Dinner Menus, Recipes, and Other Fun Ideas for Double and Triple Dates
What can you make for date nights with friends?
Just a Few Ideas
Cheese or Chocolate Fondue
Tempura or Coconut Shrimp
Make Your Own Pizza
The next time you're planning a party or little get together with one or two other couples, mix up the routine with some new recipes, menus, and other fun ideas. Most of these ideas will work well for groups up to 8-10 people. When you're cooking at home, you can get everyone involved in the process of assembling and cooking the food. It is often much cheaper to eat at home and can be just as much fun as going out somewhere.
You can arrange kids' night dinners as well. Several of these ideas are perfect for kids, such as pizza. Consider other ways to adapt these ideas for kids, such as having a kid friendly fondue station with cut up hot dogs and lots of raw veggies.
If each couple brings one or two appetizers, you will have plenty of food for a good spread. The couple hosting may want to provide a fruit and/or veggie tray as well. Consider seasonal options like bruschetta. Get ambitious and consider options like egg rolls. When you only have to provide one dish like this, it isn't too overwhelming to prepare.
Appetizer recipes: How to make Mediterranean pinwheel appetizers
Cheese dipping ideas: cubed potatoes/sweet potatoes (boiled, not too soft), raw or slightly cooked veggies (mushrooms, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, etc.), cooked ham (cubed), cubed bread, apple slices, cooked shrimp, cooked mini meatballs.
Dessert dipping ideas: Almost any fresh fruit, sliced or cubed. Think about seasonal fruits and consider different colors for your spread. Other dipping options include marshmallows, vanilla wafers, animal crackers, plain donut holes, pound cake (small cubes), angel food cake (small cubes), pretzels, potato chips.
Fondue (Cheese or Chocolate)
Call me old-fashioned, but I still believe that fondue is a great party idea. I have an electric fondue pot (linked below), which I love, but a traditional pot or a fountain works well, too. Couples can each bring different dipping foods. For a dessert fondue, provide a light meal with it, such as little sandwiches. A dessert fondue is a fun option for a post movie or show activity. You can also serve it at an afternoon party with veggies, cheese, and crackers on the side. A lazy Susan makes fondue serving for a larger group much easier.
These are numerous recipes for both cheese and chocolate fondue sauces. Have fun experimenting with them!
Electric Fondue Pot: Tempura or Coconut Shrimp
There are numerous recipe possibilities for an electric fondue pot, but in addition to fondue, my favorite recipe list includes tempura and coconut shrimp. For tempura, dipping options include: cooked shrimp, sweet potatoes, squash, cauliflower, zucchini, and broccoli. Blanche all vegetables for a couple minutes before serving. Lots of choices means that everyone can pick and choose what they want to eat the way they would for fondue.
Coconut shrimp is so tasty that there really isn't a need to serve much with it, but good options for side dishes include potato dishes, salads, and rices.
How To Make Coconut Shrimp
Follow the stove directions or use an electric fondue pot!
Make Your Own Pizza
Make your own pizza is another wonderful option for customization. People can make their own pizzas exactly the way that they like. People can assist with mixing the dough and/or preparing the toppings. You can make your own dough from scratch, use refrigerated dough, or mix it from a hot roll mix (I use Pillsbury).
There are numerous recipes for both baked and grilled pizzas. Consider your setting and the weather. If you have a smaller kitchen and/or the weather is warm, grilling may be a great option. Baked pizzas are a wonderful treat in the winter. The oven will warm the whole kitchen.
Depending on your party group, you can stick to traditional toppings or branch out. If people are interested in experimenting, try different themes throughout the year (i.e. Thai, Greek, etc.).
This is a great party option through most of the summer. If you're lucky, you'll get a couple grill parties in during the spring and fall, too.
Everyone couple brings something to grill for themselves. Depending how big your grill is (and how big your party is), you may need to take turns grilling, which provides more opportunities for socialization. The hosts can provide a shrimp appetizer and some meat toppings (lettuce, tomato, mustard, etc.). Guests are welcome to bring their own toppings, too.
Drinks and dessert will complete the meal. If it's especially warm, consider a summery dessert or a light ice cream or sorbet.
Barbecue and Grilling ... : Grilled Chicken Recipe by the BBQ Pit Boys
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