Welcome to our ultimate guide on how to throw the perfect BBQ party! We’ll cover everything from planning and preparation to food and entertainment ideas, ensuring that your BBQ party becomes an unforgettable event.
Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or simply enjoying the company of friends and family, a rooftop BBQ party is a fantastic way to soak up the sun, enjoy delicious food, and create lasting memories.
We threw our own BBQ party. So you can recreate as little or as much as you’d like. There are definitely some gems in here. Including, but not limited to, a giant inflatable flamingo pool, a DIY outdoor game and snacks galore.
This probably goes without saying, but you don’t technically need a rooftop for recreating these ideas either.
It’s also never a party until you’ve got your food and drink selections mapped out. So grab your apron, fire up the grill, and let’s dive into the steps to host an incredible rooftop BBQ bash.
Tips for Throwing a BBQ Party
To start, consider your space. How big is your backyard, and what kind of furniture and decorations do you have?
If you have a large space, you may want to consider setting up a buffet or bar area so guests can help themselves.
If you have a smaller space, focus on creating an intimate setting with plenty of seating.
Easy Food Ideas
We opted for easy food staples like hot dogs, burgers, chips, and classic chocolate chip cookies for our grab-and-go baskets.
More appetizer and entree recipe ideas:
- Hawaiian recipes like Huli Huli kebabs and grilled pineapple
- Summer chicken recipes
- 15 pasta side dishes like a gnocchi cooked on the grill for a barbecue party
- Fruit platter ideas
- Frito pie mason jars
- Sweet potato nachos
- Lemon pepper seasoning recipe for your wings
- Cranberry orange salad
- Homemade french fries
Dessert ideas for BBQ parties:
And any pool party isn’t in full effect until you’ve learned how to make mini ice cream cone shot glasses for serving your frozen treats! We also served macarons because it’s not a Sugar & Cloth party without some!
- Grilled pound cake with mascarpone and berries
- Summer grilled fruit pizza
- Brownie parfait buffet for guests to customize
- Toasted s’mores rice krispie treats
- Spike cotton candy
- 4th of July dessert ideas
Our Customized Grills
As an added DIY twist, we brought two grills for cooking.
One stand-up grill for easy hot dog and burger requests, and one to make a marshmallow/s’mores station with color-coded dessert skewers.
We had trouble finding reasonably priced colorful grills. So instead, we painted the outsides of them with high heat spray paint for a safe alternative with a little added flair.
For decor, we let the furniture be the statement makers. We reused our DIY retro fringe umbrellas and found the coolest vintage mid-century outdoor table set ever at an antique shop.
If you need additional setting, try out this DIY floor table for picnic style eating.
You don’t exactly need much when you have a giant inflatable flamingo pool as your outdoor centerpiece. And don’t be fooled, it holds WAY more water than you think!
Another fun idea would to simply blow up a bunch of large pool floats that can serve as additional seating or fun photo props.
Since our backyard barbeque party was hosted on the rooftop, there weren’t any trees. But if there were, string lights create a romantic yet functional setting.
Set Up Good Party Games
Once you’ve gotten food conquered, it’s time for entertainment!
When setting up your entertainment, think about how you can get your guests involved. Consider setting up games or other activities that will help everyone have fun and get to know each other.
We love Scattergories games so we created some Free Printable Scattergories lists.
They’re cute as it is easy to prepare or like this fun DIY Flamingo Ring Toss Game that’s an entertaining hit for kids and adults!
Or set up one or a couple of these best yard games.
For this particular BBQ party, as a play on the giant lawn games, we decided to make a jumbo flamingo tic-tac-toe board. Here’s how you can recreate it…
DIY Flamingo Outdoor Tic Tac Toe Game
Materials and tools needed to make a DIY Flamingo Outdoor Game:
- Black and white checkered mat
- Pink lawn flamingos
- 4.5 in smooth foam half circles — 2 for each flamingo
- Hot glue and glue gun
- Two color choices of paint
How to make a DIY Flamingo Outdoor Game:
1 — The checkered mat will serve as the tic tac toe board, and all you have to do is fit each of the 12″ squares together in place.
2 — For the flamingos, you’ll insert the metal rods for the legs, and then stick a foam semicircle match on the end of each leg, hot gluing them in place.
3 — To mark the difference between X’s and O’s (or flamingos in this case), we painted the feet two different colors to tell them apart.
Check Our BBQ Party Resources
Inflatable flamingo pool — Our original one is from Pottery Barn Kids, but this is a similar one.
More Outdoor Entertaining Ideas
For more bbq party ideas, check out some of our other entertaining ideas below —