The last week of December had got to be our busiest moment of entertaining guests, feasting and of course, fuelling my ultimate passion in cooking for others. The husband and I hosted three dinner parties on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day – the last two weren’t even pre-planned in advance! And we created a buffet (no kidding!) of honey BBQ ribs, roast turkey, bacon-wrapped sausages, pizzas, quesadillas, burgers, roasted potatoes and more. Everything that your parents told you to keep away from when you were little were all coming out from my kitchen. Ooh yeah!
It’s a good thing that I always have my recipes to fall back on so I can manage any last minute hosting or potluck with ease. And I totally understand the pain and stress a host has to go through when planning menus, thinking of how to plate the dishes, worrying if the food will be enough etc. I thought it’d be nice to share my favourite 10 Easy Dinner Party Recipes that are absolutely fuss-free to prepare. And if you’re wondering why there are no veggies, well, this is party food man! Call them dude food, fast food or comfort food – whatever – these crowd-pleasers are great for communal sharing and probably best eaten with your hands 🙂
1. Tortilla Wrap Pizzas
I’m sure most of you are familiar with those packet tortilla wraps from supermarkets but do you also know you can turn them into pizzas? Say bye-bye to those thick frozen pizza bases and you don’t even need to get your hands dirty with flour. Making these pizzas are just so easy plus there are endless combinations of toppings to work with. You can even get your guests to design their own tortilla pizzas with different ingredients.
Click on the link for my Tortilla Pizza Recipe and learn how to make your own pizza sauce too.
2. Ham & Cheese Quesadillas
See how useful tortilla wraps are? Besides making pizzas with them, you can also create quesadillas with any ingredients of your choice – think ham & cheese, chicken & mushroom, beef & onion, etc. And what you need to do is just to brown them up on a frying pan so the outside is crispy while the inside remains moist and cheesy-gooey.
Click on the link for my Ham & Cheese Quesadilla Recipe.
3. Honey BBQ Baby Back Ribs
With just a bottle of store-bought BBQ sauce, honey and lemon juice, you can easily fix up a slab of moist and succulent ribs with meat so tender, it just falls off the bone. Exactly like what you will get from those branded ribs places that charge them at exorbitant prices – meh. This is so finger-licking good, you will have your guests coming back for seconds for sure.
Click on the link for my Honey BBQ Baby Back Ribs Recipe.
4. Cheesy Chicken Baked Pasta
A classic casserole dish that you’d probably have eaten many times at potlucks or dinner parties. But that’s the beauty of it, it doesn’t go out of fashion. Maybe because I love my cheese so anything with cheese never fails to appeal to me. A baked pasta is something that you can make in advance and then heat up again when your guests arrive and it’s a tummy filler if you need the carbs to feed your guests.
Click on the link for my Cheesy Chicken Baked Pasta Recipe.
5. Pulled Pork Burger
When I discovered I could make tender pulled pork with my Happy Call Pan at a shorter amount of time, pulled pork sandwiches and burgers had been appearing frequently on my dinner table. Besides bready carbs, you can also serve them over pastas, salads, roasted potatoes or just eat them as is like a main. Did I mention pulled pork taste great with coleslaw?
Click on the link for my Pulled Pork Recipe.
6. Oven-Baked Crispy Fish Fingers with Greek Yogurt Dip
Let’s have a little change from the usual meat and carbs and indulge in some seafood instead. You know how some kids dislike fish because of bones or fishy taste – well I’m one of them lol. So I decided to use sutchi fillets to make finger food like these fish fingers. Of course you can deep fry them if you like but I prefer to bake them in the oven instead so they are still crispy without being greasy. If you are not interested in a healthier dip like greek yogurt, go for full-fat mayo!
Click on the link for my Oven-Baked Crispy Fish Fingers with Greek Yogurt Dip Recipe.
7. ‘Extremely Cheesy’ Lasagne
The husband’s lasagne is a real knockout – so hearty and comforting every time I have it. Again, this is another classic casserole dish that everyone is familiar with. Think golden cheesy crust on top with a hot, moist (but not soggy) filling. The flavour is so rich and robust and this dish is just so shareable with peeps.
Click on the link for my husband’s ‘Extremely Cheesy’ Lasagne Recipe.
8. Meatballs with Gravy
Are you a big fan of Ikea’s meatballs? But sometimes find their meatballs more floury than meaty? Well, the only solution is to make them from scratch. And you can easily make the balls the day before, chill them in the fridge and then pop them into the oven just before the party starts. Your guests can help themselves with the balls, as many as they can eat. Just make sure you make excess because it’s impossible to stop at one.
Click on the link for my Meatballs with Gravy Recipe.
9. Seafood Pie
I made this on Christmas Eve and it was very well received because I added a lot of seafood into it – plump & juicy scallops, fresh & crunchy prawns, tender & flaky white fish fillet. All the natural juices and flavours from the seafood somehow made the pie even more flavoursome and delicious. It may be called a pie but there’s really no pastry to it. Just mashed potatoes on top. Yum.
Click on the link for my Seafood Pie Recipe.
10. Potato Chips Crusted Chicken Nuggets
This is da bomb with kids! What’s better than combining potato chips with chicken nuggets? So bloody addictive! You can pick any potato chips of your choice – whatever brand whatever flavour – be it sour cream & onion, bbq, honey mustard, etc. Crispy and crunchy on the inside, tender and moist on the inside. How about a sweet chilli mayo dip to go with it?
Click on the link for my Potato Chips Crusted Chicken Nuggets Recipe.
And now you’re armed with these extra recipes, you can now start collating your shopping list and head to the supermarket soon! Whatever you are serving up to your family and friends, I’m certain that food cooked with love will always be tastier than anything else. Have fun and happy cooking! xoxo