Movie Night In

Written by Kristin Mansky of Modish & Main

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends and serve up a sophisticated take on some classic recipes. 

I relish the opportunity to stay home, throw on some comfortable loungewear, cozy up on the couch and sink into a good movie. Most often this is what date night looks like and we love to serve up a few elevated options on some of our favorite theatre snacks like popcorn, candy and ice cream. Whether it’s movie night in with your loved one, the whole family or you’ve invited your friends over for a casual night together, there are a few key tips to consider to ensure the experience is far better than heading out to the theaters (ahem … wine and gourmet popcorn at your disposal). 

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

#1 — Choosing Your Movie

This is arguably the most critical component of a successful movie night (others may say the food & drink are equally important). Consider your audience carefully. If it’s just a date night, maybe you switch week by week who gets to choose or if it’s a group gathering you may want to send out some suggestions ahead of time to get a feel for what everyone likes. We love to browse what’s on-demand, but often find ourselves streaming something from either Netflix or Amazon Prime. 

#2 — Get Comfortable

Besides saving the $15 per ticket, the best part about having a movie night in is getting to wear your most comfortable loungewear. You can opt for pajamas if you’d like, but these days plenty of clothing companies make lounge clothes in the softest of fabrics while still looking put together — perfect if you’re planning on having friends over. 

Don’t forget to have plenty of cozy blankets, extra pillows and candles. Worried about not having enough seating? Grab a few of those oversized pillows and set them on the floor throughout the room with a few extra throws. 

Don’t forget slippers. You can never go wrong with a great pair of slippers! 

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

#3 — The Snacks

A movie night in doesn’t exist without good snacks! We love to take a sophisticated spin on some of the classics, but still make them rather effortless, as this is, after all, a casual setting. A heaping bowl of popcorn is essential but change things up by offering a few elevated versions such as spicy chipotle + lime, parmesan + rosemary, cinnamon + sugar and my favorite, a peanut butter drizzle with peanut butter chips. Serve the popcorn in a large bucket or basket and be sure to offer side bowls or paper bags for guests to enjoy it in the comfort of their seats. 

Spicy Chipotle + Lime Popcorn 

  1. Make the popcorn on the stovetop (we love to make ours with coconut oil and sea salt). 
  2. Transfer popcorn to an extra large bowl or paper bag. Add 1-2 tbsp of chipotle chili powder (depending on your heat tolerance)
  3. Squeeze fresh juice from half a lime over the popcorn. 
  4. Follow by adding another 1/2 tsp of fresh lime zest. 
  5. Shake & serve.

Peanut Butter Drizzle Popcorn

  1. Once popcorn is made, place kernels on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. 
  2. In a small saucepan, combine 1/4 cup honey and 1/4 cup coconut sugar. Bring to slow boil and stir constantly for 3 minutes. 
  3. Add 1/4 cup peanut butter, pinch of sea salt and 1 tsp vanilla. Stir until melted and well combined. 
  4. Immediately drizzle of popcorn kernels. 
  5. Sprinkle peanut butter chips over melted sauce. 
  6. Toss to combine and add additional sea salt if needed. 
  7. You may have to break up large clusters of popcorn when serving. 

Feel free to serve small bowls of easy to grab snacks like dark chocolate almonds, homemade vegan Rolos, caramels, or even a meat & cheese plate if you’re feeling up to it. 

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

#4 — The Drinks

Another bonus of watching a movie at night home, the opportunity to sip on some delicious wine! Whether it’s date night or a group of friends, we love to serve K-J AVANT Red Blend because of it’s versatility to pair with so many foods, plus it appeases the Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Syrah drinkers. On date night, you can probably just get by with a single bottle, but if you’re planning on having more company over, grab a few more and place around the room so guests don’t have to go in search of refills.

Don’t forget to offer a non-alcoholic option such as sparkling water or soda. 

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

#5 — Post Discussion

Movies are a big production and they’re intended to provoke emotion, so take an opportunity to discuss with your guests their thoughts on the film. Plus, you’ll get a better feel for what the interests of the group are for the next movie selection.

Rather than venturing out to the movies and spending a mini fortune, opt for hosting a movie night IN with your family or friends.

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