If you haven’t done so yet, the first weekend in October is an ideal time to head to the pumpkin patch, then bring everyone together to carve jack-o’-lanterns.
Set out those pumpkin along with clever tools that make carving pumpkins a cinch, then let your kids get creative with their charming (or chilling…) designs. All that friendly competition triggers hearty appetites. In the spirit of All Hallows’ Eve, we’ve created a menu for a pumpkin carving party where pumpkin rules, from a warming pumpkin lasagna to pumpkin-flavored dessert bars.
Kick off the affair with a platter of crowd-pleasing deviled eggs and a medley of marinated olives. Both make great snacks while guests mix, mingle and tap into their creative sides. Put out blood-red punch for the kids and a low-effort spiked cider for the adults.
For the main course, give a nod to the theme of the occasion with hearty, cheesy pumpkin lasagna, made easy with our ready-to-use Parmesan Pumpkin pasta sauce (and to further cut down on time, use no-boil lasagna noodles). On the side, a simple salad of butter lettuce in a mustard vinaigrette offers fresh flavors.
For dessert, you guessed it—more pumpkin! Make a batch of Ooey Gooey Pumpkin Bars, which we guarantee will disappear in minutes.
- 1 to 2 days ahead: Make the marinated olives. Prep the vegetables for the lasagna. Bake the bars.
- Day of: Make the deviled eggs, cover and refrigerate. Assemble the lasagna. Make the cider.
- Just before serving: Make the salad. Bake the lasagna. Make the punch and the cider.
Have plenty of tools to go around. Have plenty of tools on hand so everyone can work simultaneously. If you don’t have pumpkin carving tools, paring knives and serrated steak knives will work in a pinch.
Set the mood. Dimming the lights, putting out candles, decking out the room in orange and black, and passing around drinks in Halloween tumblers can make all the difference in setting the scene for tomorrow night.
Create a contest. Bring out competitive spirits by offering awards, like the funniest face or scariest scene. The winning prize? Candy, of course!