Don’t you just love hosting a BBQ? Whether you’re hosting at a park, at home, or on a beach, they’re great fun. Let’s look at some tips to make your next BBQ your best yet!
A park can be a great location for a BBQ. It can give you the advantage of almost unlimited seating, a grill to use whether you own your own or not, and everyone is likely to feel obliged to help clean up (at least a little) because you will need to leave the area as nice as you found it. Get ready to pack that tote bag full of goodies.
If you opt to host a park BBQ, be sure to find out any requirements and available amenities of the park in advance. Some parks have covered picnic areas which can be a great way to get out of the sun and have a central gathering area for the crew to cook and eat. Bring your own tablecloth to make it festive (and ensure the tidiness of the table). These may require reservations though. Many parks have grills available. Chances are you will need to bring your own charcoal and provide fire safety yourself. When you're cooking on someone else’s grill, bringing some tin foil can be a good option to make sure that smaller items don’t fall through the grate.
Making sure that all the food gets to the park is a key consideration in a park BBQ. A good cooler will help with any meat or other perishables. Consider putting smaller items like cut-up fruit or veggies in an insulated bag to make sure they get there safely. “Portable food” like burgers, dogs, and chips are good choices for a park BBQ.
Home BBQs are a great way to enjoy good food with family and friends. You’ll want to make sure that you have your grill cleaned and ready for the occasion, as well as the outdoor furniture arranged for dining and conversation. Show off your garden if you have one or buy some fresh flowers for the occasion. You can enjoy them outdoors for the BBQ and then bring them indoors once the BBQ is over.
In addition to the privacy afforded by a home BBQ, the convenience of having your own kitchen only steps away means that you can go all out on the menu if you like. Do you feel like making a fun dessert like a decorated cake or arranging a crudité platter with intricately cut veggies? Why not try a new recipe or two? You can prepare these in advance and leave them in your fridge or on your kitchen counter until it is time to serve them.
Make sure to plan for some water games if you have the space. Kids of all ages love to run through sprinklers and play with water toys. As darkness falls, make sure to add some candles for ambiance. You’ll want to linger and enjoy the company and conversation. The only curfew for a home BBQ is the one that you set. Why not grab a deck of cards and hang out long into the evening? Some of the best conversations take place over cards.
Don’t you just love a beach BBQ? In addition to good food and conversation, you can count on sand, surf, and sun! Why not start early, BBQ slowly, and enjoy a long afternoon with friends and family? You’ll want to make sure that everyone brings their swimsuits to make the most of the day. Stash some easy game items like a frisbee or a volleyball in your tote bag to get the games going.
You’ll want to get in on all the fun, too, so keep the menu simple or ask everyone to bring a dish to share. If you will be grilling, check out the facilities in advance and make sure to reserve your spot or stake it out early. Hot dogs are natural if your beach BBQ is a beach bonfire. You can also buy ready-made food at a deli to keep it even easier. If you eat the food on the beach near a fire, it still counts! It’s a great idea to pack extra beach towels, too. You’ll want everyone to be comfy and dry when they’re not swimming or playing in the water. Beach towels make great seating around a bonfire, too.
Don’t forget the s’mores for dessert. You’ll want to pack the chocolate and marshmallows in a cooler while keeping them dry, too. Sealing them in plastic bags and then putting them in a cooler works well. It’s just not a beach BBQ without s’mores.
Enjoy a great BBQ with your friends and family!