How to Host a Fabulous New Year's Day Brunch

Brunch like it's 2017.

While New Year’s Eve typically gets most of the attention, New Year’s Day is an equally joyous occasion and deserves an equally joyous celebration. It’s the perfect time to recognize the start of a fresh year in a casual, low-key way with family and friends. It’s also the perfect time to host a brunch — and who turns down an invitation to brunch? The place where breakfast and lunch collide is a glorious place, my friends.

Hosting a New Year’s Day brunch is easier than you might think. I’m sharing five steps to show you exactly how to do it (recipes included!). Take a look, and start planning.

1: Send Out Last-Minute Invites (or Texts)

Printable Invitations

Printable Invitations

Set the mood for your New Year's Day festivities with our free printable party invitations.

If you can act fast, send out our free printable party invitations. If it’s a little too last-minute for invites, a group text will do the trick.

2: Set a Pretty Table

New Year's Brunch Table Setting

New Year's Brunch Table Setting

To create this look, search your favorite vintage stores for glassware and dessert plates with pink or gold detailing. Use a basic white dinner plate on the bottom of every place setting. Top it with a geometric napkin (these are made from fabric purchased from Quadrille, Inc.) and the vintage plates. Repurpose the printable invitations as menu cards to top off each place setting.

Whether you send out our free printable invitations or not, you can definitely use them to fancy up your place settings. To recreate the rest of this look, use geometric napkins, vintage glassware and dessert plates with metallic detailing.

3: Create a Resolution Game

Sharing Resolutions

Sharing Resolutions

Jump start the table talk by asking each guest to anonymously write down their New Year’s resolution and drop it into a jar.

Set a large jar in the middle of your table with colorful slips of paper and a few pens. Ask each guest to anonymously write down his or her New Year’s resolution and drop it into the jar. Once all the resolutions are collected, read them aloud, asking everyone to guess who wrote each one. Tip: Place the jar in a tray with a vase of tulips (or other readily available flowers) to create a super-simple centerpiece.

4: Set Up a Mimosa Bar

How to Setup a Make-Your-Own Mimosa Bar

How to Setup a Make-Your-Own Mimosa Bar

Start New Year’s Day on a festive note by letting guests be their own mixologists at a self-serve mimosa bar. My full-proof tips to creating the perfect setup

Let guests create their own concoctions at a make-your-own mimosa bar with a variety of juices and ingredients.

5: Build a Lucky Brunch Menu

Embrace good health and prosperity in the new year by building your brunch menu with foods believed to bring good luck.

Greens

Because greens resemble money, they symbolize wealth in the coming year. Consider serving a collard greens breakfast skillet or green smoothies.

Pork

Pigs represent prosperity. Serve up some braised pork belly on from-scratch biscuits, or serve your pork in the form of bacon in a bacon-potato frittata.

Fish

Fish are lucky for many reasons. First, their scales resemble coins. Second, they swim in schools, which represents abundance and prosperity. Last, they swim forward, which shows progress. Salmon is a great option for brunch. Try our smoked salmon cups, salmon eggs Benedict or mini bagels with lox.

Black-Eyed Peas

Because of their coin-like appearance, black-eyed peas are believed to bring wealth and good luck. In the South, people often eat them in the form of Hoppin’ John, a Lowcountry dish of rice and black-eyed peas. For brunch, consider pairing Hoppin’ John with braised greens and fried eggs.

black eyed peas and greens

black eyed peas and greens

Atlanta chef/restaurateur Anne Quatrano makes a New Year's Day spread for her staff, including braised winter greens and Hoppin' John, or Southern-style beans and rice. 

Photo by: Image by Brian Woodcock

Image by Brian Woodcock

Ring-Shaped Dessert

Ring-shaped cakes and desserts symbolize the year coming full circle. Cap off your brunch with an applesauce bundt cake or some tasty donuts.

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