What Food Is Good At A Beach Party?

Nothing says “party” than the beach. You don’t have to think about decorations or activities to keep your guests busy, and no venue fees – a bonus. The one thing to consider is the food. What food is good to have at a beach party?

Foods that will work well at a beach party would be anything that doesn’t take too long to eat, is edible with hands, and a variety of snacks, nutrient-dense foods, and sweet treats. Taking a few coolers to the beach with different snacks and drinks will keep the food fresh and the guests happy.

Beach party food might take slightly more consideration than any other party. Keep in mind your surroundings, the activities most people will be busy with, and the effort from your side to make these foods perfect for a beach party.

Foods That Are Good At A Beach Party

At most beaches, you are not allowed to make a fire or barbeque, so heating food won’t work. Secondly, everyone will be out and about and busy swimming, playing volleyball, wakeboarding, or whatever fun activities you have lined up for them. There is no specific time to sit and eat at a beach party.

#1 Finger Foods Are Great For A Beach Party

Anything that the guests can grab and go is a winner at the beach. Whether it is snacks, the actual meal, or dessert, eating it with your hands is the easiest. Finger foods make it easier for the host to enjoy the party, too, because there is no need for plating, dishing up, etc.

Cooler boxes with names like savory, snacks, and desserts are a great idea. The labels will help the guests to grab something from the cooler they want to try, and the food stays cool and fresh.

Snacks: Pretzel Sticks

Pretzel sticks are great snacks to serve at the beach. They are easy to make (or you could buy them), and they do not have to stay in a cooler and don’t have wrappings that might cause littering or extra management.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Granola pretzel sticksGranola with no raisins, pretzel sticks, and dark chocolate chipsMelt the chocolate chips and pour them into a plate. Roll half of the pretzel rod in the chocolate, let it drip, and sprinkle some granola over it. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.The recipe makes 24 rods, depending on how many pretzels sticks you buy.Keep it in the cooler at the beach to prevent the chocolate from melting.

Snacks: Trail Mix

Trail mixes are always options at any party but can also work for your beach party. Either big bowls on a table with a trail mix for guests to grab a handful and go, or you can pre-pack bowls. Bear in mind that some are allergic to nuts, so if this is one of your ideas, add a trail mix that doesn’t have nuts.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Parmesan Snack mixGoldfish cheddar crackers, mini pretzels, corn or rice Chex, melted butter, ranch salad dressing, and grated parmesan cheeseMix the dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients and stir well. Microwave everything together for three minutes, spread out to dry, and store in a container or bag.Makes 14 cupsStore in an airtight container, no need for a cooler.
Easy snack mixDried cherries, mini pretzels, yogurt-covered raisins, Goldfish crackers, yellow raisinsCombine everything well and store in a containerMakes 19 cupsAir tight container, no need for a cooler.
Roasted nuts (savory)Garlic powder, salt, herb seasoning blend, egg yolk, cheddar cheese, unblanched almondsWhisk egg and almonds together, toss the other ingredients in and combine. Spread mix on a baking tray and bake for 25 min on 325F2 cupsAir tight container, no need for a cooler.
Kiddie crunchy mixYogurt and chocolate-covered raisins, M&Ms, salty peanuts, mini pretzels, bear-shaped crackers, plain or frosted animal crackersCombine all the ingredientsMakes 6 cupsAir tight container, no need for a cooler.

Snack: Protein Balls

The popular protein ball is a powerhouse snack that will satisfy a hungry tummy for a while and brings a healthy twist to the table. These are easy to make, don’t waste, and are bite-sized. Most protein balls can be out in a bowl, but keeping them in a cooler will be safer to keep it nice and compact.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Peanut butter protein ballsOats, shredded coconut, mini chocolate chips, flax seeds, chia seeds, cinnamon, salt, honey, peanut butter, vanilla, and milkAdd all the ingredients and add some milk if it is too dry. Roll into balls and refrigerate for 30 minThe recipe makes 24 ballsKeep in the cooler at the beach

Food: Cold Meats

Party food and snacks are high in carbohydrates and fats, and the protein is on the lower side. Your beach party might not have a cooking area available, but cold meats are just as good. You can bump up the protein levels with cold meats and keep the meat lovers happy. These will have to stay in a cooler to keep them fresh, preventing them from going bad and causing unpleasant sicknesses.

  • Meatballs – whether you buy meatballs or make them yourself, guests can enjoy them cool. Make them small enough to serve kiddies too. It is a perfect protein bite for a grab-and-go at the beach.
  • Chicken meat is a winner when it comes to cold meat. Guests can enjoy chicken thins, smoked chicken, or ordinary chicken thighs, drumsticks, and wings cold. Ensure you keep them in a cooler as chicken meat can go wrong if left open in the heat.
  • Sausages – and sausages are a good option for a beach party. The guests can enjoy them cold and add them to a bun to make a hotdog.

Food: Lunch Wraps

Wraps are a treat, they can be cut into smaller pieces to make them bite-sized, and kids enjoy them as well. There are so many variations of wraps you can make, and it is an excellent addition to a summer beach party, and kids will love them too.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Beef and Cheese wrapsShredded carrots, cooked and sliced roast beef, shredded cheese, lettuce, onion and chives cream cheese, and four tortillas.Spread the tortilla with cream cheese and layer the ingredients. Fold or roll up as you please.Serves four whole tortillas, or 12 bite-sizedStore in the cooler at the beach to keep it fresh
Hummus veggie wrapsHummus, tortilla, salad greens, sweet onion, cucumber sliced, alfalfa sprouts, balsamic dressing, and shredded carrotsSpread the hummus on the tortilla and add layers of the rest of the ingredients. Fold or roll the tortilla as you please.Makes one wrap or four bite-sizedStore in the cooler at the beach to keep it fresh

Food: Anything On A Stick

Putting food on a stick saves you the extra space where each ingredient would have been kept separate but comes in handy to “grab-and-go,” kids love them as well. Have a bin nearby and let your guests know they can drop the stick there. You can make your whole spread on sticks: snacks, savory food, and desserts.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Fruit and cheese kebabsStrawberry halves, green grapes, cubed cheddar cheese, and additional cheese you want to addThread the fruit and cheese onto a skewer as you would like.12 to 24  servingsKeep in the cooler at the beach to keep fruit fresh
Antipasto kebabsSalami, pepperoni, Italian salad dressing, pimiento-stuffed olives, pitted olives, and cheese tortelliniCook tortellini, add olives and salad dressing, and rest overnight. Add one of each to the stick.Makes 40 sticksKeep in the cooler at the beach to keep it fresh

Dessert: Homemade Cookies

Homemade cookies are a fun way to prepare for a party and make you or your kids feel you are contributing to the food. You can make or buy cookies in bulk, and it won’t cost too much. Cookies might have to be kept in a cooler, while others are happy to sit outside for a guest to grab.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Lemon sugar cookiesCoarse sugar, cream of tartar, salt, baking soda, all-purpose flour, brown sugar, eggs, butter, lemon zest, and lemon juiceMix the sugars and butter, and add the eggs, zest, and juice. Add the dry ingredients together and mix in gradually with the wet ingredients. Form balls from the mix and flatten them with the bottom of a cup. Bake at 350 F for 15 minutesMakes 14 cookiesCan be out and about for guests to grab-and-go
Loaded pretzel cookiesShredded coconut, mini pretzels, milk chocolate M&Ms, salt, baking soda, baking powder, vanilla, all-purpose flour, eggs, brown sugar, sugar, and softened butterAdd the butter and sugars together, and then add the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the dry ingredients. Lastly, add the chocolate, coconut, and pretzels. Make balls, press down into cookies, and bake at 350 F for 14 minutes24 cookiesCan be out and about for guests to grab-and-go
White chocolate macadamia cookiesWhite baking chips, macadamia nuts, baking soda, all-purpose flour, vanilla, egg, sugar, and butterCream butter and sugars together, and add wet ingredients. Stir in the dry ingredients. Lastly, add the macadamia and chocolate chips. Drop spoons full on a tray and bake at 350 F for 13 minutesMakes 30 cookiesCan be out and about for guests to grab-and-go
M&M Oreo cookiesM&Ms, Oreos, all-purpose flour, salt, baking soda, vanilla, butter, brown sugar, eggsWhisk vanilla, butter, egg, and sugar together. Stir in the dry ingredients and chopped cookies. Add mix to the pan and sprinkle over the M&Ms. Bake for 30 minutes at 350F.Makes nine big cookiesCan be out and about for guests to grab-and-go

Dessert: Brownie Variations

A brownie will make even the toughest of hearts melt, and it is a perfect, compact dessert option for your beach party. Test your recipe before making it for the party to ensure it is nice, moist, and doesn’t crumble. No matter what flavor you decide, these are usually the show’s stars.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Chocolate BrowniesSalt, butter, baking soda, all-purpose flour, vanilla, eggs, chocolate chips, instant coffee, water, brown sugar, and sugarBoil sugars, butter, water, and coffee together in a saucepan. Remove from heat and stir in some of the chocolate chips. Whisk the eggs until foamy, and add vanilla. Stir in the dry ingredients and the rest of the chocolate chips. Bake at 325F for 50 minutesMakes 16 browniesCool, dry place. It doesn’t have to be in the cooler at the beach
Mexican BrowniesDark chocolate chips, fudge-brownie mix, cinnamon, ancho chile powder, eggs, canola oil, and waterMix all the dry ingredients. Then add all the wet ingredients and bake at 350 F for 20 minutes.Makes 24 browniesCool, dry place. It doesn’t have to be in the cooler at the beach
Chocolate chip blondiesChocolate chips, salt, baking powder, all-purpose flour, vanilla, eggs, butter, and brown sugarMix the wet ingredients and sugar. Add the dry ingredients and stir in the chocolate chips. Bake at 350 F for 15 minutesMakes 36 blondiesStore in a container; you can leave it outside for a while

Dessert: Rice Krispy Treats

Rice Krispy treats are a great addition to brownies, or you can partner them together. You can even match them to your theme by adding color to them or making some exclusive recipe no one has ever seen a Rice Krispy treat look before.

Dish NameIngredientsMethodServesStorage
Strawberry shortcake Rice Krispy treatsFreeze-dried strawberries, white chocolate chips, rice Krispies, butter, and marshmallowsMelt butter and marshmallows completely. Remove and add rice Krispies, 2 cups white chocolate chips, and 2 cups strawberries. Microwave the rest of the chocolate and strawberries, and drizzle over the treatsMakes 15 rice Krispy treatsKeep in the cooler at the beach
S’mores Krispy treatsMarshmallow crème, confectioners’ sugar, butter, milk chocolate chips, graham crackers, rice Krispies, mini marshmallows, and butter. Toppings: graham crackers, milk chocolate candy barsMelt butter, add the marshmallows, and stir until smooth. Remove and add rice Krispies and crushed crackers. Add chocolate chips. Add to a greased pan and cool. Icing: Mix the confectioners’ sugar and butter. Blend in marshmallow crème and spread over treats. Sprinkle some crumbles cracker and add a small piece of chocolate on top.24 treatsKeep in the cooler at the beach.

Dessert: Anything Fruit

Fruit is always a winner at a summer party. It is also an easy theme if you want to consider it. You can do fruit in many shapes, sizes, and dishes, which can cool the guests while they enjoy a healthy treat. As mentioned previously, you can add fruits to a stick or make a fruity salad. Either way, you cannot go wrong with fruit.

shutterstock 160513031

#2 Summer Salads Can Work For A Beach Party

Salads might be a bit more effort for you as the host. You will need disposable bowls and forks and then have to make sure you have a dustbin or garbage bag for everyone to dispose of their utensils safely. A great idea would be to pre-pack these at home and offer each guest their bowl and fork.

This way, you eliminate the hassle of bringing an oversized container with salad to feed an army and minimize the time you keep your guests from the entertainment and fun.

  • Pasta Salad: Pasta is refreshing and filling; anyone will enjoy it. Pasta is also cheap, and you don’t have to add many ingredients to your pasta to make it memorable. Choose a sauce like mayonnaise (add condensed milk for a sweet twist) and shredded veggies. You can add chicken, tuna, or ham as a protein source if you want to.
  • Fruit Salad: Fruit salad can be amazing, especially if you have a variety of fruits like pineapple chunks, berries, papaya, watermelon, mango, apples, and oranges. It might be a clever idea to separate the fruit and mix them only at the beach. Or you could opt for fruit that doesn’t get soggy, like papaya and mango.

#3 Sandwiches For The Win At A Beach Party

Even though sandwiches technically would fall under finger foods, it deserves their heading. A wide variety of bread and sandwiches will complement your beach party, and no one ever says no to a TLB.

Toasted Sandwich Options

The possibility of toasted sandwiches is endless. Ham and cheese, chicken and mayo, tomato and cheese, or something funny like peanut butter and banana can all work on a toasted sandwich. You can add any mix of toppings you love and enjoy and make it a success.

Pita Bread Options

Pita bread is quite filling, and it looks like a party. You can toss anything in there to make it a delicious combination. You can go for pizza flavors, sweet treats, vegetarian options, or saucy and meaty. Most packaging stores sell a pouch where pita bread will fit in nicely.

This way, you can serve it to each guest and make it look professional. Remember to tell them where to dispose of the packaging.

Can A Sub Work At A Beach Party?

When thinking of a sub, you might visualize a huge loaf with toppings falling out and sauce dripping. It doesn’t have to be this big for your beach party subs. Keep them compact, easy to eat with the hands, and not too full that half of the toppings end up on the floor.

#4 Drinks for A Beach Party

Usually, drinks on the beach are not allowed to have any alcohol content, which could be a plus. It can save you money; people know that alcohol is prohibited on beaches and won’t query anything.

  • Welcoming drinks – these can include anything that brings out your theme or that might fit a beach vibe. It could be a tropical-looking drink, juices, or a bottle with levels of liquid making it look like a cocktail. Afterward, each guest can use their bottle to refill with any other drinks available.
  • Water – Water is crucial when at the beach and in the sun. Not everyone wants to drink high-calorie drinks and will opt for water throughout the day. Always plan to have cold water at your beach party and enough.
  • Cans of Soda – Cans are easy to serve many guests. They open the cooler, choose a flavor they want, and go off. Remember to have a disposable site for the cans; this idea would be minor maintenance.
  • Punch – Punch combines juices, cool drinks, and ice. These are pretty yummy and sometimes nice to serve as something different. It might be better to use these as a welcoming drink, or you could add them to bottles and keep them cool in the cooler.

Are There Themes That Could Work For Beach Party Food?

A beach party is usually already themed “Beach.” You don’t have to feel pressured to have a theme for your party, as most guests will take on the “beach vibe” 100%.

If you want to, you could go for a Hawaiian theme and include drinking welcoming drinks from a coconut, adding ryes around each guest’s neck when they arrive, and you can hire hula dancers for entertainment if you’d like. The food would be fruity and meaty.

You can try “under the sea” for a kiddies’ party. All the colors of the drinks and foods will focus more on shades of blues. You can do a party pack with snacks that are easy to eat, and everyone has their own. The best way would be to avoid cake and add cookies, or rice Krispy treats to the party box because icing and sand don’t mix too well.

Another island-inspired theme you might think would work on a beach – is Indonesian islands. These islands are mostly known for their spicy foods, sushi, and bowls of deliciousness. Depending on your setup, it might work or not.

It might work if you have tables available or are using a venue next to a beach. Having only the beach, sushi on the sand, or a saucy, spicy bowl might not go down well.


Life is a beach, and a beach party will make your celebrations extra special. Ensure you have the correct type of food to enhance the party’s experience. Also, budget to have more food than too little, people enjoying the sun and the beach are extra parched.