Riverside, California (NAPSI) - Whether you’re throwing a game day party or hosting a family gathering, feeding a crowd can be simpler than you may realize. To help you save time and trouble, chef Jennifer Manning, Culinary Expert with the Kraft Kitchens, offers these easy tips and advice:

“The key to saving time when hosting a get-together is organizing your menu and creating a timeline of your preparation steps,” says Manning. “Selecting recipes that can be prepared ahead of time is a huge time-saver for you and will allow you to relax and spend more time with your guests.”

Entertaining Made Easy

• Do the Math: Make sure you have enough food to feed everyone. A good rule of thumb is three to four different kinds of appetizers for a party of 15. Plan to offer at least one to 1½ servings of each appetizer to each guest.

• Use a Slow Cooker: This dish can double as a serving and cooking device. Try Slow-Cooker Hearty Chili with ground beef, beans and cheese for a tasty and hearty winning dish. Best part? Use the leftovers as a topper for nachos to save time in the kitchen the next day.

• Serve a Custom-Created Beverage: A pitcher of your favorite beverage creation will free you up from bartending duties.

• Make-Ahead Spreads: Hot spreads and creamy dips can be assembled, covered and refrigerated a day in advance. Bake them just before guests arrive so they’re hot out of the oven at party time.

• Preprep: Buy precut veggies to lessen your chopping time. Celery, cauliflower, peppers and baby carrots can all be bought the day before and simply laid out on a tray for easy dipping.

• Save the Mess: Let sticky chicken wings fly off to Buffalo and instead enjoy a tangy, no-mess Buffalo Chicken Dip featuring PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese with a side of crackers or crudités. Much easier to make—and to clean up.

Learn More

You can find many more great tips and recipe suggestions for entertaining at www.CreamCheese.com.