7 Tips for Hosting an Awesome Potluck Meal ...

Potlucks are really awesome. I always think it's neat to find out what everyone's tastes are, where their cooking strengths lie, and so on – plus hosting a potluck is a great way to have a party without anyone having to spend a lot of money. The other cool thing is that you can have a potluck for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, or you can do it for a holiday. Whatever the meal or occasion, check out these 7 tips for hosting an awesome potluck meal.

1. Organize

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Naturally, you have to be organized with any potluck. For instance, you have to have a list of guests, but that's not all. You also need to have a list to see what everyone wants to bring, so that no one brings the same food. Plus, that will let everyone know how much they need to bring. Actually, though, it won't hurt to have a lot of certain favorites. If you know something is popular and will get eaten quickly, make more.

2. Ask Away

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You don't have to be afraid of asking for select foods. If you're hosting the meal, you can feel free to ask certain guests to make certain things, especially if you know they do it well. In fact, if you ask a friend to make a specialty that everyone loves, he or she is sure to feel flattered!

3. Not Everybody Needs to Cook

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Some people can't cook, though. Does that mean you can't ask them to come? Absolutely not! Instead, you can ask them to bring other things. They can bring wine or other drinks, they can bring napkins, or any other inedible items you might need.

4. Set a Tone

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Every party and every meal needs a tone. You don't necessarily have to throw something fancy, but if you do, you need to first make sure that the guests know. Is it a casual affair or a dressy one, for example? Make sure the guests know how to dress and make sure your home sfits the mood, whatever the case may be.

5. Serve Stylishly

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Even if it's a casual meal, you can create a lot of elegance with the way you serve. Don't be afraid to use your best china, crystal, or silverware. If your guests are comfortable with it, encourage them to do the same. Everything tastes better when you can also present it attractively.

6. Use What You Have

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Potlucks can be frustrating if you aren't careful. It's common to forget something along the way, but you don't have to freak out about it. All you have to do is use what you've got and make it work. That will relieve a lot of stress and get things going on a smooth track again.

7. Be Loose with the Leftovers

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You're probably going to have a lot of leftovers, and you should plan for that. You can either get some inexpensive tupperware for the occasion, or you can ask your guests to bring some containers. Be generous with the leftovers, try to make sure everyone has a little something. Sometimes the best part of a potluck is being able to nibble a little after the meal's over!

Potlucks can be really fun, especially if you plan it properly. It's not nearly as touch as a lot of people think it is. Do you like to host potluck meals?

Top Photo Credit: Krazy Kristine

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