Happy Hour at Home is a regular occurrence at our place. On nights when we don’t have any kids here for dinner, we frequently elect to have something easy, rather than cook a full meal.
Happy Hour Out and About
Sometimes we choose to go out for happy hour. Last week, after rushing from work to a late afternoon appointment downtown, we decide to pop in to a local place, Republic on Grand, for happy hour.
We enjoyed some cocktails, appetizers, and a mini Creme Brulee trio, all with lovely downtown views.
And while this happy hour downtown was very enjoyable, it cost about $75 for the two of us, plus a tip . And, there happened to be a large, and overly loud group of people near us, which is not what I’m in the mood for after a long and busy day. I crave peace and quiet, which is often hard to come by in a busy restaurant happy hour scene.
Happy Hour at Home
Part of the draw of happy hour is that it’s easy, right? After a hectic day, you can head straight from work to meet up with friends or your spouse and just unwind. Happy Hour at Home can be just as easy, more affordable, and you don’t have to worry about the drive home afterwards, because you’re already home. 🤣
This weekend we had two nice days in a row, in the upper 60s. My husband worked all day Saturday and Sunday, and I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off both days trying to catch up on errands, cleaning, packing for an upcoming trip, and paperwork.
By the time he got home, we were both ready to wind down. We spent a little time outside first, taking a walk around the neighborhood, and strolling around our yard to see if any of the spring perennials were peeking up yet (they aren’t 🙁.) Knowing that we weren’t in a time crunch to get dinner on the table made this so much more enjoyable.
When we finally came inside, Happy at Hour at Home took only a short amount of time to pull together before we were outside on the screened porch, fireplace on, feet up, wine glass in hand, ready to relax and watch the sunset.
Charcuterie and Wine
Our go-to choice for Happy Hour at Home is a charcuterie board. I’ve written often about our love of charcuterie because there are so many options of things you can include, that it never gets boring.
We keep a variety of crackers, nuts and dried fruits on hand in our pantry. We almost always have some kind of fresh fruit or veggies in our fridge that we can cut up and add to the board. Cheese lasts a long time in the fridge, so we keep a wedge or two of our favorite, waiting in the cheese drawer (yes, we have a dedicated cheese drawer in our fridge, as everyone should.) When we shop for groceries each week, we usually just have to pick up some fresh salami from the deli counter and we’re ready to go.
Charcuterie and wine is a great option for Happy Hour at Home because it literally takes minutes to assemble a board and open a bottle of wine. Put some of your favorite tunes on in the background, choose a comfy spot to relax, and that’s it. Happy Hour is ready.
This spread for Happy Hour at Home cost less than $25 total, including the bottle of wine (thank you, Costco.) The view was just as good, we got to select the music we wanted, and we enjoyed it in the quiet of our own home.
Hot Appetizer Options
Sometimes, we prefer a hot appetizer for our Happy Hour at Home. On the second night of our weekend, since we had just had charcuterie the night before, we decided to put together an easy hot dip. One of our favorites is Hot and Cheesy Corn Dip, but since we already had some of the ingredients on hand from our Reuben Sandwiches the other night, we decided to make Hot Reuben Dip this time.
Serve it with some Rye Triscuit Crackers and a couple of craft cocktails, and voilà, Happy Hour at Home! We went the easy route, and my hubby whipped up a couple of Moscow Mules with fresh lime. Again, we were outside on the screen porch, ready to enjoy just in time for another spectacular sunset.
Hot Reuben Dip
- 1/2 cup mayo
- 1/2 cup Thousand Island Dressing
- 8 oz sauerkraut rinsed and squeezed dry
- 4 oz shredded corned beef
- 8 oz Swiss cheese shredded
- 2 tbsp caraway seeds optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a bowl, mix all ingredients together.
- Spread into an 8×8 baking dish.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes, until bubbly and browned around the edges.
- Serve with Triscuit Rye crackers for dipping.
- This made a good amount for two people. This recipe can easily be doubled if serving more, especially since this version only uses 1/2 can of sauerkraut.
If you’re not up for getting creative on your own when it comes to your cocktail game, you might consider a subscription box like Shaker & Spoon. My husband tried it for several months and really loved it. It was perfect for Happy Hour at Home, because they deliver all the ingredients needed to create 3 different craft cocktails per month.
Other Ideas for Happy Hour at Home
There are so many things you can easily put together to keep Happy Hour at Home interesting.
- Chips and guacamole with margaritas are perfect for an easy-to-put-together happy hour.
- Hot and Cheesy Corn Dip with Fritos or veggie slices for dipping is one of our favorites.
- Flatbreads or homemade pizza or cheesy bread on the grill are things we make for Happy Hour at Home quite regularly.
- Little round pretzel bites can be found at Trader Joe’s and many supermarket bakeries now. Heat them up and serve with some warm cheese dip and they go perfectly with a cocktail or your favorite beer for a simple Happy Hour at Home option.
- And if you’re really wanting convenience, there are so many frozen appetizers at the grocery store that you can keep on hand to warm and serve when you need happy hour pronto. 😂
Do you do Happy at Hour at Home, too? If so, I’d love it if you’d share some of your favorites with us. We’re always looking for new ideas. Drop me a line in the comments with your suggestions!
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