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Our Thanksgiving & Friendsgiving Menu

Our Thanksgiving / Friendsgiving menu with tips for a simpler hosting experience!

For the second year in a row, we are hosting Thanksgiving. I didn’t realize that Friendsgiving Day was more than just a blended name for Thanksgiving with friends, but google told me that Friendsgiving 2019 is November 21-26. So there ya go. It’s an official holiday.

I’m so excited to get in the kitchen with dear friends! Some of these recipes are ones from years’ past that are definite keepers.

And some came from my friend Anna, who is an INCREDIBLE cook, when I asked what she making for Thanksgiving. She sent the cranberry lime pie, brussels sprouts, and cloverleaf rolls recipes over. (It’s fun to plan Thanksgiving with friends, even if I’m not celebrating with them in person.)

And a few recipes came  from a business and tech newsletter I subscribe to — The Morning Brew — with their office Thanksgiving winning recipes. They shared the the Gruyere, Cranberry and Sage Biscuits, the Cranberry Gingersnap Pie and Purple Sweep Potato Pie.

Considering there are only five of us coming to dinner this year, I probably need to pare some of this down. Or not. 😉


What do you serve at Friendsgiving?

Well, in our case, we’re serving a more traditional Thanksgiving meal since it’s, ya know, our Friendsgiving is going to be on Thanksgiving. But, I think the beauty of it is that there are no Friendsgiving Rules. Serve what you love and feels special – and isn’t that what all Thanksgiving menus should really be about? That, and cute pups asking for food.

plate of thanksgiving food

My Thanksgiving / Friendsgiving Menu Plan!


I’m outsourcing the turkey again this year. BLL Rotisserie in Winston-Salem makes the most AMAZING turkeys so we’re getting one from there for the second year in a row. It takes the hardest part out of Thanksgiving away so I can focus on more fun things, like sides and desserts! If you’re not local, your local rotisserie restaurant to see if they make turkeys.

  • If you’re local to Winston-Salem, here are the details for BLL’s turkeys.
    • Turkeys are 14-16 lbs
    • Cost: $69
    • You must pick your turkey up the day before Thanksgiving before 8:30 am! (They’ll be there all night cooking them and they are ready to pick up starting at 3 a.m., ha! They will typically assign you a time between 7:00-8:30 a.m.)

Pre-Gaming: Morning and Appetizers

  • Pumpkin Gingerbread – I’m making this mostly so I can eat it the morning of Thanksgiving withe my coffee. And hey, if anyone wants some later in the day, perfect.

Charcuterie boards are always a crowd pleaser for pre-dinner snacking. Plus, everything for a charcuterie board can be purchased far in advance, which simplifies things (and I usually have half of what I need on hand anyway). I’ll probably ask Alise to bring this again since she’s a charcuterie board master! Get my tips to build a charcuterie board +an ingredient list here!

Side Dishes:

  • Mashed Potatoes & Gravy (anyone have a favorite recipe? I’ve always just winged it!)
  • Gluten-Free Cornbread (Lexi’s Clean Kitchen recipe) – we had this last year and all agreed this was the BEST cornbread EVER, gluten-free or not.


I’m torn this year between a regular pumpkin pie or a sweet potato pie.And I want to make a Cranberry Pie but haven’t decided which one!


  • Pinot Noir – this lighter bodied red wine pairs wells with turkey
  • Almond Milk Bailey’s + Decaf coffee (for dessert!)
  • Alise is pregnant so I also plan to have plenty of La Croix and anything else she requests!

friendsgiving food spread


What is your must-have on the Thanksgiving/Friendsgiving menu? I always need homemade cranberry sauce! 

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  • Reply
    Hillary | Nutrition Nut on the Run

    I think I need to make a loaf of that pumpkin gingerbread for Thanksgiving morning, too. Yummm!

  • Reply

    How about mashed cauliflower for a little less carb? YOu can use cream cheese for the fat/creaminess factor.

  • Reply

    Sounds delicious! And I hope you’re using Ashly’s cornbread recipe (which actually was my recipe) cause it is delicious!!!! ???. We’ll miss having you here but hope you have a great feast!

  • Reply

    My mom is allergic to turkey, so growing up my Dad always did that, when he passed away 9 years ago, I took over and now the turkey is my favorite thing to cook on Thanksgiving. I also prepare some side dishes, but thankfully other people in our family are wanting to be more involved, so I don’t have to cook the entire meal by myself anymore. Other than the turkey, my other fave dishes to make are the sweet potato souffle, pumpkin trifle and the spicy buffalo chicken dip.

    • Reply
      Teri [a foodie stays fit]

      I’m so impressed you make the turkey yourself and what a wonderful tribute to your dad. <3

      Do you have a recipe for your sweet potato souffle and pumpkin trifle? I've never even seen recipes like that and they sound amazing.

  • Reply

    Ooohhh check out Smitten Kitchen’s cranberry pie with thick streusel topping for a cranberry dessert… it is spectacular and not too sweet!

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