How do I throw the best summer BBQ ever? It has most definitely been a summer season for the record books. Not only does it look like nothing any of us have ever experienced before, but the back and forth storms and heat waves all over the world are keeping us on our toes too (as if we were not there already). If on top of everything else, you added moving into a new home to your summer activities list, it is time to celebrate! You understandably may not be able to, or comfortable with throwing a gigantic get together, but a marking of the occasion and taking advantage of the heat while it lasts, is an opportunity for big summer fun regardless. Maybe you can even use it as an excuse aka very good justification, to purchase that amazing barbecue you have had your heart set on for a few years now. It is an investment piece, right? And a moving in gift to yourself! Because the ways which we have celebrated in summers past seems like a lifetime ago, it might feel nerve wracking or awkward to think about planning a BBQ in 2020. Follow our quick and simple guide, and we will have you grilling and chilling with ease and style in no time. School’s return is just around the corner, and shops are already stocking their shelves with Halloween decorations;  it is now or never friends.

throwing the best ever summer BBQ

Send Out Cute Invitations

Announce your BBQ with style. Whether or not you send out invitations for your epic summer BBQ, does not have to be dependent on the size or length of the guest list. You do not have to go to a fancy graphic designer or printer to have something super chic and cute either. Countless online companies offer free printable (you print yourself at home) options or you can always send out digital invitations instead. Feeling like you might want to be just a little bit extra here? Simple, pre-designed web templates can help you whip up a website for your event in less than an hour. Sending out a sharp, aesthetically pleasing, and fun invitation to whomever you are wanting to attend, will help create excitement, while logistically and cleanly keeping all information streamlined in one spot. As opposed to you having to send out multiple emails and/or text messages to each individual guest. This is a quick and easy way to get the ball rolling on throwing your best ever summer BBQ.

Fresh BBQ Veggies

An All Inclusive BBQ Grocery List

As our world changes at overwhelming speeds all around us; evolving diets and food consciousness are at the forefront, arguably more than ever before. Sadly, gone are the mindless days when a package of hot dogs at your summer BBQ would suffice. However, this is no reason to become stressed, you also do not need to be Guy Fieri in order to put on an incredible summer BBQ. Interestingly enough, the more you keep things simple, the more likely you are to be able to feed anyone and everyone who comes to your event. Salads with fresh, whole ingredients are classic and timeless. Keep salad dressing choices as a side, and always include a back to basics olive and vinegar option, fresh lemon wedges are great too. Substitute out a regular wheat/gluten pasta for a rice, quinoa or lentil based version and use that as your base for a second cold salad dish. Farm fresh corn is juicy, sweet, and delicious; you can grill it in metal baskets or keep cobs in their husks while firing up the barbecue. It will take slightly more effort and planning, but allowing your guests to individually and safely dress/sauce all of their own food items can insure allergy issues are taken care of, and sanitization is kept under control. One of the most exciting things about planning a BBQ menu in 2020? If you have vegetarians, plant based, or vegan guests attending – the delicious options that will satisfy them and everyone else (yes, even meat eaters) are bountiful and beyond. Fresh cut fruit as dessert is incredible (aka dairy free, gluten free, and literally the most plant based a plant based option can be), and asking guests to BYOB, will also help to ensure all your dietary restriction bases are covered. With that said, do also be sure to provide a non-alcoholic beverage option for your guests; water, lemonade, or ice tea always work.

throwing the best ever summer BBQ lights

Make An Excuse To Have Fun With BBQ Decor

Just because this awesome party is going down outdoors, does not mean that you cannot have a blast with decorating the space! This is your new home, your new backyard and outdoor area; allow yourself the freedom to explore how much fun getting it all decked out can be. You can go the theme route or keep things rustic and uncomplicated. Did somebody say twinkle lights? This is a beautiful, quick, classic and entertaining way to add some shimmer and glamour to your grill fest. Purchase lights at your local dollar store, or dive into the seemingly limitless options available online. Set up your speakers and map out a legendary playlist that transitions from upbeat cocktail hour, to the perfect dinner background vibe, to a sing-along sitting and talking as the stars come out nightcap.  Butcher paper rolled out onto your patio table looks clean, elegant and modern. Bonus points, you do not have to wash it when the party’s over – just toss in your recycling bin. Red and white checkered napkins provide a vintage feel, while paper plates lock down cleaning time to a minimum. Similar to the food, the more you focus on keeping things clean and simple, the more everyone will be blown away with your hosting class and flare. It will not take much to decorate for your first and best ever BBQ at your new home.

BBQ Games

Prep Some Classic, No Fuss Games

While the delicious food is being prepared, starting some backyard games can help to get everyone in the spirit for a fantastic afternoon and evening. If you have a pool, hot tub, or even a single sprinkler – water activities are a great way to loosen everyone up. Missing all of the above? Water balloons had a major comeback a few summers ago and now come in easy to fill, crazy fast systems now that are hard to say no to! This is the perfect activity to prepare ahead of time too. Want to stay dry? An icebreaker game of charades is just as enjoyable, and social distancing friendly. You may get chatting, see the hours pass by, and never end up touching the games you had waiting. If so, wonderful! Nevertheless, it is always handy to have party starting, mood boosting amusement on standby to ensure you pull off a sensational summer BBQ.

In anticipation of the post party clean up; keep things primarily outdoors as much as possible. Have a simple system for the one bathroom you would like your guests to use, and prepare for messes by keeping a stockpile of wet wipes and a very large garbage bag close by that you can notify everyone about. Get started early, so you have tons of time to enjoy your food and your company and try not to lose too much sleep over the little things that are out of your control. If you have thoughtfully planned, shopped for, and prepared food with different appetites and diets in mind, loaded up on napkins and drinks, and have more than enough comfortable seating – you are going to have absolutely no trouble in throwing the best ever summer BBQ. And when all the guests are well taken care of, do not forget to have fun yourself! 

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