Cheap Ass Dinner Parties

dinner_tableIn Atlanta, the weather’s gonna be so heinous, that I was thinking it might be a good idea to invite some friends over to snuggle down and wine and dine together.

I’ve been reading about a lot of fun dinner party concepts and thought I’d share some of my own cheap-ass ideas. Some of them are tacky, but hey: We’re in a recession and everyone needs a good laugh!

  • Iron Chef Showdown– Assign a “star” ingredient (e.g., cheese, chicken, chipotle, whatever!) and invite friends to bring over their own creations for a fierce taste-test competition.
  • Fast Food Nation– Set up a fabulous fast food buffet that’s cheap, greasy and addictive. Everyone can bring a favorite. Place Popeye’s chicken and biscuits in a beautiful basket, take Taco Bell burritos and stack ’em up in a baking dish. Go for it and create a huge piles of pomme frites a la McDonald’s. Provide kindergarten mats for nap time. Kidding.
  • Trashy Beer Tasting– Everyone brings over a six-pack of their all-time favorite cheap suds (my personal fave is Beast Light – aka Milwaukee’s Best Light). Take turns tasting each other’s bounty. Comment on taste, smell, infusion of hops… Laugh as you gag on the nastiness. Serve tasty snacks such as Funyuns, beef jerky and bean dip. People may smirk, but secretly, they’ll be lovin’ that taste of Cool Ranch Doritos with a chaser of Keystone.
  • Pantry Party– Don’t cheat on this one by stocking up (you shouldn’t be spending the money anyway!). Invite a crew over promising a fabulous dinner made only from what you have in the pantry, refrigerator, etc. You never know what you can whip up with only tuna fish, white beans and spaghetti. And if you only have a can of Chef Boyardee Ravioli, so be it. It’s all in the lurrvee.

Let me know if you try any of these! At your own risk, of course. 🙂

Got any ideas of your own? Toss ’em our way!

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