(Closed) DIY Catering

posted 9 years ago in DIY
Post # 3
4480 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: March 2010 - Calamigos Ranch

What do you mean DIY? Like, to have your family do it? You’re not planning to grill for 70 people yourself, are you?! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Honestly, I think if you can find some people to actually do the grilling who are not also your guests, it’s kind of a cool idea. I’m not sure if two grills are enough for that many people, though. Some people will get their food WAY earlier than others if you plan to serve it hot.


Post # 5
161 posts
Blushing bee

My husband is a chef. We are catering our daughters wedding on January 2nd…Precook the chicken..He always parboils it til it is done. Then put it in the fridge to get cold. (can do a day ahead)  When it’s bbq time you just put your sauce on and heat on the grill..easy easy and you know you chicken is cooked through.

Post # 6
180 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

kazoochair … great advice.

We are trying to do a taco bar and I am trying to figure it all out… cooking prior is a perfect suggestion. Thank You

Post # 7
560 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2010

What my cousin did for her wedding was DIY catering (with her mom) for 150 people, and then hired people to take care of serving the food and grilling the meat. It was then served family style on the table in bowls. Super great!! The catering staff was helpful, and didn’t do anything except serve and clean the dishes up from the tables.

Post # 8
807 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

I really hope you are not going to try to actually grill on your wedding day .It is your day girl you dont need that stress. I think your menu is pretty simple,everything else could be easily made up a day or two ahead of time and then just reheated anything that needs to be could you perhaps bake the chicken instead of grilling? Or As a previous poster suggested hire someone to grill the meat and set it all up or perhaps a family memember could help out ….

We have decided to cater our meats and we with the help of family will do all the sides. It will all be set up buffet style on a table and our family will be  setting it up and takeing it down.

Post # 9
119 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I agree with precooking the chicken and then heating it up on the grill. I alwasy do this when having a cookout for 100+ people.  I definitely agree with others about having someone else do the grilling the day of – maybe a family member or two?  Otherwise, I think it’s totally doable!

Post # 10
321 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I am also doing the catering for my own wedding, although I am not doing any grilled dishes.  I would first suggest figuring out how you want to serve, if it’s buffet style then great-easier for you.  Then-hire a chef or cook to come in the day of and help you, maybe even hire someone to serve in the buffet line if you are going that route.  Call around to local catering companies and see who is up for the job. Figure at least 2 small (drumstick, thigh) or 1 large (split breast, whole leg) per person, then add 10% to the weight you get from your pieces, maybe around 50lbs. 

This website is great for estimating quanitites and getting recipes for large amounts: http://lotsofinfo.tripod.com/index.html

I don’t know how big your grill is, but that will be quite an undertaking to grill everything well and then keep it hot.  Strongly suggest you hire out the chicken and tackle the sides/desserts yourself to keep costs down.  There are a couple local farms near me that do catering, especially big cook-out style dinners like you are planning, and they bring the big grill and do it all on site for you.  Check out if you have anything like this around you. 

Honestly, to make it “easier” is to serve food that can be made ahead, even frozen, and heat up on the big day.  I am doing braised short ribs for this exact reason, that it tastes even better the next day and you can’t overcook them! 

Hope this helps, it’s totally possible you just need to be VERY organized and plan every detail so you’re not cooking on your big day!

Post # 11
53 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Thanks for all this great info!  I’m looking into catering for myself for a 100 person wedding next June to save money.  I’m hoping to go with a buffet self-serve style  brisket and chicken (both to be cooked beforehand and heated at location), salad with mushrooms and tomatoes, rice, mixed veggies, bread and cheeses.  I’m thinking about all the utensils and things we need as well.


How might you find reliable catering servers?  What’s the appropriate cost for their services?  I feel like two people, one to man the buffet and one to replenish the buffet, would be appropriate.  I’d love to hear thoughts!

Post # 12
12 posts
  • Wedding: October 2011

If you or a friend have a smoker and know how to use it (it’s easy), I would recommend smoking meats beforehand.  It will give you a similar (better in my opinion) taste and you can do it far ahead of time (particularily if frozen). 

You can do duck, pulled pork, brisket, chicken, etc.  All are great on the smoker.  I did all of those on a little bullet smoker my 1st time smoking and they turned out great.

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