Steps to planning a dinner party

Once you get a bit older, it’s not really enough for your mates to bring round boxes of Smirnoff Ice and drink so much that you forget who you are. When planned properly, dinner parties can be so much fun. Hopefully this 10 step plan will make it seem less of a challenge.

  1. Send out your invitations well in advance, and ask your guests to tell you in good time if they can’t make it. Knowing the exact numbers will help with planning.
  2. Decide a couple of days before, whether you would like a theme. Thinking about this beforehand will give you time to source films, if you want a movie night, or games, if you’re planning to play board games between courses.
  3. Around the same time, decide on how many courses you would like to serve. It goes without saying that the more courses you serve, the more work will be involved. Maybe ask you partner or a friend whether they would mind helping you out, especially if you’re cooking for a lot of people.
  4. Make sure you have the ingredients in you fridge on the day. Go shopping a couple of days before if needs be. Don’t forget drinks, unless you’ve specifically asked your guests to bring some.
  5. On the day, have a plan of the times at which things need preparing/putting in the oven etc. Try to stick to this as best you can, but don’t worry if things lag a little. However, it is best if the food is done by the time your guests arrive, as it’s not very polite to be concentrating on cooking and ignoring your guests once they get to your home.
  6. Whilst your food is cooking, clear, tidy and hoover the area you will be entertaining your guests in. Lay out cutlery, place mats and glasses if you have a dining table.
  7. Check your bathroom is fairly clean, especially the toilet and sink, and make sure there’s enough toilet paper!
  8. Hopefully by the time your guests arrive, dinner will be simmering away and you will be able take their coats, offer them a drink, and sit and chat with them.
  9. I don’t need to tell you how to eat dinner. Make sure everyone’s glasses are topped up though!
  10. When the evening is drawing to a close, make sure you thank everyone for coming individually, and say goodbye.


This is a pretty foolproof plan, I do this every week and it hasn’t failed me yet. Happy hosting!



Featured image by Claire Thomas, Vimeo


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