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Old 09-06-2012, 09:33 PM   #1
la79al
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OT-need to feed a lot of people cheap

Going to a family get together this weekend and we need to bring food items. I already have a few snacks we'll be taking but we are supposed to be bringing dinner items for a buffet type meal. I have no idea what to bring. The more people I can feed the better, the cheaper the better. One oven/stove for multiple dishes so I would prefer to stick with something that can be eaten cold or go in a crockpot. Ideas?
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Old 09-06-2012, 09:36 PM   #2
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How may people and how big is your crock pot ? If it were me I would make big batch of mostaciolli in my electric roaster (bake it in the oven and then put it in the electric warmer thingy), serve with a nice green salad and some fresh bread loaves.
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Old 09-06-2012, 09:44 PM   #3
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I would have said baked ziti - but I think the only difference between ziti and mostaccioli is - and I can spell ZITI.

But - for the most important part - ZITI (and mostaccioli) are baked entrees, that aren't nearly as "fussy" and time consuming as lasagna is.

Have fun - and don't stress over this. Pasta and a sauce is about the cheapest thing you can bring!
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Old 09-06-2012, 09:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by la79al View Post
Going to a family get together this weekend and we need to bring food items. I already have a few snacks we'll be taking but we are supposed to be bringing dinner items for a buffet type meal. I have no idea what to bring. The more people I can feed the better, the cheaper the better. One oven/stove for multiple dishes so I would prefer to stick with something that can be eaten cold or go in a crockpot. Ideas?
There's several recipes that uses baked beans, garbanzos, black bean, etc. that uses ground beef in it to make a hearty, beany dish. Here's one:

http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,172,...231204,00.html

There's also the easy "Mexican" chicken dish for the crock pot---makes a lot and you can add a few more beans and corn to stretch it.


http://southernfood.about.com/od/cro...r/bl106c16.htm

This is just one of many similar recipes. I shred the chicken (and usually use chicken thighs for more flavor) and serve over rice or nacho chips.
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Old 09-06-2012, 10:01 PM   #5
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I'm not sure how many people you are feeding or what your budget is, but if there is only one oven/stove, I think I would just pick something up and stay out of the way of all the others who will be busy cooking. Little caesars, costco and sams club all have cheap pizzas. Or most chinese food places offer large party trays of fried rice and chow mein for fairly cheap.

If you're set on making something or don't have a lot of money to spend, stew, chili and pulled pork are all easy and inexpensive to make in a crock pot. Buy a large package of rolls or bake some biscuits and you're good to go.
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Old 09-06-2012, 11:37 PM   #6
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I usually do a pulled pork in the crock pot and pick up some rolls, or a stew and some french bread. Both do really well in a crock pot and tend to taste better the next day so you can prepare ahead of time.
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:48 AM   #7
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Yep I was gonna say pulled pork. Cook it at home and warm it up in the crock pot when you get there. A decent sized shoulder or pork butt can feed a ton of people.
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Old 09-07-2012, 02:06 AM   #8
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One easy option is teriyaki meatballs. It is quick and easy when you purchase the frozen ones.

Funeral potatoes are also easy and cost effective. Basically mix shredded potatoes with chopped onions, cream of chicken soup, sour cream and Monterey Jack cheese, and bake about 30 minutes at 325. I have also added diced Ham to it if you need the protein.
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:56 AM   #9
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Our go-to potluck food is cornbread salad. A Google search will turn up lots of recipes, but we just throw in whatever we have on hand. The ingredients are relatively inexpensive and ours always gets rave reviews and requests for the recipe.

Another good cold salad is rice mixed with a bottle of Italian dressing and any veggies you have left in the garden.

I also make mac salad with elbow mac, McCormick Salad Supreme, Lawry Seasoned Salt, mayo and tomatoes. This is especially good with homegrown tomatoes. I don't have a recipe. I just salt the noodles to taste, put in the Salad Supreme until I get the color and taste I want and then mix in the mayo and tomatoes. I learned that from a friend's grandmother many years ago. My only regret is that I can't make the wonderful chocolate chip cookies Granny always made to go with it.

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Old 09-07-2012, 04:06 AM   #10
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chili because you can really fill it up with beans
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Old 09-07-2012, 04:09 AM   #11
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Sweet and sour meatballs or hot dogs or both mixed... Frozen meatballs (the Swedish style), two packs of hot dogs sliced up, a lg jar grape jelly, and equal (or close to equal) amount of chili sauce... I bake my meatballs on a cookie sheet to get some of the grease out, then combine sauce ingredients in a pot, add meatballs and sliced hot dogs, and throw it all in the crockpot. Done!

Another less expensive idea is just canned baked beans and sliced hot dogs in the crock pot... Always a fave at church potlucks.

My ds' fave is frozen honey BBQ wings in the crockpot, but that can get costly if you don't have a wholesale club to buy from.
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Old 09-07-2012, 05:20 AM   #12
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Pulled pork or sweet and sour meatballs is always a fav.
- Chili
- Pasta Salad
- Devilled Eggs
- Cook a whole turkey ahead of time, slice it up and serve cold.

What about dessert items? Cheap and easy:
- Cupcakes
- Couple of watermelons sliced up
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Old 09-07-2012, 05:56 AM   #13
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Jambalaya! Zatarains has a mix that is really good. Buy a rotisserie chicken and shred and one kielbasa sliced up. Skip the shrimp and you are all set. is even good room temperature and the rice makes it feed A LOT.
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:30 AM   #14
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I would do something simple like pasta in sauce or pasta salad!
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:32 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by la79al
Going to a family get together this weekend and we need to bring food items. I already have a few snacks we'll be taking but we are supposed to be bringing dinner items for a buffet type meal. I have no idea what to bring. The more people I can feed the better, the cheaper the better. One oven/stove for multiple dishes so I would prefer to stick with something that can be eaten cold or go in a crockpot. Ideas?
I would bake a ham or a turkey or a cuple rotisserie chickens and slice it up on a platter. These sort of pot luck things always seem to end up with lots of side dishes and not much protein.
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