How to Create a Delicious Dinner Party Menu

Hosting a dinner party is a wonderful way to get together with friends and family, share some laughs, make great memories and enjoy some fabulous food together. The thing about dinner parties is that they aren’t usually thrown together at the moment; instead, they take some careful planning, especially where the menu is concerned. You want to be sure you’re serving up dishes that will appeal to your guests and also showcase your cooking skills. If you’re struggling to put together a delicious dinner party menu, we’ve got some tips that will help.

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Form Your Guest List

The very first step in creating a delicious dinner party menu is to form your guest list. You need to know how many people you will be cooking for and if any of them have special dietary restrictions. This can include food allergies or intolerances or specific meals like vegan or vegetarian.

In terms of how much food to cook, there are some simple tools and tips you can find online to help you figure it out. You want to take into consideration all items, including appetizers, sides (soup and salad), main course, desserts and beverages.

Take All the Guesswork Out and Opt for Meal Delivery

While it would be great if you had tons of time to pour into creating the perfect menu, the fact is that it may not be possible. A great way to guarantee your menu is a delicious success and that it will take very little time and effort on your part is to use a meal delivery service such as Sunbasket. You should read more about Sunbasket review in this link.

The way these services work is that you can customize the type of meal you want, as well as the servings, and set a date for it to be delivered. All the ingredients are prepared and pre-measured so all you need to do is follow the easy-to-read recipe cards that take you through the process step-by-step. You'll have access to fresh ingredients, recipes that are tested and guaranteed to be flavorful (often crafted by chefs) and often special diets can be accommodated (vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and so forth).

Make Selection Easy by Choosing a Theme

The category of ‘dinner party meals’ is pretty massive. It is such a huge category that it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you dip your toes into it. One way you can narrow down your options and create a menu that feels cohesive is to pick a theme. This theme will tie all the recipes and dishes together and can even help you where décor is concerned.

Some popular themes can include:

  • ·         Highlighting a particular country or culture’s cuisine
  • ·         Focusing on one or two main ingredients that are carried through all courses
  • ·         Choosing a flavor that you carry throughout – spicy, earthy, sweet, savory and so forth
  • ·         Finger and bite-sized foods only

When choosing a theme, be sure to pick one that excites you and that you feel knowledgeable in as this will build your confidence in the kitchen.

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Fresh Ingredients Tend to Be the Best Choice

In terms of flavor, every recipe benefits from fresh ingredients. So, as you research various recipes, focus on those that use items which are in season and accessible to you. While that may not be possible for every dish, you can certainly emphasize fresh ingredients.

Try the Recipes in Advance

If you end up picking a new-to-you recipe, or one that looks particularly complex, it doesn’t hurt to give it a trial run in advance. There may be some aspects of the recipe you choose to tweak to ensure perfection on the night of the dinner party.

Don't Forget How Important the Party Prep Is

Even once you choose the perfect dinner party menu, it’s important to also consider the preparation. Ideally, you don’t want to be in the kitchen cooking the whole time; you want to be able to visit with your guests as much as possible. This requires careful and precise planning so you can prepare as much as possible in advance.

Some tips can include pre-washing ingredients, pre-measuring ingredients, marinating from the night before, choosing one-pot meals such as slow cooker dishes and even cooking items in advance so you are just warming them, browning or crisping them up.

Of course, dinner party preparation is also much more involved than just the menu; you also want to think about who you are inviting, the seating plan, if there will be a theme (this can be used to help pick the menu), whether you need to create more space by moving around furniture, adding decor to the table, and making sure you give the house a good cleaning.

Now that you’ve followed all the best steps and tips, there is nothing left to do but relish in the success of your dinner party.

Photo by Rachel Claire from Pexels

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