5 ways to save money on catering your wedding
You want everything to be stunning on your wedding day, but let's face it; you're probably not made of money. So how can you dine opulently on a budget? One word - creativity!
A little trim here, a little cost-cutting measure there and you have a reasonably priced wedding reception that your guests will love.
Plan your menu by the season
Any gardener knows that when something is in season, there’s more of it! Take advantage of that bounty, both for budget reasons and for the beauty of ingredients. For spring and summer weddings, herb bouquets as table centerpieces are lovely and aromatic. In the fall, imagine bowls filled with cranberries or grapes along the tables. Don't forget to use plenty of in-season produce to round out your menu too. Large, lush salads topped with edible flowers are gorgeous and festive, and can round out a more expensive entree. Pumpkin ravioli with a bright cream sauce is perfect in fall and is inexpensive and beautiful. Plan a session with your caterer to ask about what's grown locally and when it’s in season.
Skip the meat and fish
When you think about it, pretty much everyone loves vegetarian comfort foods. Macaroni and cheese, red sauce lasagna, gourmet grilled cheese, margherita pizza, pasta primivera, pierogi and spanakopita – all foods that appeal to everyone. They all cost less than meat, and can still being elegant options. So save an animal’s life and save money too!
Change your cuts and portions
If you really want to serve meat, do it in smaller portions or with less expensive cuts of meat. What meat eater wouldn't love grilled chicken strips on a bed of beautiful baby greens, macaroni and cheese with bacon! Everyone will like meatballs in a red wine and balsamic reduction. Or heat about seafood Newburg or chowder? All of these options are far less expensive than a full serving of beef, chicken, or seafood and still have all the taste.
Limit the food choice
The less choice the less you have to pay – simple! When it comes to your entrée your guests don’t need a huge choice of dishes, find meals everyone can eat and enjoy. Rather than offering five courses have a salad to start, an entrée then serve your wedding cake for desert. You could also save money by having a wedding breakfast or lunch rather than dinner. People eat less at this time of day, and less food means less money!
Yes to beer and wine. No to Champagne
You don't need to provide guests with all the drink options under the sun! Sure everyone has different tastes, but beer and wine are more than adequate. Don't worry about a champagne toast! People can celebrate the nuptials with whatever drink they have in their hands. If you must have bubbles, you can always try a sparkling wine or prosecco.
Wow with the dress not desserts
Will flaming bananas impress your guests enough to offset the cost? Aren't chocolate fountains a little played out at this point? Do you need a five-tier wedding cake? Having a simple three-tier wedding cake with a sheet cake and a fresh sorbet will please everyone, without cutting into the honeymoon budget!