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Jun 13 2011

Are You Party Ready??

Published by at 11:13 pm under Friends,Parties

This post is dedicated to all the hosts and hostesses out there who love to entertain and are looking for some great tips on how to throw an impromptu party! Our friends at Foodbuzz and Electrolux helped sponsor our last-minute BBQ that we threw for a few friends so that we can share our party-planning tips and ideas with you. The “Are You Party Ready” campaign is brought to you by Kelly Ripa, who is encouraging people to visit her site at to take the challenge which will automatically donate $1 to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund and be entered for a chance to win a new Electrolux French Door Refrigerator.

We have hosted many parties throughout the years that took a lot of time to plan and execute – mainly because we are so committed to providing great food for our guests. Believe us, it’s very exhausting to host parties for a large group of people – not only before, but also during and after! So to make our lives easier, we’ve learned through our experiences to take some shortcuts when it comes to party-planning. This is your quick guide to some great tips that we have used in the past and also during our most recent BBQ party.

We borrowed a friend's place to throw the last-minute BBQ, which worked out perfectly because it was a nice sunny day and our friends were up for some good food and drinks. What makes a BBQ easy is that you can purchase pre-marinated meat to grill, or grab what you have in the fridge that can grill.

We opted to purchase pre-marinated Korean BBQ beef because it's quick and easy and is a huge crowd pleaser. If you don't want to pay the extra money to purchase pre-marinated, then you can buy the meat and make your own mixture to marinate overnight.

Preparing for a BBQ requires some side dishes, and the ones we chose to do are quick and simple and does not require too much work or ingredients.

Pasta salad is one of my favorite go-to party dishes that can feed a big crowd. It's great because it's a cold dish so it's okay to leave out during the party. You can be creative with the ingredients you add to a pasta salad with what you have on hand. Then just pour Italian dressing over the pasta salad for a light subtle flavor.

What better way to treat your guests than to have something fresh? Salsa or pico de gallo with chips is a great way to stretch your ingredients and have your guests snack during the party. Instead of spending time chopping ingredients, a quicker way is to throw them into a blender to make a zesty salsa.

This is probably the best shortcut - a platter of chex mix to let your guests snack on during the party.

Even if you have a last-minute party, it doesn't mean you can't think about decorations! My best tip is to re-use old decorations, such as these pretty lanterns, to bring some fun and life to the parties. Store the decorations where it's easy to find so it can be used again at a moment's notice.

Besides what we did for the BBQ party, here are some more tips on what you can do in advance to prepare for any last-minute entertaining for your family and friends:

  • Stock up on wine, champagne, and soda when it’s on sale and keep it handy for guests when they happen to give you a “surprise visit.”
  • Always have paper plates and plastic utensils to avoid doing major clean-up at the end of the party.
  • Purchase snacks that have long shelf-lives that do not need refrigeration, such as chips, cookies, and crackers – these are great to have for guests to snack on in case you didn’t have time to prepare any meals.
  • Keep in mind for some quick go-to recipes that you can prepare without using a lot of ingredients or ingredients that are readily available in the fridge or cupboard.
  • Never underestimate the power of freezing! If you ever make a big batch of food that you know will still taste good after you freeze it, then that would be something you can serve to your guests if you don’t have time to cook the day of the event.
  • Have a box that you can put all of your miscellaneous party supplies in, such as table covers, place settings, candles, decorations, centerpieces, etc. This way you can get to it quickly and decide how you want the place to look before your guests arrive.
  • Always have some entertainment options for your visitors, such as board games, video games, music, and so forth. Besides eating and drinking, you’ll want them to have a fun and memorable time.
  • And lastly – don’t stress out! Your guests will understand if it’s an impromptu event, so do your best and have a good time!

So what party tips and advice can you share with us? We’d love to hear them!

Oh, and don’t forget to visit to submit your last-minute entertaining ideas for your chance to win the Electrolux refrigerator!

6 responses so far

6 Responses to “Are You Party Ready??”

  1. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Dessertson 14 Jun 2011 at 7:08 am

    Great tips! Your party looks awesome! That BBQ Beef – yum! The salsa! I am sure your friend had a great time!
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts´s last [type] ..Honey Oat Bread

  2. nancy@skinnykitchen.comon 14 Jun 2011 at 9:11 am

    Thanks for sharing such great tips!´s last [type] ..Fresh Strawberry Pie Topped Cheesecake…The Ultimate Skinny Dessert for Father’s Day!

  3. Laura @ Family Spiceon 16 Jun 2011 at 7:49 am

    I love Korean BBQ! And getting already marinated meats is a great shortcut for impromptu parties. YUM!
    Laura @ Family Spice´s last [type] ..The Daring Cooks- Roasted Fingerling Potato Salad with Lemon &amp Thyme

  4. Sandyon 18 Jun 2011 at 11:13 am

    Those lanterns look familiar! ;) Glad that you were able to use them for a 2nd time!

  5. Adrian (Food Rehab)on 01 Jul 2011 at 4:29 am

    Nice – thanks for the partaaay tips! The Korean BBQ beef would’ve been a hit. WOOOT!
    Adrian (Food Rehab)´s last [type] ..A Cubicle Vampire’s Guide to Melbourne’s Cafe Scene

  6. Lilyon 02 Sep 2011 at 4:44 am

    Great tips in preparing a party! Hope your party was a success.. :)
    Lily´s last [type] ..Dominos menu

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