It’s November, which means the holiday season is about to kick off. For many people, Thanksgiving serves as the unofficial launch into the best season of the year, but there’s also a lesser-known occasion that has grown in popularity in recent years: Friendsgiving.
This extra holiday is not an excuse to give things to friends (although we certainly won’t stop anyone), but rather a modern celebration where friends come together to enjoy a Thanksgiving-like meal. It typically takes place before the traditional Thanksgiving holiday but is not bound by the same cultural or family traditions. Altogether, you’ve got a festive and communal atmosphere that some may even find preferable to the real thing (for, you know, reasons).
Friendsgiving has become increasingly popular in recent years, especially among young adults and those living far away from their families. It’s a way for friends to express gratitude, enjoy good food, and strengthen their bonds in a festive and communal setting that harkens the vibes of the actual holiday.
The informal and flexible nature of Friendsgiving allows participants to put their own spin on the celebration and create lasting memories with friends, and what better way than with some tasty, innovative dishes? Use our ideas below to get inspired and wow your friends on this gloriously festive and wonderfully optional (extra) holiday.
While the food is cooking and the guests milling around, set out an easy snacking tray that requires basically zero effort. The veggies are cleaned and cut, the dip is included, and the turkey bites are the perfect size!
If you signed up to bring the salad, this one is a great way to make an impression with the initial eye test. And another thing working in your favor? It’s absolutely delicious. Apples, cranberries, and walnuts are all quintessential fall and winter ingredients, and this surprisingly easy recipe manages to combine all three in a salad — all complemented with ample amounts of feta cheese and a quick vinaigrette made with apple cider vinegar and honey. Plus, you get to kick the recipe prep off by toasting walnuts, which will give a festive aroma to your kitchen that will linger well beyond the time it takes to prepare this.
Move over, stuffed peppers; it’s Stuffed Squash Season. And what better way to celebrate than with these cute little acorn squash cups filled to the brim with the makings of our Broccoli Crunch Chopped Salad Kit featuring fresh broccoli, cauliflower, red cabbage, dried cranberries, sunflower kernels, carrots, crumbled bacon, and a tangy slaw dressing? It really doesn’t get any easier than this — simply bake the acorn squash and fill each one up with the salad kit. But that doesn’t mean you can’t stand there looking proud and accomplished as your friends post pictures of your festive culinary creation to social media. You earned these accolades, after all!
Yes, we’re getting a lot of mileage out of baked acorn squash here, but can you blame us? Just look at these things! If you’re looking for a cheesy, comforting dish that could easily pass as table decor, your search ends here. Gruyère and white cheddar cheeses, lots of butter, garlic, rosemary, and a handy assist from our convenient Cauliflower Rice all combine to create a decadent filling contained in tender acorn squash cups that will have you forgetting that mashed potatoes even exist. (They do exist, and no one should stop you from enjoying both, but these may very well be even better.)
Squash is the unofficial vegetable of fall, and here’s another brilliant way to enjoy it in the form of a salad. And to make things even more interesting, we’ve invited couscous to join the party. The result is a unique and filling salad with a slight Mediterranean flair that provides the perfect opportunity to savor an often-overlooked squash variety: Delicata! This soft and, yes, delicate squash has a soft rine on the outside and sort of looks like one of those ornamental gourds one would put out for decoration. Except it’s definitely edible and supremely tasty. Anyway, it also pairs exceptionally well with our Sweet Kale Chopped Salad Kit when it’s been roasted with salt, pepper, and rosemary. Either way, this dish will definitely earn you some accolades at your Friendsgiving.
Sometimes it’s good to be the person who shows up to the Friendsgiving with a dish out of left field — something no one is expecting but is sure glad you brought. Well, we have the perfect idea: a flatbread! And don’t worry, it involves chicken, the unofficial alternative bird of Thanksgiving, which will likely please anyone in attendance who is mostly ambivalent about a traditional turkey. Another thing you don’t need to worry about? The flavor, because this flatbread is profoundly delectable: Sliced, Balsamic-marinated chicken breast, salty pistachios, creamy goat cheese, and the makings of our Sweet Kale Chopped Salad Kit all neatly piled on your flatbread of choice. Don’t anticipate any leftovers with this recipe.
Roast broccoli & cauliflower for a quintessential side dish. It’s easy, it’s quick; it’s roasted with olive oil, and it’s made even easier with Taylor Farms’ pre-washed, pre-chopped broccoli & cauliflower. If you’re in charge of a side dish and you’re definitely not a cook, this recipe might just be your easy way into the world of the culinary arts.
Facing a plate of leftover turkey? You may need some new ways to enjoy it that don’t involve throwing it in the microwave with whatever else you took home. How about a salad? This is also a great way to use up leftover veggies like carrots and Brussels sprouts. All you need to do is dice your turkey, gather up your leftover roasted veggies, and throw it all on a pile of our 50/50 Blend salad mix and top with your vinaigrette of choice (a fruit-based vinaigrette like raspberry is ideal). Top it off with some pecans and pomegranates, and you have a new and exciting way to savor your leftovers.
(Psst… prefer a sandwich instead? We’ve got a leftovers recipe for that, too!)
Need a few more recipe ideas? We’ve got you covered:
- Apple and Sweet Potato Harvest Salad
- Fall Harvest Gorgonzola and Apple Salad
- Harvest Spiced Apple Grain Bowl
- Winter Citrus Pomegranate Salad
- Roasted Hasselback Butternut Squash Maple Salad
- Maple Bourbon Bacon Squash Salad
- Grilled Chicken & Sweet Kale Salad Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Maple Bourbon Bacon Sweet Potato Skins
- Apple and Sweet Potato Harvest Salad
- Persimmon and Burrata Harvest Salad