View Full Version : dinner for a crowd?

06-27-2009, 12:49 PM
somewere in my scattered mind i invited a freind and her family over for dinner. I also invited two other good freinds to come along (they would be hurt if they were left out) So now I need to plan dinner for 6 adults, 5 kids that is something I can make the night before and just warm up, since Im the last one out of work (and we need to eat like RIGHT after work). The kids are 1,2,4,9,10. All I know is NO more spagetti. so what do you reccomend? any good low sugar desert ideas (hyper kids). Peanuts are out, oranges are out, and fish is out due to allergies.

06-27-2009, 01:16 PM
check your grocery store flyers to see what is on sale.
Some ideas I've done are:

Pork Butt/shoulder ($.99/lb)...9 pounds, cooked all day on low in crock pot and then shred, add BBQ sauce and serve on rolls, cut up cabbage or buy pre-made coleslaw and add dressing at the last minute. Watermelon for dessert.

Chicken was on sale at our local grocery this week. I bought 9 legs and 7 breasts for about $12. Marinate all day in soy sauce, garlic, a little oil & pepper, then grill right out of the bag. Corn on the cob (12 ears for $1.99) and bagged green salad.

Taco salad: cook 3 pounds ground beef and add taco seasoning, cool and refrig overnight. Cherry tomatoes - slice in half and refrig overnight. two cans black beans- rinse and refrig overnight. Just before service, shredd two heads of iceberg lettuce, add 2-3c shredded cheddar cheese, 1 or 2 bags of tortilla chips crushed, add all ingred from above and pour on a large bottle of Catalina dressing. Mix well. Add olives, top with sour cream, etc You have a meat and salad all in one large bowl.

06-27-2009, 01:54 PM
What about a bar-b-que. Make some potato and macaroni salad the day before. Also have a garden salad.

What are you going to do about the A/C and the apartment being too hot?

06-27-2009, 03:33 PM
Due to city fire regulation we cant barbque anywere on the property SIGH. I got the air to work just fine (who knew I could figure it all out with a libary book and some wire). my freinds still complain but thats there issue. I totally figured out seating now its down to food. I dont have a crock pot, it had a big ole death moment (crock pot vs cement).

06-27-2009, 03:48 PM
Do a brisket in the oven. Get one that's trimmed if you're unfamiliar with how to trim one. Now, they're a little pricy but it's pure meat and makes a lot of it.

The night before,heat oven to 225 degrees, get a bottle of marinade, some crushed garlic and coarse ground pepper. Coat brisket with marinade, about a heaping tablespoon of garlic and sprinkle on some pepper, cover with foil and bake slowly all night. Take out the next morning and let it set for about 20 minutes. Then, slice against the grain and chop up the meat, add bar-be-que sauce and serve on buns for "sloppy joe" type sandwiches with plain Lay's chips... Yumyum! Or you can leave some sliced and get a loaf of white bread. Your friends will be impressed!

06-27-2009, 04:04 PM
Ham. It's reasonably priced, easy to make, hard to screw up and feeds a ton of ppl - and all kids that I know of love ham (mmm...salty goodness).

A potato salad that you made the night before, a coleslaw, a lettuce salad, corn on the cob and some buns will round out the meal nicely.

Ham also goes with anything - so if anyone wants to bring anything, it's likely not to clash.

Sugar-free desserts you're on your own - sorry:lmao:

06-27-2009, 04:05 PM
Sugar-free desserts you're on your own - sorry:lmao:

They have sugar-free jello right?

06-27-2009, 04:17 PM
For dessert try pound cake or shortbread cookies, cool whip, and fresh fruit. All can be stored in advance. Let people make their own combinations.

06-27-2009, 04:20 PM
any good low sugar desert ideas (hyper kids).

Walmart & many grocery stores now offer low-sugar & sugar free pies & desserts. My other idea would be to get a watermelon or make a fruit salad and top it w/ sugar-free cool whip or whipped cream.

For dinner: I have a REALLY easy recipe for oven baked bbq chicken. I use legs & quarters (usually the cheapest pieces) & you can put it together the night before & just pop it in the oven (it takes 40 mins to bake). I also have a great repice for "meatloaf muffins" (they aren't really muffins, but you bake them in a muffin tin for quicker bake time). You can also prepare them the night before & pop them in the oven for 20 mins when you get home. I make them w/ roasted red potatoes that also only take 20 mins.

06-27-2009, 04:29 PM
Please share the meatloaf muffin recipe...and do you think I could use cup cake pan? I do not have a muffin pan.Thanks....always looking for a new recipe!

06-27-2009, 05:50 PM
meatloaf muffins? hey that sounds good. I was thinking of making paw paw bread but Im not sure I want that temptation. Im alergic to paw paws (and cant stop myself. LOL)

living la vida mickey
06-27-2009, 06:02 PM
I've been making this jello mold for years and have changed it sugar-free in the last few years and everyone still loves it.

Depending on the size of the mold (you can also use a 13 X 9 pan) figure how much jello you will need.

For a 6 cup mold:
3 small packages of sugar-free lime gelatin
3 cups boiling water
1 container of sugar-free cool whip
1 small can crushed pineapple in juice

Add jello to boiling water. Mix well. Refrigerate until the consistency of egg white.
Whip with hand mixer, add cool whip and pineapple until well mixed.

Pour into Pam sprayed mold. Regrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.

Unmold and serve. Enjoy!

06-27-2009, 06:54 PM
Please share the meatloaf muffin recipe...and do you think I could use cup cake pan? I do not have a muffin pan.Thanks....always looking for a new recipe!

a cupcake pan and a muffin tin are the same thing ;) so you'd be fine.

Pink Flamingo
06-27-2009, 07:02 PM
Sugar free dessert idea ....... watermelon

06-27-2009, 07:39 PM
How about sloppy joes? You can brown the ground beef the night before and then all you need to do is add a couple cans of sauce and warm it up.

Or a build your own taco or burrito bar. You can season the meat the night before and can grate the cheese, slice lettuce and tomotoes all the night before. Wrap up evertything in their serving dishes and put them in the fridge the night before and then all you have to do is warm up the taco meat.

Is there a sugar free popsicle type of thing for desert?

06-27-2009, 07:43 PM
How about Roll Your Own Burritos? Get some soft shells. Brown some ground beef with a package of taco seasonings. Chop up lettuce, tomatoes and onions. Warm up a can of refried beans. Set it all out and let people help themselves.

06-27-2009, 08:12 PM
This is one of DH's favorite dinners. I also change it up sometimes by adding other ingredients (like stuffing 1/4 of a mozzarella cheese stick into a meatloaf muffin or topping the muffins with sliced bacon)

Meatloaf muffins
1 pound of ground beef (You can substitute 1 lb. turkey or pork- we like to do a beef & pork combo)
1 egg with a splash of milk, beaten
3/4 cup bread crumbs (I like the seasoned bread crumbs, but I have also used crushed crackers or croutons when I was out of bread crumbs.)
2 tablespoons of seasoning (I use Tony Chachere's and Emeril's, but any table seasoning mix with salt & pepper will do)
2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce (You can replace this with 1/2 cup of ketchup if you don't have worcestershire)
Optional: 1 chopped onion & a can of drained diced tomatoes (Onion for extra flavor and texture & tomato if you prefer really moist meatloaf.) You can add these when you're mixing the ingredients.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Put meat into a big bowl. Add egg, beaten with milk, bread crumbs, worcestershire sauce, and seasoning to the bowl. Mix the meatloaf mixture together until blended. Spray a 12-muffin pan with with Pam (or brush with vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil). Fill meat into each tin (until each muffin tin is about 2/3 full). (Depending on the amount of mixture, you might not fill every muffin tin- that's okay!) Bake for 20 minutes.

I like to make the meatloaf muffins with the following recipe b/c they have the same cooking temp & cooking time. I put them both in the oven at the exact same time:

Roasted red potatoes
2 pounds small potatoes, red skin potatoes or any other small "baby" potatoes
2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, enough to just coat potatoes
Salt and black pepper
Optional: Tony Chachere's seasoning, minced/choppedgarlic, or rosemary

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Cut each potato in half and place on a cookie sheet. Coat potatoes with extra-virgin oil and season with salt and pepper (you can also add either rosemary, garlic, or a seasoning mix).
Place potatoes in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, until just tender.

06-27-2009, 08:25 PM
Oven-Barbecued Chicken

2 to 3 pounds of chicken legs or chicken quarters (I like to take the skin off, but you don't have to)
1 bottle of your favorite bbq sauce (We like KC Masterpiece or a spicy Thai sauce)
Salt and pepper

1. Preheat over at 375 degrees.
2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and arrange it (bone side up if you're using quarters) in a baking pan.
3. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes.
4. Turn/flip chicken to bone side down. Pour enough sauce over the chicken to cover it.
5. Bake for 20 more minutes.

06-27-2009, 08:47 PM
Wow. I bow down to your determination to provide a good meal to that group!:worship:

If it were me, I would just have a ballpark night. You know...hot dogs with all the fixins, popcorn, salad or coleslaw (something I won't have to make) and for dessert..sugar free popsicles or ice cream bars. :mickeybar

but then again, i can get a bit lazy at parties. ;)

06-27-2009, 09:19 PM
And don't forget these easy options:

Take and Bake Pizza. Buy the day before so all you have to do is pop it in the oven when you get home. Be sure to get at least one cheese with all those kids.

Mac-n-Cheese, Beans with Hot Dogs, and Applesauce. Everytime I've done this the adults devoured the mac-n-cheese. Its one of those old favorite comfort foods of just about everyone.

Chicken Strips and Tater Tots and a Tossed Salad. The kids can dip the chicken in ketchup and the adults can put a few on salads for a chicken salad.

06-28-2009, 12:11 AM
I second the Taco Bar idea!! Cut up all the lettuce & tomatoes the night before, make the taco beef the ngiht before and maybe some Chicken with Taco seasoning. Taco shells only take 10 minutes to bake, and soft taco shells can be warmed in the micro pretty quick.

Serve salad or black beans as a side. Fun for everyone and all can be done the night before except the taco shells!

I know you said no spagetti, but how about going to BJ's and grabbing a frozen lasagna or a bag of frozen stuffed shells, you can bake them gthe night before and just reheat. Serve with salad and garlic bread.

06-28-2009, 12:33 AM
i like tacos. could be fun. I know its so hard to plan for all of them. i planned a mini meal for half of us tommrow. mac and cheese and fry bread with veggies and applesauce.

06-28-2009, 09:59 AM
Don't forget to come back and let us know what you decided and how it turned out!!

06-28-2009, 10:13 AM
Chicken Tetrazini (http://eatathomecooks.com/2008/10/chicken-tetrazini-crockpot-and-oven-versions.html) - mix it up the day before and then put it in the crockpot to cook.

Chicken Fiesta with Black Beans in the crockpot (http://eatathomecooks.com/2008/10/chicken-fiesta-with-black-beans-a-crockpot-recipe.html) - another that cooks while you work and it's a hit with everyone

I can't think of a low sugar dessert other than fruit, or vanilla yogurt and fruit. I like full sugar and fat dessert :-)