Quick, Easy, and Impressive Friendsgiving Meal Ideas with CHEF iQ

Quick, Easy, and Impressive Friendsgiving Meal Ideas with CHEF iQ


From strolls in pumpkin patches to the joy of picking apples in orchards, the season is a treasure trove of heartwarming experiences. It is also the season that ushers in some of the year's most anticipated holidays, beginning with Friendsgiving. This unique celebration, while echoing Thanksgiving traditions, brings flavor to the fall festivities. It's an occasion that blends the comfort of beloved seasonal foods with the warmth of gathering with friends, creating memories that last a lifetime.


Friendsgiving, a relatively new but rapidly growing tradition, invites us to gather with friends and chosen family, often as a precursor or alternative to traditional Thanksgiving. It's a time when people come together to share meals, laughter, and gratitude, making it a particular highlight of the autumn calendar.


Friendsgiving has evolved from a simple gathering for those unable to join family for Thanksgiving to a fully-fledged celebration that many look forward to each year. The essence of Friendsgiving lies in its casual, relaxed atmosphere, where friends become family, and the dining table becomes a place of shared stories and joy. It's an opportunity to recreate the classic Thanksgiving experience with a twist, customizing it to reflect the personalities and preferences of your circle of friends.

Understanding Friendsgiving: A Blend of Friendship and Tradition

Friendsgiving, a term that found its official place in the Merriam-Webster dictionary in January 2020, is more than just a play on words. It's a blend of "friends" and "Thanksgiving," capturing the spirit of the occasion – a casual meal shared with friends during the Thanksgiving season. While not officially credited, the popular TV show 'Friends' is often thought to have inspired this modern tradition, with its memorable Thanksgiving episodes setting a template for what many future Friendsgivings would come to resemble. Unlike the traditional family gatherings of Thanksgiving, Friendsgiving is more informal and focuses on friendship, offering a space for those who might be away from family or looking to create their traditions.


The beauty of Friendsgiving lies in its flexibility. There's no set date for this celebration; hold it on Thanksgiving Day or any other November day that suits the group. This flexibility allows everyone's schedules to align, ensuring no one misses out on the fun.


Friendsgiving can range from an elaborate dinner party to a simple get-together, with each host adding their personal touch to the occasion. Some might send out creative invitations filled with Thanksgiving puns and jokes, while others might organize a potluck, allowing each guest to contribute their favorite dish. This collaboration not only eases the host's burden but also brings diverse flavors and family recipes to the table.

Friendsgiving Feast Ideas with CHEF iQ

Here are many great ideas for inspiration on simple-yet-impressive dishes you can prepare using your CHEF iQ Smart Cooker and Smart Thermometer. Check out the guided recipes for hundreds more dishes in the CHEF iQ app!


  • CHEF iQ Mashed Potatoes: Transform the traditional mashed potatoes into a creamy delight with the CHEF iQ Smart Cooker. Pressure cook and mash the potatoes to perfection, adding your favorite ingredients for a fluffy, irresistible side dish.
  • Cranberry Sauce with a Twist: Utilize the Smart Cooker for a tangy and sweet cranberry sauce. This pressure-cooked version brings out the rich flavors of the cranberries, making it a must-have for your Friendsgiving spread.
  • Mac and Cheese Perfection: Create a crowd-pleasing mac and cheese effortlessly in the Smart Cooker. The consistent cooking temperature ensures a perfectly creamy and cheesy delight every time.
  • Juicy Chicken Thighs Alternative: If the turkey isn't on your Friendsgiving menu, try the Smart Cooker for succulent chicken thighs. This alternative to traditional turkey can be a hit for smaller gatherings or as an additional protein option.
  • French Onion Soup Made Easy: Impress your guests with a classic French Onion Soup, made simple and quick in the Smart Cooker. The depth of flavors achieved will make it hard to believe you made it in under an hour.
  • Butternut Squash Soup for All: Cater to all dietary preferences with a velvety butternut squash soup, easily prepared in the Smart Cooker. Its smooth texture and fall flavors are sure to be a hit.
  • Simplified Turkey Breast: Hosting a smaller Friendsgiving? Cook a juicy turkey breast in the Smart Cooker, ensuring tender and flavorful meat without the hassle of a full-sized turkey.
  • Foolproof Gravy: With the CHEF iQ Smart Cooker, prepare stress-free gravy ahead of time. The ability to keep it warm until serving ensures a perfect complement to your Friendsgiving feast.
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake Delight: Create a pumpkin cheesecake in the Smart Cooker, combining seasonal flavors with the ease of pressure cooking. Top with whipped cream for a heavenly dessert.
  • Homemade Pumpkin Puree: Use the Smart Cooker to make your pumpkin puree for the ultimate pumpkin pie. It's a simple process that yields a fresh, flavorful dessert base.
  • Versatile Butternut Squash: Cook quickly in the Smart Cooker, ready to be mashed or added to various recipes. It's a versatile ingredient for numerous Friendsgiving dishes.
  • Fluffy Baked Potatoes: Achieve perfectly cooked baked potatoes with the Smart Cooker. They come out fluffy inside with crispy skins, ideal for a comforting side dish.
  • Vegan Potato Soup: Please everyone at the table with a creamy vegan potato soup made in the Smart Cooker. It's a warming and welcoming dish for all dietary needs.
  • Effortless Cheesecake: Save time with a classic cheesecake in the Smart Cooker. This easy method yields a creamy, delightful dessert that will impress.
  • Quick Applesauce: Complement your meal with homemade applesauce, done in just 20 minutes in the Smart Cooker. It's a delightful side or snack, perfect for the season.
  • Festive Wassail: Bring holiday cheer with a warm mug of wassail infused with spices in the Smart Cooker. It's a festive and welcoming drink for your Friendsgiving gathering.
  • Stuffed Pumpkin Showstopper: Make a stunning side dish of stuffed pumpkin in less than an hour with the Smart Cooker. It's a beautiful and tasty addition to your Friendsgiving table.
  • Sweet Potato Pie Simplified: Use the Smart Cooker to create a classic sweet potato pie. Top with whipped cream for a slice of Friendsgiving heaven.
  • Perfectly Cooked Sweet Potatoes: Serve simple, perfectly cooked sweet potatoes as a side or use them in dishes like pie or casserole. The Smart Cooker ensures they're cooked just right.
  • Spiced Apple Cider: Warm up with spiced apple cider, easily prepared in the Smart Cooker. It's the perfect cozy drink for a chilly autumn Friendsgiving.
  • Decadent Chocolate Cheesecake: Impress with a chocolate cheesecake made in the Smart Cooker. It's a rich and luxurious dessert that's sure to please all your guests.
  • Flavorful Collard Greens: Cook with smoked turkey in the Smart Cooker for a flavorful holiday side dish.
  • Creamy Black-Eyed Peas: Serve creamy, rich black-eyed peas as a delectable side, ready in about 45 minutes in the Smart Cooker, tasting as if they've been simmering all day.
  • Monkey Bread for All: For breakfast or dessert, make sticky-sweet monkey bread in the Smart Cooker, a treat that will surely be a hit.
  • Lemon-Thyme Chicken Alternative: Opt for a lemon-thyme chicken as a turkey alternative, cooked to juicy perfection in the Smart Cooker and finished under the broiler for crispy skin.
  • Luxurious Mushroom Risotto: Prepare a creamy, nutty mushroom risotto as a luxurious side, made simple and quick in the Smart Cooker.
  • Refreshing Lemon Cake: After a hearty meal, serve a bright lemon cake, moist and dense like a pound cake, made in the Smart Cooker for a refreshing dessert.
  • Stuffed Acorn Squash: Quickly cook it in the Smart Cooker before stuffing it with a flavorful mix of wild rice, mushrooms, chickpeas, and cranberries.
  • White Chocolate Cheesecake with Raspberry Sauce: Surprise your guests with a white chocolate cheesecake topped with raspberry sauce, a fruity treat made easy in the Smart Cooker.
  • Grape Jelly Meatballs: Whip up nostalgic grape jelly meatballs in the Smart Cooker, a simple and satisfying appetizer to keep guests full and happy.


Friendsgiving is more than just a meal; it's an experience that celebrates friendship, gratitude, and the joys of sharing.


It's a time to create new traditions, laugh and reminisce, to enjoy the company of those we hold dear. And at the heart of this celebration is the food – a feast that brings everyone together. CHEF iQ elevates your Friendsgiving to a new level. With the innovative CHEF iQ Smart Cooker, Smart Thermometer, and the accompanying CHEF iQ app, preparing a Friendsgiving feast becomes easier and a part of the joy.


The CHEF iQ Smart Cooker transforms traditional recipes into modern masterpieces, ensuring that each dish, whether a creamy butternut squash soup or a perfectly cooked turkey breast, is perfectly cooked. The Smart Thermometer takes the guesswork out of cooking, guaranteeing that every dish is prepared just right enhancing flavors and textures. For those looking to add a creative twist to their Friendsgiving menu, the CHEF iQ app is an endless source of inspiration, offering a wide array of recipes and tutorials that cater to all cooking levels and preferences.


Friendsgiving with CHEF iQ is about bringing people together over great food with minimal stress. It's about creating a feast that's as impressive as it is effortless, leaving you more time to enjoy the laughter and stories that fill the room. So, as you plan your Friendsgiving this year, let CHEF iQ be your partner in the kitchen, turning every recipe into an opportunity to make new memories with friends.