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How to Host a Thanksgiving Cocktail Party

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Learn how to host a Thanksgiving Cocktail Party for friends and neighbors.
Simple appetizer style food and lots of drinks with merriment had by all!

thanksgiving cocktail party idea

Hosting all kinds of gatherings during the holidays can be stressful. But, it doesn’t have to be! 

When you have a host of folks who want to gather, and you’re trying to make dates and times match for everyone, make it easy on yourself by doing it cocktail style.

Hosting a Thanksgiving Cocktail Party is a great way to gather lots of people and enjoy good food. Just like on a real day, but might I say more fun?!

Cocktail style parties don’t necessarily mean alcohol, so if that doesn’t make your skirt fly up, then find the mocktail recipes in this gigantic roundup and go wild! 

I have a few tips for you when hosting cocktail style parties:

First, you’ll want to plan your menu for items that do not use forks or spoons! Toothpicks and skewers are fine, just nothing that requires extra and extra of one thing.

Next, you’ll want to make sure it’s all help yourself. A big cheese board filled with meats, cheese, veggies, and fruit is so great. You can check out this cheeseboard roundup to get lots of inspiration!

The last tip I have for you is to ask others to bring things! Give them a category, recipe, or theme to follow and let them do the work. 

Before we get to the recipes, I’ll walk you through a few items you must have when hosting a thanksgiving cocktail party.

Must-Have Items:

Large white platters – these are used over and over for any party, so invest in a bunch. 

thanksgiving cocktail party idea using white platters

They come in all shapes and sizes, take a look at my Thanksgiving Idea List and see all the options. You’ll find all kinds of items to make your thanksgiving cocktail party and thanksgiving day amazing! 

Festive Napkins – these always make a party feel just a little more special. It lets guests know you thought about them enough to have fun napkins. <— Trivial, I know! But, how many times have you been at a party with fun-themed napkins and said “Oh! How fun are these?!”

thanksgiving napkins for a party


Something to Eat With – while I talk about not having flatware, you should have a few options for skewers, toothpicks, etc. I’ve started using these bamboo forks that are little, come in a large 100 pack, and you just toss them! And, they’re super fun!

bamboo forks for thanksgiving

Alright, take notes, pin a lot, and save the recipes you want to try! There are tons of amazing ideas — you might even want to save some for the Christmas season coming up!

Cocktail Style Thanksgiving Gathering

Learn how to host a Cocktail Style Thanksgiving Gathering for friends and neighbors.Simple appetizer style food and lots of drinks with merriment had by all!

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  1. Forget the Turkey, I want to eat all of these all night instead. The cocktails are fabulous too!

    1. I ordered 500 accidentally a few years ago, so now we use them for everything! They’re wonderful – and I’ve never gotten a splinter in my mouth. 😉 I was super worried about it at first!

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