'Twas the week of Thanksgiving and all through the house, the scent of turkey and sweet potato mash waters your mouth. You arrive at your friend's house, greeted with a smile, sit down at the table and talk for awhile. You can't help but think about your growling tummy, every dish on the table smells oh so yummy. 

This little poem sets up the ideal scene for a perfect Friendsgiving, doesn't it? But what it doesn't consider is the price of all this delicious food, because let's be honest, it all eventually adds up to be a mini fortune. However, with a few of these tips, you can keep all the food and drinks under $50. (And if all else fails, you can always send a few Venmo requests.)  

Pick 4 Main Dishes

Photo by Food Network

Now you can't get too crazy—pick around four dishes, including all the essentials like turkey, sides, and desserts that will even make a college Friendsgiving taste (and look) expensive. Here are four a quick and easy recipes to try this year, with a grocery list included at the end.

#SpoonTip: Pre-made mixes are 100 percent the way to go when eating on a budget. 

Do Nothing Turkey

turkey, chicken
Morgan Goldberg

This simple, yet delicious recipe is easy to prepare virtually anywhere, as long as you have an oven. The 12-pound turkey serves up to eight people, so get cooking, and start stuffing your face before its all gone!

#SpoonTip: To save money on a turkey (which is by far the most expensive component of the meal), ShopRite has a promotion for loyalty shoppers, which makes them eligible for a free turkey during the holiday season. 

Cheat Stuffing

Photo by Genius Kitchen

This recipe serves six, and although it tastes and looks expensive, no one would ever know that you prepared it using nothing but a mix and a few other simple ingredients. Just follow the directions on the back of the box, serve and enjoy!

Mashed Potatoes

milk, cream, dairy product, mashed potatoes, butter, dairy
Caitlin Shoemaker

Once again, if someone asks you how you made these potatoes taste so delicious, simply respond with, "a chef never shares their secrets." This boxed mix looks and tastes like the real deal. Just follow the recipe on the back of the Betty Crocker® mashed potatoes and indulge. 

3-Ingredient Mini Pumpkin Pies

Morgan Willie

This recipe saves you an immense amount of time and money on making an entire pumpkin pie. And you'd never believe the secret ingredient: Pillsbury Original Crescents. 

Grocery List

Keep in mind: We used FreshDirect to compile our grocery list, but prices may vary by store. We're also assuming you already have salt, pepper, and olive oil at home. 

- 1 (10-12 pound) fresh turkey

- Stovetop-style seasoned stuffing mix (Kraft®)

- Herbs of your choice

- Betty Crocker® Mashed Potatoes

- 1 Quart Dairy Pure® Whole Milk

- Pillsbury® Original Crescents

- 1 15-oz. canned pumpkin

- 1 large egg

Grand Total: $50.55 on FreshDirect

Get Thrifty With DIY Decor

Photo by Food Network

Decor isn't totally necessary, but it can help make your Friendsgiving feel a little more legit. Plus, it can help make your space feel festive and inviting. 

Punchbowl Invitations

These are the perfect fast and inexpensive way to get the word out about your Friendsgiving celebration. With tons of free templates, Punchbowl allows you to design your own digital invitation to send via email to all your guests. (And, it's usually free!)

Name Cards

Elizabeth Layman

Pretty place cards are the cherry on top of a truly beautiful Thanksgiving table, but they don't have to take a ton of time or money. You can find printable place card templates basically anywhere on the internet. Another simple option (being that Thanksgiving is a fall holiday) is to gather leaves from your backyard and use a Sharpie marker to write each guest's name on a leaf. That will add a pop of color to your table. 

With these tips in mind, throwing your own Friendsgiving celebration can be inexpensive and fun! Just remember, as long as you're surrounded by the people you love this holiday season, it doesn't matter how grand your meal is. Appreciating the small things will only make the occasion that much more special.