(Closed) Reception food ideas– small budget

posted 3 years ago in Food
Post # 2
5757 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: July 2018

Are you hoping to serve a meal?  I think you’ll struggle to feed 70 people with $600 unless you’re ordering cheap pizza or something.  

I think your options are appetizers or inviting less people. 

Post # 3
1200 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

Some meals might be cheaper then others like brunch over dinner. But yeah, cheapest would be pizzas or sandwich trays

Post # 4
7811 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

If it’s after lunchtime (2:00?) you can get away with simple apps — hummus & veggies, cheese & fruit w/ crackers, cake and punch. If you are planning on alcohol is that a separate budget?

Post # 5
5046 posts
Bee Keeper

The cheapest way is to have your wedding at a non-meal time like 2pm, serve cake and punch and a few snacks, and let everyone be on their way by dinnertime.

Otherwise small local restaurants usually have the best catering prices I have found. Thinks that are easy to cook in bulk and serve buffet like trays of pasta and salad or pulled pork and deli salads. 

eta:  when I say easy to cook in bulk I DO NOT MEAN SELF-CATER.  Just that from a catering stand point a pan of pasta cooked in bulk will be cheaper than say individual pot-pies so finding family owned Italian restaurants or Bbq joints will have better prices. 

Post # 6
2881 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

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sjupillat :  Please do not try to DIY food for 70 people.  That’s a lot of work for everyone.  There are a lot of thread that talk about the potential problems of DIYing that amount of food.

If your budget is $600, if you keep your guest list to 60 people, that’s $10 a person, which isn’t much.  Would you consider something like brunch with a lot of breakfast food?  Things like scrambled eggs, french toast or pancakes, bacon, sausage and hash browns.  There are a lot of breakfast restaurants around me that cater these kind of events all the time and the food is delicious.  And I suggest you leave it to the professionals.  I also think with breakfast/brunch you can get away without serving alcohol, or have one drink like mimosas or a spiked punch.

Post # 7
393 posts
Helper bee

If you would like a meal other than appys ie Costco/Whole foods sushi trays, shrimp trays, buying dips and bread and chips, veggie and fruit platters and Costco delish cakes yuou could do a baked lasagna lunch with garlic bread and caesars adn then costco desserts.   Or Buy cooked chickens and chop them up and add mashed potatoes, bread stuffing, gravy, and salad and cranberry sauce.  These all are doable so you get a actual lunch in our budget.


Maybe take some of your budget and hire a student or two to clean up and help serve/present food.


If it is late enough you can do a sundae bar with various pu nches, maybe cakes – I think some of those Costco ones are absolutlely delish ie Limonello and Tuxedo and Tiramisu, , those frozen but delish small cream puffs,


keep it simple and enjoy.

Post # 8
5778 posts
Bee Keeper

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beethree :  
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annabananabee :  +1 to these ideas. 

Have it at a non-meal time. Simple apps and cake. 

Some ideas for simple apps: 

as mentioned already, hummus and veggies (love these!), cheese and crackers, fruit, olives and pickles, tortilla chips and salsa, buffalo chicken dip, pita wedges, mini savoury pastries (meat or cheese based), a few sandwich trays

Post # 9
9524 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

can you get some wraps and trays from Costco and order some pizza, that’s what we did for my son’s 1st birthday.  it was $150 for about 40 people and worked great.

Post # 10
3728 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: City, State

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sjupillat :  That’s a great budget. Look at grocery stores near you. They will have catering trays of appetizers that are great and will be totally within budget. 

Post # 12
367 posts
Helper bee

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sjupillat :  Panera bread does platters with small sandwiches ( if u look at their catering options) which is not a full meal. Then u can add other sides.

Also their full sandwiches start at $7 and u may buy some veggie and fruit platter from grocery store. They also do pick 2 ( 2 out of 3 – small soup, half sandwich or half salad). If u ask they might be willing to cater these. Their food is good and will be filling for lunch time.

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