If your kitchen looks like this:
and your dining room/living room/everything-else-room look like this:
planning a Thanksgiving celebration that is more than just you and your goldfish and an E-Z Thaw-and-Go Turkey Dinner is damn near impossible.
But not totally impossible.
Hosting an (albeit small-ish) Thanksgiving feastivle in your urban studio apartment will be a challenge, but once you conquer a few pint-sized problems it’s all cranberry sauce and belt-loosening joy.
Problem 1: Tiny kitchen
A tiny kitchen means a small oven, no counter space, and a dishwasher that serves as storage, none of which is conducive to a 5-course meal.
- Make Thanksgiving a potluck. As host you have dibs on the mouthwatering opus that is a Turducken, and everyone else can bring the supporting cast of dishes. Less cleanup for you (and your lack of useable dishwasher), more bounty for everyone else. With the powers of all studio apartments combined, Thanksgiving can happen!
- Combine dishes. Finite space means you’ll be getting creative in the kitchen. Roast your potatoes in the same pan as the turkey. Green bean casserole can share a plate with seared asparagus. Space saving and delicious.
- Do everything disposable. Splurge on those fancy-edged, heavy-weight compostable plates and save yourself a party’s worth of dishes to deal with.
Problem 2: No place to sit
That two-person table was the perfect Craigslist find during your apartment search… but it is looking pretty small as your neighbors come pouring in. Renting a slew of folding chairs is not an option because, frankly, you have no place to put them.
- Create a Thanksgiving picnic! A gorgeous Thanksgiving tablescape can be recreated with a festive tablecloth on the floor. Load up your plates and get comfy, criss-cross-applesauce style.
Note: this will be 100% no fun for guests over the age of 37.
- Do a buffet. Your kitchen isn’t big by any means, but if you can keep the main dishes in one room and the joyful munching in another, extra table space with abound. Have your guests file through the kitchen and load up, then commence consumption with a little more elbow room next door.
- Re-decorate for a day. Move everything you own – bookcases, beanbag chairs, plant stands – to the edges of the room and break out a couple card tables to create an island of flat surfaces. Repurposing milk crates and coolers as benches will give everyone a place to sit at your tableaux of tables.
Problem 3: It feels claustrophobic
One room. All your friends. Too much tryptophan. Sound like a Thanksgiving-themed horror flick to you? If booze is flowing freely and general merrymaking is on the rise, your little apartment is going to get loud, stuffy, and destroyed in no time.
- Take it outside. Head to the park down the street for a game of touch football while the turkey finishes basting. Take a stroll and walk off some of those mashed potatoes. The fresh air will do everyone a little good.
Note: Feeling lazy? Thanksgiving is known for its blockbuster releases. This year, go as a group to catch the newest Harry Potter.
- Do your drinking elsewhere. Eating a Thanksgiving that’s anything but homemade is outrageous to foodies, but a beer’s a beer’s a beer, no matter which way you look at it. When the feasting is finished, take the festivities to your favorite bar or pub.
Have a small apartment? Love to cook for friends? What do you do to combat the confines of your teeny-tiny home? Let us know!