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The summer season is filled with lots of sunshine, body tans, popsicle dates, and barbecue traditions. While barbecues are a great bonding experience, they can be overwhelming, especially when you have lots of mouths to feed. The larger your guest list, the harder it becomes to throw an affordable barbecue, as you always need to stock up on drinks and condiments. If you’re thinking of throwing a barbecue party this summer, you’re in luck. This post brings you seven effective ways to host a summer barbecue on a budget. 

1. Go with simple meats

Contrary to popular belief, the highlight of barbecue parties isn’t the food; it’s the company. That said, the first and best way to save money while enjoying your barbecue hosting days is by sticking to the regular barbecue meats, hot dogs, and hamburgers.

For extra savings, ditch the steaks and salmon and stick to a single protein or opt for kabobs over barbecue condiments and buns. 

2. Home-made sides

The best meals for your barbecue are homemade meals. With over a million barbecue recipe books worldwide, preparing some easy to make mango habanero salsa or potato salad in your kitchen is super simple. This can also help you save even more money. 

Another way to access these side dishes without purchasing is using a potluck theme for your barbecue. Your invited guests are encouraged to bring a dish or two from their homes with the potluck. Put your guests in charge of just the sides or include other foods and drinks. 

3. Load up on vegetables

A great way to get people to forget about the absence of a second helping of meat is to load them up with snacks and vegetables. A replacement for chips and dips is grilled vegetables, especially vegetables marinated with cheap Italian dressing before being grilled. Offering an endless supply of dips and chips for munching fills up your guests within a short period, allowing you to get away with a limited supply of meats. A replacement for chips and dips is grilled vegetables, especially vegetables marinated with cheap Italian dressing before being grilled. 

4. Bulk shopping is a lifesaver

When shopping for groceries and items for your budget-friendly barbecue, it is best to do your shopping at bulk stores, as they come in cheaper. This is even better if you have a membership at these stores. Feeding a group comes with various demands and quantities that can affect your finances. The simple act of buying in bulk allows you to gain control over your budget, which in turn prevents you from splurging unnecessarily. Buy everything from snacks to meats in bulk, so even if you have some leftovers, they can be frozen or stored for future use. 

5. Use your own plates and cutlery

Yes, getting plastic plates and cups for parties is more convenient, but if you already have your own plates and cutlery at home, there’s no point in buying extra. If you’re trying to get your budget under control, this makes a lot of sense – but just be prepared for lots of washing up and cleaning by the end of the day. 

6. Check your pantry before going shopping

The tip to becoming the best barbecue host is to work smart, not hard. Before buying in bulk, or changing your party’s theme to a potluck, shop for items from your pantry. If there’s already ketchup in your cabinet, why buy a new one? A simple trip to your pantry can provide everything from condiments to snacks and sides, which might save you a trip to the supermarket and a hefty grocery list. Once you’ve identified certain essentials in your pantry, it is easy to mix and match, recreating your sauces and seasonings for your meats. Homemade seasonings taste better than store-bought ones, the major difference being the time invested in the production process. 

7. The simpler the drinks, the better

Not everyone will know the difference between a $9 bottle of wine and a $70 bottle of wine. Try to stick to the inexpensive drinks, or better still, mix a number of them to make a flavourful sangria or punch to serve your large numbers. 

Everyone who loves summer undeniably loves the tradition of the summer barbecue, as it gets your favorite people together to spend quality time together while eating good food in the beautiful outdoors. It is possible to be the best barbecue party host without breaking the bank. We hope our economical tips help make your next party an affordable yet unforgettable experience. 

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