Dinners on the Beach

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I love to entertain and serve dinners on the beach. The sunset provides an amazing backdrop for a fun dinner with friends and family.

I thought it might be fun to share some dinners I have hosted on the beach. We are fortunate to have a beach house located on a beach where alcohol is allowed on the beach! So dinner with wine is one of our favorite ways to spend an evening in Ventura.

Dinner on the Beach

Dinner on the beach. It’s one of my favorite ways to entertain. It’s so special that it’s almost hard to put into words.

Dinners on the Beach

What makes dinner at our beach so special?  I think it has something to do with scrunching your toes in the sand, sitting oceanfront with a view of the sunset, listening to the sound of the waves, drinking great wine, and eating great food. And you get to do all of this with family and friends.

Does it get any better than this?

Dinner on the Beach

A Magical Dinner on the Beach

We are lucky that we have a lot of warm evenings at the beach in Southern California and the weather in Ventura has been great for my dinners on the beach.

For this dinner, I created a table and used metal stakes to hang some mason jars with sea glass. The sunset this evening was just incredible.

A Magical Dinner on the Beach

Dinner on the Beach on a Cloudy Day

Sometimes the weather doesn’t cooperate and the sun isn’t out when it is time for dinner. I decided to go ahead and host this dinner at beach because … well I had already set up everything!

And everyone was excited about dinner.

And the table looked great. Can I just say how cool it is that we sat with our toes in the sand!

Dinner on the Beach on a Cloudy Day 4
Dinner on the Beach on a Cloudy Day

Dinner on the Beach with Solar Lanterns

This beach dinner happened on the most amazing evening. I can’t even begin to tell you how incredible the evening was. The beautiful sound of the waves and the sunset views were the best decor and sounds we could ever hope for.

Dinner on the Beach with Solar Lanterns

For this dinner, we celebrated with some of my friends who had never dined on the beach. It was so much fun to spoil them. 

Dinner on the Beach

The dinner was a bit last minute because the fog came in at about ten that morning and stayed for a few hours. I was afraid that we wouldn’t be able to dine on the beach but it burned off in the afternoon. That’s when I knew we could have dinner on the beach.

My decor, however, was pretty minimal. Here’s the thing. A few years ago I realized that 90% of the decor was the sunset and the colorful sky. There is no reason to compete with it. Embrace it and realize the entire evening will be focused on the sunset.

Dinner on the Beach

I found a vintage tablecloth with the right colors and placed some fall leaves into two vases. I added my DIY fairy light mason jars which I made a few months ago. Instead of hanging them, I just placed them on the table.

Dinner on the Beach

In case you are wondering, there weren’t very many people on the beach on Saturday night. In fact, it was pretty much our beach the entire time. I think my neighbors are used to seeing me set up a dinner on the beach. The beaches aren’t that crowded and it’s the perfect setting to set up a dinner and have the entire beach to yourself. 

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Dinner on the Beach

Dinner Recipe

I did not cook a fancy dinner because we ate a late lunch and decided we wanted a salad. So we enjoyed some great wine and an awesome Healthy Chicken Caesar Salad. 

Yield: 4 serviings

Healthy Chicken Caesar Salad

Healthy Chicken Caesar Salad

This is a delicious and healthy Chicken Caesar Salad recipe. It has a few unexpected but wonderful ingredients.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • Three large boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup non-dairy yogurt
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Canola Oil mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. chopped anchovies
  • 1 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp chopped onion
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 8 cups romaine lettuce, cut into medium-sized pieces
  • 1 cup sliced cucumber
  • 1 avocado, sliced and cut into pieces
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

Instructions

  1. Place the chicken in a Ziploc bag with the olive oil, oregano, garlic, sea salt, and pepper. Marinade for at least one hour.
  2. Cook the chicken on the grill at medium heat. Sear on each side, then turn the heat up to medium-high and cook the chicken on indirect heat until done, about twenty minutes. (Indirect heat means place chicken to the side of the lit burner.)
  3. Mix all of the ingredients for the caesar dressing in a bowl, and refrigerate until ready to use.
  4. Wash and cut, or tear, the lettuce. Slice the avocado and cucumber.
  5. Place the lettuce, avocado, cucumber, in a bowl, and toss with dressing. Top with pumpkin seeds.
Dinner on the Beach

The air was pretty humid so the wine glasses were “foggy” all night long!

Dinner on the Beach

I love hosting five people for dinner because I can arrange the seating so that everyone has an ocean front seat and view. I thought about setting the table closer to the water but I wasn’t sure if it would be a good thing if our toes ended up getting wet. Besides, I learned the hard way once that if you misjudge the tide it can ruin your dinner! I chose to go the safe route this time. Thank heavens.

Dinner on the Beach

The secret to making this dinner is that the location is so unique. Even if you can’t set up dinner on the beach, you can find a  unique location in your own home. Try finding somewhere that would be a new location for dinner. Somewhere you have never eaten before.

Dinner on the Beach

As the sun set, the twinkle lights in the mason jars automatically came on to add some light. It was beautiful.

Dinner on the Beach with Mason Jar Lights

Setting the Table

Links to the Items to Create a Beautiful Fall Table

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Dinners on the Beach

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20 Comments

  1. How fortunate you are live practically on the beach. Perfect setting. Your friend is very lucky to have you in her life

  2. There is a series on Amazon “The Durells in Corfu”. They often set a dinner table in the water to beat the heat. It’s one of my favorite scenes. Of course I don’t think they had the same type of waves you probably have.

  3. I need to see a beach sunset sometime!! I live a few miles from the beach over here in New Hampshire, and we get the beach sunrises. It’s the perfect way to start a day!

  4. Was wondering if I saw this being set up. Hubby and I were staying at a nearby hotel. I’ll have to borrow the idea for our next weekend out there!

  5. Please don’t call this chicken Caesar Salad. It in no way resembles a TRUE Caesar salad. It may have some common ingredients; however, it is not a Caesar Salad. Also, if you make Caesar Salad in the original, traditional way, it is a very healthy salad. Unfortunately, over the years all types of garbage has been added to make it a very unhealthy salad.

  6. Hi Leslie! I was brought to your website because I remembered your 3o day painting challenges! I loved doing them and you brought so many artists together. I was wondering if you might ever host them again.
    This post is beautiful! I loved in Ventura for a year in 2016. Loved it, but can’t complain about my move to San Clemente! Ventura is a special place.
    Jennifer

  7. So I’m curious…..how do you get everything (including the food) down to the beach? Does it require several trips? That short table and the cushions look heavy and large. Are the dishes packed for the trip down? I love your ideas! I even painted my kitchen and adjoining living room in your favorite white! Thanks!

  8. I love your beach dinner posts! I have a quick question. Where do you buy your chairs? They look clean and simple and easy to store. We have a lot of backyard parties and I love that yours are white!

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