This easy and festive party menu will put a spell on your guests.

Jaime Milan
October 15, 2020
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This is Obsessed: my weekly column devoted to sharing all the things I'm loving right now—from unique food and gift ideas to travel destinations and beauty products—plus some tips and tricks for living your best life.

I’ve watched the movie Hocus Pocus every year since I was a little kid. I have most of the lines memorized, and two Halloweens ago, I even dressed up as Winifred Sanderson and made my husband dress up like Thackery Binx (he *really* must love me). 

My obsession with Hocus Pocus might seem silly, but after this hellish year I’ll take any sliver of joy I can get. And since we won’t be going to any large gatherings or Halloween parties this October, I’m inviting my quaran-team over for some Hocus Pocus-themed food and cocktails (and movie-watching, of course) this weekend. 

How to Throw a Hocus Pocus-Themed Party

Hocus Pocus Tablescape and Decor

Jaime Milan

I didn’t want to spend a bunch of money on my decor since I knew I’d be buying food and lots of treats. I also wanted to use decorations that were elegant-ish and could be repurposed for Halloween each year (read: not just Hocus Pocus-themed stuff to use for one night). So I hopped online and bought a moss table runner ($16, Amazon) and some battery-operated fairy lights ($13, Amazon) to give my table a “fall in Salem” vibe for this weekend. 

In preparation for my party, I laid out the moss runner and fairy lights and scattered around some faux mini pumpkins that I already had. But it wasn’t “witchy” enough, and I realized something was missing: black flame candles! I brought over three brass candleholders from my mantle, staggered them down the length of the table and decided to I wanted to add some black taper candles for an eerie effect (I ordered these $13 ones from Amazon, and I'm waiting for them to come in). 

Hocus Pocus-Themed Food

I knew I wanted to make something hearty, delicious, cheap and really easy. There was only one dish for the job: spaghetti and meatballs! While I would never normally serve spaghetti and meatballs (um, it’s the messiest food ever), I knew there would just be a few of us, so we could eat dinner at the table.

I plan on calling my spaghetti “Lucky Rat Tails” and my meatballs “Dead Man’s Toes.” I’m also a firm believer that carbs pair best with more carbs, so I plan to make some garlic bread—in this mini skeleton cake pan from Williams Sonoma, of course—and I’ll call the gruesome bites “Billy Butcherson’s Skulls.”

And for the pièce de résistance? A “Snack-ery Binx Board” with spellbook cookies, brownie bites (with these fun Halloween sprinkles) and candy (I bought this variety pack for $16). After reading this, I’m thinking I should probably add something green to the menu (life is about balance, right?!). 

Try these recipes:

Hocus Pocus Cocktails

I had so much fun coming up with Hocus Pocus-themed cocktails to make for my party! The first one will be called the “Black Flame Candle.” It’s going to be this Pomegranate Gimlet recipe from Ina Garten, but I’m going to sub vodka for the gin and add this black, edible prism powder from Fancy Sprinkles for an extra-witchy, mesmerizing effect. 

My other cocktail is called “Burning Rain of Death.” I’m riffing on this recipe for Magical Color-Changing Margaritas, but I’ll be freezing my butterfly-pea-flower-tea ice cubes in my mini skull cake tray for a Halloween- and Hocus Pocus-approved twist. I cannot wait to see my friends freak out over these color-changing margs! 

Jaime Milan

Here's how my bar cart setup looks! (P.S.- I snagged these adorable skull-shaped cocktail picks on Amazon for $13, and they'll definitely be used to garnish these drinks.)

The Setup

Recipe pictured above: Dessert Party Board

We’ll be eating dinner and having some cocktails before the movie starts and then retreating to the living room with our Snack-ery Binx Board to munch on during the movie (FYI, you can watch Hocus Pocus for free if you have Disney+, or you can rent or buy it for a few bucks on Amazon).

I cannot wait to have a fun girls’ night with these Hocus Pocus-themed food and cocktails. I think the Sanderson sisters would definitely approve! 

Jaime Milan is EatingWell’s digital editor for all things newsy and trending. She’s always on the hunt for the latest and greatest things to share with EatingWell’s readers. In her spare time, you can find her experimenting in the kitchen, tackling home projects with her husband or taking pics of her very photogenic American Eskimo Dog, Grits. Follow her on Instagram at @jaimemmilan