A dinner party might sound super grown-up but, in all honesty, it’s just a great excuse for gathering your social circle in one place with some yummy food. If it’s your first time attending what feels like a fancy meal at a friend’s house, you might be wondering if there’s a certain etiquette for guests. Since we like to think of ourselves as experts in celebrations, we thought we’d dive into what to take to a dinner party including ideas for gifts and dishes.
Although if it turns out you’re the one who’s sending out the invites, you’ll probably want to have a read of our blog on how to host the perfect dinner party for food inspiration, party games, and conversation starters.
Gifts to take to a dinner party
More often than not, if you’re going to be attending then you’ll probably want to grab a gift to take along to the dinner party with you. This doesn’t have to be something expensive as it’s just supposed to be a little token gesture to say thank you for the invitation. To help you out, we’ve come up with a few ideas on gifts to take to a dinner party:
A nice vase
Some guests might go with the obvious gift choice of a bouquet of flowers. So why not think ahead and do something different that’s also practical and grab them a nice vase for them to put all these flowers in? Go for a glass vase that can be placed anywhere or you can be brave and choose a decorative vase that fits a certain room’s interior style.
Clearly, the host or hostess is a big fan of food if they’re hosting a dinner party which is why a recipe book certainly sounds like something they’d love. If you know their favourite sort of cuisine, even better! Who knows, you might even get an invite to the next dinner party where they use recipes from the book.
Fancy bar of soap
Soap is one of those presents that always comes in handy and you can find all sorts of lovely luxury or handmade soaps on the market. And if it’s not their sort of thing they can always put it in the back of a drawer to keep everything smelling nice.
Perhaps you don’t know the host or hostess that well and might even be somebody else’s plus one? When all else fails, you really can’t go wrong with a gift card. That way it gives them the choice to buy something themselves instead of wasting your own hard-earned money on a present that they don’t want or need.
Dishes to bring to a party
Now you might find that you’re attending a dinner party where you’re expected to bring your own dish, sometimes referred to as a potluck. Hopefully, the host has at least let you know whether to prepare something sweet or savoury – and if not then it’s probably wise to double-check along with a possible theme or menu.
Given that it sounds like it’s going to be a proper feast, you’ll probably want to make something that will go down well with the other guests too. If you’re stuck for ideas on dishes to bring to a party, these are some of our favourite options you can always fall back on.
When it comes to savoury dishes you really do have so much to choose from. If you’re struggling to narrow it down, here are some suggestions on savoury dishes you could take with you to a dinner party:
- Stuffed potato skins – The perfect dinner party option thanks to being super quick and easy to prepare, loaded potato skins are a solid choice. It’s one of those dishes that you can quickly change up as well based on what fillings you go for.
- Charcuterie board – No dinner party could be complete without a charcuterie board. Find a fancy platter to place everything on and then simply go wild with the dried meats, cheeses, and other little picky bits. By the end of the night, you’ll find that your platter is empty and can take it back home with you.
- Loaded nachos – A party food staple, a tray of loaded nachos wouldn’t look out of place at most dinner parties. Top with a hefty pile of grated cheese, jalapenos, kidney beans, sour cream, and whatever else you think could work.
- Roasted vegetable tart – One of those dishes that looks a lot harder to make than it actually is, a roasted vegetable tart is appropriate for even the classiest of dinner parties.
Been given the task of sorting out something sweet? Lucky you! From bits you can easily find at the supermarket to dusting off your own mixer, these are our ideas for sweet dishes to bring to a party:
- Tiramisu – A classic showstopper dessert that is beloved by coffee lovers. You could either make your tiramisu in individual cups for easy sharing or get a giant dish and scoop the servings out of that.
- Chocolate fondue platter – The sweet version of a charcuterie board, no one can resist chocolate fondue. A bowl of melted chocolate in the middle surrounded by marshmallows, strawberries, and whatever else you can get your hands on – you can’t tell us this doesn’t sound glorious.
- Eton mess – A sweet dish that’s presentation truly doesn’t matter, an Eton mess is a quintessentially British dessert that’s most definitely fitting for a dinner party. Lovely and light, everyone will be able to find room for this once they see how yummy it looks.
- Seasonal fruit pie – Depending on what fruits are in season at the time of your dinner party whether that’s apples, blackberries, or summer berries, a tasty fruit pie will go down a treat.
There you have it, all of our ideas for dinner party gifts to get for the host or hostess as well as dishes to bring to a party. To show your appreciation for the invitation, you can also send over a lovely thank you card with a sweet note inside. Find even more inspiration including gift guides, special occasion articles, and more over on the thortful blog.