If it’s your turn to host for the holidays, but you’re concerned about the challenges of hosting a holiday dinner in an apartment, there’s no need to worry! We have some practical tips to help you make your holiday meal a big success.
6 Tips to Make Hosting Holiday Dinner in an Apartment a Success!
1) Plan Your Menu Carefully
Whether you’re planning a formal dinner where everyone sits around a table or a more casual affair where people mingle while they eat, plan your menu ahead and be sure it includes many different types of food. If your guests will mingle, pick food that are easy to pick up and eat while standing. You’ll need to know approximately how many guests you’ll need to feed. When in doubt, it’s always better to have too much food than too little. You can easily send leftovers home with the guests if there is a surplus of food, but running out to the store mid-party to restock is a major inconvenience. Also, be sure to account for anyone with special dietary needs, such as vegans, older guests who are diabetic, or children with food allergies.
After deciding what sorts of foods you’d like to serve, pick those things that you just aren’t good at preparing or don’t have time to bother with, and ask someone else to bring them. For example, if Aunt Irene is excellent at baking, ask her to bring a pecan pie. Most guests are more than happy to bring a dish when someone else is hosting and doing most of the work. The same goes for decorating and cleanup duty. If you have a guest that doesn’t like to cook, check to see if they’d be willing to help with the music, greeting guests at the door while you’re still cooking in the kitchen, or doing the dishes after the dinner is over.
3) Decide Where Everyone Will Sit
If you’re having a sit-down dinner, be sure to have enough chairs and place settings for everyone, and also have an idea of where you want everyone to sit. Consider placeholders to make sure everyone sits where they should when you’re busy putting last minute touches on the meal and greeting guests at the door. If you don’t have room for everyone at the table, you can always bring in portable tables for the overflow or for children. But an even better alternative is to forget about the formal dinner, and have a serving station on a countertop or table where guests can serve themselves. Then they can mingle in different areas throughout your apartment where you’ve provided seating or where there’s room to stand, such as the kitchen, living room, and even your balcony if it’s a warm day.
4) Prepare Some Food Ahead
While some foods might be best when made just before they’re served, try to include items on your menu that can be prepared the day before or even several days ahead and stored in the refrigerator or freezer. Consider foods like deviled eggs, potato salad, and green salads that can be served chilled, casseroles that can be reheated, and desserts like cakes and pies that can be served at room temperature.
5) Decorate & Set the Mood
The décor and mood that you set will do as much to make your holiday dinner a hit as the food served. Play some mellow holiday music in the background on a stereo or through a Bluetooth speaker using a playlist on your phone. Use a strand or two of inexpensive lights and a few electronic candles and bows from the dollar store to brighten your apartment. If you’re having a sit-down dinner, you might even want to create a simple centerpiece with some holly branches or some colorful ornaments.
6) Relax and Enjoy
Once your guests start to arrive, try to focus on making them feel welcomed, rather than stressing out about everything being perfect. Things rarely go perfectly at holiday get-togethers, but as long as you handle whatever happens with a little grace and sense of humor while being of good cheer with your guests, your dinner is sure to be a success.
Happy Holidays! We Know You’ll Do a Great Job Hosting Holiday Dinner in Your Apartment!
Located in Waldorf, MD, Adams Crossing offers affordable luxury apartments ranging from two to three bedrooms. Haven’t taken a tour of Adam’s Crossing yet? Schedule a tour with one of our marketing professionals to see why we’re a 2017 Top Rated apartment community through ApartmentRatings!