ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Easy Dinner Party Menu

Updated on November 14, 2014

Company is Coming...What's for Dinner?

Do you struggle to find just the right menu for a dinner party? Are you looking for something simple but delicious? Do you want something that you can do most of the preparation ahead of time? If you have answered yes to any of these questions, I have some easy and delicious recipes just for you.

I like to do most of the preparation for my dinner parties either the day before or the morning of the dinner. Then on the afternoon of the dinner, I can sit and read a book and relax till about an hour before the guests arrive, when I work on the last minute preparations. The menus and recipes in this lens are all ones that I made at a recent dinner we hosted for 7 people.

I hope you enjoy this lens and perhaps you will try some of the recipes.

Orange Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin

Crockpot Mashed Potatoes

Green Bean Casserole

Orange/Cranberry Relish

Blueberry/Banana Bread

Orange Mousse

Orange Teriyaki Pork
Orange Teriyaki Pork

This recipe is easy to make and all the mess is done ahead of time in the preparation. This makes for a perfect company meal! There is plenty of time left for the hostess to enjoy the guests.

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 2 hours 50 min
Ready in: 3 hours
Yields: 8


  • 2 lbs Pork Tenderloin
  • 1 large cooking bag
  • 3 Tablespoons flour
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 4 cloves garlic ( I used the chopped garlic that comes in a jar)
  • 2 Tablespoons orange peel grated
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar


  1. Shake flour in the cooking bag and then add the orange juice, teriyaki sauce, garlic, brown sugar, and orange peel. Squeeze the bag to blend the flour with the other ingredients. Put pork in bag and turn to coat all sides. Then refrigerate for at least 1 1/2 hours. When you are ready to bake the tenderloin, cut 6 1/2 inch slits in the bag and put it in a 9/13 inch pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 50 minutes. Slice and spoon sauce over meat.
Cast your vote for Orange Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin

Glass Serving Bowl

Wouldn't the cranberry relish look great in this bowl.

Crockpot Mashed Potatoes

I love mashed potatoes but always stayed away from them for company dinners because they are so timie consuming at the last minute. A friend recently told me that she makes hers ahead of time and them puts them in a crockpot to keep warm. I was worried they would dry out...but found that was not the case. I checked out recipes on the web and found lots of crockpot mashed potatoe recipes.

Basically you can make up your favorite mashed potatoes, put them in a greased pan and refrigerate for up to 2 days and then 3-4 hours before dinner time put them in a crockpot on low for 3-4 hours. They turn out wonderful and no work while your guests are arriving!

In these mashed potatoes, I added 1 cup of sour cream and 4 ounces of cream cheese to the cooked potatoes and seasonings. I beat them in my mixer until smooth and then put them in a crockpot that I sprayed with cooking oil. I melted a bit of butter which I drizzled over the top and them put them in the refrigerator until 4 hours before I was planning to serve them. I then put them in the crockpot on low until dinner time.

Delicious...warm and creamy!

Cranberry Orange Relish

This cranberry-orange relish is easy to make and is a great accompaniment to the orange pork tenderloin menu.

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 15 min
Yields: 8


  • 1 bag fresh cranberries ( I buy in season and then put in my freezer for later use)
  • 1 whole orange(seedless)
  • 1/2 cup sugar or sweetener ( I used Splenda)


  1. Chop cranberries and the whole orange (cut into smaller pieces) in a food processor. Mix in 1/2 cup sugar or sweetener. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. I made this up the day before the dinner.

Classic Green Bean Casserole

I love the classic green bean casserole with fried onions on top. The recipe comes on the onion can. The recipe is very basic...just mix 2 cans of green beans, 1 can mushroom soup, 1/2 cup of milk and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper in a greased casserole dish. Add 1/2 of a small can of onions and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Top with the other 1/2 can of onions and cook another 5 minutes.

In order to be able to cook them in the same oven as my pork tenderloin which cooks at 400 degrees. I reduced the cooking time for the green beans by 5 minutes and it came out great!

Blueberry Banana Bread

I have found that bananas will freeze well for later use as banana bread. I know that about three bananas will make a cup of smashed bananas so whenever I have bananas that are getting overly ripe I just put them in a ziplock freezer bag and throw them in my freezer. Then when I want to make banana bread I take out a bag with three smashed bananas.

I also freeze blueberries when they are in season and have them ready when I want to make some of this delicious banana/blueberry bread.

Cook Time

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 1/2 hours

Serves: 10


  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup ripe banana (about 3 medium bananas)
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 2 Tablespoons flour


  1. Grease and flour a loaf pan. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and beat till well mixed. Mix together flour, baking soda and salt and add to mixture. Next fold in oats, banana and vanilla. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of flour over the frozen blueberries and fold into the mixture. Pour into a bread pan and bake at 325 degrees for 75 minutes.

Loaf Pans for Quick Breads

Here is the type of pan I use to make my bread.

Orange Mousse

This dessert looks like you spent a lot of time whipping up a fancy dessert, and yet it is light, delicious and very easy to make. I think it goes particularly well with the orange pork tenderloin meal.

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 10 min
Yields: 4


  • 1 box sugar free orange jello
  • 1 box sugar free white chocolate pudding
  • 1 8 oz tub light cool whip
  • 1 small can mandarin oranges (drained)


  1. Mix jello with one cup hot water to dissolve. Add 1 cup of cold water and stir. Let sit for 5 minutes and then beat in the dry white chocolate pudding powder. Next fold in the cool whip and the mandarin oranges. Put in serving dishes and top with mandarin orange slices.

Dessert Glasses

These glasses would be great for serving the orange mousse.

Interesting Dessert Dishes

I always like interesting dishes to serve dessert. Here are some that are on eBay.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)