50 Casual Dinner Party Menu Ideas | Taste of Home

50 Casual Dinner Party Menu Ideas

Take the stress out of hosting with these casual dinner party menu ideas. They're just right for any easy-going meal with friends.

1 / 40
Favorite Company Casserole Exps Chkbz18 3263 C10 25 4b 1

Favorite Company Casserole

My guests like this casserole even if they don't usually like all the ingredients in it! For instance, people who don't care for broccoli don't mind it in this dish. And I like the way it's so easy to make and serve when company comes. —Suzann Verdun, Lisle, Illinois
2 / 40
Pleasing Potato Pizza Exps Sdfm18 9857 D10 04 2b

Pleasing Potato Pizza

I first heard of this distinctive pizza after a friend tried it at a restaurant. It inspired me to come up with my own recipe. The way the slices disappear, there’s no doubt about this pizza’s potatoey goodness. —Barbara Zimmer, Wanless, Manitoba
3 / 40

So-Tender Swiss Steak

This fork-tender Swiss steak with rich gravy was an often-requested main dish around our house when I was growing up. Mom took pride in preparing scrumptious, hearty meals like this for our family and guests. —Linda McGinty, Parma, Ohio
4 / 40

Moist Cranberry Pork Roast

I love to serve this tender, flavorful pork to guests. You don’t have to toil away in the kitchen to prepare it, yet it tastes like a gourmet meal. —Kimberley Scasny, Douglasville, Georgia
5 / 40

Calgary Stampede Ribs

"More, please!" is what I hear when I serve these zippy, finger-licking ribs to family or guests. The first time my husband and I tried them, we pronounced them the best ever. The recipe has its roots in the Calgary Stampede, an annual Western culture festival and exhibition in our province. —Marian Misik, Sherwood Park, Alberta
6 / 40

Turkey in Cream Sauce

I've been relying on this recipe for tender turkey since I first moved out on my own years ago. I serve it whenever I invite new guests to the house, and I'm constantly writing out the recipe. —Kathy-Jo Winterbottom, Pottstown, Pennsylvania

Celebrating a milestone? Check out our best retirement party food ideas, too.

7 / 40

Puff Pastry Chicken Bundles

Inside these golden puff pastry "packages", chicken breasts rolled with spinach, herbed cream cheese and walnuts are a savory surprise. I like to serve this elegant entree when we have guests or are celebrating a holiday or special occasion. -Brad Moritz, Limerick, Pennsylvania
8 / 40
Beef N Rice Enchiladas Exps Ghbz18 24178 E08 15 7b 5

Beef 'n' Rice Enchiladas

With a toddler in the house, I look for foods that are a snap to make. Loaded with beef, cheese and a flavorful rice mix, these enchiladas come together without a fuss. But they’re so good that guests think I spent hours in the kitchen. —Jennifer Smith, Colona, Illinois
9 / 40
Angel Hair Shrimp Bake Exps 13x9bz19 28706 C10 05 2b 2

Angel Hair Shrimp Bake

Shrimp pairs beautifully with the herbs, salsa and three kinds of cheese in this baked angel hair pasta casserole. The shrimp make this dish special enough for a guests, but your family is sure to enjoy it, too. —Susan Davidson, Elm Grove, Wisconsin
10 / 40
Herb Brined Cornish Game Hens Exps Thca18 224491 C02 22 2b 10

Herb-Brined Cornish Game Hens

Instead of a turkey or a big roast, why not serve individual Cornish game hens for the holidays? They cook in a fraction of the time and they're guaranteed to impress all your guests. —Shannon Roum, Cudahy, Wisconsin
11 / 40
Pepper Crusted Sirloin Roast Exps Cwdj19 32321 B08 10 2b 6

Pepper-Crusted Sirloin Roast

Dinner guests will be surprised to hear that this festive entree calls for only five ingredients. It's the perfect choice for serving a large group.
12 / 40
Creamy Chicken Enchiladas Exps Dia18 33124 B05 25 2b 6

Creamy Chicken Enchiladas

My daughter has the best sour cream and cream cheese chicken enchiladas recipe I've ever tried. She brought 10 pans of it to my wedding reception and they were the biggest hit of all the food. So many guests wanted the recipe, we sent it out with our Christmas cards. —Pat Coffee, Kingston, Washington
13 / 40

Ham & Cheese Casseroles

I got this recipe from my mother and love it because it’s easy and I’ve usually got the ingredients on hand. It freezes well, so I can have an extra ham and cheese casserole handy for when guests show up. Everyone always likes it; there are never leftovers. —Jan Schoshke, Brookville, Kansas
14 / 40
Salmon With Brown Sugar Glaze Exps Botoh19 42919 B08 16 6b 6

Salmon with Brown Sugar Glaze

I was not a salmon lover until I tried this recipe. Now it is one of my favorite dishes to serve friends. —Rachel Garcia, Arlington, Virginia
15 / 40
Romano Basil Turkey Breast Exps Sdon18 44628 E06 12 7b 2

Romano Basil Turkey Breast

Guests will be impressed when you slice this golden, grilled turkey breast, dressed up with a flavorful layer of basil and cheese under the skin. —Darlene Markham, Rochester, New York
16 / 40
Roadside Diner Cheeseburger Quiche Exps Chmz19 47174 B10 26 2b 9

Roadside Diner Cheeseburger Quiche

My savory main-dish quiche tastes just like its burger counterpart. Easy and appealing, this cheeseburger quiche is pretty enough to serve guests. —Barbara J. Miller, Oakdale, Minnesota
17 / 40
Spice Brined Pork Roast Exps33365 Thca1917912b02 04 4bc Rms

Spice-Brined Pork Roast

This brined and barbecued pork roast is unbelievable moist. Adding seasonings to the coals produces an awesome aroma that draws guests to the grill!—Lorraine Schroeder, Albany, Oregon
18 / 40
Beef Enchilada Lasagna Casserole Exps Opbz18 23569 E06 05 6b 2

Beef Enchilada Lasagna Casserole

“Whenever I make this cheesy layered casserole, my guests rave about it and ask for the recipe. I serve it with French bread or toasted garlic bread.” —Charlene Griffin, Minocqua, Wisconsin
19 / 40
Chicken Thighs With Sausage Exps50339 Thhc1997841c08 16 5bc Rms 2

Chicken Thighs with Sausage

Whether you’re serving your family or special guests, this comforting entree hits the spot on cold winter nights. —Joanna Iovino, Kings Park, New York
20 / 40

Golden Apricot-Glazed Turkey Breast

Basted with a simple glaze, this wonderfully moist and tender turkey bakes to a lovely golden brown. Make it the centerpiece of your holiday table; guests will be glad you did. —Greg Fontenot, The Woodlands, Texas
21 / 40
Easy Beef Stuffed Shells Exps Ft20 85164 F 0519 1 Home 8

Easy Beef-Stuffed Shells

Here’s a rich and comforting dish that’s terrific right away or made ahead and baked the next day. Pesto makes a surprising filling for these stuffed shells with meat sauce. —Blair Lonergan, Rochelle, Virginia
22 / 40
Garden Chicken Cacciatore Exps Thas21 133377 B04 13 8b 6

Garden Chicken Cacciatore

Treat company to this perfect Italian meal. You'll have time to visit with your guests while it simmers, and it often earns rave reviews. I like to serve it with couscous, green beans and a dry red wine. Mangia! —Martha Schirmacher, Sterling Heights, Michigan
23 / 40

Beer-Braised Stew

Guests will take one bite of this savory stew and immediately know something is different. And they'll never guess the secret ingredient is beer! Serve this with a loaf of freshly baked bread and everyone will be happy. —Geri Faustich, Appleton, Wisconsin
24 / 40
Sausage Ratatouille Exps Fttmz19 86951 B03 05 4b Rms

Sausage Ratatouille

You’ll feel like Ratatouille’s great chef Remy when you serve this veggie-packed dish party guests will rave about. Don’t let the ingredient list fool you: Pantry staples and an easy-cook method make this one a cinch. —Janine Freeman, Blaine, Washington
25 / 40
Gorgonzola Beef Wellingtons Exps66434 Thca2449046d12 12 4b Rms

Gorgonzola Beef Wellingtons

Your guests will certainly be impressed when you serve Wellingtons. Besides being a wonderful, special entree, it is so easy on the cook. Most of it can be prepared a day ahead and it bakes in 20 minutes.—Joyce Moynihan, Lakeville, Minnesota
26 / 40

Salmon and Goat Cheese Crepes

Homemade crepes filled with a fabulous goat cheese cream and topped with smoked salmon add a real "wow" factor to a brunch table. The flavors will impress your guests.—
27 / 40
Italian Meatball Kabobs Exps Sdjj18 68303 C02 15 3b 3

Italian Meatball Kabobs

When the temperatures are high, and so is your craving for Italian fare, turn to these deliciously different kabobs. A green salad and rustic bread are all you'll need to complete this summer meal. —Marie Rizzio, Interlochen, Michigan
28 / 40
Tomato Sausage Cheddar Bread Pudding Exps156191 Th2379801c07 05 6bc Rms 2

Tomato, Sausage & Cheddar Bread Pudding

This savory dish is the perfect excuse to have bread pudding as the main meal, not merely afterward as dessert. — Holly Jones, Kennesaw, Georgia
29 / 40
Sausage Ravioli Lasagna Exps58859 Sd2401789c09 13 5bc Rms 2

Sausage Ravioli Lasagna

Here’s a hearty entree that’ll have guests kissing the cook! You can easily alter it to please any palate—using ground beef or turkey for the sausage or beef ravioli instead of cheese. —Nicole Gazzo, Bondurant, Iowa
30 / 40
Beef Bolognese With Linguine Exps Ft21 130403 F 0423 1

Beef Bolognese with Linguine

After much research, tasting and tweaking, I finally came up with this beef bolognese recipe, based on a dish from an Italian restaurant where I worked. It’s perfect for feeding a house full of guests. —Christine Wendland, Browns Mills, New Jersey
31 / 40
Phyllo Layered Pastichio Exps168114 Cw132791a04 23 2b Rms 5

Phyllo-Layered Pastichio

My grandfather always made pastichio on special occasions or when we had guests coming for dinner. I cherish the happy memories I have of him teaching me how to cook one of his signature dishes. —Tina Waisman, Safety Harbor, Florida
32 / 40
Garlic Lover S Beef Stew Exps82255 Cw143040b11 01 7bc Rms 4

Garlic Lover's Beef Stew

Wine gives a mellow flavor to this beef and carrot stew. We like to serve it over mashed potatoes, but you could also use noodles. —Alissa Brown, Fort Washington, Pennsylvania
33 / 40

Lime-Chipotle Carnitas Tostadas

Here's a terrific recipe for your next weeknight dinner. Set out various toppings and garnishes so your family members can customize their own tostadas with the lime-kissed shredded pork. —Jan Valdez, Chicago, Illinois
34 / 40
Slow Cooker Cheesy White Lasagna Exps Scbz18 149264 C08 10 2b 4

Slow-Cooker Cheesy White Lasagna

Here’s my best version of my favorite food—lasagna! The recipe is a winner, so it’s worth the extra prep. You’ll have plenty of time to plan side dishes while the main dish is cooking. —Suzanne Smith, Bluffton, Indiana
35 / 40
Shredded Beef Burrito Filling Exps Edsc17 153660 B03 16 3b 3

Shredded Beef Burrito Filling

Make your next office party a taco bar or burrito bar! Set out the beef in the slow cooker on warm, along with tortillas, bowls of shredded cheese, salsa, sour cream, and chopped lettuce, jalapenos, onions and tomatoes. For a variation, I make Beef & Bean burritos by mixing a can of refried beans into 3 or 4 cups of cooked beef filling. —Hope Wasylenki, Gahanna, Ohio
36 / 40

Beef Brisket Tacos

Birthday parties back home were big gatherings of cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents and anyone else we considered family. As soon as guests arrived, hot pans of shredded brisket, or carne deshebrada, appeared, along with frijoles, tostadas, salsas and huge bowls of salad. Brisket was the dish we always counted on because it could be made in the oven or a slow cooker. —Yvette Marquez, Littleton, Colorado Muy Bueno Recipes + Stories
37 / 40
Crockpot Short Rib Ragu Over Pappardelle Exps Thso18 218391 B04 20 8b 3

Slow-Cooker Short Rib Ragu over Pappardelle

An irresistible sauce gives this beef another dimension of flavor. Nearly any starchy side, such as potatoes or polenta, will work in place of the pasta. Short ribs are my crowd-pleaser weekend meal for all occasions. —Missy Raho, Morristown, New Jersey
38 / 40
Easy Taco Cups Exps Hca19 164595 B09 11 4b 2

Easy Taco Cups

These zesty little cups rank high on my list of favorites because they combine three things I look for in a recipe: fast, easy and delicious! They make a simply fantastic finger food for parties, and my guests have fun selecting their desired toppings. —Ashley Jarvies, Manassa, CO
39 / 40
Tuscan Grapes and Sausages

Tuscan Grapes and Sausages

This recipe is one of my go-tos when entertaining. It's simple, elegant and you can entertain your guests instead of spending the entire time in the kitchen. It is always a crowd pleaser and everyone always asks for the recipe. The whole pieces of garlic in this dish become so sweet, a lovely complement to the sweet grapes and spicy sausage. I serve this over rustic hand-mashed red potatoes. —Melissa Zienter, Las Vegas, Nevada
40 / 40
Easy Stuffed Shells Exps42632 Th143193b04 23 6b Rms

Easy Stuffed Shells

I threw this recipe together one day when we had unexpected guests. It was an immediate hit and is now a family favorite. Get the kids involved when putting together this simple, savory dish. —Dolores Betchner, Cudahy, Wisconsin

Sue Stetzel
Sue has been working with Taste of Home since 2011. When she isn’t writing, she’s answering your burning cooking questions and working with our team of Community Cooks. She spends her free time cooking, crafting, and volunteering for various organizations in her home town.

Newsletter Unit

CMU Unit

cover
Subscribe & SAVE Save Up To 80%!