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The holidays are a great opportunity to reconnect and spend time with family - and if friends are the family we choose, you might want to include them in your celebrations. But hosting Thanksgiving with friends can quickly get expensive if it’s your responsibility to feed a crowd.

That doesn’t mean you can’t pull off a frugal and delicious Friendsgiving feast. If you’re in charge of the food, try using some of these recipes that feed 10 or more for $30 or less. Or, if you’d rather host a potluck-style gathering, you can share these ideas with your friends to make sure everyone stays within their budgets.

Start with Tasty, Simple Apps

Here are some simple and cheap holiday party recipes for guests to enjoy as they arrive, mix and mingle:

  • Meat and Cheese Boards: Who doesn’t love a little charcuterie to snack on while sipping your favorite beverage? Get the party started by selecting a few meats and cheeses from the deli section of your local grocery store. Head to a farmer’s market or even a butcher shop to pick up a few items to share. Be sure to find an ideal refreshment as well!
  • Spinach Dip in a Bread Bowl: Ted Jenkin, a financial advisor from Oxygen Financial who knows the importance of saving rather than spending, suggests this recipe for spinach dip from Tablespoon.

Move on to Mains (and Don’t Skip the Sides!)

Dazzle your guests with the main attractions:

  • A Twist on Turkey: You don’t need to spend an arm and a leg for a cooked turkey from a fancy deli store. But you can keep it seasonal and festive with this turkey and stuffing casserole from Budget Bytes that will cost you just under $20 to feed six (and under $30 to feed a larger party of 10).
  • Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus: Want to impress your Friendsgiving guests? Try a side of bacon-wrapped asparagus via Genius Kitchen. You could also use green beans instead of asparagus if one veggie is cheaper than the other at your local store.
  • Slow-Cooker Butternut Squash Soup: Not only does this use some basic main ingredients that should keep your grocery bill low, but the slow cooker does all the work to give you this tasty butternut squash soup from Gimme Some Oven. If you don’t have all of the seasonings on hand, see if you can raid your friends’ kitchens first before buying whole bottles of a spice you may not use very often.

Finish on a Sweet Note

No Friendsgiving is complete without a little dessert:

  • Chocolate and Macadamia Nut Monkey Bread: If you’re feeling ambitious, you can go for a pie. But if you want to stick with the “cheap and simple” theme, try this recipe for a chocolatey twist on monkey bread that uses store-bought biscuit dough.
  • Pumpkin Cookies: You can skip the pie but still enjoy pumpkin-flavored sweetness via Cooking Classy’s pumpkin sugar cookies with cinnamon cream cheese frosting. These recipes will give you a Thanksgiving with friends that’s as memorable as it is budget-friendly, and make it even easier to enjoy the holidays with everyone you care about most.


This information and recommendations contained herein is compiled from sources deemed reliable, but is not represented to be accurate or complete. In providing this information, neither KeyBank nor its affiliates are acting as your agent or is offering any tax, accounting, or legal advice.

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