How to Throw the Ultimate Friendsgiving

It’s November, which means it’s time to put away the Halloween candy and break out the turkey and stuffing. While you may have just shared some time with family and stuffed yourself with helping after helping of turkey, potatoes, and green bean casserole, you may find yourself thinking “man, this is a great holiday, I wish I could share it with my friends!” Well buckle your seatbelt, because you can! Allow me to introduce you to a little something called Friendsgiving.


Friendsgiving is what it sounds like – Thanksgiving with your friends! The concept was originally popularized by the hit TV-show Friends, and people have been having their own Friendsgivings since. The idea of hosting your own Friendsgiving may sound daunting, but never fear! I’m here to share with you my tips and tricks to throw the ultimate Friendsgiving.


1. Plan early!

It’s better to start planning your Friendsgiving sooner rather than later. Send out invitations, that way you know how many people you’ll be cooking for, and you can start gathering ingredients. If you’re the host then congrats – you’re in charge of the turkey! Unless you’re planning on feeding a large group you’ll want to buy your bird early; the smaller ones sell out fast.


2. Do some research

If you, like me, are a turkey novice you’ll want to do some research. Look up a few recipes and tips about cooking turkey. Some of the tips I found are:

  • Put your turkey in the fridge several days in advance to defrost (this is really important!!)

  • If you don’t have a roaster, buy an aluminum pan and put a cookie sheet beneath it to support it.

  • If you want the meat to be really juicy try brining your turkey – this can be submerged in a liquid brine or rubbed with a dry brine.

  • You’ll want your turkey to be 161 degrees to be considered done. Put your thermometer in the thickest part of the thigh – make sure it doesn’t touch the bone – to get an accurate reading.

  • Let the meat rest! If you cut into it right away not only will you probably scorch your hands but all the juices inside the meat will flow out and you’ll be left with a dry bird. Let your turkey rest about a half an hour after you take it out of the oven before you start to carve it.


3. The Giblets!!

Speaking of turkey, REMOVE THE GIBLETS! If you’re wondering what giblets are, they’re the extra parts of the bird – specifically the neck, gizzard, liver, and heart of the bird. Some people like to make giblet gravy and others like to use the neck to make stock for soups. I’m not a giblet fan so I just remove them before cooking. It’s easy to forget to do and you do not want to roast your bird with the giblets still inside. Typically the giblets will all be in a bag inside the body cavity of your turkey. However, if your turkey is like mine was you might look inside only to find the neck. Where are the rest of the giblets? Did the turkey just come without them? Nope! After you check the body cavity turn the bird around and check the neck cavity – you’ll find it under a flap of skin and there you should find the packet with the rest of the giblets. It’s not a pretty picture, believe me, but it’s better that you get them out now than make an unpleasant discovery when you go to carve your bird.  


4. The playlist, the playlist, the playlist

Plan out a fun playlist not only for the party but also to listen to while you cook! Whether it’s your favorite bop, jam, or banger, you’ll feel way less stressed out if you have some fun while you cook. If you’re worried about music for the actual event have your friends suggest a few songs – that way everyone gets music they like.

5. Coordinate with your friends

Cooking for thanksgiving is a lot of work – not to mention pricey. As the host you’ll probably have your hands full with the turkey alone, maybe along with some stuffing or potatoes if you can manage it. That’s where your friends come in! Friendsgiving is all about the potluck. So while you’re busy roasting your bird have your friends sign up to bring the green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin pie. It’ll make your life way easier. I’d recommend making a facebook group so your friends can comment on what they’re bringing. That way everyone can see who’s in charge of what and you don’t end up with twenty types of stuffing and no potatoes.


6. Remember to have fun with it!

Hosting a Friendsgiving can seem like a daunting task, and rightly so. It’s a lot of work to learn how to cook a turkey, ensure that everyone is bringing something different, and to find a time and date that works for everyone. It’s easy to get caught up with little details in trying to have the perfect Friendsgiving. Don’t worry about getting fancy plates or having fall-themed drinks. Even if you completely botch the turkey just order pizza instead and continue with the festivities. Friendsgiving is less about having the perfect place settings and Michelin star level food and more about getting together with your friends, having fun, and remembering how thankful you are to have each other in your lives. So whatever you end up doing, have fun with it.


Images courtesy of: Giphy, Buzzfeed, Elite Daily, Wordpress