Preparing and cooking food for a hundred people was not something that I was prepared to do. I didn't have the supplies, kitchen space or energy to even consider doing so. As I was talking with some friends trying to get them to help, we decided to start looking into some catering options instead of doing all of the work ourselves. I had no idea that there were so many types of caterers that prepared such a wide variety of foods. That is why I created my blog to help others considering using a catering service to prepare the food for their next party.
If you're planning a wedding, business event, or other get together, having food catered can help you save time and effort and allow you to focus on your guests. Catering for an event is nice, but the costs can add up quickly. Before you enlist the help of a caterer for your next gathering, consider these money saving tips.
Shorten it Up
If you want to serve food but also want to save money, shorten the time of your event when food will be served and eaten. If there is a guest speaker, do not serve food until the speaker is finished with their presentation. If you have a lot of other activities planned, make the food portion a focal point rather than part of the entire event. The less time your caterer and servers are on the clock, the less money you're spending. This will also cut down on the amount of food served as people nosh throughout the event. Make it more formal and only serve food for a set amount of time.
Lighten the Menu
Full course lunches and dinners along with desserts and beverages can cost quite a bit of money. Since it takes caterers a lot of work and preparation to make more elaborate dishes, those costs are passed on to you. Have small finger foods and simple desserts like fruit instead of individually made cupcakes or other desserts. Appetizer sized foods will satisfy your guests without the extra cost it takes to serve full course meals.
Simplify Dinner and Drink Ware
Rather than have glassware for every beverage, serve everything to visitors in one glass. Disposable plates, cups, and napkins will certainly cost less than using china and fancy silverware. Caterers have to set the table, wash the dishes, and transport these items to and fro, but with disposable items, cleanup is easy and there's a lot less to contend with. This simple change can really make a difference in your budget. You can also buy these items yourself rather than have the catering company provide it, which will also help you save.
Keep an Eye On the Bar
If alcohol is being served at your event, consider making mixed cocktails or sangria instead of serving individual beers or glasses of wine. Alcohol is one of the priciest parts of catering services, but by making larger batches of mixed drinks, you can shave off some cost. Another recommendation is to give each guest only a few "drink tickets" and then make the rest of their beverages cash bar only. Providing free alcohol to lots of guests is a surefire way to run up your total tab.Share