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Hosting a Virtual Dinner Party

By: Erin Paly

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, many restaurants have remained open for takeout and delivery. As the weeks go by, some restaurants and cafes are offering the option to dine in again. However, many of us still do not feel comfortable going out and sitting in close quarters with others.

If you have been missing dining out with friends, but also want to play it safe and aren’t quite ready to break your quarantine, then thank your lucky stars for technology, and host a virtual dinner party! Here’s how:

1. There are multiple platforms that can be utilized for group video calls that are simple to sign up for and free to use! Some of the most common are:


-Zoom (keep in mind the basic plan has a 40-minute meeting time limit)


-FaceTime (provided everyone included has an iPhone)

-Facebook Messenger (host up to 50 people - no Facebook account required!)

2. Pick an evening for when you will host your dinner.

3. Write your guest list and send out invitations via text or email!

4. Plan your menu! (Tip: Karen’s Spice Kitchen spice blends are perfect to have on hand for occasions like this. You will be able to create a delicious, healthy international meal in the comfort of your own home, and your guests’ mouths will be watering when they see what you have created!) Here are some ideas for having a Karen’s Spice Kitchen inspired virtual dinner party:

- Recommend the purchase (or simply provide) Karen’s Spice Kitchen spice packets to your guests beforehand. People are of course free to cook whatever they wish, but many will agree you simply cannot go wrong with curry, especially when Karen’s Spice Kitchen drastically simplifies the process!

- How about challenging your friends to branch out and each create a different international dish with any of our 16 spice blends? What a great conversation starter this will be, when everyone comes together to share their culinary experiences and compare differences in type of dish, techniques, plating technique, and even side dishes!

- You could even suggest everyone create the same dish! How fun will it be to come together and see everyone’s different variations and interpretations of the same dish?

5. When the big night comes, start preparing and cooking your dinner an hour or two ahead of time so that your meal is ready to dish up before you head online.

6. Plate your dinner, pour yourself a glass of wine or mix yourself a cocktail, and prepare your backdrop/table-scape, if you so desire! (Possible table decorations include flowers, candles, or a nice tablecloth). Also, make sure you have optimal lighting.

7. Flip open your laptop, find an ideal surface on which to place it, and get signed on to your virtual dinner party! Don’t forget to ensure your computer microphone and camera are functioning properly, and that your screen is angled to your liking.

8. Finally, greet your guests, and enjoy each other’s company and the delicious dinner you have concocted!!! You and your guests can spend time simply talking and catching up, or perhaps could even choose to play a game, like Charades or Pictionary!

9. Last but not least, when the night is over, don’t forget to give thanks for technology, for the ability to be social while at home alone, and for the delicious Karen’s Spice Kitchen leftovers in your kitchen… if there are any.

To order or to learn more, check out our website: and please share with your family and friends!


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