How to Plan your Party Food Amount – Part I

¡Hey guys! We hope you enjoyed the holidays as much as we did. Today we bring you an easy guide with four simple steps to plan your party’s food amounts.  This post has a part two, so make sure you are connected with us in Twitter or Facebook to get the rest of the tips, we are sure you are going to love it! So let’s get started!

When it comes to party planning and food amounts, trying figure out the just how much food you need is hands-down the biggest challenge: you don’t want too little and you don’t want too much and to be honest there is no magic formula, so the determination often comes down to more of an art than any kind of scientific method.

Some elements you need to consider when you are party planning include how long your party will last, the type of food you will be serving (rich, or light), and the age variations of your guests.  You also will need to consider if this will be a complete throw-down barbecue in the afternoon, a light brunch, or a simple after-dinner gathering for cocktails.

Luckily, planning your party menu and isn’t as hard as it sounds.  As long as you follow a few basic party planning guidelines and party planning basics, you can plan your menu and event recipes with confidence.   It all starts with an outline of your original ideas for food amounts.

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  1. Review and adjust your menu.  After you have made your outline of your menu ideas, you will want to take the time to review it a couple times and make adjustments.  What appears to be a good plan today may look a little different to you the next.  The best menus come from planning in advance and making adjustments before they’re finalized.
  2. Round up, instead of down.  Successful planning also means that when you estimate the amount of food per person, you should be rounding your numbers up instead of down.  No one wants to hear that you ran out of the tastiest hors d’oeuvres just because someone else took more than their share, and you don’t want to serve smaller portions of your main course simple because you don’t have enough.

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  3. Consider the necessity of proportion variations.  Also adjust your portions by both popularity and by the number of choices being offered.  When it comes to popularity of a particular appetizer, you should serve larger quantities of traditionally popular appetizers, and smaller quantities of lesser favorites.  For instance, shrimp cocktail will likely be the champion of the party and the per-person quantity should be increased, but the cheese and cracker platter may not get as much notice, and you could probably have a little less cheese on hand.  Likewise for serving multiple selections of hors d’oeuvres; the more choices you have, the more the individual portions should be scaled back, and always assume each person will take a small portion of each selection on a buffet.
  4. Bulk up your food arsenal.  Stay prepared by keeping some standard bulk foods on hand.   For cocktail parties, keeping the standard snacks like olives, pretzels and nuts around case rescue you from any unforeseen food deficit, and, extra bread for sit-down dinners can fill in any voids when guest are still hungry.   It’s always good to have a back-up plan that requires no extra effort.

What do you think of the party planning guide food amounts?  Stay tuned for the second part! Feel free to comment bellow any tips you may have, we will be happy to include it in our post. 😉



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