Do you get anxious about hosting dinners at home? I certainly do! One thing I found that makes it easier is to have a bank of easy, reliable recipes and menus on hand. Today, I’m sharing five pre-done menus for you to help take the strain and guesswork out of summer entertaining.
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Getting a plan in place is the hardest part! Today I’m sharing 5 unique menus that cover a wide variety of tastes – from the classic meat and potatoes lover to the vegetarian/vegan guest.
The menus typically feature only one component that needs your attention on the day of your event. The other components can either be made in advance or store-bought. Using this method is one of my top tricks for keeping entertaining EASY!
Classic Steak & Potato Night
Start off this evening with a cheese & fruit tray. If you’re pressed for time, you can even pick one up pre-made. For dinner, choose your favorite cuts of steak, season or marinate, and roast on the grill.
The side dish is an amazing potato and green bean combination that I’ve made time and again. Always a winner! It’s also the only course that involves any significant prep work, which keeps the overall menu easy.
For dessert, try one of the booze & ice cream combos from this post!
Menu #2 is perfect for a casual get-together and features these amazing citrus-marinated pork tacos! The best thing about this recipe is that it’s cooked in a crock pot so can be made in advance. Black bean and corn salad makes a great side dish for this meal.
This crowd-pleasing, flavor-packed margarita pie can be made in advance and kept frozen until needed. Easy-peasy!
Chic Roasted Chicken
I typically slant this menu toward Greek flavors but you could really go any direction you like (Italian, Moroccan, etc.). For the skewers, I like a cucumber, feta, olive combo or watermelon, feta, mint, and blackberry mix.
Before roasting, stuff your chicken with a cut lemon and some Greek herbs like oregano or rosemary. The wild rice dish below is a very rich and flavorful side and you can easily swap the walnuts for pecans or slivered almonds. For dessert, make (or purchase) an assortment of brownies and blondies!
Wild Rice with Walnuts
- 1 cup wild rice
- 2-3 14.5-ounce cans of chicken broth
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions
- 1/2-1 cup unsalted walnuts, toasted
Cook rice according to directions, substituting chicken broth for water. When the rice is done, blend in butter, onions, and walnuts. Serve hot. Serves 6.
Five Star Fish
The star of this menu is the red snapper as it becomes unveiled from its layer of salt! And cracking the salt off is fun for guests.
Purchase (or make) a seasonal fruit pie with ice cream for dessert.
If you’re not vegetarian yourself, it can be difficult to know what to serve. This Israeli Couscous salad is one of our summertime favorites! Even my meat-loving husband enjoys this dish. Leave out the cheese and it works for vegan friends as well.
The starter and side are both simple and easy to prepare. For dessert, I recommend this Coconut-Lime sorbet, also vegan-friendly.
Entertaining doesn’t need to be tough! You just need a good plan. Hope these summer menus have inspired you to host some friends for dinner soon!
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