How to Host the Perfectly Priced Backyard BBQ (3 Simple TRICKS)

Backyard BBQs are the pinnacle of summer gatherings. They’re easy, fun, and a great place to catch up with family, friends, and neighbors.

If you want to close out the summer with one last backyard shindig, don’t worry about putting a dent in your wallet. You already have the venue, now all you need to do is plan the party on a budget.  Follow these few simple tips to throw an amazing backyard BBQ at an amazing price.

Keep It Simple

When hosting, it’s tempting to put out a show stopping spread. But if your goal is simply to hang out with family and friends and have a good time, keeping it simple could be the key to keeping your BBQ on budget.

Start by planning your menu. Instead of going all out, keep it to hot dogs and burgers or grilled kebabs (a great way to make meat and veggies go a long way). Pair your main dish with a dip bar for a simple side. Asking your guests to bring their favorite dip will ease the financial burden of hosting and make for a fun, collaborative party.

If you still want to really impress your guests, make a spectacular dessert or a signature welcome cocktail, something that you’ll only need a limited amount of.

Shop Smart

If you’re not tied to a specific menu, check out the circulars from your local grocery stores to see what’s on sale. You might have been planning to do a mixed salad, but with fresh corn on the cob on sale you can easily make the menu swap. Or if a key ingredient is on sale at a store you don’t normal shop at, it might be worth the trip for your BBQ.

It also pays to be smart about your paper products. The last thing you want to do after a great party is deal with a pile of dishes, so paper plates and plastic cups are your best friends. Instead of paying premium prices for these items at the grocery store, stop by your local dollar store. Instead of paying for napkins, put out a few rolls of paper towels for your guests to use instead. (These also come in handy in case of a spill.)

DIY with the Right Tools

If you don’t mind spending a little time prepping if it means you’ll save money, make sure you have the right kitchen tools on hand to make the job easy and quick.

For instance, if you opt to save money by buying heads of lettuce for a salad instead of expensive packaged greens, having a lettuce knife will make chopping easy and keep your lettuce looking as fresh as if it came out of a container.

Want to put together a fancy melon salad? A little time spent with a melon baller and some Netflix will make your masterpiece come together quickly. Sliced strawberries are awesome in a fruit salad or on top of a more traditional salad, but slicing enough to feed an entire party can take forever. Two words: Strawberry slicer. You’ll be able to uniformly slice an entire carton of strawberries in no time.

Having the right tools on hand lets you prep for your party from scratch, meaning the only thing you’ll “spend” is time.