If you love dressing up, eating sweets, and cozying up indoors with good company, Halloween is likely your favorite thing about fall. It's also the perfect excuse to get your favorite people together for a festive dinner party. Since there's definitely not a traditional, set Halloween dinner menu, it's also a great chance to get creative and have fun in the kitchen. Whether you go all out with a themed, costume-mandatory annual party and want to step it up a notch, or you simply feel like hosting a grown-up dinner party on October 31, the 13 Halloween dinner ideas we came up with will steer you in the right direction.
Starting with small bites and appetizers, then moving onto sides and main courses, and finishing with drinks and desserts, the 13 recipes below will keep your guests coming back for more. Scroll through to start planning ahead for a festive, fall-ready dinner bash this Halloween.
Spicy Chipotle Pumpkin Dip
Get the evening started with a fall-inspired appetizer, like this spicy chipotle pumpkin hummus from Half Baked Harvest. It definitely gives the crowd favorite a seasonal twist and a gourmet upgrade. Top it with pepitas for extra crunch and put those leftover pumpkin seeds to good use.
Spice up your side dish game with these flavorful jalapeño poppers from The Modern Proper. Stuffed with parmesan cheese, a light layer of cream cheese, thick-cut bacon, chives, garlic, and panko flakes, they are definitely going to hit the spot, before or after trick-or-treating. They're also super easy to eat as finger food, which is perfect for anyone who isn't planning on having a formal sit down dinner.
Creamy, smooth, and oh so flavorful, a warm, soft cheese starter is about as good as it gets—and this honey-baked camembert from Salt and Wind is no exception. Topped with crispy, salty pistachios, sharp dried cranberries, and sweet honey, the dish can be doubled to satisfy all your guests.
Charcoal Bun Hot Dogs
These hot dogs from Spoon Fork Bacon are no joke. If your idea of a fun Halloween dinner party involves a lot of orange and black, these hot dogs are going to be right up your alley. The recipe calls for all the usual suspects, like tomatoes, pickles, sausage, onions, and peppers, except the buns are made with charcoal for a spirited twist.
Squash, Pomegranate, and Arugula Salad
A colorful salad like this one from Salt and Wind will be a welcome addition to your Halloween spread, especially if the night also involves lots and lots of candy. Calling for pomegranates, pumpkin seeds, squash, arugula, onions, and a light tahini dressing, it doesn't get more seasonally appropriate than this.
Harvest Corn Chowder
Since the nights will be getting cooler and darker on the last day of October, plan on making a warming, comforting chowder like this white bean harvest corn chowder from The First Mess. It's vegan-friendly and packed with healthy ingredients, including paprika, onion, potatoes, thyme, chili, garlic, corn, lime, veggie stock, cilantro, and beer for a balancing bitterness.
Classic Chicken Paprikash
Though it stays on the Halloween theme thanks to the lovely saturated orange hue, this chicken paprikash recipe from Salt and Wind is decidedly sophisticated. In other words, it's perfect for a grownup Halloween spread. The classic Hungarian dish pairs well with a variety of sides, from all kinds of grains, to roasted veggies, to garlic bread, or a simple salad.
Stir-Fried Korean Beef
Whip up this stir-fried Korean beef dish from Half Baked Harvest if you want to make something within 30 minutes without compromising on flavor or vibrancy. It's filling and easy to make; serve it as a side or main dish.
Wine-Braised Beef With Mushrooms
This wine-braised beef with carrots and mushrooms from The Modern Proper is the ultimate comfort food meal. The juicy, tender meat falls right off the bone, and the mushrooms are bursting with a rich wine flavor. Served over a bed of fluffy mashed potatoes, this is the perfect recipe for a chilly fall evening.
Ginger Pear Cider With Vanilla Bean
Now that you know what you'll be eating, let's talk drinks. We suggest trying this ginger pear cider from The First Mess if you're looking for a non-alcoholic beverage that'll impress the crowds. It's made with fragrant, aromatic vanilla bean for a lovely blend of spices and fall flavors. Plus, it contains plenty of healthy ingredients that deliver vitamin C.
Haunted Orchard Cocktail
As for an alcoholic beverage for an adult Halloween party, you'll definitely want to make this haunted orchard cocktail from Half Baked Harvest. Inspired by "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," it's comprised of tequila, a splash of lemon, apple cider, maple syrup, ginger, cinnamon, and a dash of sparkling hard cider. Cheers!
Devil's Food Cake With Marbled Buttercream Frosting
A Halloween dinner party isn't complete without a sweet finish. For something on-theme color-wise and delicious beyond belief, we suggest making this black cocoa devil's food cake from Spoon Fork Bacon. The orange and white marbled buttercream frosting is the perfect finishing touch.
Skillet Apple Caramel Crisp
We included two dessert options for anyone who prefers fruity flavors over chocolate (and anyone who just wants double the fun). This skillet apple caramel crisp from The Modern Proper is perfect to serve in mugs with a nice balancing scoop of vanilla bean ice cream.