Planning a barbecue, whether it’s for an upcoming family reunion or an impromptu casual gathering of friends, is always fun. While everyone loves the idea of gathering together with some delicious food to enjoy during backyard festivities, things can quickly go south if one of the guests has dietary restrictions (e.g., vegan/vegetarian) if there are children present (children don’t like spicy food), or there are outdoor pet allergies among people who will be attending. It is also important to ensure that the menu is cost-effective and tastes good on top of being healthy.
The following tips should help you achieve all these goals on your next barbecue outing:
Create A Guest List Before Planning Any Details Of The Barbecue
The guest list should include names, ages, dietary restrictions (if any), and allergies (e.g., peanut) of everyone who will be attending.
Think Of The Children
Plan for children attending the party by creating a special menu just for them that caters to their palette and preferences but doesn’t skimp on nutritional value. For example, grill up some hot dogs or hamburgers for them to enjoy with potato chips, baked beans, watermelon skewers, ketchup packets, etc.
Be Mindful Of Ingredients
Check every ingredient you will use in your dishes to ensure no allergens present might interfere with anyone’s health or general well-being. Ask yourself questions like is there flour in this sauce? Is there gluten in this marinade?
Set Up A Grill Station
Create a grill station with one side for adults and the other side for children.
This helps prevent any cross-contamination of food while keeping foods separate, so you don’t have to bring back half-eaten hot dogs or hamburgers to the kitchen.
Make Sure To Have Plenty Of Beverages On Hand For Everyone
People enjoy the opportunity to eat and drink with friends, but nobody wants to run out of water or soda in the middle of a party! Also, make sure there are enough glasses for every person present at the barbecue.
Be Mindful Of Pet Allergies
If you are hosting an outdoor pet allergy barbecue, it is best to keep the furry ones inside since many dogs tend to get excited when tasty food comes around. However, this can be dangerous for guests with allergies since pets’ saliva can spread allergens everywhere if they decide they want to give someone a kiss, for example.
On The Menu
Be sure to include some fresh veggies and fruit in your menu as well. For example, grilled asparagus or zucchini can be delicious as side dishes. Treat your guests with delicious Country Sweet BBQ sauce. Add some healthy snacks, with berries such as raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries are always crowd pleasers when it comes time for dessert.
Think Of Boundaries
Set boundaries before people start grilling anything so that nobody has any expectations of cooking space. If you are by yourself, just grab some tongs and go crazy! Just make sure the tongs are used only for cooking purposes rather than moving things around your backyard or rearranging chairs around the table. We all know that barbecue is about being able to play with fire, but still, be safe.