Dinner Party Menus for Every Party Style

Collaborate and design the perfect menu with your Chef.

Anyone who throws a dinner party must first choose an aesthetic. Some parties are elegant and sophisticated, while others are light and fun, perhaps with costumes and a theme. Whatever aesthetic you choose for your dinner party, the menu should reflect that aesthetic and complement your vision.

Best Dinner Party Menus for Any Aesthetic

As a host, you want everything at your dinner party to go perfectly so that your guests have a magical evening. If you're stuck on how to make your dinner party menu go well with your chosen theme, here are a few ideas for a fantastic evening that's sure to please.

Elegant Dinner Party

If your theme is elegant, you need a menu that is going to wow your guests. Aim to serve simple, sophisticated dishes made from top-notch ingredients that allow the flavors to shine through. 

  • Lobster bisque
  • Roasted pork loin with roasted apples and potatoes
  • Shaved brussel sprout salad
  • French apple tart

Presentation is important, so be sure to think about how you will plate and serve your dishes.


If you're looking for a less sophisticated theme, one option is to serve breakfast for dinner. Serving breakfast for dinner is a fun way to get loved ones together and feel like a kid again. As a host, you can serve everyday breakfast classics or elevated versions of your brunch favorites if you want a more elegant vibe.

  • Breakfast burritos 
  • Chicken and waffles
  • Fruit salad
  • Pancakes or crepes
  • Frittatas
  • Brunch cocktails, like mimosas or Bloody Marys 

Murder Mystery Party

A murder mystery party usually keeps guests up and walking around, so have a charcuterie board or finger food available while your guests are sleuthing. When it's time to sit down for dinner, your guests have the opportunity to chat, enjoy the ambiance, and show off their costumes. This kind of party, while fun, will require a lot of work and organizing from you as the host, so consider a self-serve or buffet-style meal that will save you time on food preparation.

  • Baked potato or taco bar
  • Pasta station with different sauce choices
  • Salad
  • Seasonal fruit
  • A fun dessert, like a cake with a knife or question mark on it

Family Dinner Party

A casual dinner party allows you to share dishes from your culture or those you grew up loving, like one of your grandmother's treasured recipes. Eating with the family is normally a casual affair, so serving up your dinner party menu family-style is an excellent way to share and bring everyone together. 

  • Pasta 
  • Chicken legs
  • Paella
  • Curry
  • Anything special from your family's background

Corporate Dinner Party

If you're trying to impress your boss or coworkers, you'll want a menu that shows some sophistication and professionalism. This means finding dinner party worthy dishes that inspire awe and conversation without falling too outside the norm. You can adjust the formality of the menu depending on your dinner guests' culture and preferences.

  • Wood-grilled salmon and green salad
  • Grain-based salad with roasted veggies and balsamic vinegar
  • Roasted chicken breasts
  • Pavlova

Themed Dinner Party

Themed dinner parties can be a blast, especially when the menu goes perfectly with the event. Throwing a backyard luau? Try grilled pork and pineapple. Cinco de Mayo party? Taco bar and margaritas all the way. Some other popular ideas include a French café party featuring baguettes, cheeses, and charcuterie or a retro 1950s party with diner food like burgers and shakes.

Tips For Throwing an Excellent Party

Once you've settled on the menu, it's time to start prepping and getting everything together. Many hosts start to feel frazzled as the event draws nearer, but there's no need to stress as long as you start prepping early with great dinner party ideas. So break out the spicy marinade and the slow cooker—it's time to plan ahead.

Prep, Prep, Prep

On the day of your party, you're going to have a million details that require your attention. When it comes to prepping your ingredients, the earlier that you can get started, the better.

Your menu should be planned in advance so that you can start cooking and/or prepping your desserts and side dishes a couple of days before your dinner party. Prep the main course early enough to be ready when guests arrive. You don't want to spend too much time in the kitchen when you're hosting, after all.

Maintain Theme Consistency

You want every aspect of your event to reflect the theme, not just the dinner party menu. Once you've settled on a theme, take time to put together a playlist that goes with the vibe. Scout out some decorations at your local dollar or party store to transform your home or event space into the world you want your guests to enter. Look for recipes for cocktails and mocktails that go with your theme, and have them ready upon your guests' arrival. You also can't go wrong with themed party favors for your dinner party guests to take home with them.

Work With an INTUEAT Chef

Even if you think you have everything under control, why not let yourself relax and enjoy your dinner party with your guests? Hiring a personal chef from INTUEAT can take a load of stress off your shoulders so that you can focus on everything else that needs your attention during your party. 

When you hire an INTUEAT chef, they will work with you to create customized dinner party recipes that perfectly coordinate with your personal tastes and the theme of the event. Not only that, your chef will do all the food prep and cooking, including cleanup. It couldn't be any easier!

Create Excellent Dinner Party Menus With an INTUEAT Chef

Make your next dinner party a success by hiring an INTUEAT chef, a culinary professional who will work with you on every detail of your dinner party menu until it's just right. Get started by browsing for a personal chef in your area that's available for your date. When you reach out to a chef, you'll hear back within 24 hours and can get started planning your menu. 

Each chef specializes in their favorite cuisines and is passionate about sharing their love of food with the world. No matter the theme you're going for, INTUEAT is right there with you to see it through!

Eager to expand your palette? Check out the Food Trends in 2023 You Need to Try!

Become your own favorite restaurant - read our guide on Fine Dining at Home: How To Pull It Off.

Feeling inspired to start planning your own event? Find your INTUEAT personal chef in Sarasota, Denver, Colorado Springs, Miami, and Fort Lauderdale!

Jennifer Rives

This article is about my personal profile as a writer. It includes the genres I write in, the style I write in, and advice I have for new writers.


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