Recipes for a Small Holiday Gathering

Roasted Pumpkin Soup in a white bowl with pumpkin seeds on top

The holidays are known for their large portions to feed a crowd and provide plenty of leftovers for enjoying days after. But this year is different, with more households than ever scaling down their holiday celebrations to keep within social distancing guidelines. But just because your guest list might be a little smaller this year doesn't mean you have to settle for boring meals. Instead turn to these helpful recipes, each of which keep that beloved holiday flavor but don't produce mass quantities.

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Oven Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Cubes of roasted sweet potatoes and onions in a shallow white bowl

Sweet potatoes and sweet onions make a perfect pairing in this easy side dish that serves four. Don't skip the splash of balsamic at the end, it adds just the right amount of tang.

02 of 13

Oven Roasted Turkey Legs

Oven Roasted Turkey Legs on a baking sheet
Agan Kadi

These turkey legs serve four, so you don't need to worry about making a whole roasted turkey from scratch. The trio of sage, thyme, and brown sugar create the wow-worthy sauce that's brushed on each leg.

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Autumn Apple Salad

Autumn Apple Salad II

Feature in season produce, like apples and cranberries, in this refreshing salad. The creamy yogurt dressing is contrast with a sprinkling of crunchy almond slivers.

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Mini Apple Pies

Mini Apple Pies

Classic apple pie is great for dessert and this recipe (which makes four pies) is just the right size for a tiny gathering. Pair with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream for some extra decadence.

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Chef John's Perfect Mashed Potatoes

bowl of fluffy mashed potatoes topped with butter and parsley

You can't have the holidays without mashed potatoes. These are buttery and thick and go well with any main you're eating.

06 of 13

Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

Maple Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon in a white bowl
Caroline Thomas Russo

Sweet, salty, and savory, this is a vegetable side dish that can't be beat. Brussels sprouts are roasted in a maple syrup and olive oil blend before getting tossed with crispy bacon.

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Maple Salmon

Maple Salmon

Want to skip the bulky ham or turkey this year? Instead try salmon with a sweet maple glaze to create a new holiday favorite.

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Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Pumpkin Soup in a white bowl with pumpkin seeds on top

Velvety smooth and full of beloved holiday flavors like pumpkin and nutmeg, this vibrant soup makes a great appetizer for a small group. "This is my favorite pumpkin soup yet — it has a beautiful creamy texture and a roast vegetable flavor," says reviewer ASHERWELL.

09 of 13

Cheese and Bacon Potato Rounds

potato rounds topped with cheese and bacon on a white plate

Much easier than baking and scooping spuds for potato skins, this simple recipe dresses up thick slices of buttery potato with cheese, bacon, and green onions. Add a dollop of sour cream or splash of hot sauce for extra flavor.

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Asparagus Side Dish

Asparagus Side Dish on a white plate

Ready in under 20 minutes, this side dish that combines asparagus and cherry tomatoes will brighten up your holiday dinner table. Frances S. describes this recipe as, "Super easy, very very tasty/ and pretty on the plate to boot!"

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Bacon-Wrapped Garlic Asparagus

Bacon-Wrapped Garlic Asparagus
Soup Loving Nicole

Even the pickiest of eaters will enjoy their green veggies when it comes wrapped in bacon like this dish. "Even my kids love it," says recipe creator ARATMARIE.

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Apple Strudel

Sliced Apple Strudel on a white plate

Combine pre-made phyllo dough with a spiced apple filling for an easy dessert that tastes entirely homemade. With four servings, you won't have to worry about leftovers hanging around for long.

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Turkey Drumsticks Perfecto

Turkey Drumsticks Perfecto on a floral plate

Serving just three, this recipe is the ideal size for a small crowd this year. Best part? The small ingredients list won't have you running out and buying specialty foods for just one dish.

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