Looking to host a Friendsgiving for your buddies on a budget this year? To keep costs low for the event, you’ll need to plan properly. Here are a few tips.
Prep in Advance
Start by creating a guest list. You may be tempted to invite a lot of people to Friendsgiving, but keep the gathering small so it’s more manageable, and you can enjoy the meal and your company. A good way to figure out the number of invitees is to match the number of guests to the number of table seats you have. If your table fits eight people, invite eight. If you can make some space and add a second table to accommodate additional guests, do so. Once you know how many people you’ll invite, set a timetable for picking up the groceries, prepping the food, cleaning your place, and laying out the table. Having a clear itinerary will reduce stress and prevent last minute chores.
Decorate for Less
Keep your decorations simple for Friendsgiving. Pumpkins, gourds, and leaves are perfect decorations for Fall, and they are inexpensive and easy to find. Here are some easy budget ideas from dummies.com to make your Friendsgiving celebration come alive.
Host a Potluck
You can save yourself some work and reduce costs by making your Friendsgiving a potluck dinner. Have your pals pitch in by contributing a dish, snacks or beverages. It’s a good idea to keep track of what each person brings, so you don’t end up with duplicate dishes. You don’t need multiple bowls of mashed potatoes. You can also choose to delegate specific dishes. A simple spreadsheet can help you organize.
Consider a Non-Traditional Celebration
Whole turkeys can be expensive, so consider skipping the full bird to save a few bucks and go non-traditional. Buy a turkey breast or choose a completely different meat like chicken or ham. There are also no rules about when you need to host Friendsgiving. Instead of a full-blown Friendsgiving dinner, think about hosting a buffet-style lunch. A mid-day buffet will cut back on your prep work and lighten your stress. When making other dishes like desserts, find less expensive recipes. Instead of making pumpkins pies, for example, you could try making a batch of pumpkin cookies to save money on the cost of crusts. Here are 75 cheap pumpkin recipes to consider from prudentpennypincher.com.
Make Meals Ahead of Time
It’s a good idea to prepare as much of your Friendsgiving meal as you can before the event. Make side dishes like stuffing, mac and cheese, and mashed potatoes the day before. If you plan to serve turkey, prepare the bird ahead of time by brineing or seasoning it, so all you need to do is put it in the oven the day of your party.