The coolest hosts don't have a trick up their sleeves. They have a game plan.
Host an Easter or any spring feast with ease. All you need is our game plan for these special celebrations. Start early and knock just a few things off your list in advance so the only thing you'll have to think about before guests arrive is whether the chocolate eggs are hidden well enough.
Two weeks before - or even more
- Plan your menu. If you're ordering your roast from the butcher, you'll want to do it soon, so decide now whether you're cooking a ham or lamb, or something else that requires organizing. At a time where many people are planning to make the same large cuts of meat, ordering ahead can save disappointment if your grocery is sold out on holiday weekends. For more menu inspiration, check out our favourite Italian-inspired mains for Easter.
- Make your guest list. Whether it's family, friends or a mix of both, it helps to have your guests in mind before moving onto the food planning. Make note of any dietary restrictions and you might hope to designate some dishes too!
A week before -- or even more
- Finalize your menu and don't forget dessert!
- Finalize your guest list. Reach out for any serving pieces, chairs or other items you need to borrow from guests.
- Make a grocery list and a list for supplies, including any napkins and disposable cups and cutlery.
Three days before
- Go shopping for everything except what needs to be bought fresh.
- Put together a music playlist. Music helps to set the mood for any occasion!
- Clear out the hall closet for guests to hang their coats.
Two days before
- Set the table, along with any platters you'll be using. Make sure you have enough cutlery and glasses cleaned and ready too.
- Prepare any dishes that can be made days in advance.
One day before
- Tidy up the house.
- Finish those make-ahead dishes.
Six hours before
- If you're cooking a ham, put it in the oven now to ensure it has plenty of time to rest.
- Begin on the rest of your dishes. The earlier in the day you can get them out of the way, the better.
- Blanch any vegetables that can be prepped ahead of time so they're ready for finishing later.
Three hours before
- Chill any wine or drinks you'll be serving.
- Set out the appetizers that don't need to be refrigerated.
Two hours before
- Make any dishes that have to be prepared fresh.
- Run the dishwasher and unload it.
- Wipe down kitchen counters.
An hour before
Reheat any dishes that you've prepared in advance.
If you've assembled a cheese plate set that out now so it can come to room temperature.
30-45 minutes before
- Change into your celebration outfit.
- Turn on the music and do your victory dance. You're all ready for the big spring feast and you're done ahead of time!
- Sit back, relax and wait for your guests to arrive.
Here are our top picks for a delicious Easter or spring celebration, including appetizers, mains and desserts.
The Ultimate Antipasto Platter
French Cheese Tray
Asparagus, Lemon & Ricotta Flatbread
White Bean Dip
Balsamic & Fig Glazed Ham
Roasted Leg of Lamb with Mediterranean Stuffing
Rack of Lamb with Pomegranate Sauce
Lamb Chops with Red Wine Reduction
Roman-Style Lamb Shanks
Asparagus and Goat Cheese Quiche
Easy Ricotta and Pesto Stuffed Shells
Angel Hair Pasta with Zucchini, Lemon and Mint
Artichoke, Fennel and Frisée with Orange Dressing
Roasted Cherry Tomatoes and Asparagus
Steamed Asparagus with Hollandaise
Asparagus, Mint & Feta Salad
Lemony Ricotta Pie
French Lemon Tart
Panna Cotta with Strawberries
Pavlova with Berries & Mango Coulis