Feeding a group

We had our housewarming party about a month ago and it was a chance for me to stretch my wings and plan and cook food for a large group. I think we planned food for about 50 people or so. My parents plan a lot of family parties so they know how to feed large groups of people. So, over a Packer game we planned out the meal and the timing of everything (very important to do!). I don't remember exactly, but I think including alcohol I made food for 60 people for about $200....soooo I think that was pretty good. :-)

The main items are were pulled pork, beans with meat, a chocolate fountain, and Italian pasta salad. Overall everyone really liked the food and we had just the right amount! We had some leftovers but not too much. Some of our guests liked the food so much I had frequent recipe requests for some of the food and drink I served!

I used my magnetic seasoning grinders to stick
my recipes up on our metal tile over the stove.

BBQ pulled pork
1 boneless pork butt, about 4 pounds
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons season salt
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon paprika (surprisingly adds quite a bit of after-spice - even made my uncle sweat!)
1 tablespoon black pepper
BBQ sauce (You can chose whatever you like....yeah)

Prep station

  • Cook the meat in the oven until the internal temperature of the meat is 160F.
    • I cooked it at 225 for about 6 - 7 hours.
  • Let cool a bit
  • Roughly pull a part the meet into a separate dish. Be sure to take off some of the larger chunks of fat.
  • Cover the meat and put it in the fridge (if you are making it the next day)
  • The next day, put the meat in a slow cooker with your BBQ sauce.
  • Start to separate the meat more as it cooks. DONE
Fresh out of the oven

Tip: If you serve this on small buns the meat will serve more people.

Creamy Latin pasta salad
1 pound rotini pasta (3/4 of a 16-ounce box)
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup crumbled feta cheese or queso blanco
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1 lime, juiced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup finely diced ham
1 orange bell pepper, seeded, ribbed, and chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded, ribbed, and chopped
1 cup frozen peas
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup peeled and chopped jicama
1/2 cup pimento stuffed olives

  • Cook the pasta
  • Blend the dressing ingredients in a blender
  • Mix all the ingredients together
  • Let sit over night and season to taste the next day
Generally speaking, I don't like pasta salad. They tend to be very bland, but they are good for feeding large groups. So, I looked for something a little different. It was kind of fun because most people didn't know what the jicama was and they kept trying to guess. Overall, I think most people liked it. However, despite the unusual flavors, I think it was still bland. At the last minute my aunt tried to help me season it with sea salt but it didn't seem to help too much.


Beans with meat
1 can garbanzo
1 can black eye peas
1 can kidney beans
1 can bean mix
1 can Chick pea
1 can Butter beans
1 can Ground beef
BBQ sauce (I would suggest using a different kind than you used from the pork

  • Cook ground beef with seasoning and bacon
  • Mix all beans, bbq sauce, cooked beef in a crock pot
  • Remember to stir
This was probably the least liked dish. I made this on the fly and didn't plan it out very much so it ended up being bland. I had intended to make an awesome recipe from my great aunt, but of course, family recipes aren't always easy to get. So, at the last minute I improvised.

Dry Sangria mix
Club soda
Arbor mist
Frozen fruit (I used a berry mix)

Ratio: more wine than soda

  • Guess what? You mix all the ingredients in a punch bowl!
    You don't really need to add ice because the frozen fruit acts like an ice cube
Chocolate fountain
Dipping items

So there you go. All of that food rounded up with some typical snacks (Doritos, taco dip, etc) and dessert (cookie bars and pie) and you have yourself a budget friendly meal to feed a crowd. Then to please the late night crowd, head to the basement bar and play some shot roulette :-) Lucky 21!

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