caribbean dinner party
Adult Parties Summer Decor

How You Can Throw An Elegant Indoor Tropical Dinner Party

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Summer is here and wee are no stranger to summer tablescapes. The inspiration for this simple tropical themed dinner party came from these big monstera floor plant we found at Michaels. We removed each branch and we actually did the centerpieces to Kelly’s bridal shower. But of course, we found other ways to use these beautiful tropical leaves.

Recently, Danny invited some friends over. It was supposed to be a beautiful summer day. We had a plan for a tropical setting in the yard. And boom, the weather decided to change abruptly. It was going to rain exactly when we were going to have our guests over.

Elegant tropical tablescape for indoors.

So we adjusted the plans pretty quickly. We now moved this tropical dinner party indoors. The first thing we came up with was this floor plant placed right by the dining room table. We love this woven basket from Marshall’s so we used it as the base. Since the basket is pretty wide, you’ll need to place the palm stems into a thinner glass vase. Then place the vase within the basket.

We took the additional leaves and used them throughout the dinner party.

Monstera Leaf Plant

More Summer Tablescapes You’ll Love:

Simple Tropical Tablescape

There are a few elements to this tablescape but we think it came out really nice!

Monstera Leaf Plate Setting

First up, the plate setting. Start with a silver charger. These are so easy to find these days, you can even get them at your local dollar store. Then we place one large monstera leaf, almost covering the charger completely. We got this pack of monstera leaves on Oriental Trading.

Make your own custom napkin ring from mini monstera leaves.

Add a clear plate so you can see the leaf. Finish off the plate setting with this a crisp white fabric napkin held by a handmade napkin ring. Place the silverware within the napkin ring as well.

DIY Tropical Napkin Ring

The trick to making your own napkin rings is having a round base to make it easy to start. Shower curtain rings are perfect for this! We gave it a rustic feel by wrapping the shower curtain ring with raffia string. Finally, glue two monstera leaves onto the ring. Micheals sells these small leaves in a bag.


Use shower curtain rings or toilet paper rings to make custom napkin rings.
Raffa string is great for a tropical theme project.
Green and silver place setting

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Elegant Tropical Centerpiece

For this elegant centerpiece, we used three clear large cylinders. We placed one monstera leaf within the cylinder and pressed it up against the glass. Then we place one large electric candle within the cylinder.

Tropical Candle Centerpiece

Everything on the table looked pretty dark so we needed a way for the centerpiece to stand out. We improvised and added this white wooden shelf. This really made the leaves pop from the dark mahogany table. It also brought everything together with the crisp white linens. Finally, casually lay extra monstera leaves on the white wood board in between the cylinders. 


simple and elegant tropical dinner party
simple and elegant tropical dinner party

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Caribbean Themed Appetizers

Since Danny and I are Dominican, this Caribbean themed food is really just food to us! 🙂

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Tropical Charcuterie Board 

You can easily make a charcuterie board with some classics and add a tropical twist. Here we started with hummus, chips, nuts, salami, and cranberries, but then topped it off with plantain strips and yuca chips.

Charcuterie board with Caribbean snacks

Traditional Caribbean Empanadas 

Empanadas are very popular in the Caribbean. You can easily make them with cheese, shredded chicken, or ground beef. All you need are the right tortillas. We recommend the frozen batch made by Goya that you can find in the freezer aisles. Place filling in the middle of the tortilla, fold it over and press edges with your fork. Fry until tortillas are crispy.

Traditional Caribbean empanadas
Traditional Caribbean empanadas

Pineapple Fruit Platter

This cool pineapple fruit platter is great to serve as an appetizer or with dessert. Cut up one pineapple and a quarter of watermelon into slices. Place the pineapple head in the center of a bright tray. Then layer the fruit around the head. Finally, place on a serving platter just to give it height.

Easy pineapple fruit platter
Easy pineapple fruit platter

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Tropical Dinner Menu

For dinner, we served classic Caribbean meals. I’ve included great recipes for these delicious meals:

Yellow Rice & Chicken – A classic Caribbean dish.

White Rice & Beans – Another staple dish.

Pastelón de Plátano Maduro – A traditional Dominican plantain dish.

Tostones – Green plantain side dish (great with rice dishes)

Bread and Butter Display Hack 

We can have a dozen serving trays but sometimes we don’t have the right one. Here’s a quick hack if you don’t have a tray for rolls. Use a cake stand and turn it upside down. Place a small bowl in the center for butter and place the rolls around it. This also works great for chips and salsa!

Serving Tray Hack
Easy pineapple fruit platter

Easy Self Serve Salad Bar

We love to offer guests options so they can pick their favorites. This self-serve salad bar is great for any dinner party. Use different sectional serving platters to hold salad toppings. Add citrus elements like oranges for a tropical twist.

Easy pineapple fruit platter

Easy Tropical Dessert Table

Our best tip for amazing desserts during a dinner party is to start with simple basics, add 1 twist and serve in the most unique way.

It may look like we spent all day baking away in the kitchen but we didn’t. These are boxed desserts! 

How to serve tropical desserts
How to serve tropical desserts

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Guava Cupcakes

Take yellow box cake. Bake it in a flower mold so that the beautiful shape stands out. Place the cake inside a martini or dessert glass. Add a bit of vanilla frosting. Add a tropical touch by topping with mini guava squares you can get at your local supermarket. Finalize with a fresh mint leaf.

How to serve tropical desserts
How to serve tropical desserts

Mini Tres Leches Dessert

These tres leches cake shots are favorites of our guests. We have made these at a lot of parties and they are always a crowd pleaser. Once again, most of these elements are store bought, it just needs a bit of mixing and presentation!

How to serve tropical desserts


1 Box yellow cake (you can use pound cake as well)

1 can carnation milk

2 can evaporated milk

1 1/4 cup of whole milk

2 tablespoons of vanilla 

1/4 cup sugar

2 tablespoon of cinnamon

Cinnamon sticks for garnish

How to serve tropical desserts


  • Remove the edges of the cake and crumble it in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
  • In another bowl, combine all 3 types of milk, sugar, and vanilla. Mix well. 
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the cake mix. Pour until the consistency is not too wet and not too dry. 
  • Refrigerate for 2- 3 hours. 
  • When ready to serve, pour the mixture into shot glasses.
  • Top with small scoop vanilla icing, sprinkle powdered cinnamon, and garnish with a small cinnamon stick.
How to serve tropical desserts

Finally, we added some chocolate creme filled wafers. 

How to serve tropical desserts

Caribbean Beverage

Tamarind is a pretty unique fruit cultivated in many tropical regions. Tamarind juice is a Caribbean favorite so it was our choice of beverage for this dinner party. Place empty mason jars, tamarind juice, and lime water on a serving tray. Add another monstera leaf to bring the theme together.

Traditional Caribbean drinks
Traditional Caribbean drinks

So that’s our tropical indoor dinner party. What do you think? Mr. Bear sure liked it!

Bring summer inside with an indoor tropical theme
Traditional Caribbean drinks

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