No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake has a delicious graham cracker crust topped with creamy pumpkin cheesecake and a drizzle of salted caramel sauce. This will become a tradition in your home.
If you’re like me, the fact that it’s already November kind of snuck up on you. The holiday season is officially here, and it’s time to buckle down and get prepared. I’ve partnered with EVITE® to bring you these adorable Mini No Bake Pumpkin Cheesecakes with Salted Caramel Sauce, and I’m also sharing my best ideas for holiday entertaining without the hassle.
Make Your Menu
When I’m planning a big holiday party, I like to start with my menu. Why? Because every tip I have for you after this hinges on that big asset. From grocery shopping to how many dishes need to fit on your table or buffet, it all hinges on what’s included on your mealtime menu.
Start with the main event – the protein. Serving a huge crowd? Two smaller turkeys may make more sense. They cook more quickly, and stretch further (four drumsticks instead of two sure sounds good to me!), and give you twice as much turkey stock after the fact. Also consider switching it up and serving both turkey and ham.
From there, your side dishes should come together easily, and can even be farmed out to family members. Consider making mashed potatoes and creamed corn in the slow cooker, saving oven space for the birds and green bean casserole.
When it comes to dessert, you have to think about oven space too. Serving these Mini No Bake Pumpkin Cheesecakes with Salted Caramel means you don’t have to worry about oven space at all, or that there’s room now for an extra pie or two, if that’s what floats your boat. This dessert has all the flavors of baked pumpkin cheesecake, but it’s super simple to make and who doesn’t love mini desserts?
I know Thanksgiving is all about the pie, but if whipping up homemade pies isn’t your thing, opt for a simple crisp recipe like this Browned Butter Bourbon Apple Crisp from Katie at GoodLife Eats. Even though it sounds fancy, it comes together in a snap and has all the lovely flavors of traditional pie without the hassle of rolling pie dough.
Refresh Your Spices
Believe it or not, store-bought spices really should only be kept around for a year so. They won’t hurt you after that, but they will lose their pungency. The holidays are a perfect time to replace and re-stock your most used items.
Don’t forget seasonal favorites like pumpkin pie spice and apple pie spice, which you might not use other than these last few months of the year. You’ll definitely want those warm and toasty spices to be as fresh as possible for baking and mixing into your favorite desserts.
Stock Your Pantry
Once your menu is set, keep a separate grocery list of just holiday party items. If your budget is tight, pick up a few of the shelf stable or freezer-friendly items each week leading up to the main event. That’ll help your wallet survive the big wallop a party can provide, if the only thing you’re purchasing the week-of are perishable items, which also usually happen to be cheaper.
From canned green beans to stuffing cubes, there are lots of side dish items that can be purchased well ahead of time, and stored in a big tupperware for transporting or just keeping out of the way until you’re ready to rock and roll your holiday meal. Plus, doing the holiday shopping over several weeks means you’re less likely to need to run out to the store for that one forgotten item 15 minutes before your guests arrive. We’ve all been there, and it stinks.
Plan Your Tablescape
I personally adore decorating for the holidays. In fact, I may have already started purchasing my Christmas decorations. But decorations don’t have to be expensive, or time consuming. This year, I’m keeping my Thanksgiving table simple.
I bought sweet little pumpkins, some white spray paint and sparkly gold paint, a little thyme, and ten minutes is all you need to create the perfect tablescape decorations. They can be used to prop up seating cards, or as plate decorations, and once the meal is done, they can be distributed throughout your home for a festive look all season long.
You can use any paint colors you want to match your decor, and the whole beautiful table will run you less than $20. Try finding that at your local Home Goods!
Simplify with EVITE
Whenever we’re entertaining a large crowd, I’d much rather spend my time creating decorations I can enjoy all season long than writing out paper invitations. EVITE’s mission is to get people enjoying the season face-to-face, and sending out their beautiful Thanksgiving invitations takes mere minutes. They’re customizable, come in free and paid premium versions, and are so cute!
And this type-A girl absolutely adores the RSVP tracking feature of each invitation. I can watch my guest list fill up with yes’s and no’s, and update my grocery list as I go – even accessing it from my phone when I need to. There are comment features that’ll let you know Aunt Martha is bringing her sweet potato casserole, and Mom’s baking brown and serve rolls so you don’t have to.
This year, when we were trying to decide on our Halloween party menu and theme, I used EVITE’s party ideas and planning tips section to round out my ideas. Now that the party is over, I’ll be using their Thank You card feature to personally thank each of my guests that also brought food and drink along.
This post is sponsored by EVITE, all opinions are my own. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that make My Baking Addiction possible.