Chili cook-off organization for entries
Funny thing about hosting a chili cook-off party… you invariably end up with a lot of crock pots full of chili! In the past, we have tried a couple of different methods for labeling the chili pots so that everyone can easily vote on them. We ran into problems with the numbers getting moved, the ladles getting mixed up, and the chili getting dripped all over the tables. So this year, we brainstormed until we came up with a solution to our chili disorganization — foil oven liners! I didn’t even know these things existed until I spotted them in the store, and I knew they were just what we needed.
I couldn’t leave them that sorry shade of boring foil silver. No, I had to whip out one of my favorite tools, spray paint. I especially love glossy spray paint. First, I had Little Jo lay out all of the foil liners on a big sheet of plastic I put on the floor of our garage. I let her do this because she loves to “help”, and because she’s a lot closer to the ground, so bending over to straighten them out wasn’t nearly as taxing on her back as it would’ve been on mine.
Then McGeeky and I spray painted them solid red with two coats of paint. While they dried, I made a stencil of a spoon shape with a piece of cardboard, then used that to spray paint some yellow spoons onto each tray.
Sure, all this painting wasn’t necessary, and the foil liners would work fine plain, but I think the paint made them turn out a whole lot cuter. And without that spoon outline there, how on earth would guests know where to put that ladle?
You’ll notice the cute little numbered crockpot on the tray. Labeling chili with numbers is an extremely important element to a cook-off, because people will be voting on the chili based on the numbers. For that, we have some super cute crockpot labels. These are part of our full Chili Cook-off Printables collection on Etsy, and coordinate with our invitations and voting ballots. There are even labels that say “vegetarian” and “spicy”, and some with names of various meats that each chili might contain. We have some friends with allergies or who don’t eat meat, so it is nice for them to know if a chili is safe for them to eat or not.
I printed out enough labels for the cookoff, cut them out, and then used my laminator to laminate them. I am so glad I took the extra step, because they did get chili on them, but it wiped off the plastic easily. This means I can re-use them again next year!
To make sure the numbers didn’t blow away or get mixed up, I used a little bit of sticky tack to hold them in place.
These labels also coordinate perfectly with our voting ballots, and the clear numbering makes it so much easier to vote.
If you like these chili pot labels, you can purchase our template to print your own. It’s part of our Chili Cookoff Printables collection that’s available on Etsy. This collection lets you make:
- These matching chili pot numbers and labels
- Our customizable Chili Cookoff invitations
- Our matching voting ballots and scoresheet
- Our fun chili pepper banner and decorations that are great for hosting your own chili cookoff party
If you’re hosting a chili cook-off this fall, we’d love to hear all about it! And if you’re looking for some ideas for decorating, we love these festive chili pepper dishes for condiments like cheese and sour cream, and decoration is easy with chili pepper garland and chili pepper confetti. And who doesn’t love a pinata?