In addition to my regular menu planning this weekend, I had to finalize our party menu, too!Â Saturday was our bi-monthly Sam’s shopping trip–excellent timing on that one–so we took advantage of already being in the warehouse store to stock up on the usual goods plus anything else we’d need for party food.
Todd’s trunk was so weighed down it made alarming noises when we stopped at red lights! And there was no way everything was fitting in the pantry, so party prep items are still hanging out at the end of the dining room table until needed. I’d estimate we spend $200-$300 extra in groceries when prepping for a big party like this, and it always feels like money well spent. Our guests have plenty of options and the leftovers feed us (and sometimes our offices) in the days after the party so we don’t have to worry about cooking after the fun. It all evens out.
Speaking of those options, this is what the menu is currently set at:
Spanish Pulled Pork with Kings Hawaiian Rolls
Vegan Corn Chowder*
Roast Beef and Swiss Pinwheels
Smoked Gouda Pimento Cheese Pinwheels
Bacon-Wrapped Artichoke Hearts*
Spicy Black Bean Dip* with assorted crackers and chips
Chocolate Chip Brownies*
Paladin Punch* (non-alcholic)
Mulled Apple Cider
Black Juleps (whiskey)
Beer: Yuengling Oktoberfest and Not Your Father’s Root Beer
Assorted wine, sodas, full bar, and mixers are always available
(Menu items marked with an * are from my cookbook, What to Feed Your Raiding Party.)
It’s very similar to last year’s menu with a lot of “fan favorites” like the bacon-wrapped artichoke hearts and the pinwheels. I had multiple dips on last year’s menu, but with so much food they got overlooked, so I slimmed it down to only one (and one that is always a hit at out parties). I also had a couple more desserts on the menu for last year, but I know that at least one guest is bringing a couple of sweet items for the table, so I lessened my to-do list knowing that we’ll have plenty.
And last year’s table was so jammedÂ full that I thought it would be nice to have a little more room to maneuver this year!
This picture is from last year, too–I like to plan what is going where on the table and what serving dishes I’ll need before I start filling platters and dressing up the table. It looks like we only had 2 of the 3 leaves in place–I guess we only added the third leaf for Thanksgiving, though we’ve left it in place since. Good! That means we’ll have even more room to work with!
Okay, now back to work on my costume!
46 thoughts on “What to Feed Your Halloween Party”
Wow! You are prepared, it looks a fab menu. I wish we celebrated halloween here in the Uk like you do 🙂
Thanks, Claire! I think I enjoy planning my parties as much as I do attending them.
Eeep! Your menu sounds amazing! Can’t wait to see your costume!
Thank you! I hope to be able to post my costume after the party (after only because I’ll probably be finishing it in the wee hours of the night before, lol).
I lay out my serving dishes beforehand, too! That is a ton of food! Can I come next year? haha
You’re more than welcome to, lol! I’m glad I’m not the only one who does that (plan out serving dishes)!
That’s an amazing spread! Laying out the dishes beforehand is a great time-saving tip.
I find it to be a big help! Not only do I not have to scramble to find the dishes I need, I can easily see if one’s been damaged or needs some attention before the last minute.
Wow, you went all out with your menu! Great set up!
Feeding people (and other acts of service) is how I show my affection and admiration for my friends and family.
Cranberry Pumpkin Muffins are one of my favorites. I remember the coffee shop at my college had them… I would get them like every day. Mmmm. Your menu sounds great!
Thanks! The pumpkin bread is amazing–I’ll have to post the recipe next week–and we discovered that it freezes beautifully!
That looks like a great spread! I love going to ‘adult’ halloween parties because you get sweet and savory!
Yes, I like to keep a good balance 🙂
Your very prepared!! I can’t wait to see how everything turns out!!
I enjoy planning. I hope this year’s party goes as well as last!
What a feast. I can’twait to see how your table will look this year. I also like to plan how my table will look and what dishes to use when I’m hosting a party.
Once it’s loaded with food it’ll probably look a lot like last year, but that’s not a bad thing at all!
Thanks for the Halloween suggestions! I wish I could have a party this year, but our house is just too small.
For many years we didn’t really have room to entertain inside so I hosted a pumpkin carving party in the yard. I don’t think we were rained out even once!
Your menu looks great! We are having a very small (8-10 people) get-together for Halloween and I am working on our menu too — we’re doing a bourbon theme, since my husband and his friends are so obsessed with it. I might steal a couple of your ideas, too!
Oooh, a Bourbon dinner sounds divine! Hope you’ll post about the party on your own blog 🙂
That is quite the spread! I can see how the party would be a hit.
We do our best to live up to the expectations of Southern Hospitality 🙂
Your Halloween party spread looks incredible!! We usually only serve a few snacks, but you have definitely gone all out! Thanks for the inspiration 🙂
I’m afraid I’ve never been able to stop at just a few snacks–my fear is running out of food, so I over prepare, but it all works out 🙂
That menu sounds delicious! I absolutely love pinwheels!
They’re so simple and yet the first party I served them at they were gobbled up, so I don’t dare take them off! They’re also an easy way to add another vegetarian option that’s more robust that just a dip or chilled veggies.
So um… I’m invited, right? Because that looks absolutely amazing!
Sure! You’re quite welcome 🙂
So I am guessing I am invited so I thought I would give you my choices in advance: vegan corn chowder ( which by the way I am so checking out your other post), cranberry pumpkin bread, spicy bean dip and some Paladian punch!
The “secret” to the vegan chowder is to use coconut milk instead of dairy. It’s so rich and creamy and pairs wonderfully with the corn, potatoes, and bell peppers that even our staid carnivores don’t miss the bacon or milk!
Can I come to your party?!!?!? It looks really good!!!
Of course! The more the merrier 🙂
Wow, it all looks amazing! You’ve got it all under control!
Thanks! I do my best to be prepared and get things done over time so I’m not scrambling at the last minute. So far, so good this year!
wow I’ll be right over. Looks delicious and that’s a lot of food. Have fun!
Yes, it was a lot of food, but our guests did a good job of taking care of it 🙂
I love the ideas! Seriously so helpful because I have the hardest time with coming up with ideas as to what to prepare!
Always happy to help, Lexie!
What a great menu! I always set up my table with the platters before hand – just to make sure it fits and looks nice. I also usually need to label them with a sticky note. Otherwise I forget to pull something out!
I’ve been known to make diagrams of table layout in the past 🙂
The before and after pictures are amazing. You’re so great at organizing all of these things into a cohesive tablesetting.
Thank you, Jenna! Years of practice is really all it is, at this point 🙂
Wow! Looks like lots of amazing party food!
Thanks, it was! We put quite a bit of the leftovers into the freezer and are still snacking on some of the appetizers.