Have you ever had to host an enormous dinner party? Whether you’ve had to do it in the past or in case you have a big one coming up, it can be intimidating! You want everyone to be full and happy, but you don’t want to lose your mind making it happen. Holidays, special occasions, and get-togethers are often stressful, scary undertakings for the host, but we at RecipeLion.com believe in the power of food to bring people together. So don’t give up just yet! We’ve compiled a list of our best 5-course meal ideas.
If you’re more familiar with the standard appetizer, entree, dessert pattern, you may be wondering, why five whole courses? Well, a traditional 5-course meal — soup, appetizer, salad, entree, and dessert — has a progression that can be truly satisfying as a diner. From the first teaser of a bite to the refreshing sweetness at the end, the 5-course meal is like a present with a bow wrapped around it. Also, having a nice, long dinner provides an opportunity for conversation and fellowship with your loved ones!
As you scan through these 5-course meal ideas (each of them snagged from RecipeLion’s on-site test kitchen!), here are a few tips to keep in mind: You want to do a lot of meals that you can prep beforehand and perhaps only one that requires a lot of active time, so be strategic! Also, don’t pick too many heavy dishes in a row—you’re going to be eating a lot in a 5-course meal! Lastly, try to space out the recipes that use certain cooking appliances. If all five of your courses need to use the oven, you’re going to be doing a lot of sitting around on your hands.
Without further adieu, mix-and-match with our best 5-course meal ideas!
Course One: Soup Recipes
- The King of Chicken Soups (video!)
- Tried and True Italian Pasta Soup
- Ultimate Comfort Potato Soup
- Very Veggie Kale and White Bean Soup (video!)
- Rustic Red Pepper and Tomato Soup (shown)
Course Two: Appetizer Ideas
- Crab Meltaways
- Thai Red Curry Deviled Eggs (shown)
- Pull-Apart Stuffed Shells
- Easy Italian Bruschetta (video!)
- Start the Party Meatballs (video!)
Course Three: Salad Ideas
- Golden Raisin and Broccoli Salad (shown)
- Terrific Toasted Quinoa Salad
- Colorful and Fresh Vegetable Salad
- German Style Cucumber Salad
- Throw Together Potluck Salad
Course Four: Entree Ideas
- 5-Ingredient No-Peek Chicken – This was my meal prep this week, and let me tell you, it is easy and HEAVENLY!
- Engagement Chicken
- Honey Glazed Ham (video!)
- How to Cook Prime Rib: Perfect Prime Rib Recipe
- No-Fuss Pork Chop Casserole
Course Five: Dessert Ideas
- Vintage Bread Pudding (shown)
- Just Like Olive Garden’s Lemon Cream Cake
- Gooey Stuffed Cinnamon Roll Bake
- Millionaire’s Cake
- Little Old Lady Lemon Pound Cake