BBQs & Barbecuing

Your BBQ Party Checklist

man cooking on bbq

One of life’s simple pleasures is the smell of food cooking on a BBQ wafting through the air – and even better, when the smell is coming from your own back garden.

When it comes to hosting your own BBQ party, the ‘heat of the grill’ shall we say, can sometimes become too much. That’s why we have put together a checklist that includes all the BBQ essentials you need to ensure yours goes off without a hitch.

Top tip: The best BBQ party will have ticked everything off this checklist, so be sure to read the whole thing. 

The guest list

First on your BBQ party checklist is the guest list. It may seem straightforward but it’s important to ensure you give your family and friends enough time to respond accordingly – particularly if they don’t live close by or may potentially need a babysitter.

Top tip: Don’t forget to find out if any of your guests are vegetarian or vegan, or have any allergies.

The setting

You want to make sure your outside space is fit for your guests. In the days leading up to your BBQ, this will typically involve some cleaning and maintenance.

Here’s a few pointers and some how-tos:
Mow the lawn
Pressure wash the deck and/or patio
Trim back any hedges
Get rid of any weeds
• Tidy up the front of your house

The space

Next on our list of BBQ essentials – seating. You want to encourage mingling, while maintaining your guests’ comfort.

A large 6-seater garden furniture set and accompanying picnic tables or bistro sets should do the trick – and don’t forget about kitting it out with a form of outdoor heating and lighting for when the sun goes down.

You also don’t want to be caught out by the unpredictable weather, so check out our garden shelter ideas for some inspiration.

Top tip: If you’re inviting some neighbours to your BBQ party, you could ask them to bring a garden chair or two to help you out.

Grill and cooking equipment

If you tick only one thing off our BBQ essentials checklist, then it’s got to be the grill and cooking equipment.

Start with giving your BBQ a good cleaning before everyone arrives, or maybe you’re in the mood to treat yourself to a new one?

Food and drink

You’ll want to ensure everyone is well fed, but it’s important not to overstretch yourself.
Keep things classic with a mixed grill of meat and veg, burgers, and some simple side salads – which you’ll need to prep before your guests’ arrival.

Stock some outdoor coolers with a variety of soft and alcoholic drinks, and have a drinks dispenser filled with iced water to keep everyone hydrated.

plate of bbq food

To avoid a big clean-up job afterwards, add recyclable plates, cutlery, glasses, and plenty of napkins to your BBQ party checklist!

Top tip: Don’t be shy, ask your guests to bring a side dish or their favourite tipple to add to the spread.



The kids

If kids are on your guest list, you’ll need to have a plan in place to keep them entertained.

We’ve got a selection of great outdoor toys – just make sure the adults take turns to supervise throughout the day.

Health and safety

One of the most important BBQ essentials is maintaining the overall health and safety of your guests.

Have a First Aid Kit nearby, plenty of sunscreen and some citronella candles or bug spray.

Lastly, check out how to cook different food on your BBQ with this handy guide.

And there you have it, everything you need to get your BBQ party off to a grilling start.


Pick up your BBQ essentials 



Writer and expert