Party Food Ideas for a Delicious Nancy Drew Detective Party
February 7, 2024
Nancy Drew birthday party food table

Party Food Ideas for a Delicious Nancy Drew Detective Party

Party food ideas abound but if you want to design a menu that works with the theme and ties in your color scheme…..this is the mystery party food for you! There are lots of Nancy Drew food options mentioned in the books. You could choose a specific mystery and recreate a meal made by Nancy's housekeeper Hannah. OR you can let your guest of honor choose their favorite foods and design them into a perfect Nancy Drew Menu!

The perfect Nancy Drew detective party menu
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Nancy Drew Party Food Backdrop Ideas

Nancy Drew birthday party food table

When we constructed these built-ins I envisioned using them to serve party food and drink buffets. All the openings are the perfect opportunity to display additional party props to strengthen the theme.

Old timey travel items work well here with trunks, suitcases, and airplanes.

Additional vintage looking items like a wire caged lantern, tall skinny hourglass, and simple tea set (or this beautiful floral one) round out the shelving.

Nancy Drew birthday party food table backdrop

The focal point of the backdrop is the large Nancy Drew detective poster with a printable book page banner layered over the top. The banner has the title page of our star mystery, “The Sign of the Twisted Candles,” as the center point with book images and text pages to finish it off.

Because the Nancy Drew books are still under copyright I cannot sell these book page banners but all you need to do is make copies of different pages onto cardstock paper and cut them out into uniform sized rectangles that are taped to Baker's Twine or fishing line, whatever your preference.

I can, however, share the Nancy Drew Detective Poster with you here in the shop.

Nancy Drew Party Food Labels

Nancy Drew birthday party food table

The first way to make food on theme is to create fun names for your regular edible party fare. You can edit these printable Nancy Drew food labels to transform your food into anything you want!

And I know we're not to the dessert yet, but how amazing are these cakes by my friend Jennifer of Salt Cake City!? I mean 🥰. And yes, there are TWO cakes. I'll explain in a minute.

Savory Detective Party Food Ideas

Nancy Drew detective party wrapped sandwiches with custom picks

Toasted pesto, ham, and provolone sandwiches are SO GOOD! Especially on these yummy ciabatta buns. They take a minute to prepare so have guests get their appetizers first as you're broiling the sandwiches so they can be served nice and toasty. And Make sure guests know what they're getting by using Nancy Drew Food Labels to identify ingredients and the fun 2″ round cupcake toppers to make everything more festive!

Get the Look:

Baked brie and fruit Nancy Drew party food

Baked brie is another frequent special request. Serve with crackers, fruit slices, and finish off with these Nancy Drew cupcake toppers . Nancy Drew Food Labels available here.

Yellow fruit is a must have, options include:

  • Yellow Opal apple {as shown}
  • Ripe yellow Bartlett pear
  • Dark yellow Bosc pear
  • Crispy Asian pear
  • Mango slices
  • Pineapple chunks
  • Golden kiwi
Fresh veggie plate from Red Gate Farms Nancy Drew Food

A veggie plate is always a great idea to add to any party menu. It's amazing how many kids will eat veggies when they are set out and easily accessible. Choose fruits and vegetables in your party color scheme. In this case we have yellow and black options:

  • Yellow carrots
  • Yellow peppers
  • Yellow Sun Gold tomatoes
  • Black Olives

And make sure to reference the Red Gate Farm from the book! Nancy Drew Food Labels available here.

Nancy Drew Party Drink Ideas

Nancy Drew party drinks

Lemonade is the classic choice for a yellow Nancy Drew Party drink, but you can elevate it by choosing a sparkling lemonade {Trader Joe's} and giving it a fun name on our Nancy Drew Food Labels. The Cream Soda I found at an old fashioned candy shop and loved the color for our theme.

Nancy Drew Birthday Cake Ideas

Crime scene Nancy Drew party cake

I already mentioned we have TWO Nancy Drew cakes for this party. That is because we split the guest list into two different dates. A smaller guest list makes the party SO MUCH better for everyone. You can have themed party activities that are more involved. You can create, and craft, and bake, and learn better with a smaller number of friends. SO….

For party #1 – we served a 5″ round cake with Nancy, the footprints, and our crime scene tape makes me very happy! I especially love the magnifying glass Jennifer made with the sugar glass. This beauty is her Ruby Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese frosting and fondant details.

Nancy Drew birthday party book cake

Party #2 enjoyed my favorite – a book cake! This is so perfect for my book loving daughter.

Jennifer of Salt Cake City was able to customize the book cover. Instead of being book #9, she changed “The Sign of the Twisted Candles” to 12, and the author became the birthday girl. She also included 3 other favorite Nancy Drew mystery titles on the side of the cake, for a total of 4 stacked books in one incredible cake!

This “Berry Bliss” cake boasted a strawberry cake layer with raspberry filling and vanilla buttercream frosting. Salt Cake City currently has 78 different flavor options! You can check the menu out here, it's amazing.

Nancy Drew birthday party book cake

It was almost painful to cut this beautiful book cake but with the candle sticking out of the book candle flame it was perfect! This “Berry Bliss” flavor was amazing. It's one thing to create gorgeous frosting, it's quite another to ALSO have a deliciously moist cake!

Nancy Drew Sweet Party Food Ideas

Skeleton key cookies for Nancy Drew party food

SKELETON KEY COOKIES: The birthday girl, an aspiring baker {see our Baking Party from last year here}, decided to bake skeleton key sugar cookies with cream cheese frosting and fondant details. Not bad for a brand new 12 year old!

Get the Look:

Lucky lemon bars for Nancy Drew party food

LEMON BARS: Lemon bars are the birthday girl's favorite and she insisted on making a small batch for her party. They are indeed lucky. This mom doesn't usually allow so many treats at one event! You can get the Nancy Drew Food Labels here.

Nancy Drew detective mystery pops

These “Mystery Pops” were a last minute addition as I was looking through the bulk candy aisle and noticed the question marked Dum-Dums. I love that you can sift through and pick specific flavors in the bulk section at Winco Foods and others.

If you ever go and all the candy in a certain color is gone……that was probably me. I'm sorry! 😂 Nancy Drew Food Labels available here.

Nancy Drew decorated shelves for party food

FRUIT BARS: The final “treats” we sent home with the girls are the “That's It” banana + apple bars as “surveillance snacks”. I love these because they are just fruit and nothing else. Also, because “that's it!” seems like something Nancy would say in a moment of brilliance! I nestled the bars into a parfait cup of Lemon Heads for a prettier presentation.

CANDY POWDER: And finally, the blue pixie sticks make excellent “fingerprint powder”. You will have to purchase a big bag of pixie sticks and sort the colors on this one.

Get the Look:

Decor Items:

Nancy Drew Mystery Food Ideas

Nancy Drew birthday party food table

If you try any of these Nancy Drew mystery party food ideas, I'd love to hear about it in the comments below. And if you share photos, I want to see it too! Please tag us @partieswithacause on Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram. We love celebrating all your hard work! 

Then join me, your Healthy Hostess for better-for-you holiday and party foods. Grab your free food substitution guide as the first step in your next healthy holiday gathering.


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Until next time my friend! Signature and photo

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Gingerbread houses in a row as table runner centerpiece for a Christmas Cookie Exchange Party I’m Bri of Parties With A Cause. I’m a mother to three crazy awesome kids, interior designer, & party planning junky. I love reading, globe trotting, and frozen yogurt. And I’m elevating the party experience one cause at a time! Read More

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Healthy food substitutions lists

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If you're ready to improve your lifestyle and the health of your family, join me in the "Healthy Hostess" movement. Where we serve great food to the people we love. With food that nourishes the body and events that feed the soul. Use this food subtitution list to plan more intentional holidays and gatherings. Collect healthier recipes, less stuff, and more meaningful memories, with me at Parties With A Cause. 

You are on your way to Healthier events! One food substitution at a time.

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