This blog post will talk you through everything you need to know before throwing a cooking party. If you are anywhere near as big of a foodie as us you love cooking parties. Yes, cooking parties, not dinner parties, we are talking about gathering your family and friends to cook together. Whether this is your first time hosting a cooking party, or it’s become a monthly ritual in your house, you know that in order for it to run smoothly you need to be well prepared. So here are our tips to help you throw a cooking party:
The guest list
First things first, you need to figure out how many people you are going to invite. You should be basing this on the number of people that fit comfortably in your kitchen and dinner table. Keep in mind that everyone has to have room to comfortably cook, and you need to have enough space in the oven to cook the various dishes. Having said this, it is usually best to keep the guest list small.
If you worry about friends asking to bring their own friends, be upfront with them and tell them it’s an intimate cooking party. Likewise, get your guests to confirm their attendance. If someone can’t make it, this means you can invite another person or allow one of your guests to bring a plus one. We suggest you remind everyone a few days before throwing the cooking party and confirm that everyone is still able to make it.
As you create your guest list take into consideration everyone’s special dietary food requirements and food allergies. This can also help you reduce your guest list. You won’t invite your friend with a severe shellfish allergy to a seafood themed dinner party!
What to cook
Next up is deciding what to cook. We suggest making an appetiser, a main course and a dessert. Pick a dish at least one person in the cooking party has cooked before this way you can be prepared for any obstacles that might come up when cooking it.
As previously mentioned, be specific on the dish you will be cooking. This way you can make sure your guests like it and you can arrange for any special dietary requirements prior to throwing the cooking party. Let your guests know who will cook what before the party itself so they can come mentally prepared to cook what is expected from them. Designate tasks strategically, don’t put that one friend who is always late in charge of appetisers. Likewise let your guests showcase their talents, for instance put the baker in charge of desserts.
What you’ll need
- Ingredients: We suggest one person getting all the ingredients for the party, preferably the person throwing the cooking party. This prevents people showing up without the ingredients they were meant to bring. You can simply split the cost at the end.
- Snacks: It’s always good to have something to nibble on as you wait for your cooking party guests to arrive or your appetisers to cook. If you would rather snack on something you made together, we suggest inviting one person over earlier to help you set this up.
- Tools: There is nothing worse than having to change a dish last minute because you don’t have all the kitchenware equipment needed to make the recipe. Or having to eat off a pan because you don’t have enough dinner plates. So make sure you have all the kitchenware, knives, tableware and table linen you need for throwing a cooking party and making it run smoothly.
- Stock up on kitchen roll and stain remover: Be ready to have your kitchen roll holder at hand, this way you will be prepared to swiftly clean up what is spilled. After all, someone will spill something for sure.
Let us know if we’ve missed any tips on throwing a cooking party in the comments. Otherwise, check out our blog on How to Host an Unforgettable Dinner Party.