Gourds for Halloween dinner ideas
Holidays and Special Occasions

Halloween Dinner Ideas for Adults

Coming up with Halloween dinner ideas is a fun way for adults to celebrate this holiday without having to dress up as either a slutty or terrifying  anything, and won’t we all be much happier that way? I’ve hosted plenty of fancy dinner parties in my day, but they are a lot of work, and Halloween is all about fun. Instead of trying to impress everyone with your kitchen skills, focus on easy recipes but make them look kind of creepy. It’s not as hard as it sounds. Ever seen a rambutan? Food is plenty scary enough on it’s own. Of course, I don’t know where to find a rambutan, so we’ll be sticking with things you can actually do at home. And for once we won’t be skipping decorations!

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Halloween Dinner Ideas for Grown-Ups

Dark Halloween Dinner Party Decor

Last week I told you all I think the only Halloween decoration you need is cobwebs, and that’s still true, but for this I’m going to add three more, yes, that’s right, THREE MORE decorations. Is my sarcasm coming through? I hope so. I really don’t find a total of four Halloween decorations all that impressive, but then again, I don’t need a pumpkin patch on my table either. The only part of the house I’m going to decorate is the table, since that’s where everyone will post up. I realize people have different sized tables, but I have a big one and a small one, so you’ll get to see examples of both.

1. The Cobwebs

Host a dark Halloween dinner party!

Well, you knew they were going to be included, so here we go. For a big table, I like cobwebs coming down from the chandelier. For a little one, I like little jackets on the chairs. If you have a chandelier to decorate at your dark Halloween dinner party, you can stick to the chandelier itself, or do a little extra work and pull it down to the table. If you do this, you will want to stretch the cobwebs really thin so people can still see each other from any part of the table. For the chair jackets, there’s really no need to stretch anything, but you should only do the back side. You don’t want your guests going home covered in cotton.

Host a dark Halloween dinner party!

2. Dead Flowers

Host a dark Halloween dinner party!

No, not fake flowers. Straight up dead ones. I want the atmosphere of my dark Halloween dinner party to be like someone set the table a long time ago, and for whatever reason, they were never able to return. For this, I suggest you buy your flowers a couple of weeks in advance, leave them in the sun, and don’t water them. There are ways to speed up up the process if you need to, but what could be easier than forgetting to take care of something? My flowers actually wound up with more color than I wanted for these pictures, but they’ll be super dead by the time Halloween dinner gets here.

3. Gourds


Gourds are so weird! I love them. Pick up a couple and throw them on the table somewhere. Pumpkins are fine as well. That was my original plan, but I found an awesome decorative gourd set at Walmart and decided to use that instead. They had some that were legit moldy and gross, though, so if you’re getting them early you might want to pick up fake ones. Here’s a set that looks like it would fit in. If you want to keep with the theme, I’d stay away from pumpkins with faces, but that’s about it.

4. A Messed Up Tablecloth

I wanted a really holey one, like mice had eaten it or something, so that’s what I picked up. But, it wasn’t long enough for either table, so it became a table runner. The tablecloth I used underneath on the big table was purple, because I like purple better than orange, but you could do any color that floats your boat. In fact, you don’t have to have one at all if you don’t want. I can’t even find one to fit on my smaller table. It’s too big of a square. I did see this tablecloth after I already took all my pictures, so that is what I’m using when I actually throw the party.

Creepy Food Ideas

Okay guys, this is too easy. All you have to do is color one of your dishes black to keep the vibe going. You can be fancy and use squid ink, or you can use black food coloring. You want to be gentle with food coloring. A little black goes a long way. Obviously you can’t dye just anything, but the choices are surprisingly bountiful. What you need is something kind of mushy. I had some shrimp and grits and mashed potatoes to practice on. You can see how they turned out. The taste wasn’t altered at all, but don’t they look disgusting? I do have a complete menu you get when subscribing to my newsletter, and there is a recipe with squid ink included if you’re curious about that. You can subscribe by clicking here, and I hope you enjoyed these Halloween dinner ideas!

Hosting a dark Halloween dinner party is super easy and fun! #halloween
Hosting a dark Halloween dinner party is super easy and fun! #Halloween
Hosting a dark Halloween dinner party is super easy and fun! #Halloween


Halloween dinner ideas - serving pumpkin soup with gourds decor
Halloween dinner ideas - gourd decorations and dead flower centerpieces

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  1. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays actually, and while I’ve decorated for it a lot over the years, I’ve never considered a dinner party. I really like all your ideas, too, especially the dead flowers and the cobwebs, even though I am deathly afraid of spiders haha. Great ideas, really…and it might inspire me to throw one myself.

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      Lol, you don’t have to use real spiders. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. robin rue says:

    Sounds like you are going all out. I would love to be invited to a Halloween Dinner party, but if not maybe I will host my own ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      I swear it’s really easy, you can even buy prepared food and dye it black!

  3. This looks so cool! I really like the idea of using cobwebs on the dining area. These gourds makes a nice centerpiece.

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      They did before my dog ate one! Lol

  4. What a cool idea! My kids love having what they call “dinner parties” (i.e. turning down the dimmer switch in our dining room) – I wonder if I could get them into black-colored food, too?

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      I’d be worried they’d want to dye everything if they tried it! It’s the kind of thing me and my sister always did. Still do, apparently. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. This set up came out so cute! It would be perfect for a Halloween party. I love the black food dye as well.

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      Thanks! I try to always keep it simple.

  6. Love the ideas you have for your dark Halloween party. We love using cobwebs to decorate with for Halloween. Such a cheap and easy option.

  7. The dead flowers are a really nice touch that I would have never thought of! I also like how you hung the cobwebs on the chairs!

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      I’d like to say dead flowers were a creative burst of genius, but really it’s just me being lazy. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I love the idea of using dead flowers. I would have never thought of that. And of course the cobwebs. Though I’m not sure I could get myself to eat food that has been turned to black. I’m super visual with my food. But I would totally serve it to kids and watch them squirm!

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      I can’t lie, it was weird eating the food. But it tasted fine so I just stopped looking at it.

  9. I love these decorations because they are simple but so festive!! If we end up having a party, I may have to take some of these ideas.

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      You are welcome to them!

  10. I love this so much. I want to be invited.

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      Come on down! Or up, or east, or wherever you would be coming from. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. I love how gothic and creepy this party idea is. It really is perfect for Halloween. I love the idea of using cobwebs and dead flowers to decorate with.

  12. I like the decorative theme. I haven’t had a dinner party in a while, so maybe I will have to plan one.

  13. It’s been a long time since I last hosted a Halloween party and it would be so nice to do so! I think this is pretty awesome!

  14. I like the idea of a dark Halloween dinner party. This seems like a totally manageable list to have a festive party – which I love. Think the dead flowers add the perfect finishing touch!

  15. How fun! I love hosting dinner parties but our schedule has been crazy full this semester. My husband and I both teach evenings at University and he teaches Monday and Tuesday and I teach Wednesday and Thursday. Gotta fix that!

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      Whew, you sound busy! My husband has Fridays off and I work from home, so we usually have one night a week where we can do something. Hopefully next semester you can get your schedules aligned!

  16. I love the idea of a Halloween dinner party! You included so many great and spooky ideas!

  17. Jeanine says:

    I was thinking of doing something for halloween. I think a dinner party would be just awesome. I think it would be a lot of fun, and your ideas are great!

  18. This decor is very fitting for Halloween but I can’t get over how beautiful it is too. The purple really pops and would be perfect for any spooky gathering.

  19. These are some awesome decor ideas! I’ve been itching to host a party at my house so maybe a Halloween party is in my future. I’ll definitely be referring back to this post for some inspiration when it comes to decorating.

  20. Angela @marathonsandmotivation.com says:

    This is such a fun idea! I love hosting special occasion dinner parties, so will definitely remember these great tips!!!

  21. This promises to be such a fun party. Those cobwebs made me cringe really. Especially the ones on the table. We don’t really celebrate halloween in India, but we understand the culture behind it. I am sure I would love to have a Halloween themed party once my child is a little older. I’ll remember the dead flowers hack then. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1. Beth Davidson says:

      I’m trying to imagine my table with the point of view of a different culture that doesn’t do Halloween, and it is really horrendous, isn’t it?

  22. I have never had a Halloween dinner party before, but it sounds like fun! I love your ideas.

  23. This is such a fun party idea! Itโ€™s halloween-y enough but is still classy! I would love to host my own party.

  24. Great job pulling this theme together in a classy way. I have to admit that I’m not a big Halloween fan, but you’ve managed to capture just the right mood here.

  25. This looks so cool! We have friends that are SUPER into Halloween (and the rest of the year they just call it Cosplay, haha) and these decorations could easily rival theirs. I was just about to compost some roses that lost their luster, but perhaps I’ll dry them out for Halloween tablescape instead! Great ideas.

  26. This is so much fun! We just moved in a new home and I’d love to have friends over for a festive dinner. My daughters would have so much fun with this!

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