Planning Our Friendsgiving Menu

This Saturday is our annual Friendsgiving party!


We have a group of about 20 of our closest friends driving in town to celebrate Thanksgiving and enjoy some indulgent and delicious food!

I have the best time prepping for Friendsgiving and am beginning to brainstorm menu items for this year’s feast. We have some dishes that have become staples thanks to rave reviews from our guests, but I always love searching for some fun new recipes to try.

Our staples include:

I am still on the lookout for the perfect mashed potatoes recipe and would love your recommendations for great vegetable sides or a perfect pumpkin pie recipe. Please comment below and share any links you may have for “must try” Thanksgiving recipes!

Here are some recipes that caught my eye for this year’s feast:


I am not working until later this afternoon (late night tonight!), so lunch was enjoyed at home.

A salad topped with pulled chicken, carrots and light ranch dressing did the trick.

chicken salad with ranch

I also had an apple and a couple of handfuls of almonds on the side.

And now it’s time to change and head off to work for the evening!

Question of the Afternoon

  • What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?

Please feel free to link to any any “must try” Thanksgiving recipes! I’m on the lookout for some new winners to try this weekend!


  1. says

    Healthy green bean casserole made from scratch is delicious and so healthy! I saw another version of this (similar to other recipes I have seen) on 100 Days of Real Food. Another fun idea is mini pumpkin pies. You can buy the little pie shells, make the pumpkin pie mix and pour into perfect little portion-controlled pies! I hope you have a great night!


  2. Kaitlyn says

    A couple years ago, I made a pumpkin pie for my family’s Thanksgiving celebration. My uncle, who is an excellent cook, took one bite of it and said it was one of the best he’s had. It instantly transported him back to his childhood, which is DEFINITELY a compliment coming from my uncle! My secret ingredient? Heavy whipping cream. That’s all I’ll say! :)


  3. Dana says

    I think my mom’s stuffing would have to be my favorite! I don’t have a link but the recipes in this month’s Shape look pretty good!


  4. Jessica says

    Pioneer Woman’s mashed potatoes are hands down the BEST mashed potatoes. They aren’t healthy per se, but so worth it!! I made them for my family a few years ago for the first time and they have been a “must have” at every big holiday meal since then.


    • Jen Clark says

      Jessica- I agree! Pioneer Woman’s mashed potatoes are my go to dish for holidays! I made a double batch last week and will make another batch next week! So yummy!!


      • Cheryl L. says

        Absolutely, I always struggled with making good mashed potatoes but ever since find Pioneer Woman’s recipe…it’s all good. I agree, not healthy but they taste fabulous and if you are just having them for a special day, it is a very worthwhile indulgence!!!! Give them a try, Julie…you won’t regret it!!!


  5. Macrae says

    I always make a fresh cranberry sauce. (I loath the canned jelly stuff !) And this is a huge hit for healthy conscience and not!
    12 oz fresh whole cranberries, Ocean Spray is great.
    1/2 cup sugar (more to taste)
    whole peeled cubed orange
    1/4 – 1/2 pecans
    Process all in food processor (just pulse with the pecans to chop or they become pasty)
    It all kind of melds together as it ages (great days left over!!)


  6. says

    Best mashed potatoes recipe I have EVER tried used cream cheese in place of sour cream or Greek yogurt. They were just…I have never had mashed potatoes this good, and I am QUITE the potato snob. I think the recipe was from the Pioneer Woman, but I bet you could figure out how to lighten it up if you wanted to! I didn’t use the 200 sticks of butter that the recipe called for, and it still came out amazing!


  7. Dana says

    My favorite part of thanksgiving is butternut squash!

    Recipe/ Directions:

    Preheat Oven to 350
    Cut butternut squash in half longitudinally
    Scrape seeds out
    Put face down in pan and fill with water covering only 1/4 of squash
    Cover top of pan with foil
    Bake for 30-40 minutes or until a fork goes through the squash without force
    Let it cool down
    Add 1/2 tbsp- 1 tbsp of butter
    Add cinnamon and brown sugar (start with a little of each and decide how much you want based on your personal preference)

    Another family tradition is making jello and putting colorful marshmallows on top of it, easy and fun dessert!


  8. says

    I love broccoli & cheese casserole topped with Cheese-its. It’s a Thanksgiving staple in our house.
    You should check out Paula Dean’s mashed potato casserole. It is loaded with cheese, sour cream, cream cheese & other delicious things. Not healthy at all, but good for Thanksgiving!


  9. Lulu says

    Hands down, I love the sweet potatoes, mushrooms, corn, spinach and cranberry and am willing to try any veggie dish. I’m not a big fan of turkey (omg I know, shocking!) and the stuffing that I’ve tasted aren’t the best. But still am open for new foods!


  10. Morgan says

    You need to try Pioneer Woman’s mashed potatoes! I don’t do the extra step at the end of adding the extra butter and baking it though.. They are amazing!


  11. says

    I’m hosting our annual Friendsgiving dinner on Saturday, too! Any chance you’ll share the pineapple souffle recipe? That sounds awesome – I might need to include a last-minute addition :)


  12. Pam Cook says

    Try Ree Drummond from The Pioneer Woman for mashed potatoes. They are not good for you but totally delicious. Her smashed potatoes are also amazing!


  13. says

    Our friends just hosted their “Friendsgiving” dinner and I baked Pumpkin Poppers. (so easy/quick and perfect for a light dessert, sweet app, or for the morning after with your coffee). I just posted the recipe up on my blog.
    Also, this recipe intrigued me on The Chew’s Thanksgiving special yesterday: Sauteed caramelized onions with robiolina cheese and shaved white truffles.
    Enjoy your dinner!!!



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