My husband and I love hosting dinner parties, BBQs, game nights, you name it. We’ve somewhat slowed down in our hosting efforts since having kids but we really want to get back into a regular routine of having people over. My husband’s whole family loves making good food and I love decorating and making pretty treats. Hosting dinner parties is a great way to teach kids how to be generous with your home and serve others too! Here are some simple tips to host a gorgeous dinner party without spending lots of time or money.
This post was sponsored by Wolf & Irving.
Collect Classic Table Decor
I love adding placemats and serving dishes to my dinner party stash. Placemats protect the table and give your table settings a beautifully classic touch. I don’t decorate in any traditional or specific style so I love finding fun patterns and mix-and-match separates that coordinate with my decor and dishes. I generally use a solid color tablecloth and printed placemats. Or if I’m going with the bare table look I can use any combination of placemats and dishware. We just purchased an amazing distressed wood dining room table for our new home which is amazing quality and will serve our family years to come.
These modern placements from Wolf & Irving are from the Boho Chic collection. I love the aztec-inspired print and muted gray colors that contrast with the white background. These Wolf & Irving “Sana” placements coordinate perfectly with the Thea cloth dinner napkins. Each classic table item is beautifully made in the USA with 100% recycled materials and non-toxic inks. See how to make these cloth napkin folded flowers, just scroll to the bottom of this post!
Wolf & Irving table linens are soft and durable and perform like a restaurant tablecloth. They are machine washable and naturally more stain resistant and fade resistant than traditional cotton or linen.
Greet Guests With a Drink Station
Who doesn’t love a refreshing drink upon walking through the door? We don’t drink much alcohol at all, but I do love an occasional Mojito or Mai Tai. The kids love refreshing tropical smoothies we make with banana, pineapple, mango, and orange juice. Water infused with lemon and lime slices is always a hit at a summer dinner party. If you want to make your own summer drink station, these RSVP Skinnies Cocktail Mixers are a budget-friendly way to offer a variety of drinks without having to store a cabinet full of leftover mixers after your party. Each of these fruity mixers blends beautifully with carbonated water or regular ice water. RSVP Skinnies Cocktail Mixers are also delicious to drink without the suggested alcohol if kids want to try to one. Each drink mixer stick has 0 calories and offers instructions about what to mix with it to create a refreshing drink.
You can easily make any combination of drinks by mixing Gin, Tequila or Vodka with sparkling water and adding one of these RSVP Skinnies cocktail mixers! Best part, the mixers themselves have 0 calories so you can enjoy a few extra appetizers. Shop RSVP Skinnies on Amazon »
Make Some Simple Appetizers
Appetizers are a fun way to interact with your dinner guests and munch while you chat. A dinner party appetizer can be as simple as a veggie plate with ranch dressing or french bread spread with garlic butter and toasted. Appetizers are also great to enjoy with a drink!
Easy Garlic Bread
French bread, sliced
Garlic, minced or paste
Parmesan cheese, shredded
Slice the french bread into pieces 1 inch thick. Mix 1 tsp. of minced garlic or garlic paste with 2 tbsp. of butter and spread a thin layer onto each piece of bread. Top with shredded Parmesan cheese and toast until lightly browned. Enjoy while warm!
Awesomely Easy Spinach & Artichoke Dip
1 cup frozen spinach, thawed and chopped
1 1/2 cups artichoke hearts, chopped
6 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
Heat the spinach and artichokes over medium heat until warm. Stir in the cream cheese, sour cream, mayo, and Parmesan cheese until combined and saucy. Remove from the heat, pour into a serving dish and serve warm.
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Goat Cheese Crostinis
Thin loaf of bread
Onion, sliced thinly
Slice the loaf of bread into pieces 1/2 inch thick. Spread each slice with goat cheese. In a small skillet, cook the onion in balsamic vinegar over medium heat until soft and golden. Spoon the onion onto each slice of bread and toast until lightly browned. Enjoy while warm!
Finish Dinner With Sweet Treats
What’s a dinner party without dessert? A bowl of ice cream is always a classic crowd-pleaser but if you want to get a bit more fancy make these easy treats!
Chocolate Covered Strawberries are easy to make by dipping fresh strawberries in melted chocolate. Our secret is to add a tbsp. of oil to the melted chocolate so it flows smoothly and dries with a glossy finish. Place each dipped strawberry on parchment paper to dry. 10 minutes in the freezer will significantly speed drying time.
Homemade Dark Chocolate Truffles are another delicious treat that are easy to make with 4 ingredients. My delicious truffle recipe includes a shot of espresso for an extra rich flavor. See our full DIY Dark Chocolate Truffle Recipe »
Dinner parties are lots of fun and can be inexpensive and stress-free with a little planning. I like keeping pretty table decor around and recipe ingredients in the pantry so I can easily make dinner for spontaneous guests. It’s fun to teach my kids how to host company too!
Pin It! Easy Folded Cloth Napkin Flowers
Katie enjoys all things creative; DIY projects, photography, decorating and family adventures. She feels blessed to be a stay-at-home mom with 3 kids and many artistic outlets.