Sweet and savory. Hot coffee and cold boozy drinks. Though it’s easy to go out for brunch with a group of friends, what about hosting a brunch for your friends? It might feel a little daunting at first (how many eggs will I have to crack?!), but we have you covered. Here are our five tips for hosting a no-stress, better brunch.
1. Make Dishes Ahead
The most challenging part of hosting brunch is the limited time—who wants to wake up at 7am (on the weekend!) to prep for guests? We say pick dishes you can make the night before—little breakfast egg muffins or a baked French toast casserole are good options. Try Smitten Kitchen’s Boozy Baked French Toast. It’s assembled the night before and stays covered in the fridge until 30 minutes before your guests arrive. This way, the bread soaks up all that milky, custardy goodness. Or you can make a big batch of overnight oats, with all the fixings, the evening before.
2. Make Drinks Ahead, Too
Just like the dishes you’ll be serving, your drinks can be made ahead too. For the coffee drinkers, make a big batch of cold brew concentrate the night before. You can always heat the coffee on the stove if your guests want a warm cup, or have ice on hand for iced coffee.
Brunch isn’t complete without Bloody Marys and Mimosas. Bloody Mary mix can be made the night before and guests can add the vodka themselves (+ keep a bottle of hot sauce out for guests who like their Bloodys spicy).
To add more flair to Mimosas, try a “Prosecco Bar” complete with different fruits and fruit juices to add. Strawberries, peaches and raspberries are a great place to start, and guests can pick and choose their mix-ins. Plus, get more ideas for big batch cocktails your guests will love.
3. Put some Pressure on Your Eggs
The goal of hosting a brunch is to not become a short-order cook – you don’t want to end up making eggs over easy for each person. Instead, we enlist a pressure cooker and cook a large batch of soft and hard boiled eggs for guests to pick from. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, make a breakfast quiche or frittata for the crowd.
4. Baked Bacon
Crispy bacon certainly has a place at the brunch table, but spending time at the stove with bacon sizzling and grease splattering is no fun while you’re entertaining. Instead, stick the bacon on a cooling rack on top of a sheet pan to collect the drippings. Turn the oven on right before your guests arrive and you’ll have warm bacon for serving.
5. Let it Linger
I don’t know about you, but brunch always is a long affair, as it should be. If I’m hosting, I have a tendency to jump up and start cleaning as soon as people finish eating. But brunch is different. It’s time to recount the previous night and spend time with friends. Don’t be afraid to let the dirty dishes pile up; you’ll get to them later.