We have dinner with my two best girl friends and their beaus once a week. We started this tradition about three years ago once we were all settled into our career lives out of college. At first, we would go out to eat – spending about $40 – $60 per couple each week. One week, we decided to have our weekly date night at one of our houses and our official dinner club was born.
We keep it simple. Each week we rotate between our three homes, and each one of us rotates making the appetizer, ent
ree and dessert. We bring our own adult beverages unless it is a special occasion (this works well for my husband and I who can get by with water or a $3 bottle of wine).
I spend a little more on this meal than the others during the week, but usually I am able to make the appetizer
for $5 – $10, entree for $25, and dessert for less than $5 – it evens out (Note: on a normal day my husband and I cost about $5 – $7 to feed. That may seem like a lot to some, but he is 6’4 and I am a marathon runner so we eat like three people).
I was pretty proud of myself last week. I was able to make hummus (from scratch!) and cut up fresh veggies (carrots from the garden) to put together a quick, easy, and cheap app. I had some leftover cheese and grapes from other meals that I added as well.
This week was my birthday so I treated everyone to the whole meal. I was able to feed 8 people and get three more meals for my husband and I for $100 (this is with buying organic meats). We are suckers for Mexican food so I made a three course meal with drink pairings:Appetizers: Guacamole, two salsas, cheese dip and chips with margaritas or Corona
Dinner: Taco bar with homemade refried beans, shrimp, ground beef and chicken (we had hard and soft shells, sour cream, lettuce, tomato, rice, jalapenos, cheese and red onions to top) with a local Kosch
Dessert: Homemade Mexican Chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream with a milk stout
Eating on a budget is going to be key for us to reach our goals of spending less, but our weekly dinners give us a great way to socialize without breaking the bank!