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Breakfast might be the most important meal of the day, but brunch is by far the most fun. With plenty of food and stories to share, it’s the perfect way to spend time with friends. Here’s how you can make brunch extra special.

Brunch doesn’t have to be a formal, sit-down meal around a table. Why not make it a late morning ‘open house’ where people come and go over the course of two or three hours? That way you can invite more friends and it won’t feel empty if a couple of guests drop out at the last minute. Set up a buffet with lots of food and drinks – you’ll be able to do some quality brunch mingling this way. Or, on sunny days, why not take it outside? What about a brunch at 10am? Don’t forget the Lipton Ice Tea.

It’s worth checking a few days before your event whether brunch guests have dietary requirements. Dairy, wheat, meat, nuts – breakfast can be a minefield for vegans and people with food allergies, so make sure there are alternatives. Make a trayful of fruit skewers and put out some almond or oat milk and you’re halfway there. Don’t forget the non-dairy spelt muffins!

You could focus on one type of cuisine, be it American, Spanish, French, Mexican or Swedish (hello cinnamon buns!). If it’s a brunch party for someone special, make them the theme – serve their favourite foods, play their favourite tunes and if you’re really dedicated, dress up like them. If it’s a special birthday brunch, who wouldn’t love a gigantic stack of candle-topped pancakes? You could even ask everyone to bring a dish that matches the theme. Easy.

Who doesn’t love a nice mocktail at brunch? Build a Virgin Mary bar with two pitchers of tomato mix – one spicy and one mild – and plenty of celery and veggies for the garnish. Or if you prefer a few bubbles, Lipton Ice Tea with lemonade over crushed ice is never out of season. Add mint or berries to decorate. Also, check out our delicious mocktail recipes.

Combine the universal love of brunch with a good cause. Pick a local charity or group and then invite people who you think would be interested in supporting it. Make it very clear in the invitation that all attendees need to make a donation upon arrival, and then ensure the food is super yummy and keep the drinks flowing. Feel-good vibes all round.

Want to impress everyone? Go to your local flower store and get several reasonably priced bunches like gypsophila, daisies and eucalyptus. Make a couple of small arrangements for the table and when everyone is finished eating, bring out the remaining flowers and some empty, cleaned jam jars and a few pairs of scissors and let people arrange their own mini bouquets to take home. It’s so easy and your friends will be delighted. Everyone loves flowers.