 cups)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 6 sage leaves, sliced into thin ribbons
  • 12 basil leaves, sliced into thin ribbons
  • 4 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk (or 3 cups low-fat milk and 1 cup half and half)
  • ¼ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and white pepper, as desired
  • Unsalted butter to grease the casserole dish
  • 2 cups whole milk mozzarella cheese (about 8 oz.)
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (about 4 oz.)
  • 9 no-boil lasagna noodles
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 425° F. In a large bowl, toss the butternut squash and the onion in the olive oil. Spread in a single layer on a large lined baking sheet. Roast in preheated oven for 15 minutes, add the garlic, stir for even cooking, and continue cooking for another 15 minutes until the squash is tender.
  2. Remove the squash from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350° F
  3. Meanwhile, make the sauce by melting the butter over medium high heat in a heavy bottom pot. Add the fresh sage and basil and allow to cook for a couple of minutes. Add the flour, stir, and allow to cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the milk and whisk until the mixture comes to a boil. Then, reduce the heat to low and allow to cook for another 5 minutes. Sauce will thicken as it cools. Add the nutmeg and season with salt and pepper, as desired.
  4. Butter an 11 x 17” casserole dish.
  5. To assemble the lasagna, coat the bottom with a thin layer of sauce. Lay three of the noodles in a single layer in the dish. Top with half the squash mixture, a third of the shredded cheese, and a third of the remaining sauce. Repeat for the next layer. Top with the final three pasta noodles, the remaining sauce, and then the remaining shredded cheese.
  6. Loosely cover with aluminum foil and bake in 350° F oven for 45 minutes while allowing it to cook without the foil for the last 5 minutes of cooking time.
  7. Refrigerate leftovers for up to three days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Corn and Bacon Casserole

Corn and Bacon Casserole

Created by: Emily Buys, Clever Housewife

Corn and Bacon Casserole is the perfect dish to take to Friendsgiving, because who doesn’t love bacon covered in cream?

Ingredients:
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • ½ yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. black pepper
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. ground mustard
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 cups whole corn kernels, fresh or frozen
  • 1 Tbsp. basil, chopped and divided
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. In a large skillet, cook bacon until crisp. Remove bacon and drain fat on a stack of paper towels. Cool and crumble bacon.
  3. Sauté onions in 2 tablespoons of reserved bacon fat. Safely discard any additional fat. Cook until onions are translucent.
  4. To onions, add flour, garlic, salt, pepper, paprika and mustard. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes more.
  5. Remove skillet from the heat and stir in sour cream, corn, half of the crumbled bacon, and half the basil. Mix well and pour into a 1-quart baking dish.
  6. Sprinkle the remaining bacon over the top of the casserole and bake uncovered for 20 minutes, or until heated through.
  7. Remove casserole from the oven and serve warm. Refrigerate any leftovers for up to three days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Onion

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Onion

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

Start a new side dish tradition this holiday season and serve these tasty roasted Brussels sprouts with bacon and onion. They are quick and easy to make, which will free up time to spend with family and friends. The secret to this delicious side dish lies in tossing the Brussels sprouts in bacon grease before cooking, delivering a perfectly seasoned, crisp-tender vegetable that will delight everyone at the table.

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. Brussels sprouts
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 6 slices bacon, diced
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Rinse Brussels sprouts and cut larger sprouts in half lengthwise.
  3. Cut uncooked bacon into small pieces; sauté for 5 minutes, until the bacon grease has been released and the bacon is partially cooked.
  4. In a large bowl, toss Brussels sprouts, diced onion, partially cooked bacon and bacon grease from the skillet. Drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Place Brussels sprouts mixture on an ungreased baking sheet; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook at 400°F for 20-25 minutes, or until Brussels sprouts are crisp-tender. Serve immediately.
  6. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus

Created by: Crystal Owens, A Pumpkin & A Princess

Add roasted prosciutto asparagus to your Thanksgiving menu for an easy and savory side dish that’s ready in less than 20 minutes.

Ingredients:
  • 15 spears asparagus
  • 15 slices prosciutto
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • Black pepper
  • Salt
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a 13”x9” baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  2. Trim ends of asparagus spears.
  3. Wrap one prosciutto slice around each asparagus spear.
  4. Drizzle asparagus with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Bake for 12-15 minutes.
  6. Serve immediately; refrigerate leftovers in airtight container for up to 3 days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Apple Cider Mimosas

Apple Cider Mimosas

Created by: Erin, Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts

Apple cider puts a fall twist on the classic mimosa for your holidays this year!

Ingredients:
  • Apple cider
  • Sweet (spumante) sparkling wine
  • Apple slices
Directions:
  1. Fill a champagne flute about half way with apple cider.
  2. Top with sparkling wine.
  3. Add an apple slice if desired.
  4. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Tip:
Make a kid-friendly version by using sparkling white grape juice or club soda instead of the wine.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Cranberry Whiskey Sours

Cranberry Whiskey Sours

Created by: Sharon Garofalow, Cupcakes and Cutlery

This tangy and bright cocktail comes together quickly, making it perfect for all your holiday entertaining. Plus, when you garnish with a sprig of fresh rosemary, it pretty much tastes like the holidays, in a glass!

Ingredients:
  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 1 oz. cranberry juice cocktail
  • ½ oz. fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • Fresh rosemary to garnish
Directions:
  1. In a cocktail shaker, add Bourbon, cranberry juice and lemon juice.
  2. Add ice and shake well.
  3. Strain over fresh ice in a low-ball cocktail glass.
  4. Add fresh rosemary to garnish.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Vegan Roasted Vegetable Thanksgiving Bowls

Vegan Roasted Vegetable Thanksgiving Bowls

Created by: Julia Mueller, The Roasted Root

In order to ensure your vegan and vegetarian friends don’t leave Friendsgiving hungry, make these healthful and flavorful Thanksgiving Bowls. They’re vegan, gluten-free and are packed with all sorts of flavors and textures – including Thanksgiving favorites like wild rice, roasted sweet potato, green beans, candied pecans and even cranberry sauce. It makes for a festive entrée and ensures those who don’t eat meat aren’t left out of the celebration. I like the idea of adding garbanzo beans for a plant-based protein source, roasting them with spices to spruce them up.

Ingredients:
  • 1½ cups wild rice
  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided
  • 3 cups green beans, trimmed and chopped into 1½” pieces
  • 1 large sweet potato, cut into ¼” rounds
  • 1 can (14 oz.) Simple Truth™ Garbanzo Beans, drained and rinsed
  • ¼ tsp. chili powder
  • ⅛ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. sea salt, to taste
  • 1 cup Kroger Raw Pecan Halves
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground nutmeg
  • Pinch sea salt
  • ⅓ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • Cranberry sauce
Directions:
  1. Add all of the ingredients for the candied pecans to a small skillet and heat to medium high. Cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid thickens and the nuts become dark and crispy, about 5- 8 minutes. Remove from heat, transfer to a cutting board to cool, then chop. Set aside until ready to use.
  2. Cook rice according to package instructions and set aside until ready to use. While the rice is cooking, roast the vegetables.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375°F and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  4. Spread the sweet potato rounds and green beans over one of the baking sheets, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. Spread the garbanzo beans over the second baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with chili powder, ground cinnamon and sea salt. Place both sheets in the oven and roast until everything is golden brown, about 30-40 minutes, stirring green beans and garbanzo beans and flipping the sweet potatoes halfway through.
  5. Prepare the vegan Thanksgiving bowls by dividing the wild rice among 4 large bowls, followed by the roasted green beans, sweet potato and garbanzo beans. Top with candied pecans, dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds. Add a dollop of cranberry sauce and serve.
  6. Refrigerate leftovers in a plastic food container for up to 3 days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Paper Chain Photo Booth Backdrop

Paper Chain Photo Booth Backdrop

Created by: Amy Christie, this heart of mine

What’s the best part of the holidays besides the food? Taking photos! Photos with family, photos with friends, photos with everyone! Give your pictures a special pop with a paper chain backdrop. Paper chains are a cinch to make, use simple materials and can made in any color you want.

Things You'll Need:
  • Approx. 100 pieces of 8.5”x11” cardstock paper in your desired colors
  • Scissors (or paper cutter)
  • Stapler
  • Push pins (or tape)
  • Camera (and tripod, if you have it!)
Directions:
  1. Decide where your photo wall will be. Look for a place with good natural light like near a window or door. Then decide how large of a backdrop you want to make. I used 100 sheets of paper cut into four strips each and the paper chain covered a 5’x5’ space.
  2. Cut all the paper into 2”x11” strips.
  3. To begin, take one strip, overlap the ends and staple to hold it in place.
  4. Take another strip, thread it through the middle of the first loop, overlap the ends and staple to hold it in place.
  5. Continue making connected loops until you have enough to cover the space you wish.
  6. To make a backdrop, take lengths of the paper chain and use a push pin to hold them in place on the wall. You can try using a heavy-duty tape, however, because of the heft of the chain, multiple pieces of tape might be necessary.
  7. Once the chains are hung, it’s picture time. Pose groups in front of the paper chain covered wall and snap away. If you do have a tripod, use it!

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

How Much Should I Make? Planning for Thanksgiving Dinner

How Much Should I Make? Planning for Thanksgiving Dinner

Created by: Jessica Williams, Butter With A Side of Bread

With a holiday in which the meal is the main event, it can be difficult to estimate just how much food to make. No one wants to have so much leftover that it spoils, however with the right amount of leftovers you can enjoy all your hard work for a few more days! Here's a quick guide to help you decide just how many dishes and how much of each to serve on Thanksgiving.

How Much to Plan for Dinner & Dessert:

Small Dinner Party: 4-9 guests

Appetizers: 2-3 small plates (No need to make a lot – aim for each guest to have 3-4 bites total)
Turkey: 14-15 lbs.
Side Dishes: 4-6 dishes that each serve 6-8
Dessert: 2-3 pies or other dessert recipes that each serve 6-8 

Medium-sized Gathering: 10-16 guests

Appetizers: 3-4 plates or small platters that each serve 8-10
Turkey: 16-18 lbs.
Side Dishes: 5-7 dishes that each serve 6-8
Dessert: 4-5 pies or other dessert recipes that serve 6-8

Grand Family Feast: 17-25 guests

Appetizers: 5-6 plates or platters that each serve 8-10
Turkey: 20+ lbs., also consider serving a small ham in addition to the turkey
Side Dishes: 5-7 dishes that each serve 10-12
Dessert: 6-7 pies or desserts that each serve 6-8

A Few More Tips:

Planning for Kids
If you're planning on having several small children in attendance, instead of offering them the same traditional Thanksgiving fare as the adults, consider serving a few alternate dishes. Simple ideas such as a bowl of Goldfish crackers, string cheese or raisins are a welcome sight for little ones. I've even set out bowls of M&M's, gummy bears and licorice for dessert and I was surprised at how much everyone enjoyed it - not just the children!

If you have kids attending your dinner and are not sure whether to factor them in as 1 guest or not, here's a quick guide:

  • Kids aged 12+: Count them as an adult
  • Kids aged 6-11: Count them as half of an adult portion
  • Kids aged 5 and under: Count them as a third of an adult portion

The only exception here is dinner rolls, I'd plan on 1.5 per person, regardless of their age.

Dietary Restrictions
There are a variety of different dietary restrictions these days. I recommend sending out a simple message to your guests beforehand and encourage them to let you know of any special considerations. You may have to add or swap out dishes to accommodate individuals who are gluten free, vegetarian, vegan, etc.

Turkey for Tomorrow
Plan for leftovers! That's easily one of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving. There's something amazing about having a slice of warm apple pie for breakfast with a side of mashed potatoes and gravy. Adjust your meal to ensure you have enough leftover of your favorite dishes. If your family can't get enough of Aunt Irma's cornbread stuffing, make a double batch and make sure to have containers on hand for everyone to take some home. In the serving suggestions above I factor in leftovers because I simply consider them part of the meal.

What’s Popular at Your Dinner?
When estimating how much of each side dish to make, remember to consider how popular a recipe might be. In our large family dinner we usually make enough mashed potatoes for everyone and a few neighbors (if you're envisioning a giant bowl of mashed potatoes, you have it right!), but we only make enough green bean casserole to serve half the guests.

 

Sparkling Cranberry-Lime Seltzer

Sparkling Cranberry-Lime Seltzer

Created by: Laura Franklin, Food Fun Family

There is something about a festive punch or a fancy glass filled with a colorful, fruity drink at a Thanksgiving get-together that sets the tone for the entire gathering. This easy-to-prepare non-alcoholic sparkling drink is a fun new way to feature cranberries at the holiday table, and one that everybody - young and old - can enjoy.

Ingredients:
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup chopped cranberries
  • 2 fresh limes, sliced
  • 3 Tbsp. cream of coconut
  • 1 liter sparkling water
Directions:
  1. Add sugar and water to a small saucepan; cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves and mixture begins to thicken slightly.
  2. Remove pan from heat and stir in chopped cranberries and cream of coconut. Allow to cool.
  3. Pour cranberry sugar mixture into a large pitcher. Add sliced limes. Pour chilled sparkling water over all; stir and serve over ice.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Orange Citrus Salad with Cranberry Orange Dressing

Orange Citrus Salad with Cranberry Orange Dressing

Created by: Britni Vigil, Play. Party. Plan.

This Orange Citrus Salad is the perfect way to brighten up any Thanksgiving meal.

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. Simple Truth Organic™ Baby Spinach
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 Tbsp. Kroger Granulated Sugar
  • 4 oranges, peeled and chopped into bite-size pieces
  • 4 oz. Private Selection™ Crumbled Goat Cheese
  • ½ cup Kroger Orange Juice
  • ½ cup Kroger 100% Cranberry Juice
  • ¼ cup Kroger Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp. Kroger Honey
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • Zest from one orange
Directions:
  1. Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Once heated, place the chopped pecans and sugar in the pan and heat, stirring often, until the sugar is caramelized and the pecans are slightly browned.
  3. Remove nuts from heat immediately and place in a single layer on a piece of parchment paper.
  4. While pecans are toasting, make dressing by combining orange juice, cranberry juice, olive oil, honey, garlic, orange zest and salt together in a large bowl and whisking until well combined.
  5. Put together salad by adding spinach, orange pieces, goat cheese and pecans into a large bowl. Toss with dressing and serve chilled.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Friendsgiving Fringe and Watercolor Invitation DIY

Friendsgiving Fringe and Watercolor Invitation DIY

Created by: Lauren Saylor, A Fabulous Fete

We all know that Friendsgiving is all about spending time with loved ones, and of course, delicious food. So this usually has us focusing on recipes, shopping trips and coordinating dates and times to get everyone there. But how about taking a few minutes to pick up a few supplies from the grocery store, and inviting your guests in style (instead of a text message)? Follow this simple DIY to make fringe and watercolor invitations that will wow your guests.

Things You'll Need:
  • Poster boards
  • Paper lunch bags
  • Tape
  • Watercolor and brush
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
Directions:
  1. Measure your poster board and cut 5”x7” pieces until you have enough to accommodate your guest list.
  2. Trim strips from the lunch bags that are about 1”x5½” long.
  3. Make the fringe by cutting up from the bottom of your strips and stopping about ¼” from the top.
  4. Tape down your strips so they overlap – 3-5 per invite is the perfect amount! You can use double stick tape on the top layer of fringe so there isn’t tape showing.
  5. Add your details in watercolor on the top of the invite.
  6. Tuck in and envelope and surprise your guests with your creativity!

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown Butter Sage Cream Sauce and Parmesan

Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown Butter Sage Cream Sauce and Parmesan

Created by: Amy Christie, this heart of mine

Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown Butter Sage Cream Sauce and Parmesan has sweet hints of pumpkin and fragrant sage in the glory that is browned butter, with a bit of cream. It’s almost too good to believe.

Ingredients:
  • 2½ cups flour
  • 2 egg
  • ¼ cup hot water
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • ⅛ tsp. nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ⅛ tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • 12 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 4 Tbsp. heavy cream
  • 1 cup Parmesan, finely shredded
Directions:
  1. To make the pasta dough, make a mound of the flour on your work surface then make a well in the center.
  2. Crack the eggs in the center of the well and beat with a fork.
  3. Gradually mix the eggs into the flour, eventually incorporating all the flour.
  4. Knead the dough, adding additional flour to the work surface as needed, until firm and smooth. The dough should not stick to your hands, only itself.
  5. Make the dough into a ball, wrap with plastic wrap and then let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  6. For the pumpkin filling, drain excess liquid from pumpkin puree using a mesh strainer or paper towel.
  7. Combine the strained pumpkin puree with the nutmeg, salt and ground pepper.
  8. To make the ravioli, divide the dough into fourths. Working with one quarter at a time, roll the dough into thin sheet, about 6” wide by 18” long. This piece will make 6 ravioli. If using a pasta machine, use the 4th or 5th setting.
  9. Lay out the thin sheet on a heavily floured counter.
  10. Place 6 evenly spaced scoops of pumpkin puree, 2 teaspoons each, on one half of the dough.
  11. Use your fingers to dab water along all the edges.
  12. Fold the other half of the dough over on top of the pumpkin scoops, gently pressing the edges to seal.
  13. Use a knife or pizza cutter to cut the pasta sheet into individual ravioli.
  14. Place the complete ravioli on a parchment-lined baking sheet and continue with the remaining dough.
  15. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add in the salt and fresh sage.
  16. Leave over the heat, stirring often, until the butter begins to brown, about 5 minutes.
  17. Remove from heat and add in the heavy cream. Stir in the Parmesan and then toss over pasta.
  18. Boil the ravioli for 3-5 minutes or until they float. Carefully remove them from the water and top with brown butter cream sauce.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Buttermint-Filled Tin Place Cards

Buttermint-Filled Tin Place Cards

Created by: Becky James, The Crafting Chicks

Decorate a spice tin with some rustic flair to give your guests a personalized gift as a place card this Thanksgiving. Fill the tin with some butter mints as an after dinner treat.

Things You'll Need:
  • 1 spice tin for each guest
  • Buttermints
  • Jute or ribbon
  • Sprig of rosemary
  • Printed or written names of each guest
Directions:
  1. Take lid off tins and fill each tin with butter mints. Then place lid back on tins securely.
  2. Tie jute or ribbon around tin.
  3. Tuck a sprig of rosemary in-between knots on the jute or ribbon.
  4. Finish by placing name tag on jute or ribbon.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Pumpkin Ice Bucket

Pumpkin Ice Bucket

Created by: Sharon Garofalow, Cupcakes and Cutlery

The holiday season is upon us, which means we’ll be hosting our family and friends often. Make your table extra festive with a Pumpkin Ice Bucket! It’s fast to make and adds such a fun touch to your bar area. Although I’m showing my ice bucket holding white wine, you can easily use it for soda, sparkling cider or champagne.

Things You'll Need:
  • 1 mid- to large-sized pumpkin
  • Marker
  • Serrated pumpkin carving knife
  • 2 larger plastic zip-top bags
  • 1 leaf
  • White paint pen
  • 1 straight pin

To create your Pumpkin Ice Bucket:
Choose your pumpkin. You can see from the scale in the photo above that the pumpkin I used was just about the height of a wine bottle (with the pumpkin top still on). I used a marker to draw my scallop design and then used a serrated pumpkin carving knife to follow the pattern. I cleaned out the inside of the pumpkin using a large serving spoon (and reserved the pumpkin seeds for roasting, because yum! These would also be great to put out as a snack at your party).

I used two large plastic zip-top bags to create a little bit of a lining on the inside of the pumpkin before I added my wine bottles and ice. Pumpkins tend to be pretty thick so they shouldn’t leak as the ice melts, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. I used a leaf from my flower arrangement and a white paint pen to make a drink marker for the Pumpkin Ice Bucket, which I attached to the pumpkin with a straight pin.

Keep an eye on your Pumpkin Ice Bucket throughout your party and make sure to remove water from melted ice and refresh with new ice as needed.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Pumpkin Poke Cake

Pumpkin Poke Cake

Created by: Jessica Williams, Butter With A Side of Bread

This easy cake is brimming with fall flavors like pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg! Topped with a luscious brown sugar whipped cream frosting, it’s a perfectly festive dessert.

Cake Ingredients:
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • ¾ cup water
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup oil
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ cup sweetened condensed milk
Topping Ingredients:
  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9”x13” pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Combine all of the ingredients and cake mix with an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes on high. Transfer cake batter to prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  3. Cool cake for 20-30 minutes, then poke holes on the entire surface of the cake.
  4. Pour ½ cup sweetened condensed milk over the top of the cake. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, until cake is chilled.
  5. For the topping, whip the whipping cream, brown sugar and vanilla with an electric mixer for several minutes, until soft peaks form. (This goes so much faster if you use a metal bowl that has been placed in the freezer for about an hour beforehand.)
  6. Spread sweet cream over the top of the cake. Dust with ground cinnamon.
  7. Refrigerate cake for at least 30 minutes prior to serving. Store any leftovers covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

10 Tips to Host the Perfect Friendsgiving

10 Tips to Host the Perfect Friendsgiving

Created by: Lauren Saylor, A Fabulous Fete

When it comes to entertaining, there are a few tricks I have up my sleeve. They’re simple but clever tips to remember to help you host with ease. You can easily adapt these to any entertaining situation. So read them, memorize them, and use them to make sure you host your best Friendsgiving dinner yet!

  1. Stick with single color blooms for easy arrangements. Whether you decide to put them into one arrangement, or simple put each type of flower in their own vase, using this trick keeps flower looking cohesive and impactful without any experience in flower arranging.
  2. Always have plain and unscented candles stocked for creating an easy table setting. I keep glass white candles on hand to set the mood at our dinner table when entertaining. You can easily use a large amount of candles as your only centerpiece, or pair with flowers. Unscented is best as to not overpower all that cooking you did!
  3. Use fresh herbs to wrap with place cards. Rosemary and thyme are both fragrant and beautiful choice. Wrap bundles with ribbon and a place card to add color and interest to basic plates and settings.
  4. Create a simple cocktail to welcome guests. Welcome cocktails ensure your guests go straight to mingling rather than searching for (or asking you, the hostess for) a drink.
  5. Add an interactive element to the table/party like asking guests to write down what they're thankful for and reading them after dinner at the table. These are great conversation starters, especially if you have friends that are just meeting!
  6. Use items like pumpkins and/or squash to decorate festively. Simply place them in a bowl and you have an instant, colorful centerpiece.
  7. Prep items the day before, like appetizers and desserts, leaving more time for you to mingle. Figuring out what you can freeze or refrigerate, then heat up as guests arrive, is a huge time saver.
  8. Use gorgeous serveware for store-bought items to save time, but yet still add a special touch to your decor/table. Marble, silver and white cakestands are great for things other than desserts. Have a few on hand for appetizers or condiments on your table.
  9. Prep a playlist to set the mood. Whether it’s an upbeat list for your best friends, or something more mellow to set a relaxing tone, decide ahead of time and turn it on a few minutes before your guests arrive.
  10. Have containers ready to go for guests to take home leftovers. You can create tags as well so they know it’s okay for them to take what they want. It’s almost impossible to finish all those leftovers anyways, share the wealth!

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

5 Simple Tips for Cleaning as You Cook Thanksgiving Dinner

5 Simple Tips for Cleaning as You Cook Thanksgiving Dinner

Created by: Carrie Robinson, Frugal Foodie Mama

Keep cleanup to a minimum and have more time to spend with the family with these 5 Simple Tips for Cleaning as You Cook Thanksgiving Dinner.

I love cooking Thanksgiving dinner each year for family. But what I don’t love so much is the huge mess that is left in my kitchen after the turkey has been picked clean and the pumpkin pie has been sliced and served. I mean, who feels like tackling a major kitchen cleanup while they’re in a turkey coma? Not me! While it’s impossible to 100% avoid making a mess as you cook a family holiday dinner, there are some simple steps you can take as you stuff that turkey and whip up those mashed potatoes to ensure you have less to clean up afterwards.

  1. Line any baking sheets you plan to use with Kroger Home Sense® Parchment Paper Pop Ups. Once those dinner rolls have been baked, simply toss out the parchment paper and put your clean baking sheet away. No need to wash them later!
  2. Keep one side of your sink filled with soapy water. I like to use Kroger Home Sense® Ultra Liquid Dish Soap since it’s tough on grease. Use the soapy water to quickly wash up a knife you need to use again or to wash cutting boards as you go. It’s also handy for quickly wiping up spills and splatters on your counters and stovetop.
  3. I love to use my slow cooker when cooking up a big holiday dinner because it helps free up precious oven and stovetop space. What I don’t like about using my slow cooker is the bits of food that get stuck to the sides of the slow cooker insert. To avoid hours of soaking and then lots of scrubbing, simply line your insert with a Kroger Home Sense® Slow Cooker Liner before adding in your ingredients.
  4. Nix the many trips you will make to the trash can and save time by keeping a large garbage bowl on the counter. Toss potato peels, vegetable scraps, packaging and cans right into the bowl and then toss the contents into the trash when it’s full. Make 2-3 trips to the trashcan instead of 10-12.
  5. We all know that a roasting turkey tends to splatter grease a little as it cooks. Or that the filling in a homemade apple pie could bubble over just a bit dripping to the bottom of the stove. You can avoid having to clean and scrub your oven later by lining the bottom rack with Kroger Home Sense® Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil. Once you are done baking and roasting and the oven has cooled, simply toss out the foil. No scrubbing needed.

What is your number 1 tip for cleaning as you cook a holiday dinner?

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Mango Bellini

Mango Bellini

Treat your guests to a sweet and tangy drink to wash the winter blues away.

Ingredients:
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh mango, pureed
  • 4 ounces chilled Prosecco
  • 1 chilled champagne flute
  • 1 mango peeled, pitted and sliced for garnish
Directions:
  1. Combine mango puree and chilled Prosecco (or any sparkling white wine) in each champagne flute.
  2. Garnish with fresh mango slices on the rim and serve.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Mango Holiday Dip

Mango Holiday Dip

This sweet, flavorful dip adds a pop of color to any celebration!

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup  mango purée
  • 1 cup  roasted red bell pepper purée
  • 3 ounces  goat cheese, crumbled
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4  tsp. cumin
  • 1/4  tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 1/4  cup  freshly chopped cilantro
  • 1 mango, peeled, pitted, and diced
  • Bread or arepas for dipping
Directions:
  1. Combine mango and red pepper purée in a medium size saucepan over medium-low heat and heat until warm for 3 to 4 minutes.
  2. Slowly stir in goat cheese until incorporated into purée. Season with salt and pepper, cumin, cayenne pepper, and fresh lime juice.
  3. Pour into serving bowl. Stir in cilantro and top with diced mango. Spread over toasted bread or serve with arepas for dipping.

Tip: Can use store bought roasted red bell peppers in a jar or broil one or two whole red bell peppers under medium heat, turning frequently, as necessary, until the entire pepper skin has turned black and blistery, peel, remove seeds and membranes and puree.

View Party Plan: Friendsgiving

Website Feedback