Simple Tips for Hosting a Budget Summer BBQ

summer bbqSummer is a perfect time for get-togethers and cookouts! Chances are you and your family will be having a backyard BBQ sometime during the summer season. Keep costs low for your summer BBQ low with these tips!

  • Use what you have. There’s a good chance that you probably already have lots of the things you need for your summer BBQ. So, before you go shopping at the store, do a little searching in your fridge, freezer, and pantry first.
  • Go easy on the meat. Meat can be one of the biggest expenses of a summer BBQ. Chances are your backyard BBQ is just a formal gathering, so you can opt for slightly cheaper cuts of meat. Think sirloin steak instead of t-bones, and hot dogs instead of fancy sausages.
  • Buy in season veggies. There are lots of great produce items in season and much cheaper during the summer months! Take advantage of this and serve some tasty grilled vegetables in addition to the mountains of meat. It’s cheaper and healthier!
  • Make it a pot luck. Most people will ask if you if they should bring something to your summer BBQ anyway, so take them up on the offer! Try to keep track of what everyone is bringing, though, so you don’t have too many duplicates.
  • Mix up a pitcher of lemonade. Or fruit punch, blue raspberry, orange, lemon-line, or cherry Kool-Aid. It’s so much cheaper than expensive bottled drinks!
  • Skip the 2 liters. If you must have soda at your summer BBQ, skip the 2 liter bottles. Most end up half full and flat by the end of the night anyway, meaning that you’ll most likely end up throwing it out.
  • Make it BYOB. If guests will be imbibing in alcoholic beverages, make your summer BBQ a BYOB event and just provide the ice and a couple of mixers. Let guests know that they can bring alcoholic beverages of their choice. You can also opt to purchase one or two types of alcoholic drinks and let guests know that they are welcome to bring something different if they wish.
  • Don’t bother with decorations. You really don’t need them or an informal summer BBQ and they’re just an extra expense.
  • Calculate costs of paper products. Paper plates and napkins can be another hefty expense during you summer BBQ. Do a little math before just grabbing the first packs that you see.
  • Shop sales and use coupons. Keep an eye out for good deals for your summer BBQ. During the summer months, you can usually find nice deals on meat, condiments, and other summer BBQ staples. We also usually see lots of coupons for these same items.

Do you have any other tips for a summer BBQ on a budget? Leave them in the comments below!