Dinner parties are a staple of adulthood these days, but they can get pricey and overwhelming fast. You get your girlfriends together, grab some wine, and catch up over some mouthwatering food, but let’s be real – it’s a lot harder to relax and enjoy a dinner when you’re hosting! You can be totally down to have some company, but sometimes a meal for a big group isn’t exactly in the budget, and it’s hard to find the time to cook a few courses entirely on your own. It’s easy to miss out on the fun when you’re too stressed about how much you’re spending or how long the lasagna has to go in the oven for, so change it up and make the dinner prep part of the experience!
If you’re having a casual dinner party with close friends, consider asking each of them to be responsible for a certain part of the meal, and have everyone bring the raw ingredients over earlier in the afternoon. Instead of thinking of yourself as the sole host, imagine that you’re all hosting the party. Delegate different aspects of the meal to each one of your guests. They can make whatever they’d like within that category, but you can prepare it all as a group for some extra time together.
For example, assign one friend to a side of veggies – she could bring some peppers and onions for a stir fry veggie dish, or bring the ingredients for a fresh Greek salad. Another friend could be responsible for an appetizer of her choosing, another for a starchier side, another friend for dessert, and so forth. Choose the entree yourself, and have everyone plan their sides accordingly for an effortless and inexpensive meal!
If you’re looking for something even easier but you still want that dinner party experience, round up your friends with the same food subscription service. Have everyone bring that week’s Blue Apron box- you can still prep it together and enjoy a delicious meal as a group, but there’s a lot less pressure on you as the host. For some added excitement, put someone in charge of drinks and try out some fun cocktail recipes while you cook. Grab some cute aprons, toss on some throwback hits, and chef up a great meal while you reminisce together!