How to Cater Enough Food For Your Event

If you are planning a catered event, you have a lot to think about. Not only are you responsible for choosing the dishware, utensils, appetizers, Hors d’oeuvres, entrees, and beverages, you also have to plan the venue, d├ęcor, guest list, invitations, budget, and much more. But most importantly, you must ensure you have enough food to feed everyone. In order to create the perfect catering menu, all of these aspects must be considered ahead of time.

Although it can be fairly easy to choose the items you want on your menu, it can be more of a challenge to plan for the right amount of food. Ordering too much food can be a waste of resources and money, while ordering too little can make your event seem incomplete. Continue reading to learn some important tips on how to order the appropriate amount of food for your catered event, and who you can trust for professional advice and recommendations.

Understanding Your Budget

When it comes to ordering enough food for your catered party, the first factor you want to consider is your budget. Basically, your budget will set the tone for how much food you plan to serve at your event. Furthermore, it is very easy to go over your spending limit if you do not pay attention, so work on finding a balance between the right amount of food and your set budget.

Consider the Essential Factors

Aside from your budget, the three most influential factors for your catering menu include your guest count, the type of event you are planning, and the length of time it will last. These three factors, coupled with your desired spending limit, will help lay the foundation of how much food you will need. This information should be used to gauge how much food you will need. For instance, if you are planning a baby shower that should only last a few hours, you will need much less food than if you are planning a family reunion.

General Rules of Thumb

You can gauge the appropriate amount of food based on the factors mentioned above, as well as, the fundamental catering model displayed below. Use these recommended limits to get your planning started, and then get your plan into motion by consulting with your trusted catering company for help fine-tuning your menu. They can help you meet your event’s needs within your set budget.

Appetizers and Hors d’oeuvres:

  • Cocktail Party – 10 to 15 servings per Person (no meal to follow)
  • Daytime Event – 1 to 3 servings per Person (light lunch to follow)
  • Evening Event – 3 to 5 servings per Person (lighter dinner to follow)


  • 5 Ounce Main Course per Person
  • 2 to 3 Sides per Person
  • 2 Desserts per Person
  • 2 Beverages per Person


  • 3 to 5 Appetizers per Person
  • 1 Serving Soup and Salad per Person
  • 7 Ounce Main Course per Person
  • 3 Sides per Person (include 1 starch and 1 vegetable)
  • 2 Desserts per Person
  • 2 to 3 Beverages per Person
  • 2 Desserts per Person

Call Jug’s Catering at 317-842-5879 when you need Indianapolis party caterers you can trust. They are family owned and operated catering company that has been in business for over 75 years! Request a free estimate, today.

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