Thanksgiving 101: Cocktails (and a recipe for The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz)

Does hostessing count as a hobby? Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and by far my most beloved party to hostess. This year was my seventh apartment Thanksgiving celebration — I’m sure I’ve made the meal at least a dozen times — and, dare I say, it was a huge success.

Since I love the experience of playing Holly Hostess almost as much as I love shopping, Netflix, and coffee — in case you were curious, that’s a comically large amount — I’ll be sharing a few of my favorite festive decor ideas, party tips, and recipes in Thanksgiving 101! Starting things off: Booze, obviously.

Now, not to belittle all of the intricacies of hostessing, but cocktails are one of the most important parts of the party. When having a big party, there are a few key things to remember about alcohol. First and foremost, be responsible — not to get too PSA on ya, but don’t let drunk people drive home from your party. I think having guest sheets and a comfy couch is one of the best solutions, especially against the ‘I don’t want to leave my car here’ argument. Next, be reasonable about cost; you need enough for everyone to enjoy themselves, but you do not need to buy all the types of all the kinds of alcohol. It’s not in the budget. Since everyone has a preference, let guests know what you’ll be serving — that way, they’ll know if they would rather bring their own beer/wine/whatever. Now let’s assume some guests are bringing their own beer or wine. Where are you going to put them? If you’re low on fridge space, stock a cooler with ice. It isn’t the prettiest, but it keeps the space between your refrigerator and oven clear for you to finish cooking. Finally, be prepared to make a drink on the spot — even if you’re finishing up a thousand other things. By having a punch bowl or pitcher full of a fun and tasty drink, you can keep the party going without missing a beat. Need such a drink? Grab the recipe for The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz below!

(Straight edge? Non-drinker? Take out the booze and this concoction is still delicious!)

Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipe - Cranberry Apple - The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz (5)

The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz
Makes approximately 16 drinks


  • Cranberry juice cocktail
  • Apple juice
  • Lemon-lime soda
  • Cranberry vodka
  • Green apple vodka
  • Cranberries (for garnish)
  • Wooden skewers or food picks (for garnish)
  • Festive straws (obviously)
  • Ice


  • Mix 4 cups cranberry juice cocktail with 4 cups apple juice in a pitcher.
  • Add 6 oz. green apple vodka and 8 oz. cranberry vodka to the pitcher, then mix.
  • Fill a glass with ice, then fill it two-thirds of the way with the cran-apple cocktail.
  • Top off the drink with lemon-lime soda.
  • Skewer several cranberries onto your drink stirrer (a food pick or skewer stick) and add a straw, then serve.
  • Note: If you’re super short on time, you can add the lemon-lime soda all at once. I like filling each drink with it to keep the soda nice and fizzy. 

Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipe - Cranberry Apple - The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz (2)

Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipe - Cranberry Apple - The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz (3)

Thanksgiving Cocktail Recipe - Cranberry Apple - The Festive Cran-Apple Fizz (4)


Coming up next in Thanksgiving 101… Easy Thanksgiving Appetizers!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *