Cooking for a Crowd: Bachelorette Bashs, Long Weekends & Girls Getaways

Do you have an upcoming bachelorette party you’re in charge of, ski weekend or family reunion? Do you need to get a meal on the table for 10 people that’s relatively healthy, filling and caters to a multitude of dietary restrictions? You’ve come to the right place: I’ve got you, girl! Here are two quick and easy meals to serve for a crowd:

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Mexican Fiesta

Mexican tacos are easy, quick - the ease of a ‘taco bar’ means people with food restrictions can eat what they need to.

Shopping list:

Soft corn tortillas

Hard corn tortillas

Organic corn chips

Olive oil

Bag lemons & Limes

Large tub of salsa (Trader Joe’s, Costco)

Organic chicken

Onions, peppers, garlic

Grass Fed ground beef

Bag of Avocados

Bag of tomatoes

Salt & Pepper

Bag of shredded lettuce

Bag of sharp cheddar cheese

Hot Sauce (Frank’s Red Hot)

Two cans of beans (*Beans of your choice: black beans, pinto, refried)

Optional: Sour Cream

You are going to want to make sure you have small bowls for serving dishes to prepare your Mexican fiesta. Start by grilling the chicken (season with salt, pepper, garlic, paprika), slice thin and set aside in a bowl. Do the same of the ground grass-fed beef. Then slice up the onions and peppers and saute them in a pan with garlic and olive oil until they are tender, then set aside in a bowl.  Next, prepare the beans of your choice and put them in a bowl. Place the cheese, the shredded lettuce, the corn chips and salsa into separate bowls.

For the avocados, you can either slice them and set aside of prepare a homemade guacamole. To do that, slice up a little onion and a half a teaspoon of garlic and place in the bottom of a bowl. Chop up the tomatoes into small pieces and place in the bowl. Prepare three avocados, de-pit them and stick them in the bowl. Top with salt, pepper, and lime and mash the bowl together until you have homemade guacamole.

Place the corn tortillas on a serving dish. If you would like to serve the soft tortillas warm, lay them out on a baking sheet and put them in a 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes or so. Serve warm.

Make sure to have all of your additional condiments such as hot sauce or sour cream prepared, should your guests want them.

To pair this meal: think sparkling wine, good old fashioned ice-cold beer or homemade margaritas with lime.

Sunday Sauce

Here’s a twist on a traditional Italian feast sans meat that will be sure to cover anyone with food allergies and it’s quick and easy to make.

Shopping list:

2-3 bags of brown rice/quinoa gluten-free pasta

2 bags of organic spinach

2 jars of organic marinara sauce (Trader Joe’s, Costco)

chopped garlic (Costco, Trader Joe’s, Fairway)

2 long gluten-free baguettes (Udi’s, Trader Joe’s)

Basil

Lemon

Salt & Pepper

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Box of organic mixed greens

Cucumber

Tomatoes

Grated Parmesan Cheese (to serve on the side)

For this meal, the pasta is going to be the star of the show, with a plethora of other veggie-based options as well as folks who can’t live without their carbs. By eliminating meat, fish and dairy and gluten here, you can reasonably serve most people and won’t need to make separate meals for those who have restrictions. Should you have time to make a homemade marinara sauce, good on you, but to feed a crowd relatively quickly, your best bet is to get some nice organic jars of sauce to have on hand.

First get the boiling water for your pasta going and heat your sauce in a saucepan on low heat (I like to doctor my store-bought sauce up with more salt, pepper, oregano and garlic powder, if I have it). When the water has come to a boil, put the pasta in and cook according to the package instructions.

Saute the bags of spinach in olive oil and garlic and season with salt and pepper (if you like a kick, add some red pepper flakes) and set aside when finished.

Then slice up the cucumbers and the tomatoes for the salad. Get a big salad bowl and put a bit of crushed garlic, olive oil, lemon, salt & pepper (if you have a little balsamic, throw that in, too) and whisk together. Then combine the bag or organic greens with the tomatoes and cucumber and toss in the bowl to make sure the dressing is spread evenly throughout.

Then slice the two baguettes and place on a baking sheet. Drizzle olive oil, some more garlic, basil and salt and pepper generously on the four slices. Put this under the broiler for roughly 5 minutes and keep an eye on it so it won’t burn.

When the pasta is ready and drained, find a big serving bowl and put a layer of warmed marinara sauce on the bottom. Fill the bowl with the pasta and top with more sauce and then mix it around to make sure it’s evenly distributed. Put a few piece of basil on top to serve. You can have the grated parmesan on the side if anyone should want it.

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What’s your favorite meal to serve to a crowd? Let us know in the comments section below!