BBQ season is most definitely almost upon us, and quite honestly we couldn’t be more ready for it. A BBQ is one of the best ways to enjoy a summer evening with loved ones and as the host you definitely don’t deserve to be having any less fun than your guests. Luckily, with the right preparation and set up hosting a BBQ is an absolute breeze.
Here are just a few of our top tips guaranteed to make your first BBQ of the summer go off without a hitch:
Keep it simple
Everyone loves the classics and so try not to spend too much time planning an elaborate menu. Stick to the crowd pleasers like burgers, sausages and ribs, and don’t go overboard with the sides. Grilled halloumi is a great vegetarian option which is simple to prepare, and there are some really great meat-free burger options available. Saving time with the cooking will give you more time to hang out with the guests.
Check the Grill in advance
Whether you’re using a gas BBQ, firepit grill or charcoal BBQ, you want to make sure everything is in order before your guests arrive. Clean the grill out, make sure you have enough fuel and don’t be afraid to give it a test run- it might seem like a lot of effort but the last thing you want is a garden full of hungry guests and nothing to cook on…
As well as checking the grill in advance it’s really helpful to plan your shopping list to avoid that dreaded last minute dash to the supermarket. Try and work out how many guests will be attending a few days in advance so that you can plan your provisions. Find out if guests have any dietary restrictions and so you can cater for this accordingly. Prep food and seating before guests arrive so that all you really need to do is get the food grilled and on the table.
Set the scene
Create the right atmosphere by setting the scene for your BBQ with seating and lighting. Make your seating arrangement guest friendly so that they have plenty of space to eat in comfort whilst interacting with other guests. Outdoor lamps and fairy lights create a really cosy atmosphere and keeps the party going as the evening draws in. You can also make some really stylish DIY outdoor lighting by filling mason jars with lights or candles– These are a lovely way to add a bit of decoration to the table.
Don’t be a one man band
BBQs are great fun when everyone mucks in. Don’t feel like you have to run around doing all the work yourself. More than likely your guests will have no problem helping out, so don’t be afraid to ask them to watch the grill while you get the drinks in. To cut down on food prep you can even ask guests to bring sides and pudding- Remember, your guests are there to see you and so it’s really not worth stressing about being the most professional host.
Don’t Forget the drinks
With the food being such a focal point of the BBQ it can be easy to forget about having a great selection of drinks. You want to have plenty of drinks available to keep your guests hydrated, particularly if it’s really hot. It’s a really fun idea to prepare different cocktail and mocktail recipes for guests to try and this keeps guests entertained whilst you’re working on the food.