Amanda Freitag's Go-To Meal For Having Friends Over Is So Relatable - Exclusive

To some, cooking for guests can be a high-stress and high-stakes experience. Feeling the need to impress our friends, family and even dates with delicious, one-of-a-kind meals can turn what's supposed to be a fun get-together into a battle royale with our ovens, pans, and cutting boards in a kitchen version of the Thunderdome. But celebrity chef and TV personality Amanda Freitag has a different take on how to cook for when her friends come over. Instead of preparing for the Hunger Games, Freitag prefers to keep it simple and go with some easy — but delectable — dishes for her guests.

"I usually cook very simply when friends come over," Frietag told Mashed in an exclusive interview during the South Beach Wine & Food Festival. "I love doing snacky shared things, whether it be like mezze, where we have breads and labneh and hummus and veggies."

According to Freitag, it's best to start simple. If you're dreading company, set out a classic charcuterie board made with items of your choice. The possibilities are endless — whether you're into hummus and veggies, meats and cheeses, or assorted crackers and breads, there's a way to make it into a charcuterie board. A great snack spread takes the pressure off the main event, which is where Freitag changes up the food but doesn't abandon simplicity.

She loves simple, Italian-style entrées

After letting her guests devour the snacks, Amanda Freitag likes to do an easy main entrée to complete the meal. For her, the ideal style of preparation is something shared that can be made in bulk in a big pot or pan. "I'll usually do one main entrée of something really easy to add," Freitag told Mashed. "Or I'll do Italian style. I love a big Sunday sauce, lots of pasta, Caesar salad, break bread, red wine. That's the best."

Freitag makes cooking for guests less scary for the rest of us, showing us that we can entertain without driving ourselves crazy trying to prepare a five-star meal for everyone that walks into our homes. And if her simple spread still sounds complicated to you, don't worry. Her show "#EasyAF," which airs on TikTok and Instagram, aims to teach basic cooking skills and guide eager beginner chefs through easy and delicious recipes. When asked about the show, Freitag stated that while she had many reasons for creating it, her main reasons were that she wanted to continue to make cooking videos and help teach others to make delicious food.

"I don't get to cook that much on Food Network anymore; I'm doing a lot of judging," Freitag said. "I wanted to teach people how to cook because I find that when we make complicated recipes, people will say, 'Wait, how do you chop an onion?' So I want to get people comfortable in the kitchen, and I can reach so many people on those platforms." Some of the recipes already up on Freitag's page include a braised short rib sandwich, homemade marinara, and potato and kale soup — all of which would be great for your next gathering with friends.

To learn more about the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, visit the festival's website.