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How Much Food for a Party and 13 Party Menu Ideas
By: Moriah Meeks, Editor, AllFreeHolidayCrafts.com
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It can be overwhelming when planning for a large party and figuring out how much food to buy for a large number of people is a daunting task. That's why we've done some research and compiled How Much Food for a Party and 13 Party Menu Ideas. These tips and DIY party ideas are meant to ease your stress as you get ready for a fun evening with friends and family. From birthdays to family reunions, we've got a list of genius tips for throwing an awesome party and keeping all your guests fed for the duration of the night.
Whether your party is an outdoor cookout or an indoor gathering, these tips for serving food at parties apply to any large get-together. We've listed several recipes for cocktails, appetizers, and more to help spark some inspiration while you're planning out that party menu. We've done the research for you, and we've come up with some great solutions for your party needs. Considering how long your party is and how many guests you have will help when planning your shopping trip for groceries. Your guests will also love the fact that you made some, if not most, of the food yourself rather than catering. This will make for an amazing and memorable party that your friends and family will be talking about for weeks afterward.
For more great party ideas and recipes, also check out How to Mix Cocktails and Cocktail Party Ideas
How Much to Serve at a Party
Party Food Planning Tips
Throwing a party can be a lot of work, and you don't want to be caught off-guard without enough food for your guests. These DIY party ideas and menu planning tips should get you thinking about how much to buy at the grocery store before your party.
Consider how much the average person eats. Try scaling down your food calculations to just one person. On average, a person eats about a pound of food for a meal. This multplied by the number of people you expect to be coming will give you a better ballpark figure of how much food to buy.
Think about portions of different food types. Your guests are not likely to eat a pound of burger or a pound of chips alone. Break the average pound of food down into 4 ounces of four food groups: meat, vegetables, salads, dessert, etc. This will help you decide how much to buy for individual dishes.
Don't go overboard with the appetizers! If you're serving a main course or main entree, you don't need to spend too much time on appetizers. Chips and dip are always a classic party appetizer and are easy to replenish throughout the night. You don't need to make fancy hor d'oeuvres if you've already got burgers, hot dogs, and gallons of potato salad to make.
Factor in the expected length of your party. The guests at your party aren't going to eat all at the same time and at one point during the event. They'll constantly be walking over for more food and to fill up their drinks. For this reason, you need to keep in mind how long your party will last to have enough refreshments to restock your food table.
Try serving punch over soft drinks. For your non-alcoholic beverages, it is super easy to continue serving punch throughout the night rather than lugging cans or liters of soda from in the house. It'll be more cleanup at the end of the night with all the cans. With punch, you can just add more to the bowl, and at the end of the night, all you'll have to clean is the punch bowl and ladel.
Set up a buffet of food. It's your party too. You should be able to enjoy yourself and not spend the entire party serving your guests. Buffets are always fun anyway. You can do themed buffets like Mexican or Italian. You could even have a dessert buffet where your guests can make ice cream sundaes.
Party Menu Ideas
Now that you have an idea of how much food to stock up on before the big event, you can finalize your menu. We've gathered a few choice appetizers and cocktail recipes to spark inspiration. You can even use one of these recipes as your signature homemade treat for your guests and show off your fabulous hostess skills.
Check out more party planning tips with this Party Checklist: How to Plan the Best Party
What foods are you excited to see when attending a party?
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