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Detail of Caramel Apple-Almond Crepes

Caramel Apple-Almond Crepes

A great dish for dessert or breakfast, these filled crepes are quick and easy to make, full of wonderful flavor, and make any occasion special.

Have a Drinks, Appetizers, and Desserts Dinner
by Wen Zientek-Sico

Looking for a great party idea for summer parties? Check out our D.A.D. (Drinks, Appetizers, and Desserts) party plan and recipes.

What is everyone's favorite part of a party when it comes to food? Drinks, Appetizers, and Desserts, of course! In the summer, when appetites are lessened and no one wants to eat heavy food, they are my favorite type of party to throw.

While it may seem odd to have a party composed simply of drinks, desserts, and appetizers, it is very easy on the host or hostess, and as long as you balance the menu, great for the guests too.

Here are some pointers:

  • Make sure your invitation states in advance that it is a D.A.D. party. If your guests come expecting a real sit down meal, not only might they be disappointed, they might end up leaving the party hungry.

  • Choose similar items in terms of how they need to be served or eaten. It will make it easier when you need to arrange for plates, utensils, seating, tables, and the like. If you have three items that need to be served in bowl for example, it makes it hard for people manage a plate and three bowls should they want those dishes. If you opt for items that need to be cut or eaten with a fork and knife, make sure to provide sturdy plates and utensils along with surfaces for them to eat off of.

  • You can have a sit down D.A.D. dinner, but it is better suited for a sit down or casual buffet.

  • D.A.D. dinners work great for parties with small numbers, but they are even better for larger numbers. It is my favorite type of menu to serve for open houses and large get-togethers.

  • If you are having a large number of guests, consider choosing desserts and appetizers that are bite sized and highly portable. You can see our article about Roving Food for more hints about this type of party.

  • This type of party is also ideal for utilizing station buffets. I usually create five stations. At one I will have a bar, where people can make their own mixed drinks and pour soft drinks, and the second is usually a punch station where several mixed punches (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) are available. The third is a table of cheese, crackers, cut fruit, vegetables, dips, spreads, and the like. It is all served at room temperature and fits that kind of grey area between snack, appetizer, and dessert. I will have a final two stations, one offering desserts and one offering appetizers.

  • Don't limit a D.A.D. party to a celebration for a dad. This type of party is great for wedding receptions, showers, graduations, anniversaries, block parties, open houses, and other large parties.

Here are our suggestions for a wonderful D.A.D. party just for Dad.


Alex's Margaritas

Berry Good Punch

Blue Skies Margaritas

Café Creosote Lemonade

Chocolate Martini

Citrus Slush

Frozen Coffee Shakes

Frozen Strawberry Margarita

Icy Hard Pink Lemonade

Melon Margaritas

Mexican Style Sangria

'Nana 'Ritas

Peach Daiquiri

Sally's Sangria

Strawberry-Banana Colada

Strawberry Spritzer

Traditional Sangria

Wen's Favorite Sangria



Bacon Radish Pinwheels

Cheese in Round Rye Bread

Classic Guacamole

Crab & Cheese Mushrooms

Creamy Cucumber Dill Dip

Curry Dip

Easy Salmon Ball

Favorite Chicken Quesadillas

Green Chile Squares

Grilled Shrimp

Healthy Chicken Quesadillas

Herb Cheese Stuffed Snow Peas

Light Cucumber Canapés

Lobster or Crab Melts

Mexican Fondue

Mexican Marinated Mushrooms and Onions

Mushroom and Cream Cheese Canapés

Prosciutto with Melon and Blueberries

Roquefort Dip

Smoked Oyster Spread

Spicy Grilled Chicken Wings

Vidalia Onion Cheese Dip

White Bean Bruschetta


Almost Instant Chocolate Mousse

Blackberry Pudding

Broiled Peaches with Crème Fraîche

Choc Choc Cherry Chip Cake

Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball

Chocolate Cream Mousse

Chocolate Cuppuccinos

Chocolate Toffee Ice Cream Pie

Everything Macaroons

Flan Flambé

Frozen Chocolate Frango

Hot Fudge Cake

Individual Berry Tiramisus

Inside Out Cannolis

Irish Whiskey Freeze

Margaritaville Party Pie

Mexican Sundaes

Orange Glazed Grilled Pineapple

Pineapple Coconut Chess Pie

Raspberry Bavarian

Rich Lemon Cake

S'Mores Cheesecake

Strawberry Angel Cake

Strawberry Ice Box Cake

Strawberry Ice Cream Angel Food Cake

Strawberry Lemon Turnovers

Strawberry Orange Shortcakes

Super Fast Pineapple Pie

Triple Ginger Lemon Pears

Vernalisa's Strawberry Pie

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