Party Catering Tips Hello Fresh

6 Tips for Catering Your Next Party

Some party catering tips for your next home gathering. 

By Kevin Marshall


Social gatherings around food, drinks and music make for some of the most fun and memorable
moments in our lives. When your time comes to host a dinner party, kid’s birthday or family
gathering, you’ll be faced with the challenge of catering for the guests.

Organising catering for your party takes more work than simply finding great recipes to serve. There
are several factors you need to consider in order to provide the ideal experience for your guests, and
if you care what they think, you’ll want to keep reading.

Let’s take a look at some of the things you need to consider when catering for your next party!


1. Number of attendees
When planning the catering of your party, the first thing you need to do is determine how many
mouths you will need to feed. This is important as preparing too little food will leave your guests
hungry while preparing too much will waste time and resources. The number of guests also has bearing on what kind of food is appropriate. For example, steak would not be as appropriate for a large gathering of people as it would be for a more intimate dinner. Make sure to get people to RSVP so that you know exactly how many people you will need to cater for.


2. Time of day your party is taking place
The time of day that your party is taking place is the most important factor in determining what to
serve. The following list will give you an idea of what meals are most appropriate for each timeframe.

 7am – 9:30am: Full breakfast
 10am – 11:30am: Light snacks
 12pm – 1:30pm: Full lunch
 2pm – 4:30pm: Light snacks
 5pm – 7:30pm: Full dinner
 8pm – late: Light snacks and desserts

It’s pretty simple to follow; if your party occurs just after lunchtime then you won’t need to cater a
robust meal and vice versa. Be sure to let guests know whether or not they will be served a full meal
so they can plan ahead and not eat anything big before arriving.


3. Variety of dishes
Depending on the amount of guests you’re planning to cater for, the more variety of dishes on offer, the better. It allows you to cater for different diets and tastes, experiment with cuisine styles and minimises the risk of anyone going hungry. If you need ideas on what to serve, check out the delicious HelloFresh recipes archive to find some delicious and easy-to-prepare options.


4. Your budget
As with any other endeavour that’s going to cost you money, effective catering requires you to plan
out a budget to see what you can and can’t afford to do. Make a decision early about how much
you’re willing to spend and leave a little wiggle room at the top end. It can actually be very inexpensive to cater depending on the kind of party you’re hosting. For example, you could throw a BYOM (bring your own meat) BBQ where you only need to buy what you’re cooking for yourself.
Trying to entertain on the cheap isn’t always easy; luckily supplying good food doesn’t have to leave
you destitute if you’re smart about it.


5. Age of attendees and your seating arrangement
If you are going to have a lot of children at the party, avoid serving any dark-coloured food and drink
that could leave very noticeable stains in and around your house.
On the other hand, if guests are mainly going to be standing around and chatting, then convenient
finger food is the best option. Finger food is great because it allows people to fill themselves
up without needing to carry around a plate or be seated. If there is a mix of ages at the party, then consider offering something appropriate for children or seniors alongside your main offerings.


6. The occasion
The occasion of the party is another important factor in determining what’s suitable for catering. For
example, if you’re hosting a Mexican party then you probably would be better throwing together a
BBQ rather than a salad bar. If it’s a kid’s party, then food with bones like chicken wings or fish probably isn’t a good idea either.

Do you have any tried and tested tips for catering parties? We’d love to read your suggestions in the comments.



Kevin Marshall is a local chef in Surry Hills, Sydney. He enjoys cooking and discovering any new food recipes. He always discovers delicious recipes and food inspiration to make the most of meals.


(Image credit: Stempow)