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First Wedding Buffet Catering - help with amounts?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hello all!  We have catered cocktail parties, provided entrees in a drop-off arrangement, and helped "cater" post-funeral gatherings (pretty much finger foods available, restock the trays but stay out of the way deals).  We have not done a wedding buffet before but one of our clients really likes our food from some of the other gatherings so they have asked us to cater their wedding.  I need help with amounts.  The reception will be a little "unconventional" but what is conventional these days?  I apologize in advance of all the information I am giving but the devil is in the details so I thought I would share them all :)


Wedding will be outside with guests sitting on hay bales and the reception will be in a barn right next to the wedding.  The barn does not currently house animals but large tractors and tools.  They are installing additional power and an oven - water? not hot... wheeeee!


100 attendees, about half in their mid 20's and the other half in their late 40's and up.  The wedding will be between 6:00-6:30 with appetizers available from 6:30-7:00ish.  During that time, there will be the "first dances"... groom mother, bride father, first groom bride.  Dinner will then be available from around 7:00 until 9:00 when there will be a DJ playing music and dancing etc.


The Menu:


Smoked Chicken Salad Cups (cold)

Seasonal Fruit and Cheese Tray including at least 3 cheeses and Three Cheese Bake with Pepper Jelly and Crackers (cold)

Prosciutto and Filo wrapped Asparagus spears (hot)

Corn and Crab Bisque Soup Shooters (hot)



Bread or rolls and butter

Bacon Wrapped Pork Loin Roulade (filled with green onions and creole mustard “pesto”)

Slow cooked Roast Beef and Gravy


Side Dishes:

Blue Cheese and Bacon Potato Casserole

Shrimp and Grits Casserole

Medley of Squash, onions, and peppers

Salad with at least the these dressings: Ranch, Blue Cheese, Pepper Jelly vinaigrette



White Chocolate and Blueberry Bread Pudding

Wedding Cake that they are providing.



Since the time for appetizers officially will be rather short, I am not sure how much to have.  The cold appetizers will be out for most of the time for folks to snack on but the hot appetizers... it could be kind of weird to be passing wrapped asparagus spears while folks are sitting down eating pork loin and roast beef.



I would normally normally make at least 110 servings of pork loin at around 5ounces uncooked each for just dinner.  I still want to make at least 110 servings of each but not sure the volume I should be shooting for.  Same with the side dishes.  Not sure of the amount to make of each for 100 people.  Our sides are usually for 20 or so, not 100.


The dessert... not sure why they want an additional dessert besides their wedding cake except they just want the foods they like :)  There will be drinking and dancing and lots of food to eat... not sure how much bread pudding to make and I don't want to compete with the wedding cake...


Any guidance would be much appreciated.  

post #2 of 5
Thread Starter 

Maybe I should have told you what WE were thinking...


Appetizers - since the time is fairly short, we thought maybe 200-300 of the wrapped asparagus spears and 150-200 of the soup shooters.  The chicken salad cups would be left out so more like 400-500 because I could see people popping one of those into their mouth as the danced.  Not sure about how much cheese and fruit.  It will be more like grapes, and our local strawberries.


Entrees: Normally we would allocate 5-6 ounces of uncooked pork loin per person but there are appetizers and another entree so I was leaning towards maybe 4 ounces per person?  A little more on the beef pot roast as it is fattier will cook down to less per person - probably 6 ounces?


Side dishes... that is a doozie as  our recipes seem to grow on us when we multiply them out more than 20 servings.  Still, probably 1/2-3/4 cup each.


Bread pudding, well I suppose how hard that gets hit will depend on how good the cake is?  Smaller portions for sure but do not want to run out. 


Does this sound "sound"?



post #3 of 5

Apps only being about 30 minutes, which will more than likely carry over to 45 minutes, i would usually do about 3 pcs of apps per person especially if theyre passed. they eat less that way. displays will usually not go as far, so usually have to do more. as far as entrees go, if youre doing 4 oz pork and 6 oz of beef, that would be good but i think youre still going heavy on the beef, i would cut it to 4 oz cubes and do about 5oz per person. potatos are dirt cheap so go heavy on the casserole, say 6 oz ea. grits would be good at about 1 cup per 3 people normally for a 2 sides buffet but with threee you can do less, say 25 cups total. veg medley i would do 5 oz cut weight. salad depends on whether its romaine mesclun iceberg or spinach... romaine about 1 and 1/2 oz ea. and leafy greens about 1 oz per person. and las but not least bread puding i usually do at 4 oz per person but i use a creme anglaise in mine also which is a little thicker and thus heavier than most.

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

I was planning a little heavier on the beef as I thought I may be "revisited" with the rolls as a small sandwich that someone could grab later after/during dancing.  I have no problem cutting back though :)

Thank you so much for the feedback.  I definitely do not want to run short.  

I don't know if you have catered many weddings but we plan on packaging the bride and groom togo box up before the wedding so it will be well refrigerated before they leave.  Am I taking all the fun out of it requiring them to have a microwave later? 

post #5 of 5
Youre fine boxing them up a meal to go. The beef should be plenty but it is your party, your name. The bride and groom will more than likely appreciate the forthought
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