Outdoor Party Planning Ideas, Tips, Checklist and Recipes

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Today I am going to share some easy outdoor party planning ideas with complete party planning checklist and printable, of course I’ll be sharing some awesome recipes using delicious and affordable OREO Cookies, Nutter Butters and Chips Ahoy! You will find these boxes in the big dump bins near the check-out aisle in Walmart stores.

I have had outdoor parties in all seasons of the year, even in wintertime in Minnesota and Colorado.  Some years the winter months are a bit more tame than other years and allow you to set up outside and enjoy the winter wonderland surroundings.  Other years heat lamps may be needed.  If it’s just too cold, most all of the below steps can easily be moved inside (except for some of the sports J).  I am now in a more moderate climate where we can have outdoor parties year round without the heat lamps (but unfortunately don’t have the beautiful snow either).    Planning the parties is so fun, I love making the invitations and creating a theme.  Supplies are of course essential, and then there’s my favorite part, the food.  I am showcasing some really fun dessert ideas that go great with a seasonal, holiday party theme.  Each is very different from the next.  Please use the below guideline for planning your outdoor party.


Here’s my outdoor party planning tips and checklist : 

Outdoor Party Invitations: 

  • It’s key to know (roughly) how many people will attend, so getting RSVPs the old fashioned way or through the web helps me to prep as far as what to cook and how to budget.
  • Send invitations via email saves money, but handmade invitations increase attendance.
  • Mention details!  What to bring (and not to bring), what to wear (and what not to wear… have some fun with this!).  Ask to inform the host if there are allergen or special/restriction diets.
  • Make the invitations unique and reflective of your personality.

Oreo Cookies Cheesecake Recipe




Outdoor Party Theme: 

  • Pick your theme early!  It will make planning your party so much easier.
  • White, gold and silver themes feel luxurious and give off an almost magical feel (especially around the holidays), while not necessary using expensive party supplies.
  • Make and set up your outdoor party supplies early, as this often takes longer than expected.

Chip Ahoy! with Vanilla Butterscotch Marshmallow Recipe



Outdoor Party Supplies: 

  • Keep kids entertained with games and toys.
  • Keep adults entertained with games and toys too! (cornhole and bocce ball are always a hit)
  • Place trash and recycling cans or bags in every corner.  It’s easier for guests and less cleanup for you.
  • Instead of hiring a DJ I often use free music apps or a customized playlist.
  • Heaters/Fans depending on time of year

Outdoor Party Table Checklist (Party of 6): 

  • Essentials: Dinner & Salad plates, Silverware , Wine & Water Glasses, Cup & Saucers (if appropriate), Napkins, Placemats.
  • Optional: 1 Big Flower Vase, 4 Small Flower Vases, Fresh Flowers, Fresh Juice(s), Fresh Water w/ sliced Lemon or Cucumbers, Salt/Pepper shaker, Small Candle Vases.


Outdoor Party Recipe Ideas : 

  • OREO Cookies, Double Stuf OREO Cookies,  Nutter Butters and Chips Ahoy! are a nice addition to every party and celebration. I grew up on these and am very accustomed to eating them right out the box, but they elevate the taste in recipes like those listed below. The products are very affordable and easy to find them at Walmart. They are the perfect size to also be used as a holiday gift/stocking stuffers!   I’ve chosen three recipes that are personal favorites of mine, each of them is visually appealing and especially fitting for the holiday season:
  • OREO Cookies Cheesecake: Delicious cheesecake showing an elegant touch. With simple ingredients and baked with love, this recipe is just amazing! Less than 20 minutes in preparation and the cake can be eaten within the day. Keep it in the fridge until ready to eat.
  • White Chocolate-Covered Nutter Butters: These are so quick to make and very fun for kids.  Get kids involved in decorating these treats!
  • Chips Ahoy! Vanilla Marshmallow Stacks:  While not as decadent as the other two, this dessert just might taste the best.




You Can Purchase OREO Cookies, Chips Ahoy!, Nutter Butter, RITZ Cookies and Crackers at Walmart stores.

OREO Cookies Cheesecake
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr 15 mins
This is the perfect recipe to bring out the fancy side of OREO Cookies. The crust is OREO, looks beautiful and is the highlight. This recipe is very easy and can be easily modified by adding or replacing ingredients:
Course: Cookies, Desserts
Author: Posh Journal
  • For crust :
  • 26 OREO Cookies
  • 1/3 cup melted margarine
  • For filling :
  • 24 Oz room temperature cream cheese
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 lemons’ zest
  • Top crust :
  • 10 Double Stuf OREO crumbled
  1. Heat oven to 325 F
  2. Using hands or food processor, crush cookies to fine crumbs then place into a mixing bowl.
  3. Mix crushed cookies with butter then transfer to a lightly coated non-stick spray springform pan. Press onto bottom gently using a hard surface (such as the bottom of a glass), measuring cup, etc.
  4. Place in fridge for 5-10 minutes.
  5. In the mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese in a low speed mixer for about one minute
  6. Add eggs, one at the time and beat slowly until combined.
  7. Add vanilla, sour cream, lemon zest, sugar and beat until creamy for 1-2 minutes.
  8. Pour over crust then bake for about 55 minutes
  9. Tips on baking a cheesecake : Use a roasting pan with boiling water about halfway up. Foil the springform pan in multiple layers to prevent the water from seeping into the cheesecake. Place the springform pan into the roasting pan. This method will allow the cake to set slowly, resulting in a creamy texture and preventing cracking
  10. Let it cool in a pan for about 30 minutes and don't forget to add the top crust before putting it in the fridge for at least 4 hours (I recommend over 6 hours).
  11. Cut the cake using a dry and warm knife.


Nutter Butters White Chocolate Covered
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
45 mins
Author: Posh Journal
  • 20 Nutter Butters
  • 2 Cups white chocolate baking chips
  • 1 tablespoon Shortening
  • Sprinkles
  1. Melt chocolate over a low heat. You can use a double broiler or microwave (I heated the 1st cup in a small microwave bowl for 30 seconds and pull the bowl out the microwave). Add 1 more cup white chocolate, stir it then put it in the microwave for another 30 seconds. Then add 1 tablespoon of shortening.
  2. Dip each cookie into white chocolate then add sprinkles. Place dipped cookies on a baking pan covered with waxed paper and place in fridge for at least 30 minutes


Chips Ahoy with Bourbon Vanilla Marshmallow
Author: Posh Journal
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup light corn syrup or honey
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine salt
  • 3 large egg whites at room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons bourbon vanilla extract
  1. Combine water, sugar and corn syrup in a medium sized pan, then stir gently. Insert a candy thermometer and set for 240°F and heat over medium high temperature.
  2. Meanwhile, place the egg whites and cream tartar in the bowl then beat using a mixer for about 3-4 minutes
  3. Remove the sugar syrup mix from the heat then pour the syrup into the beaten egg whites. Whip the mixture until begin to fluff up for about 7-8 minutes then add bourbon vanilla and whip for another 1 minute
  4. Place the spread into an airtight jar then store in a fridge until ready to use.
  5. You can rewhip if the mixture becomes flat
  6. Add a teaspoon of marshmallow fluff into one side of cookies then place another cookie on top


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  • Reply
    Robin Masshole mommy
    Dec 11, 2015 at 12:55 pm

    These are all such great tips. It’s winter here now, so I will bookmark these for next summer 🙂

  • Reply
    Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle
    Dec 11, 2015 at 1:20 pm

    That’s got to be one of the most beautiful outdoor party set ups I’ve ever seen. Bookmarking!

  • Reply
    Jennifer Van Huss
    Dec 11, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    What a great recipe!! I love the beautiful outdoor party set up you did as well! That is stunning!

  • Reply
    Dec 11, 2015 at 2:29 pm

    That has GOT to be the most pretty Oreo cake I have ever seen! What a wonderful job you did! Just looking at it I think I gained 5 pounds!

  • Reply
    Fashionable Librarian
    Dec 11, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    You are killing it..#bloggersrock

  • Reply
    Liz Mays
    Dec 11, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    This is really helpful. I’d love to start having more parties outdoors. Your dessert treats look great!

  • Reply
    Elizabeth O.
    Dec 11, 2015 at 6:21 pm

    How can you say no to all of those yummy treats! And they’re easy to do as well, so you don’t have to beat yourself up trying to make them!

  • Reply
    Ann Bacciaglia
    Dec 11, 2015 at 8:56 pm

    This is a great checklist for the holidays. I will have to try making some of these delicious treats.

  • Reply
    tara pittman
    Dec 11, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Great way to decorate cookies. They look so yummy

  • Reply
    Dec 11, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    Such a nice idea and i really love the food. I want all of these for Christmas.

  • Reply
    Erica Brooks
    Dec 11, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    That table setting is lovely. I’m sure my kids would enjoy all of the treats. Oreos and Chips Ahoy are their favorite cookies.

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 2:20 am

    That cheesecake looks so delicious. I’m craving it now! Yummy!

  • Reply
    Ana De Jesus
    Dec 12, 2015 at 3:55 am

    Definitely pinning this post. It is winter at the moment but I can’t wait until it is warm and I can enjoy days lazing outside.

  • Reply
    Miss Millennia Mag (@MissMillMag)
    Dec 12, 2015 at 6:03 am

    Wow, that looks so delicious and great way to decorate cookies.

  • Reply
    Angela Milnes
    Dec 12, 2015 at 6:23 am

    These are lovely ideas and look very decorative!

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 8:09 am

    First of all your pics are gorgeous!! I love your tablescape and that cheesecake looks amazing!

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 8:51 am

    The cheesecake looks amazing! I love all your ideas The outdoor table is so beautiful.

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    chips ahoy with vanilla marshmallow? yes yes yes

  • Reply
    Tina @ My Highest Self
    Dec 12, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    My goodness I have not seen such beautiful party photos in a long time! Dying over that oreo cheesecake!!

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 1:56 pm

    These look like all fantastic dessert ideas! I would love to make these for my holiday parties although in Chicago we won’t be outside!

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 3:59 pm

    That is such a beautiful display! All of these goodies look so delicious! I would love to try out that Oreo cheesecake. Yummy!

  • Reply
    Annemarie LeBlanc
    Dec 12, 2015 at 7:12 pm

    Everything looks so good! The cookies are so festive and the Oreo cheesecake is mouth-watering! I will do my best to make my own Oreo cheesecake! Thanks for the recipe!

  • Reply
    katrina g
    Dec 12, 2015 at 7:20 pm

    Yummy the food looks so good.

  • Reply
    Dec 12, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    The table looks amazing! I’m going to try your cheesecake recipe.

  • Reply
    Claudette Esterine
    Dec 13, 2015 at 7:15 am

    As always, great looking, interesting tips and wonderful recipe.

  • Reply
    Krystal's Kitsch
    Dec 13, 2015 at 8:25 am

    What a beautiful set up and dessert area. I would love to recreate that cake!

  • Reply
    Bonnie @wemake7
    Dec 13, 2015 at 8:34 am

    What an awesome set up! My husband loves oreos. Thanks for these planning tips.

  • Reply
    Dec 13, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    This outdoor party looks fabulous. And thanks for the recipes too…YUM!

  • Reply
    Dec 13, 2015 at 3:08 pm

    This looks like so much fun! I love oreo so I’ll have to give this a try!

  • Reply
    Amanda || Growing Up Madison
    Dec 13, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    OMG I have OREO’s in the house and it’s something that ALWAYS has to be here. Loving the outdoor idea.

  • Reply
    Up Run for Life
    Dec 13, 2015 at 7:25 pm

    I personally don’t care for outdoor parties unless it’s decent outside. I think food choices is super important when it comes to planning a party. You can’t go wrong with oreos, nutter butters, and chips a hoy. They are family favorites.

  • Reply
    Dec 13, 2015 at 7:52 pm

    I simply love cheesecake, but I don’t believe I ever had Oreo cheesecake before, though. I’ll definitely have to give it a try!

  • Reply
    Dec 14, 2015 at 7:08 am

    Looks like your recipes are to die for! Look at those delicious looking goodies. My mouth is watering!

  • Reply
    Shann Eva
    Dec 14, 2015 at 8:13 am

    Yum. All three of those recipes look delicious. Especially that Oreo Cheesecake. I’d love to try that!

  • Reply
    Dec 14, 2015 at 8:48 am

    I bet my nieces and nephews would love those White Chocolate-Covered Nutter Butters! I will have to try making those for them. Happy Holidays!

    Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly

  • Reply
    Kelly Hutchinson
    Dec 14, 2015 at 9:35 am

    I know I am not supposed to covet, but I want that table so badly! I love anything dipped in chocolate!

  • Reply
    Dec 14, 2015 at 11:12 am

    I love the way the cheesecake looks like one giant Oreo Cookie! I would eat the whole thing 🙂

  • Reply
    Dec 14, 2015 at 11:41 am

    These are some great party tips!!! I host a lot of events and parties so I will have to keep these tips in mind!

  • Reply
    Dec 14, 2015 at 11:59 am

    This makes me long for a house. What a fun party planning idea, the weather is so nice right now outdoors is perfect.

  • Reply
    susieQTpies (Susan B)
    Dec 14, 2015 at 4:29 pm

    WOW I’m loving the beautiful party set up. Great party planning ideas and RECIPES! Total nom nom. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Dec 15, 2015 at 8:03 am

    Great recipes. Thanks for sharing.. I loved your outdoor party setup…

  • Reply
    Dec 15, 2015 at 6:26 pm


  • Reply
    Mimi Green
    Dec 16, 2015 at 8:38 am

    Now this looks like my kind of party. I’m so trying these out for my daughters holiday party.

  • Reply
    Dec 16, 2015 at 9:09 am

    Sign me up for that party. Gorgeous. 🙂

  • Reply
    Dec 17, 2015 at 10:29 pm

    This looks like my favorite party! All your photos are amazing 😀 Love it!

  • Reply
    Dec 19, 2015 at 9:52 am

    I love it! Such a cute outdoor display and these recipes are wonderful!

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