When I sat down to make my 2020 content plan, I can say that this post was certainly never part of that plan! In this odd time we’re living in, it’s been so great to see how people are adjusting by learning how to virtually connect with others. Since we all miss being able to go out to restaurants and have friends over for dinner parties, I thought I’d share you how to host a virtual dinner party!
There are, of course, no rules and many ways how to host a virtual dinner parties, but I’ve been part of a few different virtual dinner parties that I wanted to share with you.
The three options for having a virtual dinner party:
- Pick and menu and everyone cooks the same thing and then enjoy virtually together
- Everyone makes part of the meal and portions it and does a porch drop off and then enjoy virtually together
- Make a freezer meal/make ahead meal and and do a drop off and then enjoy virtually together
The first option to host a virtual dinner party is to organize recipes, invite friends and all cook the same meal. So, for this virtual dinner party, as the organizer, I would select a recipe from each category (I’ve listed a few options too):
- App or Salad – easy cucumber salad, spinach salad, 5 ingredient tortellini salad
- Entree – roasted chicken or sesame salmon bowls or 5 ingredient chicken alfredo pesto gnocchi
- Dessert – salted caramel chocolate chip cookies, cream cheese raspberry swirl brownies, or the easiest banana muffins
- Cocktail/Drink if you’re feeling fancy like this melon spritzer or this apple cider old fashioned
You can get as creative as you’d like and send out a mini recipe book with the recipes for each menu item. Or you could pick a cookbook (like my 5 Ingredient cookbook). Then invite friends to cook each recipe for the dinner party. When it’s time for the dinner party, log into your favorite video chatting software (like Google Duo, Zoom etc.) and enjoy a lovely meal with family and friends! You can compare menu items and talk about how they turned out, if you enjoyed cooking them etc. This reminded me of having a virtual game night!
The option of all cooking the same dish(es) at your own house allows you to have virtual dinner parties with those near and far, like those living across the country!
So, that’s one fun way to have a virtual dinner party, but I have another way that’s even more fun if you live closer.
This one involves cooking and dropping off items onto family/friend’s doorstep. Each person at the dinner party gets assigned a dish (appetizer, salad, main, dessert, etc.). That person creates/makes the dish and delivers a portion to each person that is part of the dinner party. It’s like a creative way to do a progressive dinner party, social distancing style.
We have done this a couple of times with my in-laws and it’s been so fun. We recently did this for Serbian Easter. My in-laws made a garlic roasted leg of lamb and bread and salad. I made these amazing deviled eggs and Ben made a snack mix. Someone made Serbian potato salad and a baked phyllo dough/cheese dish and we also enjoyed an amazing dessert of intricate Serbian cookies. It was so fun!!
This also works for coffee dates. Ben used to share a doughnut with his grandfather every week, and since they haven’t been able to do that, his grandfather dropped off a doughnut and they ate it together via facetime, so cute!
Another option is dropping off a freezer meal or something you’ve made ahead and then you can enjoy it virtually together!
- Here is a roundup of my favorite freezer/make ahead meals with stand out favorites being the chicken enchilada casserole, sheet pan pizza and chicken broccoli alfredo casserole
Have you had a virtual dinner or coffee date?