Try these dinner party ideas: fun inspiration for meals to impress your friends and family! Browse ideas fit for every occasion.

Dinner Party Ideas

Hosting a gathering? Then let us be the first to suggest these Dinner Party Ideas! These recipes cover the gamut of occasions and seasons. Have a casual pizza party with friends, or a fancy meal of seared scallops. Try a cozy pot pie in winter, or breezy poke bowls in summer. These meals are perfect for entertaining and will impress everyone! Here’s our list: with side dish suggestions to pair!

And now…dinner party ideas for your gathering!

More side dish, appetizer and drink ideas

The hardest part of a dinner party menu? Planning all the side dishes and appetizers to go with the main dish! Here are a few more lists of recipes that can help you to plan your party:

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Focaccia Pizza

20 Dinner Party Ideas to Impress: Party Pan Pizza & More!


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 12 pieces 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Here’s how to make the best ever sheet pan pizza! This easy method makes a big pan for everyone to enjoy with your favorite toppings.


Ingredients

Scale

For the pizza dough*

  • 375 grams (3 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon instant or active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon each dried oregano and garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 264 grams (1 cup – 2 tablespoons) warm water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for the sheet

For the pizza toppings

  • 1 ¼ cup pizza sauce (purchased or our favorite Easy Pizza Sauce)
  • 1 cup (3 ounces) shredded smoked gouda cheese
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 6 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese
  • Optional topping: 4 cups (3 ounces) baby arugula, 1 tablespoon olive oil,  and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Fresh basil leaves, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Make the dough (5 minutes): In a large bowl, stir together the all-purpose flour, yeast, kosher salt, oregano and garlic powder. Add the warm water and olive oil and stir until flour is incorporated.
  2. Knead the dough (8 minutes): Knead the dough by pushing with the base of your palm, then reforming it into a ball. Continue kneading for 8 minutes until the dough feels pillowy and has a smooth, stretchy exterior. If the dough is very sticky, add a small amount of flour while kneading. Alternatively: attach the dough hook to a stand mixer and start the mixer on medium-low speed, then allow the mixer to knead for 8 minutes.
  3. Roll out and rest the dough in a sheet pan (15 minutes): Using floured hands, gently shape the dough into a boule (ball shape) by folding the dough under itself. Add a light sprinkle of flour to the boule. Then roll out dough on floured surface to roughly the shape of the 13×18 sheet pan. Brush 3 tablespoons olive oil on the bottom and sides of a standard 13″x 18″ sheet pan. Add the dough and brush it lightly with oil. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and rest for 15 minutes to relax the dough.
  4. Rest the dough again (45 minutes): Press the dough back into the corners of the pan so it evenly covers the pan. Cover and rest 45 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 500F.
  6. Bake the pizza dough* without toppings: After the 45 minute rest, bake the pizza dough for 6 minutes without sauce and toppings.
  7. Add the toppings and bake again: Remove the dough from the oven. Add the pizza sauce, smoked mozzarella, fresh mozzarella (torn into pieces), and Parmesan cheese, and top with a few pinches of kosher salt. Take care, since the pan will be hot! Bake for 6 to 8 minutes until the cheese is melted and lightly brown.
  8. Serve: If using, in a small bowl, mix the baby arugula with the olive oil and ¼ teaspoon kosher salt. Sprinkle the pizza with torn basil, then add the arugula on top. Cut into pieces with a knife (a pizza cutter doesn’t get all the way to the pan edges) and serve immediately.
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Italian inspired

Keywords: Dinner party ideas

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you'll want to make again and again.

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