Does the thought of planning a dinner party stress you to the max? If so, turn to the tips below so that you will have fun too!
Plan Your Menu With Care
The key to being a host who isn’t stuck in the kitchen the entire time is to plan a thoughtful menu. Look for items that can be prepared ahead of time, that cook fast, or that can be cooked in a crockpot. For example:
- Gourmet cheese and crackers or a premade crockpot soup are a perfect appetizer.
- Salads and many cold veggie side dishes can be made ahead of time.
- Grains blends can be made in a rice cooker.
- Fish and other meats can be marinated ahead of time and just need to be baked or grilled.
- Desserts can be made the day before.
- Serve bottled wine, a punch, or a signature drink you can make in bulk. Be sure to have NA options.
- Feel free to buy a few pre-made deli items.
- Feel free to ask guests to bring a dish or at least BYOB.
Classic Or Eclectic
You can never go wrong with classic white place settings, which you can add a bit of visual interest to with colored napkins, napkin rings, placemats, and table décor. Or go full on eclectic and do a mix and matched type of shabby-chic place settings. When it comes to table décor, you at least need a centerpiece but make sure it’s not too tall so that guests can see one another across the table.
Last but not least, serve coffee and dessert when the evening is winding down—which will also act a cue that it’s time for guests to wrap things up.