Tips For Novice Cooks During Potlucks

You’ve been invited to a potluck party! Yay! If you’re someone who has plenty of experience in the kitchen, you’re excited to cook up another one of your signature dishes. However, for those of you who, like me, do mostly just simple cooking, that excitement of being invited to that party might slowly (or quickly) turn into anxiety or dread. Here are some tips to help navigate the situation.

  1. Find what works for you
    • Maybe instead of an entrée – dessert is more your thing. Or maybe you know how to put together some delicious appetizers. There are no rules that state you always have to bring an entrée dish to a potluck. If it’s something you were assigned to, don’t be afraid to discuss with the host to swap with someone else.
  2. Don’t be afraid of keeping it simple
    • I like to leave the fancy dishes up to the pros. Usually, I assign myself something that wouldn’t leave me frazzled such as a roasted vegetables or a carb dish. Simple, easy recipes are abundant and easily accessible with the help of the internet! Quick story, I attended a potluck just a few weeks ago and decided to make some simple roasted sweet potatoes. Most of the dishes served ended up being pretty spicy, and this lady ended up thanking me for bringing the sweet potatoes as it helped to balance the rest of the dishes.
  3. Start cooking early
    • Now that you have chosen a dish to conquer, I mean make to bring to the party, it’s time to cook! Give yourself plenty of time to cook before the party. You may think you just need 30 mins to whip up that dish real quick before the party, trust me and start earlier. Learn from someone who ended up missing a party because her cheesy potatoes weren’t cooked all the way through in time for the event.

If all else fails, head to the store and pick up a big tub of ice cream (or wine, whatever appropriate for the party) and a big smile! Although food is an important aspect of a potluck, it is not the only thing that matters. Dress up, show up, and have yourself a great time!

Author: Chloe Lim
Email: cherowee@gmail.com
Author Bio: Chloe Lim is a graduate student studying Health Promotion. An ideal evening for Chloe would include a 2-hour Zumba class followed by a big buffet dinner, before ending the night in fuzzy socks and a mug of hot tea (or cocoa).


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