How to Keep Food Cold at a Party: 5 Easy Methods

Parties are the highlight of our lives. You get to spend time with your friends and family, and you get to eat and enjoy together.

However, many challenges come with the process of hosting a party. Your guests will arrive at different times and they will expect to get only the best, especially when it comes to the food.

How to Keep Food Cold at a Party can be challenging in such cases, especially when it is sitting outside on a typical summer day.

Keeping food at the right temperature is not just about preserving its taste and flavor. Temperature is vital as it ensures that food is quality and safe to ingest.

Most people understand how to keep food hot at a party. However, most people struggle with keeping foods cold at parties. To effectively keep food cold, there are tools and equipment that you can use. In this article, we explain to you the best methods you can use to keep food cold at a party. 

ice in a cup

Before we delve into the nitty-gritty of keeping food cold at parties, here are a few things you should know:

  • Avoid placing food directly on ice. This is, however, not a blanket rule as it does not apply to the case of molluscan shellfish, vegetables, and fruits. 
  • Bacteria multiply exponentially between temperatures of 70 and 125 degrees Fahrenheit. Cold food items should remain at a temperature of 40 °F. If the temperature exceeds 70 °F, discard the food.
  • Always remember to keep your food covered.

Some of the methods that you can use to keep food cold at a party are:

  • Using Ice.

Everyone knows how this works. Ice is the ultimate item for cooling things in the home, so why not use it when you have a party? You can make use of steel tubs on ice to keep your juice cold. Also, you can have serving trays with in-built ice chambers as these will help you keep foods cold for longer periods. Fill half the trays with ice and then set your serving bowls on the ice so that it stays cold. 

Ensure that the food bowl edges are way above the ice level because as the ice melts, there is a chance that water could make its way into the bowl and ruin your delicious recipe. Also, remember to monitor the ice bucket at day time and drain water from it while adding more ice as needed. 

Putting Food Away when People Finish Eating

Well, this may sound like just the right thing to do, but there is much more to just clearing food from the table when people finish eating at a party, or they are taking a break. This method of keeping food is useful especially in the afternoon as temperatures are higher which makes it more probable that food will spoil. If food is supposed to be cold, it should remain at room temperature for two hours tops. When the temperatures are soaring high during your party, it is better to leave the food out for only an hour.

Also, eating in waves is interesting. You can use the small portions that you take back to the cooler and refrigerator throughout the party to keep things interesting.

As the day progresses, you can store or throw out the leftovers depending on how much you have and how long it has been exposed and continuously serve your guests the best of your cold foods. 

Smaller Portions Work Best

So, you prepared a lot of pasta, and you are not sure how to serve your guests.

No matter what you do, please avoid taking out a giant pasta-filled bowl for your guests to serve.

It would be more convenient to use smaller bowls. In this way, you can keep these larger bowls safely in the refrigerator and only fill up the smaller bowls when the pasta runs out.

Remember, we mentioned that cold food should be left out for approximately an hour or two.

As such, you will need to replace the bowls after the same amount of time. In this way, you do not interfere with the quality and taste of your cold foods. 

A Kiddie Pool for your Beverages

A plastic kiddie pool will go a long way in ensuring the beverages stay cold. Once you fill it with ice, you will be ready for your early and late guests as well.

An added advantage of using the kiddie pool is that you can also use it for food. To use it effectively, wrap the pool with a table cloth then fill it with ice.

foods in refrigerator/How to Keep Food Cold at a Party
  • Two Metal, Deep, Rectangular Containers, One Larger than the Other

This trick works well for keeping your food cold. All you have to do is to take the small pan and press some putty or other forms of waterproof adhesive into its corners. Set the pan inside the larger one and ensure it is secure.

You can then pour water into the larger container and put it in the freezer. Wait for the water in the container to freeze solid.

You can keep adding water and freezing it until it reaches the rim of the bottom container. When the water is frozen, you can simply food the foods you require to stay cold into the small container and you can have it stay that cold for hours. 

How to Keep Food Cold at a Party

Maintaining the right temperature for foods is not as complex as it may seem.

However, it is important to keep foods at the right temperature so that you can maintain the taste and to ensure that it is safe for ingestion. You can invest in the right equipment to help you keep your food cold at a party.

However, we have given you some simple tips and solutions that can help you ensure that your food stays at the right temperature.

With our tips, you can keep both your beverages and foods cold, and you will not have to worry about the time your guests arrive.