Chef Audrey here from the ALDI Test Kitchen to talk to you about something very important: football parties! Sometimes throwing a party can be intimidating and quite overwhelming, but I’m here today to share my 10 essential tips to throw an awesome and EASY big game bash. When I think of parties, food and decorations are the first things that come to mind. If I were not a chef, I would be a party planner or a professional decorator, because I enjoy it so much! Let’s get started on planning the party!
#1. Food. Keep it simple. Have each guest bring something to pass around. This will take a lot of the stress off, and you will have a great variety of foods for guests to eat. Limit dishes to finger foods so they are easy to eat while mingling or standing. Don’t forget to pick up all of your big game food staples at ALDI! From fresh veggies, meats, breads and cheeses to beer & wine, soda, snack foods –even condiments to top it all off are available every day!
#2. Label the food. Have your guests provide you with a name and a list of common allergens that they may have used in their dish so you can have more time to relax and fewer questions to answer. Make it fun, by having your guests create football-related names for their dishes or fun phrases like “wings so good they make you want to do a touchdown dance!” For recipe inspiration, check out this fun library of all-star game day recipes. Gluten Free? Check out our delicious selection here!
#3. Drinks. Have your guests BYOB. That way you can all share and keep costs down. Make sure you stock up on ice to keep the cold drinks cold.
#4. Make sure you have enough coolers and space in advance. You may need to ask your guests bring coolers or maybe you can borrow some folding tables/chairs from the neighbors. Utilize the outdoors to store coolers, or a garage. If you live in a Northern state like I do, you can use the winter weather to your storage advantage!
#5. Think paper! Paper plates, plastic cups and silverware can go a long way in keeping dishes and cleanup under control. Make sure you choose the sturdy ones. Your guests may want to load their plate with all the goodies, and a flimsy plate just won’t do. ALDI has you covered for these items as well. Minimize dish duty and have fun decorating at the same time! This leads me to the next tip.
#6. Decorate! You can find super cute football-themed items at many places these days. Plates, napkins, cups, streamers, banners, even balloons. A tablecloth is always a good idea too!
#7. Plan ahead. Start shopping early for your food and supplies so the “week-of” is a breeze. Planning ahead is the key to a smooth and effortless party. ALDI weekly ads are here to help!
#8. Create a game within the game. Not everyone that attends a big game party is a sports fan. So, think football bingo or something along those lines. Give your guests a fun reason to stay engaged in the party and the game. Every touchdown, kick or flag can be a square blocked off, etc. Cheap, easy or even homemade prizes are a good idea too!
#9. Seating. Make sure you have plenty of seating available. After your guests fill themselves with all the delicious treats and cocktails, they will want to sit, relax and watch their team win!
#10. Have fun! This is a party, after all. With all of the tips above, you can relax & enjoy your guests, the food and the game! Share your best game day party tips and ideas below in the comments.
Chef Audrey attended culinary school at the Illinois Institute of Art when she realized her hobby was becoming a lifelong passion. After culinary school, Audrey mastered her skills in restaurants around the Chicago land area, incorporating local and seasonal ingredients in breakfast and lunch menus. She has many years of experience working for a national organic retailer as well as catering large events and private parties. You can find some of Audrey’s recipes featured on ALDI product packaging. Audrey enjoys trying new restaurants (especially food trucks!), and spending time outdoors with her beloved boxer, Boots.