It can be really daunting to want to invite friends or family over for a dinner party, only to be reminded that dinner parties can be EXPENSIVE. I was lucky enough to have our 7 Deadly Sins dinner party sponsored by Foodbuzz but for anyone else who doesn't have someone giving them the cash to throw a dinner party, here are some ideas for cutting down costs:
- Don’t get a babysitter
- Have a Theme
- Aggie's Kitchen had a great idea by throwing an Adult Pizza and Ice Cream Social. If you make your pizza dough and ice cream from scratch, and use produce and herbs you have growing in your garden, this could be an extremely frugal way to have fun with your friends.
- Or you could throw an Irish, (or if it fits a St.Patrick's Day) dinner party like Stiletto Money did. She used really inexpensive ingredients like potatoes, cabbage and corned beef and by having it centered around the Irish theme, it didn't seem "cheesey" to serve those items to her guests.
- Probably the most frugal dinner party I've ever seen was Nourished Kitchen's Recession-Proof Dinner Party. Neither she or her guests spent any money! Now that's the way to throw a frugal dinner party. The host provides a flavorful homemade broth along with homemade bread, and each guest brings an item they had in the fridge, pantry or freezer to go in the soup pot. Such a great idea.
- Limit the number of guests
- Choose your menu carefully
- Have your guests bring stuff
We also use that same idea for our International Dinner Club. We choose one culture's cuisine to focus on for the month, and everyone brings dishes from that country.
Even if you don't have your guests provide dishes for the main meal, you can always ask them to bring a bottle of wine or dessert. You are going through all the work of hosting, cooking, cleaning, etc, they really won't mind :)
- Homemade decorations add to the ambiance
Dinner parties can definitely be done on a dime. So have fun and invite your friends over to share in some great food!