Music: check. Invitations: check. Costumes: check. What more is needed for throwing a good Halloween party? Lots! But the good news is, it’s super simple to throw a small and intimate gathering for adults that is festive and also stylish. Have your guests talking for years to come with these easy and festive Halloween party ideas.
How Do You Plan a Halloween Party
Even if Halloween is full of treats and tricks — planning a small gathering this season doesn’t have to be tricky! We’ll cover everything you need to make your Halloween party spectacular with these important to-do’s:
- Set a date and time: Make sure you plan your date and location ahead of time. Sometimes, Halloween doesn’t fall on a weekend, so plan accordingly! Also, decide where you’ll be hosting your get together to make planning the rest of your details a breeze.
- Pick a theme: Once you’ve planned the date and location of your Halloween party, pick out your theme! Some good theme ideas include “Freak Show”, “Haunted House”, “Autumn Harvest”, or “Hollywood Horror” to name a few. Get creative with it!
- Send invitations: Now it’s time to send out the invitations. Use your DIY skills and create some memorable and spooky invites to send out to your guests. This is also a great time to state if your party will be practicing social distancing.
- Choose or make your decor: Start planning your decor details according to your theme. Whether you plan to go shopping or DIY, the options are endless.
- Put together your menu: It’s not a party unless there’s food and drink! Make sure to have your food and drink ideas planned well-before the party so you don’t have to do last-minute shopping or cooking. You can even create a pot-luck list if you want your guests to contribute.
- Plan activities: Create a list of social distance-friendly activities that your guests can enjoy at the party. This will ensure everyone will have something to do and will make your party memorable. Make sure you have appropriate activities planned depending on if you’re throwing a party for adults or if it’ll be kid-friendly.
Spooky Decor Ideas
If you want your spooktacular get together to truly stand out, incorporate whimsical yet sophisticated décor elements and finishing touches. From festive centerpieces to fall flowers, these pieces will transform your Halloween party to a frightful and fun holiday event.
- Creepy candles: Add a twist to your traditional candles and light up your table with antique-style candle holders or even set them in wine-turned-potion bottles to set a mysterious mood.
- Entryway party favors: Stuff some cute bags with fun treats and place them in a bowl near your front door for a sweet and welcoming surprise.
- Tableware: Set out plain white serving dishes so you can add pops of orange and black — like striped straws, paper plates, napkins, and funky drink glasses — elsewhere.
- String lights: String up some white twinkle lights to set a magical mood. To tie in the Halloween theme, hang pretty orange and black DIY tissue pom poms from the lights.
- Candy: Halloween candy is a fantastic way to decorate the table, and gives guests some tasty treats to nibble. Fill clear glass containers with classics, like candy corn and candy pumpkins, and add embellishments, like spooky printable labels that say, “Boo” or “Happy Halloween!”
- Florals: A must for every table setting is a floral centerpiece. For this particular occasion, go for something joyful and beautiful with fall flowers.
- Paper jack-o-lanterns: Fresh pumpkins, although a staple, can be really messy. Avoid clean up duties and make them out of paper! Then, string them up around your party for some extra festive decoration.
- Succulent centerpiece: Spice up your table with a DIY succulent pumpkin centerpiece. Pumpkin succulents are a great way to show off your favorite succulent variety at the party.
- Paper bat garland: Cut out paper bats and attach them to string with clothespins. Then, string them around your doorway.
- Spider web placemats: Spruce up your table with DIY placemats made out of parchment paper and puff paint. Using the puff paint, make web shapes onto the parchment paper. Let it dry overnight and then peel the paper off the back. Place the mats under clear plates to show off your craftiness.
- Upgrade your bar cart: A bar cart is always a nice touch for a party, and is also a great piece for showcasing your fun themed drinks and DIY Halloween decorations.
Tip: Don’t be afraid to DIY! Decorating a Halloween party doesn’t have to be expensive, and making decor yourself is a fun activity to enjoy with your friends or family.
Delicious Halloween Party Food Ideas
Halloween and sweets are pretty much synonymous with one another. Here are some simple yet sweet treat and appetizer ideas for your Halloween party.
- Pumpkin pie cheesecake dip: Fall is all about pumpkin flavors, and it’ll sure be a hit at your Halloween party. Make a sweet pumpkin-flavored cheesecake dip and serve it in a pumpkin-shaped dish with some pretzels or graham crackers for dipping.
- Mummy brie: Class up your Halloween party with a yummy cheese and cracker platter. To match the theme, wrap puff pastry around round brie for an instant mummified look.
- Scary sugar cookies: These are an easy one, and are great in a pinch. Cut out dough using Halloween themed cookie cutters and frost them however you like!
- Candied apples: For a twist on the traditional candied apple, serve “poison” apples with all-black toffee instead of caramel.
- Candy corn cupcakes: Make candy corn themed cupcakes using orange and yellow batter. Then, top with creamy marshmallow frosting and candy corn pieces.
- Monster pizza bites: Everyone loves pizza! Bake some pizza bites in the oven — these serve as great finger food. To give it a Halloween touch, place black olive slices on top for eyes.
- Spooky spinach dip: Amongst all the sweets you may have at your party, make sure to have some veggies! Make your favorite spinach dip and place it in a bread bowl that’s shaped into a cauldron. Serve with pumpkin-shaped tortilla chips.
- Mummy meatballs: The tastiest party bites get a Halloween twist. Wrap the meatballs in strips of dough so they resemble mummies and bake in the oven. Serve with your favorite condiments for a delicious appetizer.
Tip: Since guests are likely to mingle, foods that you can eat with your hands are ideal. Also, be sure to have balance when it comes to the amount of sweet and savory foods you’re serving!
The Best Themed Drinks
What’s a party without some liquid refreshments? A drink list should be on your mind when it comes to Halloween party ideas. A full bar is always good to have when planning a party. Here are some of our favorite Halloween-themed boo-zy cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks:
- Dragon’s punch: What’s a party without a punch bowl? To tie in fall flavors and spices, make a spiced-pomegranate punch with rum — or easily make it non-alcoholic. Plus, the blood-red color will be right on par with the Halloween theme.
- Halloween hot cocoa: This Halloween hot cocoa is perfect for cold nights, is non-alcoholic, and a great option for the kiddos. Make traditional hot cocoa, but add some drops of green food coloring. To take it over the top, add some orange or purple marshmallows or even some creepy gummy worm candies.
- Cider Sidecar: There’s no such thing as too much apple cider this time of year. Upgrade your favorite sidecar cocktail recipe with apple cider.
- Witch’s Brew: Take any soda or beer bottles and make a DIY label that says “Witch’s Brew” and tape it around the bottle for a unique twist.
- Pumpkin spice White Russian: Move over pumpkin spiced latte! Introduce this fan-favorite autumnal ingredient into a classic cocktail like a White Russian.
- Black Magic Margarita: Make a classic margarita, but add some drops of black and red food coloring to achieve an eerie black look. Top off with lime for garnish.
- Ditch the martini glasses: Ditch your classic martini or cocktail glasses and switch them out for vials. For a frightening flare, paint inexpensive candelabras black and set the vials inside.
- Bloody Mary syringes: Every Halloween party needs a little blood. Whip up a classic bloody mary recipe and serve them in syringe shooters.
- Halloween ice cubes: Polish off any drink with Halloween-themed ice cubes. Freeze olives into ice cubes for “eyeballs” or freeze some gummy worms or plastic spiders into ice for a creepy surprise!
Tip: Make sure to have enough non-alcoholic drink options at your party, especially if kiddos are around.
Fun Halloween Party Activities
Making sure to have enough things to do at a party is important! Here are some great Halloween party activities that are fun for adults and will also keep any kids entertained:
- Scavenger hunt: Bring fun and adventure to your Halloween party with a themed scavenger hunt. Divide your guests into teams to hunt for items on the list. Whichever team wins gets to enjoy a nice cold drink.
- Horror movie trivia: Play a drinking game or movie trivia with classic scary movies.
- Candy corn toss: Sweets are just as fun to play with as they are to eat. Just like the classic ring toss game, make it unique and turn cones into candy corn using spray paint.
- Apple bobbing: Revive this classic game of apple bobbing that kids love. To take it to the next level for adults, swap out the water for white sangria!
- Halloween charades: This activity is great if you’re hanging out with a group of friends or if you’re with family members. Just swap in Halloween-themed phrases and clues!
- Mad scientist guessing game: Cut a hole in a box or fill non-transparent jars with funky-textured foods. Let your guests guess what’s inside by using their hands to feel what’s inside.
- Halloween pinata: Have some candy-filled pinatas for the kids, or fill them with mini bottles of alcohol for a more adult-friendly pinata.
- Murder mystery: If you have a large enough group, plan a murder mystery game for a chilling touch to your party.
Tip: Be sure to accompany these fun Halloween party ideas and activities with a playlist with all of the best seasonal hits!
Halloween is a night of fun and fantasy — and there is no better excuse to gather with close friends or family on a cool autumn night. From yummy treats and drinks, fall flower decor and these other Halloween party ideas, you’ll be sure to make it a fright night to remember.