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Cost Friendly Snacks & Food for Bunko Challenge

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Ok Everyone,
August is my month to host Bunko for a group of 10 ladies I play Bunko with once a month. I am on a strict food $$$ budget, trying to get debt paid off over the next year.

So I need HELP!!! At the home where Bunko takes place their is usually several different types of snacks on the table, drinks (soda, beer, coolers, bottled water), several different kinds of food items to snack on and eat before the bunko starts, during the break, and they usually have some kind of dessert too. I don't usually host bunko because of the cost involved... But they all agreed it is time for me to take my turn.

HELP!!! SOS!!!

I need some affordable ideas on what to prepare that tastes good & that we can eat, snack on, & dessert upon. Any and all recipes and suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I have budgeted $55.00 for this. Their are 10 Bunko players including myself that will attend.

post #2 of 19
Crockpot queso - 1 block Velveeta cheese, 1 cup salsa or 1 can Rotel Tomatoes. Cube the Velveeta into 1" cubes and put in the crockpot, add salsa. Mix up and turn on crockpot. Start this early, so the cheese has a chance to melt completely. Serve with tortilla chips and veggies.

This is what I make for every party and everyone loves it.

Macaroni Salad is usually a hit, too.
post #3 of 19
Make a big pitcher of iced tea, and serve in actual glasses with lemon and lime slices, it is very nice and presents well. I have a nice glass pitcher and glass set from my grandmother and I always use this at showers and parties. Everyone likes the little touch it adds. Make tortilla rolls. Use 1 pkg tortilla, 1 pkg wafer thin ham lunchmeat, shredded cheddar cheese, chopped green onion. Spread each tortilla w/ cream cheese (I like to sprinkle with garlic powder), layer 1-2 pieces of meat, sprinkle w/ cheese & onions roll up and slice into 1/2" rounds. French bread pizza slices- slice a loaf of french bread about 1/2" thick top with a little pizza sauce (not too much or it will get soggy), then favorite pizza toppings (pepperoni, cheese, sausage, mushrooms) put under broiler until cheese is melted and heated thru.
post #4 of 19
Crock pot queso-great idea. Try frying up some hamburger and throwing that in. Makes it more hearty. I would watch the flyers between now and than and see what you can get a good deal on. Plus check your pantry too. Might have some ingredients already on hand. Do you have to provide all the drinks too??

Other things;

cheese and crackers. maybe somer summer sausage if on sale.
chips and other dips
veggies and ranch
little wienes and bbq sauce-super easy. couple packages of wieners, one bottle of bbq and one jar of grape jelly-do generic on both to save a buck or two.

try the cookie bars. the recipe is posted on here. I guess they are suppose to taste like a twix candy bar. it calls for crackers and you may need some anyways if you do cheese and crackers.

Go generic on the food as much as you can. As long as no one sees the packages, they will never know the difference.
That is all i can think of right now. i will brainstorm and add more later.
post #5 of 19
Oh, and if you serve wine at all, try one of the box wines. I drink Black Box Chardonnay and it is really good. The cost? $18.99 and you get 4 bottles worth of wine. That may be more than you are wanting to spend. You could also try Yellow Tail, which is a great Australian brand. Usually it's around $6.99 a bottle. For beer, do you have a brewery or brewpub near you? You can usually get a 5 liter jug right at the brewery for around $10. You get way more beer than a 12 pack for about the same price or less.
post #6 of 19
Muffins and cookies from scratch are inexpensive. You could make them in advance and throw them in your freezer. Just pull them out the morning of to thaw. Family fun's website has a few great muffin recipes.
post #7 of 19
I have hosted bunco parties before and they know when I do I don't bring alcohol, but I also don't drink it when others host.

For Aug I would go for different salads, maybe the suggested nacho above or I posted a beer bread knock off recipe a while back. Taste like Tastefully Simple but way less $$ serve with 1/2 c mayo 1/2 cup sour cream, mix in bacon bits, or garlic or mixed herbs. simple and fairly cheep..

Taffy Apple Salad:

4-6 apples, diced
1 sm box butterscotch pudding mix
1 sm can crushed pineapple
1 lg tub cool whip

Mix the dry pudding into the cool whip, add pineapple and apples.. Use genaric... Everyone will want the recipe...

Goofy Grape Salad:

green and red grapes
1 block cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup sour cream

cream cream cheese, sour cream and sugar together, mix in grapes and serve in shallow dish, top with brown sugar.. I've never brought any of this home, they clean the bowl.

Spinach Salad

1 bag spinach salad
1 sm can mandrin oranges
Strawberries if you have them are good too
(2) sliced hard boiled eggs, looks pretty
Red onion rings
You can top with nuts if you have them too

I use a basalmic vinager or rasberry salad dressing...

Good Luck
post #8 of 19
I have a recipe for mint cream filled brownies that are easy to make from scratch. You would probably have everything but the mint flavoring. They are really good. let me know if you want the recipe. veggie trays are cheap and you can make several types of dips with usuing sour cream and diffrent types of dry salad dressing mixes. If you don't have it in your budget to get the wine and beer then skip it. Serve tea, water and some different 2 liter drinks. Go to the dollar store for pretty pitchers if you don't have any. Use your own glasses and plates if you have enough.

other ideas
chips and dips
salsa and chips
make several types of home made cookies (freeze them)
fudge (easy recipe that take only two things )
post #9 of 19
For August I would do summer foods.

Maybe a cheese and cracker platter with a few different types of cheese and assorted crackers. You can get big wedges of Havarti, and Gouda at Sams for a good price as well as the usual suspects like Cheddar, Colby, Jack, etc. Aldis has a good Entertainment cracker selection and they are only 99 cents a package.

Fruit tray with vanilla yogurt as a dip.

Vegetable tray with assorted dips.

Maybe a Shrimp mold to go with crackers? It only calls for 8 oz of shrimp so it's not that pricey if you get the frozen shrimp.

Spinach dip in a bread bowl?

What about sandwich fixings and french bread loaves cut into small wedges for mini subs?

Pasta salad sounds great as well and is cheap to make.

Hope2's salads sound divine.

Make your own dessert. There are lots of box mixes out there for a few dollars that make some interesting desserts.

The iced tea idea sounds could also do the same presentation with homemade lemonade.

Good luck!
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
:happy dance:

Man I love all of you!!! THANKS!!! Thanks for all great ideas. :happy dance:

I love the ice tea & lemonade idea. I don't own any pretty pitchers, I'll try the Dollar store and the thrift stores to see if I can find a few nice inexpensive pitchers. I don't drink either and would rather not spend half of my budgeted amount on booze for the gals in my bunko group that do drink. I would much rather spend the $$$ on having a nice spread for everyone to snack on & eat.

YOU ALL ROCK! Keep the food ideas coming I'm loving it!
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