How to: Planning a kids' birthday party

Planning a kids’ birthday party doesn’t have to be a hassle. Keep it simple and concise by picking a singular theme and carrying that theme throughout the party. Once your theme is selected, focus on three party must-haves: decorations, food, and party favors.

Pick a theme and decorate accordingly

Planning a Kids’ Birthday Party

Since our birthday party was carnival themed, we decorated with a backdrop that mimicked a carnival canopy and dressed all of the tabletops with disposable white tablecloths. We spread peanuts and paper chains made from tickets throughout our dessert table. While making sure to display all of the food at our party in bright, festive serving dishes.

Prepare festive foods  

With a little imagination and creativity, you can turn any food into the perfect party food. Give snacks and desserts unique, fun names that are related to your party theme. Serve your food buffet style and allow kids to leisurely serve themselves between the party games and activities.

Salty-Sweet Popcorn Balls

Salty-Sweet Popcorn Balls

For our birthday party, we twisted up some traditional popcorn balls by decorating them with chocolate pieces and serving each popcorn ball in a colorful cupcake liner for a salty-sweet treat that kids will love. You can customize the recipe for your own themed birthday party by adding chocolate pieces and using cupcake liners that match the colors of your event.

Strong Man Vanilla Pudding Cups

Strong Man Vanilla Pudding Cups

Pudding cups are a great birthday party snack option. Not only are they an easy-to-eat, single-serve snack. But you can also mix any type of cookie or candy into each pudding cup. This makes the kid-approved treat an easily customizable food option for any birthday party theme. For our carnival birthday party, we made Strong Man Vanilla Pudding Cups by attaching a mustache sticker onto the outside of each vanilla pudding cup. We created barbells by placing two marshmallows onto a paper straw and resting the straw above crushed vanilla wafers.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Rods

Peanut Butter Pretzel Rods

Regardless what birthday party theme you decide on, Peanut Butter Pretzel Rods are a great food option for any kids’ party. These 3-ingredient snacks can be coated with white chocolate morsels, colored sprinkles, shredded coconut, chopped walnuts and other kid-approved toppings. If you’re having a carnival-themed party, serve your Peanut Butter Pretzel Rods in a clear, large vase, filled with bright candy pieces.

Thank guests with DIY party favors

Easy Clown Bow Ties for a Kids’ Birthday

DIY party favors that match the theme are a must when it comes to birthday party ideas for kids. To bring our carnival birthday party full circle, we made these easy Clown Bow Ties that kids can attach to their shirts. Need a little inspiration when it comes to deciding on the perfect party favors? Spend an afternoon at your local dollar store or craft store. You’ll be sure to leave with some hot glue and plenty of possibilities. 

Photos and concepts for our carnival birthday party were provided by Ericka Sanchez of Nibbles and Feasts.