Most stressful things about hosting guests – including cooking food to perfection

Millions of hosts like the idea of entertaining at home – but end up wishing the day and night away because they find it so stressful.

A poll of 2,000 adults, who cook food for guests, found the most challenging things about hosting include making sure the meal tastes nice, elements of the menu are cooked at the same time, and being stuck in the kitchen and not able to socialise.

And a third worry about keeping all their guests entertained – but 19 per cent start cleaning when they want to hint it’s time for people to leave.

Despite this, 26 per cent are planning to host this Easter bank holiday weekend, with 24 per cent of those feeling apprehensive about festivities.

In a bid to help combat the stress, Jamie Oliver has partnered with Tesco, which commissioned the research, to create a fuss-free, prep-ahead, five-ingredient roast leg of lamb recipe, and a hot cross bun pudding which uses leftover buns, and costs just £0.63 per portion.

Jamie Oliver has created some easy and cheap recipes for adults hosting this Easter
Jamie Oliver has created some easy and cheap recipes for adults hosting this Easter

Jamie said: “My secret to cooking a roast for a crowd is to choose a deliciously easy recipe that’s reliable, you can prep ahead of time, and one where the oven does all the hard work – so you can spend time with family and friends, and not be stuck in the kitchen.”

It also emerged almost half (47 per cent) stress about getting the house clean enough for guests, while 38 per cent worry about the meal tasting good enough to impress.

Easter will be spent celebrating at home this year – and, of those who aren’t hosting, 22 per cent will enjoy being a guest at someone else’s house.

The research also found that 43 per cent of hosts have regretted overcomplicating a menu for a get-together, with 52 per cent of those desperate to impress.

But 44 per cent of those polled, via OnePoll, want a challenge.

Tesco has worked with Jamie Oliver to curate 30 limited edition “Easter in a box” hampers including recipes and treats, which can be won via the supermarket’s Instagram and Facebook pages.

Alessandra Bellini, chief customer officer, said: “We know that many of our customers celebrate Easter, and we want to help them to come together with friends and family over good food at great prices.

“We’ve created some delicious recipes with Jamie to show people that hosting a gathering over the long weekend can be low stress, low spend, and maximum enjoyment, especially when taking advantage of our cracking Easter offers in store.”


  1. Making sure my house is clean and tidy for guests
  2. Making sure the food tastes nice
  3. Making sure all elements of the meal are cooked at the same time
  4. Keeping guests entertained
  5. Catering to everybody’s tastes
  6. Making sure the food is cooked to perfection
  7. Getting through all the washing up afterwards
  8. Being stuck in the kitchen and not being able to socialise or chill out
  9. Worrying the meal is good enough quality
  10. People turning up early or late
  11. Not having enough food to go around
  12. Not having enough time to prepare
  13. Guests’ dietary requirements/restrictions
  14. Worrying the chosen recipe won’t work
  15. Worrying your guests will break something or spill drinks on your furniture
  16. Topics of conversation with guests
  17. Who to invite, and ensuring all guests get on
  18. Keeping guests waiting between courses
  19. Cooking too much food
  20. Family members quizzing you about your life i.e. work life, love life, etc.

WalesOnline – Food & Drink