Always going out with friends, whether it is to eat or to have fun, can make a big dent in any bank account. Not to mention, it can be so stressful trying to always coordinate with everybody on where and when to meet on any given night. But what if there was no need to stress out about the hassle or the cost of a Friday night out?
Solution: Invite friends over to make your own dinner and dessert!!
It’s a lot cheaper (not to mention healthier) to make a whole meal at home than to go out, and it’s not as frustrating as it might seem.
Before friends start to come over, go to the store and stock up on some fruits, veggies and whatever meat or staple is sure to please the group. If someone would like to make a special dish or has a special diet, it’s okay to ask them to bring whatever extra ingredients they may need to make their dish. Just make sure to give them the proper heads up.
Then, as friends get off work (or out of class), they can come trickling over to join the cooking festivities.
Start prepping and cooking when friends come over, but not before starting a great playlist — something that is upbeat and gets people talking, yet won’t make people feel too antsy or dancy. This is the perfect time to catch up and de-stress as you work together to make whatever food sounds good to everybody.
Casseroles, homemade pizza, tacos, a steak… all delicious with the right seasonings. For those who are 21+, make your own mixed drinks too! Have fun with the blender and some ice to try something yummy or to make something completely new.
For dessert, you can bake something with relative ease (especially with store bought mixes), but ice cream is super easy go to. If you’re looking for something more fun and involved, making your own popsicles also makes for an delicious dessert and can be super easy.
For easy popsicles, blend some fruit with ice cream until you get a smoothie mixture (which is delicious in it’s own right). Pour the mix into an empty ice cube tray. Don’t worry if you don’t have popsicle sticks. For a quick fix, you can use toothpicks, and worse case scenario, stick some plastic forks into each cube.
While it’s all cooking (or freezing), you can play any board game or video game to pass the time. Soon, everyone can dig into whatever masterpiece comes out of the oven. Just make sure to keep an eye on anything cooking, you don’t want anything to burn (especially your kitchen)!!
Another plus side to staying in for the evening is that if the party lasts into the wee hours, there’s already food and great company for a sleepover, plus you have a safe place to crash!
Looking for good recipes on the cheap? Head over to Collegian Cooks for fun and quick meals that will please even the pickiest eaters.
Nightlife Writer Anna Hoover can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Hoovanna_Disny.