Scandinavian BBQ Party Guide: Hosting the Nordic Way

May 17, 2023 | Living Well Tips, Mindful Living, Scandinavian

Scandinavia may be known for its unpredictable weather, but when the sun shines, you better believe they make the most of it! They embrace the warmth, light, and natural beauty, transforming their gardens into inviting spaces for memorable get-togethers. If you’re looking to infuse your hosting skills with a touch of Scandinavian charm, you’re in for a treat. The Scandinavian way of hosting embraces simplicity, warmth, and a relaxed atmosphere that will make your guests feel right at home.


Create a Hygge Atmosphere

Hygge (pronounced “hoo-gah”) is a Danish concept that embodies coziness, comfort, and a sense of well-being. It’s all about creating an inviting and warm atmosphere for your garden party. Here’s how to infuse your space with hygge:

  1. Cream Throw
  2. Decorative Pillows
  3. Outdoor String Lights
  4. Decorative Terracotta Planter
  5. Marshall Speaker
  6. Bowl planter
  7. Bean Bag Loveseat
  8. Portable rechargeable Lamp

Comfortable Seating: Arrange comfortable seating areas where guests can relax and unwind. Place plush cushions, blankets, and throws on outdoor furniture to encourage coziness. Consider adding floor pillows or bean bags for additional seating options.

Natural Elements: Incorporate potted plants, fresh flowers, or greenery to add a touch of freshness and life to the surroundings.

Soft Lighting: Set the mood with soft and warm lighting. Use string lights, or lanterns to create a cozy ambiance as the sun sets. Opt for warm-toned bulbs to cast a gentle glow over your outdoor space.

Ambient Music: Create a soothing and relaxing atmosphere with background music. Opt for instrumental tunes, acoustic melodies, or soft jazz that complements the cozy ambiance. Keep the volume low to encourage conversation and connection.

Set the Table

Once you’ve created a hygge atmosphere, it’s time to set the tablescape for your Scandinavian BBQ party. The tablescape is where you can showcase your creativity and attention to detail. Here are some tips to help you create a welcoming table setting:

  1. Candlestick Holders
  2. Linen Table Cloth
  3. Tealight Holders
  4. Table Runner
  5. Eco-Friendly Disposable Plates
  6. Dried Flowers
  7. Blank Name Cards
  8. Glass Vases

Choose a Tablecloth: A linen or cotton tablecloth in a light or natural shade will add a touch of Scandinavian simplicity and elegance. If you prefer a more minimalist look, you can use a runner down the center of the table instead.

Personalized Place Cards: Make your guests feel special by preparing personalized place cards. Use natural materials like kraft paper or wooden tags and write each guest’s name with a calligraphy pen.

Beautiful Centerpieces: Create simple yet stunning centerpieces using wildflowers in vases. Look for blooms that evoke a natural and organic feel, such as daisies, lavender, or baby’s breath. Arrange them in vases or repurposed glass bottles for a charming, rustic touch.

Sustainable Tableware: Opt for sustainable and eco-friendly options when it comes to plates and cutlery. Choose disposable plates and cutlery made from biodegradable or compostable materials like bamboo or palm leaf. These options are not only environmentally friendly but also convenient for quick and easy cleanup.

Soft Ambiance with Candles: Set a cozy and intimate ambiance with the soft glow of tea lights or candles. Place them strategically along the center of the table or in small holders scattered around. The flickering candlelight will add warmth and create a relaxing atmosphere for your guests.

Serve some Food and Drinks

No Scandinavian party is complete without a delightful spread of food and refreshing beverages. Consider these ideas to create a culinary experience:

  1. Serving Platters
  2. Oil and Vinegar Cruet
  3. Wooden Dipping Bowls
  4. Oil and Vinegar Dispenser
  5. Wooden Serving Bowl
  6. Wooden Serving Spoons
  7. Serving Plates
  8. Wooden Serving Tray
  9. Drinking Glasses
  10. Drinks Dispenser

Food Stations and Buffet Style: Create a casual and interactive dining experience by setting up food stations or a buffet. Arrange the dishes attractively, allowing guests to serve themselves and choose their favorite items. Label the food items to help guests identify suitable choices and accommodate their dietary requirements. This setup encourages mingling and gives guests the freedom to customize their plates according to their preferences.

Scandinavian-Inspired Menu: Embrace the flavors of Scandinavia by incorporating traditional dishes into your menu. Offer a selection of open-faced sandwiches known as “smørrebrød” topped with various ingredients like smoked salmon, pickled herring, or creamy cheeses. Include fresh salads with Nordic ingredients like dill, cucumbers, and radishes. Fire up the grill and serve classic BBQ favorites, like hot dogs. Serve them in fresh, soft buns and offer an array of condiments and toppings. Some popular choices include pickled cucumbers, crispy fried onions, tangy mustard, and a dollop of creamy remoulade sauce.

Drink Stations and Accessories: Set up stylish drink stations where guests can help themselves to the beverages. Use wooden crates or vintage trays to display the beer bottles, glasses, and drinkware. Enhance the Scandinavian ambiance by incorporating natural elements like fresh herb sprigs, citrus slices, or edible flowers as garnishes.

Danish Beer Selection: Embrace the Danish beer culture by offering a variety of local brews. Include popular Danish beer brands like Carlsberg, Tuborg, or Mikkeller in your drink selection. Consider both lagers and ales to cater to different preferences. Display the beers in an ice-filled tub or a rustic wooden crate to create an inviting beer station.

Non-Alcoholic Options: Cater to all your guests by offering a selection of non-alcoholic beverages as well. Provide options like homemade lemonade, flavored iced teas, infused water, or sparkling fruit juices. These refreshing alternatives ensure that everyone can enjoy a cool and flavorful drink, regardless of their alcohol preferences.

End on a Sweet Note with a Cozy Campfire

To wrap up your Scandinavian BBQ party on a delightful and cozy note, create a charming campfire ambiance where your guests can gather and indulge in sweet treats. Here’s how you can infuse the Scandinavian spirit into the finale of your garden gathering:

Photo by Leon Contreras on Unsplash

Fire Pit or Campfire Setup: If you have a fire pit or a designated area for a campfire, prepare it for the evening’s festivities. Ensure you have enough firewood, kindling, and fire starters to keep the fire going throughout the evening.

Toasting Marshmallows: Set up a toasting station near the campfire, complete with long skewers or roasting forks for marshmallow toasting.

S’mores: No campfire experience is complete without indulging in the beloved tradition of making s’mores. This American favorite has found its way across the pond to Scandinavia, where it has become a hygge activity. Gather the classic s’mores ingredients, including graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate bars. Give it a Scandinavian twist by experimenting with different flavor combinations. Consider using liquorice or swedish fish!


Hosting the Scandinavian way is all about creating a warm, inviting atmosphere where simplicity, nature, and togetherness take center stage. By embracing hygge, keeping it simple, and emphasizing natural elements, you can effortlessly bring the essence of Scandinavian hospitality into your own home. So, gather your loved ones, prepare Nordic-inspired cuisine, and enjoy the art of hosting the Scandinavian way – a memorable experience that will leave your guests feeling cherished and connected. So, gather your loved ones, fire up the grill, and embark on a culinary journey that celebrates the Nordic way of hosting. Skål!

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