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ELLEN'S KITCHEN
Cook Talk

Food planning for 50 people tomorrow help please
Mark
08/31/07
im hosting my parents 25th anniversary party tomorrow and i am making food for 50 people

i need to make a deli platter and my questions are what meats(most popular) and how much should i get?

and sausage pepppers and onions
how much sausage will i need and how many peppers n onions

also i was thinking i might make a salad
any ideas would be greatly appreciated
thanks mark

ellen
09/01/07
Mark, you have sure left this late.

Your meat platter- 1 pound for each 3 people= 16 pounds total. An assortment of deli sliced ham, turkey breast, salami, add roast beef if feeling flush.
Sliced cheese plate too, cheddar, jack, swiss,possibly a little pepperjack: 10 pounds total.
12 pounds sausage, 3 pounds each peppers and onions.
6 heads lettuce plus cukes, carrots, tomatoes, croutons, 2 quarts dressing- get bottles- ranch, low cal italian, blue cheese, honey mustard, maybe raspberry vinegrette.

Tami
09/22/07
I am having an afternoon picnic for about 50. I am serving sausage & peppers and chili. How much sausage will I need? Guests will be bringing other sides. Please help. They are hungry bikers and I do not want to run out of food. Thanks
Tami
ellen
09/23/07
Minimum I would plan is 1 pound sausage for each 3 people, since you will also have chili, If it was just suasge you woud want 1 pound for each 2 people.
Kelly
04/21/09
I am having a graduation party with 50 guests. I will be serving meatball subs along with italing sausage subs. I am doing pasta salad and three bean salad. Can you tell me how much of each fool I will need. Thanks
ellen
04/21/09
30 each on the subs. 1 3/4-2 gallons pasta salad, about the same on 3 bean. don't forget grated Parm on the condiment table for the sandwiches.
Marla
06/12/09
I am planning fruit trays for 400 people. How
much fruit should I purchase? Other food will also be served. Thanks.
ellen
06/12/09
See the fruit tray article. For a light tray, you want 5 "bites" per person. For a regular size tray, you want about 8 bites, use the quantities on the fruit tray for 25, since you want 16 times this amount you can substitute in some other fruits.
Aaron
07/19/09
We are servin lunch for 50 people. We are serving chicken tacos, mexican rice, and a lettuce salad. What amounts should we use?
ellen
07/21/09
1/2 the amounts for 100. See the plan for 100 page for salad and the the baked potato bar for help on the taco bar.
melissa
11/30/09
I am having a Christmas party for 45 adults and 10 kids under 8. I will be serving Schnitzel and Lasagna with buns, and veggie trays, fruit trays, salads, chips and dip and desert squares and cookies. I am wondering how much of each I will need. Thanks.
ellen
11/30/09
I would just count this as 50 people. For the veggie trays, fruit trays, salads, chips and dip, just use 1/2 the amounts for 100 on the various planning pages. Kids like ranch dip with veggies.

For the lasgna, 4 9x13 dishes, cut 12 per dish. For the schnitzel, 60 small pieces. Many folks will take some of each.

For the cookies and bars, cut/make them small and do one of each flavor per person for up to 4 different flavors/types.

Carlene
12/01/09
I need to know how much I need to feed approximately 50 high school football players.
I thinking of spaghetti and meatballs..dessert...brownies
Thank you,
Carlene
ellen
12/01/09
Count as 75 and use 3/4 the amount for 100 of any of the many items tabled. Or make 1 1/2 times the spaghetti dinner for 50-60 at the bottom of the spaghetti page.
Carol
02/22/10
Hosting a baby shower February 28. Approx. 60 people.
I'm serving finger sandwiches, such as mini Italian Club Sandwiches, Benedictine, & chicken. How many should I fix.
Pig N Blanket, Meat Balls in BBQ sauce.
Vegies & fruit & Cheese. How much should I get.
ellen
02/24/10
This is a very generous menu, assuming it is all women, I would do 1 of each mini sandwich per person, plus 2 pigs, 2-3 meatballs. For the veggies and fruit tray, see these pages on the site, about 2 times the fruit tray for 25, and one relish tray for 60, subbing in some fresh veggies for part of the pickled, for a really attractive tray. Cheese, 2 ouncs per person, 2-3 pounds of crackers.
Carrie
04/21/10
I need to make potato salad, rigatoni, ham barbecue and baked beans for 40 people. how much to make of each.
ellen
04/21/10
This is what I would make:
12 pounds potatoes for salad
3 pounds dry pasta
1 gallon baked beans
20 pounds boneless meat
gaby
04/23/10
planning a stag and doe for 50, deli meats on a bun, pickles, veggie trays, fruit trays, cheese trays and a dessert tray, how much should we purchase?
ellen
04/23/10
Go to the sandwich event page, select your level of sandwich involvement, get 1/2 the amounts of sandwich materials, breads and condiments for 100. The guys and gals will balance each other out, more or less, on serving size.

There are also specific pages for the fruit tray (2x the one for 25 would do it), dessert plan, veggie tray. There is also a beverage page should you need help with tea, beer, etc.

Patty
04/28/10
Baby shower is 5/16/10. Having approx. 50 ladies. menu includes, assortment of finger sand (chicken, ham, tuna & egg) meat platter, pasta salad, tossed salad, sweet/sour meatballs, chili type bean & hamburg concoction, chips, cheese & crackers, fruit salad, veggie platter & dip.
How many sandwiches of each to prepare? how much for meat platter with cheese.
what should I prepare for fuit, cheese/crackers, veggies etc.
thanks for your help.
ellen
04/28/10
Hi, Patty,
This is a somewhat unusual mix of tea party foods and heavy appetizers, I wonder if you would consider a little menu revamp to simplify prep and service?
For example, tea sandwiches plus the deli meat platter; I would either go with all assemble it yourself, adding the bowls of egg, tuna, etc to a cheese platter, or all tea sandwiches with a cheese platter. My only caution about the tea sandwiches is, you need to read the article on tea sandwiches, there are a lot of "tricks" to having them be fresh and good; and they need to be assembled morning of, so you have to allow time/ help.
Instead of a chili, I would suggest a queso dip, sour cream based dip (maybe hot artichoke or spinach in a crock pot?) or even a guacamole.

pasta salad, tossed salad- make about 1/3 the amount for 100 of each
Fruit salad- see the fruit tray page. I would suggest a fruit tray instead of a salad; keeps better, prettier to serve, easier to eat, leftovers are more useful
veggie platter- there is a veggie tray page. Since you have a tossed salad, how about a relish tray instead- more interesting- 2/3 the recipe for 60.

Cheese, 2 ounces sliced per person, crackers 2-3 pounds.

You need enough sandwiches and sandwich makings to make 2 sandwiches per person total- that would be 6-8 pieces if you only did tea sadnwiches.

Donna
05/06/10
Baby shower in July for 50 guests
Menu: mini croissants with ham, turkey, roast beef and cheese, vegetable tray, fruit tray, cookies, chips & cake. How many sandwiches for each person, and is this enough variety. It is at 2:00pm
Thank you for your help
ellen
05/08/10
Congratulations for planning ahead!!!

Yes, this is a nice selection. Expect everyone to put cheese on their sandwiches in addition to the other filling- 2 ounces per person. For this selection, I would do it this way:
ham 2 ounces per person, turkey 2 ounces per person, roast beef 3 ounces per person
Allow 2 1/2 rolls per person. See the sandwich page for condiments, use 1/2 the amount for 100. Fruit tray, make 2 times the tray for 25 in the article.

Consider making part of the veggie tray a relish tray instead- see the top of the veggie tray page.

vegetable tray, fruit tray, cookies, chips & cake

Loretta
05/17/10
Food planning for 50 people this weekend
Hi Ellen,

I'm having a confirmation party this weekend - 50 people. I'm making sausage & peppers, catering penne a la vodka, chicken parmesan and an italian sub. How much should I order of those and how much sausage and pepper should I make? Thanks.

ellen
05/18/10
This is quite a few entrees for 50 people which makes it harder to estimate. I would probably do 30 servings each of the chicken and sausage, 2 or 3 half pans of the penne (depends on what else you are serving, salad, bread, etc, and how big of eaters the crowd is). 30 servings of sausage is about 10 pounds.
Leta McPherson
05/20/10
Food planning for 200 people tomorrow help please
really need your help on how much food to have
ellen
05/20/10
Loretta, I can't find a previous post by you. START A NEW THREAD with your next post, tell me the menu and event, and I will try to help.
ellen
05/20/10
And Loretta, clarify- is it 50 people or 200.

If this is you, this may help. For 50 people:
sausage & peppers, 1 pound sausage plus 1 pound peppers for each 4 people
catering penne a la vodka- 60 servings (5-6 9x13, or 3 half pans)
chicken parmesan- 60 small pieces= 11 pounds of chicken not counting the sauce
italian sub- 30 pieces.

Kathy
05/22/10
Hello Ellen, I am feeding 50 people pound cake with strawberries and whip cream.
I have planned 6 pound cakes?
I have purchases around 8 pints of frozen strawberries.
Does this sound good and how many containers of cool whip? smile, Kathy
ellen
05/23/10
Cake OK, I would do 12-16 pints strawberries. I would do real whipped cream, the spray kind in the can. Use the serving size guidelines on the can, but plan for 2 servings per person.
Suzy
05/24/10
Rice Pilaf for 50 in an Electric Roaster
Hi Ellen,
I want to make rice pilaf for 50 in my electric roaster.
Will 1 -18qt roaster owrk or do I need 2?
How do you handle the bring to a boil part?
What temp and how long.
ellen
05/25/10
One will be perfect. It takes about 15 minutes per gallon to bring the water to a boil at 325-350 covered. I might saute the rice in a little butter/ olive oil and spice before mixing.
Kelli
06/03/10
I'm having aBBq for 50 people - was thinking burgers pulled beef and chicken
Cole slaw and beans
Not sure how much food to get!
Beer wine and amragrita's too!
ellen
06/03/10
1 piece chicken PLUS 1 4 ounce patty PLUS 3 ounces pulled beef or pork per person will give everyone their choice.
Cole slaw, 2 1/2 to 3 gallons per 100
beans, 3-3 1/2 gallons per 100
Sharon Phalon
06/07/10
Graduation Party for 60 this Saturday
Having a graduation party this Saturday w/ 60 people - menu is meatballs subs, assorted sandwiches - possibly catering in, chicken scampi, italian sausage & peppers, pasta salad, green salad, fruit salad, vegetables & dip platter & the cake. Could you help me with the amounts to buy. Thanks!
Rose
06/07/10
Family reunion in July for 50
Planning an Italian deli platter with meats and cheese, bruschetta, poached salmon platter, chicken tenders, a pasta choice, roasted vegetables, and sausage and peppers and tossed salad.
ellen
06/07/10
Rose, its a nice menu, but is this lunch, dinner? What dessert? Mostly adults or what mix of kids, and how long a party? Write back.
ellen
06/07/10
Sharon, this is a little hard to estimate, because you don't say what time or for how long. The amounts here given are for dinner type meal. You would use 2/3 the amount for 100 for the table items.
meatballs subs, assorted sandwiches I would do this by having the meatballs and meat/cheeses on platters with the rolls separate and let people make their own, less waste. 3 ounces meatballs per person, see the sandwich page for deli platters and get enough for 1/3 of 100 (30).
- possibly catering in,
chicken scampi, 3-4 ounce piece per person
italian sausage & peppers, 3 ounces sausga, equal amount mixed peppers and onions
pasta salad, green salad, see plan for 100 page
fruit salad, fruit tray page
vegetables & dip platter, veggie tray page
the cake, the dessert tray page
Sharon
06/09/10
Hi Ellen,

I am planning a picnic party this Saturday from 12:30 till about 6 and was wondering how much food I will need for 60 adults and 10 children under the age of 10. I ordered 15 lbs of Pulled Pork, 80 hamburgers, 68 Hot Dogs, 8 Pounds of Macaroni salad and 7 lbs of Potatoe salad. I will also be having Ring Bologna and Cheese and Baked Beans (8 cans) Do you feel that would be enough food?

ellen
06/09/10
Long on meat, short on salads. You need at least 20 pounds salads, and I would probably go 24. 1 burger patty per person. 1 hotdog per person, but only start with half, and Polish sausage or kielbasa is MUCH tastier than regular hot dogs. 2 gallons baked beans.
Heidi
06/14/10
Having 65th birthday party and planning to bbq, chicken, ball tip and salmon filets. My questions is what amounts of each do you suggest, the party starts at noon and the guest of honor at 1PM.

Also what sides do you think would be best? I was thinking a fruit and veggie tray, pasta and green salad.

Also would have some finger food as guest arrive such as cheese and crackers, dips, and shirmp mold.

Is this enough or should I plan for more food?

ellen
06/14/10
With BBQ, good rolls and butter are never a mistake.
1 piece of chicken per person PLUS 1 pound salmon fillet for each 5 people PLUS 1 pound raw boneless beef for each 4 people. You will have some left, but not too much, and everyone will get their first choice.
The sides and nibbles you suggest would be fine with this meal!
Elaine
06/19/10
Food planning for 25 people
I'm planning a picnic for 25-30 people.
My menu would consist of appetizers such as roasted peppers,Italian cheese & meat platter, chickpea salad, 2 lbs. of shrimp cocktail & chickpea salad.
My main course would be chicken legs, thighs & quartered chicken breasts, pork chops, sausage & peppers,
tossed salad, oven roasted potatoes, corn on the cob and possibly hamburgers, sausage patties & hot dogs later on.
How much would I need of each to ensure everyone gets a taste?
Thanks!!
ellen
06/19/10
With this menu, unless you are actually doing/ covering 2 meals the hamburgers, sausage patties & hot dogs are unnecessary.

Here is my advice:
Skip the shrimp cocktail unless you can do 1 pound for each 5 people. Otherwise it will run out early and many people will mind not getting some.

See my antipasto platter for help on appetizer amounts. 1/4 cup hummus or chickpea salad per person.

chicken legs, thighs & quartered chicken breasts, pork chops, sausage & peppers:
1 piece of chicken plus 1 small/ thin pork chop plus 3 ounces sausage per person.
The other items are covered on the plan for 100 page, use 1/3 the amounts for 100.

Joe Mangan
06/20/10
Food planning for 500 people tomorrow help please
Hi! I am a Lion and we need some help with the
future needs of Lion's do work for various organizations. How much in the way of condiments do we need for hot dogs and hamburgers. Last event was Ok for the meat and
buns and hot dogs. We had 350 hamburgers and 200 hot dogs. The problem was the lettuce, tomatoes and othe product that we came up short. We purchase a 6 pack of romain lettuce a box of 10 or 12 medium tomatoes and the fruits (blew this one to much)! Fruits were
apples, oranges and cuties about 400 pieces of
which the oranges and cuties came up short and the apples we had to many. About 14:30 the tomatoes ran out, soon there after the lettuce ran out. Also any help with the amount of mayo, mustard,relish and ketchup would be apprciated (had to much)! Thanks for any help! Lion Joe California Lions.
ellen
06/21/10
Hi, Joe,
See the sandwich event page for a very comprehensive table of sandwich condiments- how much you need of various items for 100 people.

Apples are not a particularly popular fruit for sale, people prefer juicy.

kaitlin
06/21/10
feeding 50 buffet for engagement party in july
Hi, I am having an engagement party in July. Here is the menu:

shrimp cocktail (6 pounds of 20-24 shrimp per pound)
stuffed grape leaves (100)
tomato, basil, mozzarella skewers (150)
chips, cheese, crackers at the tables

full tray veggie lasagna
full tray pulled pork
full tray spanikopita (spinach pie)
full tray greek salad
full tray pasta salad
full tray bean salad
full tray another pasta salad
full tray cole slaw (to go with pulled pork on buns)

plus burgers, fresh keilbasa, and lots of cake for dessert with 3 gallons iced coffee.

Is this enough? Too much? Please give me your thoughts. I appreciate it!

ellen
06/22/10
Don't know how big your full tray is, but the balance of things is about right.

The only change I would make, is I never allow less than 1 pound of shrimp for 5 people- 6 at the most- people love shrimp and will eat it all up- and the last folks might not get any.

I would probably add iced tea, 3 gallons unsweetened, for the meal.

Kathy
06/23/10
Food planning for 60 people for Sat. help please
I am having an outdoor party in a park with a covered pavillion for 60 people.(Theres 6 - 10 foot tables) Have ordered 60 small ham/turkey/lettuce/tomato sandwiches from a deli and having meatballs and rolls (180 meatballs & 5 dozen rolls) ziti and sauce - (4 lbs.?) baked beans (don't know how many cans to get) veggie trays (how much should I cut up?) watermellon & cantelope (how much?) should I do a pasta salad too? Am making brownies & cookies and then have a half sheet cake. Chips also - Is this enough?
ellen
06/25/10
I am sorry this posted while my computer was down.
baked beans (don't know how many cans to get) 3 #10
veggie trays (how much should I cut up?) aboout 10mpounds edible parts plus 3-4 quarts dip
watermelon & cantelope (how much?) total 1 whole pound per person, you decide the mix
Yes this is enough food. The pasta salad would be fine- about 2 gallons, or 4 pounds dry pasta- but not essential.
Sharon
06/29/10
Just starting to plan menu for Aug 7 Grad party. Between 40-50 people. Serving Pulled Pork on buns, Fried Chicken, Creamy Hashbrowns, Baked Beans, Mini Corn Cobs, and still deciding on other menu items. All suggestions appreciated. Not sure if dessert should be cake or cupcakes?
Kristie
06/29/10
How many pounds of food are typically in a full tray?
ellen
06/29/10
Sharon, something green- salad or veggies; fruit trays are festive and popular; cupcakes are not cheaper than sheet cake and not quite so adjustable if crowd varies...

Kristie, it depends entirely on the food and whether the tray is 2 1/2 , 4 or 6 inches deep; they come in all three sizes.

Karen
07/02/10
Food planning for 70 people tomorrow help please
How much fruit should I use for a party for 70. I am using pineapples, strawberries, melon and grapes.
ellen
07/02/10
See the fruit tray for 25 Do 3.
GG
07/05/10
Hi Ellen..

I am having 40 adults to my house on Saturday for a party. I ordered 60 rolls, 4 llbs of turkey, 3 llbs of ham, 3 llbs, of salami, 2 llbs prov cheese, and 3 llbs of white american cheese.

I will have pizza and other dippings, fruit, crackers, salsa, etc.. Is that enough meat???

GG
07/05/10
Hi Ellen..

I am having 40 adults to my house on Saturday for a party. I ordered 60 rolls, 4 llbs of turkey, 3 llbs of ham, 3 llbs, of salami, 2 llbs prov cheese, and 3 llbs of white american cheese.

I will have pizza and other dippings, fruit, crackers, salsa, etc.. Is that enough meat???

ellen
07/05/10
Yes, unless you have invited the Green Bay Packers... You can use 1/2 the condiments on the sandwich event page to plan lettuce, mayo, etc.
GG
07/06/10
Hi Ellen..
Thanks for the reply ... DO you think I should cut down on the meats?
Anne Marie
07/06/10
We're having a bbq this weekend for about 40 adults and 20 kids. We'll be serving hot dogs, burgers, pasta salad, cole slaw or potato salad, coffee and cake. How many burgers & dogs should we buy? How much of the salads should I make? Thanks.
Missi
07/06/10
Food planning for 50 people 8/13 help please
Work summer picnic party. Want to do traditional picnic food. Hamburgers, hot dogs, potato salad, pasta salad, baked beans, chips, dip, brownies, mini cupcakes. How much of each?
ellen
07/06/10
Missi, this is a DIY site, and you need to look at the tables, post an estimate, and let me look at it. All these foods are discussed.

You need one brownie and one of each flavor cupcake per person.

1 hot dog plus 1 burger per person.

Mellie Dekoning
07/06/10
I am having a party for 50 adults for supper.I am planning to have a buffet style and finger food as I don't have enough tables. Is cold cuts , fruit, veg. cookies, cake and drinks enough? How much do I need.thanks..
Caroline
07/07/10
I am having 30 kids and 30 adults to a party on Saturday. I got 1 and half sheets of cheese pizza, about 80 4x4 pieces total, and I was thinking about cold cuts for the adults... How many pounds of each Turkey, Ham, Salami, and cheese would you recommend I get - 2llbs of each?
Carter
07/09/10
I am having 30 kids and 30 adults to a party on Saturday. I got 1 and half sheets of cheese pizza, about 80 4x4 pieces total, and I was thinking about cold cuts for the adults... How many pounds of each Turkey, Ham, Salami, and cheese would you recommend I get - 2llbs of each?
ellen
07/10/10
Mellie, you could add rolls and bread, sandwich condiments, and a relish tray- the relish tray for 60 on the veggie tray page would be great. For amounts, use 1/2 the amounts for 100 on he dessert planning page, beverage planning page, sandwich event page.

Caroline, get 1/3 the amounts for 100 on the sandwich planning page.

STEVEN
07/11/10
I'm Planning a BBQ Party for 75 adults and 30 Kids. I have 100 Hamburgers 100 Hotdogs, and 12 lbs of sausage and peppers. 7 Lbs Macroni salad 10 lbs pototoe salad,lettuce salad about 6 heads, 14 lbs baked beans,75 Half -piece corn on the cob. Too much,not enough?
Amy
07/11/10
Finger Foods and desserts for 50 adults
Hi I'm having a evening party for 50 adults on Saturday night. I would like to serve finger foods, hot app like franks in a blanket, cheese tray, antipaste, ect. And of course dessert. I want to have enough food with a good variety and keep an eye on the budget. Thanks!!!!
ellen
07/12/10
Steve, you need at least one piece of coprn per person, and I always add 10%; almost 3 gallons of potato salad Probably will have some meat left. Other than that, don't forget the sandwich condiments (see the sandwich page), and it looks pretty good.

Amy, unless the party starts 8P or later, many people will eat a dinner's worth of food. Use the dessert planning page for your dessert bar, and take a look at the appetizer planning page and my appetizer recipes. Then post your estimates and I will check them for you.

Kathleen
07/18/10
Hi! We're planning our 25th Anniversary party and so far about 60 people are coming. It starts at 2PM so we have lined up:
3 large shrimp rings
2 large fruit trays
2 large veggie trays
3 nacho dip & chip platters
For dinner, we are serving
Sliced roast beef (approx 6 lbs)
Sliced roast pork (approx 9 lbs)
Meatballs (approx 240)
Penne in tomato sauce (5 or 6 9x13 pans)
4 bean salad
Mixed green salad
Caesar salad
Assorted breads and rolls
Dessert will be replica of our wedding cake served with ice cream.
Will we have enough food? Think we're too heavy on the meats and short on the side dishes. Would appreciate your suggestions. Thanks!
ellen
07/19/10
You will run out of roast beef; everyone takes some; I plan a minimum of 15 pounds cooked weight. They will eat the meatballs almost as an appetizer. You have enough sides, you might want one hot or grilled veggie.

Congratulations.

Pam
07/25/10
My question would be. What would you suggest for a simply dessert party for 50 people?
Thank you
ellen
07/25/10
I would do a great hot fruit cobbler, tarts, or pies: a devastating chocolate something, a great cheese cake and a selection of about 4 tiny two bite pastries/ petit fours/cookies. All can be made ahead.
Jewell
07/26/10
Food planning for 50 people Sept help please
Planning a brunch for 50 - serving bagels, muffins, danish, scones, croissant, jumbo combo platter of fruit, cheese and cold cut platter and how many jumbo shrip do i need for shrip cocktail
Tina
07/27/10
80-100 People
Hi Ellen,

I am preparing food for approx. 80-100 guests on Sunday, August 1st. We will be serving hot dogs, hamburgers, salad, cold pasta salad, pasta, fruit salad, rice, sausage&peppers, eggplant, green beans, small chicken breasts with broccoli & sauce. I'm just trying to get an idea on what size trays I should be using to prepare for this amount of people. Any suggestions that you have would be greatly appreciated. THANK YOU.

-Tina

ellen
07/27/10
Jewel, 3 per person for appetizer portion

Tina, this is a tough estimate because it is more than usual number of choices for the number of people. For 100 people:

hot dogs, hamburgers, sausage&peppers, small chicken breasts with broccoli & sauce.
1 burger per person, 1 pound sausage for each 4-5, 3 ounces chicken per person Skip the dogs, or just have a couple of packs for kid back up.

salad, cold pasta salad, see plan for 100 page

fruit salad, see fruit tray page Fruit trays keep better than salads, can be done ahead, and the leftovers are more usable.
pasta, rice, about 5 pounds each
eggplant, green beans, about 26 pounds each

charl
07/30/10
planning wedding reception bbq for 75
planning a wedding bb
ellen
07/31/10
See the BBQ and brisket page to prepare an estimate I can check for you. Then, be sure you have a few people (3-4) to handle the grills and serving who are NOT part of the wedding party/ guests, as they will need to be cooking while the folks are getting married.
maria
08/09/10
Planning food for 45 people.

50 pc fried chicken
tray of mostocciali good for 25
tray of lasagna good for 25
tray of eggplant parm good for 25
tomato foccacia - 45 pc
1 3ft sub american
1 3 ft sub italian

roasted potatoes - how many pounds?
chicken breasts with wine sauce - how many pounds?
italian sausage - how many pounds?

Connie
08/10/10
Baby showr
Would like to plan a baby shower for 60 people. Sandwiches or cold cuts how many, veg tray, cheese tray, chips, dip, pickles, fruit tray and cake.
ellen
08/10/10
Sounds like a nice tea party, and I suggest you look at the the and tea sandwich articles. For a cold cut bar, chips, dip, pickles, amounts are discussed on the sandwich article tables and the plan for 100 tables, you need a scant 2/3 the amount for 100, including he cheese.

All the rest of the items have their own pages. Fruit tray page, veggie tray page (but yoy might consider the relish tray for 60 instead, more interesting), and dessert planning page. Also the beverage planning page if you need it.

So pull together an estimate, and if you want me to look at it, just post it.

Tonie
08/17/10
Ellen, Love your site.

I have been out of the catering business for a while - need advice.

Planning family reunion -

30 people supper: BBQ sandwiches/ pasta salad, potatoe salad and cole slaw - how much of each

50 people dinner:, spaghetti with meat sauce
salad
Texas bread
various desserts

63 people picnic - hamburgers and hot dogs. with casseroles and salads thanks - I am a little rusty about this

ellen
08/17/10
For the 30 people, use 1/3 the amounts for 100 from the BBQ and brisket page.

For the 50 people spaghetti dinner, use the amounts from the spaghetti dinner for 50 at the bottom of the spaghetti page. Desserts for 100 on the dessert planning page, use 1/2 the amount for 100.

picnic, plan on 1 patty plus 1 dog per person. Get a box of Boca burgers or Morningstar patties for the non-meat eaters. Consider using Polish sausages instead of hot dogs; MUCH tastier and not much more costly.Condiments on the sandwich planning page, use 2/3 the amount for 100. Casseroles and salads, use 2/3 the amounts on the plan for 100 page. Watermelon, 1 pound per adult, would be tasty with this.

Jacoba
08/21/10
cecear salad for 60 people
please help me to see how many romaine lettuce I will need.
Patricia
08/26/10
Food planning for 40 people
I am having a party on Saturday, BBQ. I have 10 chickens, 15 lbs sausage, 3 briskets (total weight 37 lbs. brisket). I am making a "bean pot", and beans with meat & japalenos, 15 lbs potato salad. I want to have fruit tray and relish tray to go along with my dips, chips, etc. Can you please tell me how much fruit (and maybe what is best type) and also how much relish for relish tray? I was thinking pickles, onions, peppers, cheese, etc. on relish tray.
ellen
08/26/10
Jacoba, use 2/3 the amount for 100 of romaine in the Caesar salad section of the plan for 100 list.

Patricia, you have about double too much meat for 40 people. I would put at least 1 brisket, 3 chickens and 5-8 pound sausage into the freezer for a later party.
For the fruit tray, make 1 1/2 times the pineapple fruit tray for 25 on the fruit tray page. For the relish tray, make 1 of the relish trays for 60, using 2/3 of everything if you only expect 40, top of the veggie tray page.

theresa
08/27/10
hi,

im planning a luau party (more on the asian side)for 40-50people
how much roast pork i should buy (in lbs)?
I will have 2 big tray of pineapple rice
200 skewers of chicken kabobs
shrimp coconut (approximately 250 shrimps)
meatballs (200 meatballs)
and a big tray of papaya avocado salads

I will have some fruity drinks too.....
Please let me know.....

thank you!!

ellen
08/27/10
20 pounds lean boneless raw pork would be plenty with all the other entrees.
Richard
08/29/10
Food planning for 50 people
Hi Ellen,
Wanting some help deciding on quantities for a group of fifty woman, here is the menu for our picnic:
Grilled Sausage (w/peppers and onions)
Grilled Hots
Cole Slaw
Pasta Salad
Baked Beans

Thank you!

ellen
08/29/10
This is a pretty heavy menu for a ladies' group, unless you are sure they like the sausage option. I would add some chicken breasts or thighs, as long as I were grilling anyway.
For sausages only, allow 2 pounds for every 5 people, you decide the mix. For chicken added, I would do 1 small piece of chicken per person plus 3-4 ounces of sausage per person.

Cole Slaw
Pasta Salad
Baked Beans
For these items, you just use 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page.

Wendy
09/01/10
Hi Ellen - I am planning a shower for 50-60 women. It will be at 2pm on a Sunday in Oct. We are looking at four different kinds of finger sandwiches (smoked salmon, cucumber, etc.), mini-cupcakes, macaroons, lemon bars, iced tea, champagne, wine, (possibly deviled eggs, small scones) etc. What would be some other complementary dishes do you think? I am wondering about adding a salad perhaps... How many finger sandwiches do you think we need to have?
ellen
09/01/10
Why not just stick with the traditional afternoon tea menu, since you have such a perfect time of day and such a good start on the menu? A pound cake or other cake, a good gingerbread or fruit loaf, or a trifle with sponge cake fingers, fruits and custard, (and sherry, if it is not a baby shower) might be added.

When I make tea sandwiches, using the ultra thin Pepperidge farm bread, I make 1 with the white and one with the whole wheat for each person, a total of about 6-8 pieces, depending on how you cut them. You get about 15 sandwiches per loaf. Crusts off, of course. See the several tea party pages-

Christine
09/03/10
Hosting a Potluck dinner late September
I'm hosting an italian theme potluck dinner party for 30 adults in late September. As the host I would like to make sure all the basics are covered. I would like to make an antipasta salad, baked lasagna, chicken marsala and pignoli cookies. How much do I make of each? I'm not sure what many of the guests will bring. I'm aware of one guestbringing salad and one guest will have an italian deli meat & cheese appetizer platter made.

Thank you!

ellen
09/03/10
This is how I would handle the party:

Use the antipasto vegetables on this page:
www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/appetiz2.html

Do lasagna for 25, on the spaghetti page.

Do the chicken allowing 1 6 ounce raw, boneless piece per person plus 10%.

About 1 pound cookies for each 5-6 people.

amanda
09/12/10
im planing a babyshower for sunday. im having 50 people. how many food platers should i get? or if i do food for the pound how many pounds would feed 50 people?
ellen
09/13/10
You need 1 1/2 pounds per person, including 5-6 ounces of entree.
Suzy
09/16/10
Hi Ellen,
I am having a 50th wedding anniversary party at 4pm for 55 adults with meat, cheese and fruit trays for appetizers, and the main course will be
25 lbs roast beef
20 lbs green beens
20 lbs roasted red potatoes
20 lbs broccoli salad
72 dinner rolls
2 lbs butter
does that sound right to you?
Thanks for your help!
ellen
09/17/10
Great job, you will only need about 15 pounds each of the green beans and broccoli salad at the most. If the rolls are good, and not too large, you might allow 2 per person.
Ryan
09/17/10
Hi Ellen,

I'm hosting a BBQ this Sunday for 50 people (six are vegetarian). I'm wanting to serve a mix of hot dogs, hamburgers, and porkburgers. How many of each would you suggest?

Thank you for your expertise!

ellen
09/17/10
First, a dozen veggie burgers for the vegetarians. 3 Pounds of firm tofu, cubed 12 to the package and marinated in soy sauce, then kabobbed and grilled is another good choice.

60 patties, I have to leave the beef/pork split to you because I don't know local preferences. 40 dogs, but consider Polish sausage or kielbasa instead- much tastier.

Christie
09/20/10
Food planning for 60 adults 15 children 10 & under
Hello Ellen,
This is for my daughters one year birthday at my home. Planning to have penne vodka, sausage & peppers, chicken marsala, coldcuts possibly and potatoe salad. Chicken fingers & hotdogs for children. Also rolls for sausage/coldcuts. Not sure how much to have of each & planning to prepare myself or cater. On a budget & working day before party.
Thank you so much!
laura
09/21/10
Food planning for 40 high school football players
I was just informed that I am to host my son's pre-game football dinner this Thursday. I plan on serving Italian sausage, baked penne, garden salad and brownies. How much of each would I need?
ellen
09/22/10
Christie, count this as 2/3 of 100 for quantities. For the meats, skip the hot dogs; 1 pound sausage per each 4 plus 1 smallish piece of chicken per person, plus about 6 pounds of chicken tenders, plus 2 ounces of coldcuts per person and 1 1/2 to 2 ounces of cheese.

Laura, you don't say how many people! 1 9x13 penne per 8, 1 pound raw sausage per 2, 2 brownies each, See the plan for 100 for the salad.

Linda MacAngus
09/28/10
Serving about 400 hamburgers.
Will you please tell me how much ketchup and mustard I should buy?
mary
09/29/10
im planning my daughters 3rd birthday party and im making a mexican food buffet. im making pachucos, gorditas, and tamales and i was wondering how much of each do i need?????
ellen
09/29/10
Linda, see the condiment guide on the sandwich page.

Mary, allow 1 gordita, 1 pachuco and 2-3 tamales per person, plus 10% if they are fairly heavy eaters.

katys
09/29/10
I'm planning dinner for 45 adults mostly women. I'm planning: Chicken curry, biryani rice, coleslaw, tofu vegetable stir fry, beef pasta and vegetable curry. Please advice how much of each item I will need.
ellen
09/30/10
Hi, Katys,
This is a little tough because of 4 entrees for only 45 people. I would do about 3 1/2 pounds of rice for the biryani, since you won't have other rice and the chicken, tofu and veggie curry could all use it.
1 1/2 gallons cole slaw, you will have some left over.
3/4 cup each chicken curry and beef pasta, PLUS 1/2 cup each tofu and weggie curry, and everyone will get their first choice. You will have some left, but not too much.
Kate
10/14/10
Food planning for 50 people next weekend Tailgate
Hi, I'm hosting a tailgate next weekend which will last ~8 hours. There will be 54 adults and 8 kids.
To start I was thinking of serving Macaroni Salad, Chili and Hotdogs before the game for lunch. All in crockpots so we dont have to grill.
After the game I was thinking of ziti, ribs, sausage peppers & onions, and green beans.
Throughout the day there will be an assortment of chips & dips.

How much do you think I need for all of this food?

ellen
10/15/10
This is 2 meals plus light hor doeuvres. Treat it as 2/3 of 100 and you will have plenty; for example, 4 pounds dry pasta for the macaroni salad.

Condiments for the hot dogs are on the sandwich page

For the mixed meats at supper allow 1/2 pound raw ribs per person PLUS 1 pound of sausage with an equal weight of mixed peppers and onions for each 3 people. Everything else is covered on the planning pages. If you want to post an estimate I will check it for you.

Vivian
10/16/10
Food planning for 60 people
Hi Ellen,
I am having a christmas lunch for 65 people, and the menue is 4 different kinds of finger sandwiches: Curry Chicken, cucumber, egg salad, and a smoked salmon. Then there will be about 5 differents kinds of dessert. I was wondering how many sandwiches I would do of each kind.
ellen
10/16/10
If you are making these on the thin, tea sandwich bread, you want to make at least 2 sandwiches (6-8 pieces) per person, and if it is in place of lunch, I would do 3- 1 chicken, 1/2 each egg, cuke, and salmon, and the last divided between egg and salmon, or else add a sweet fruited cream cheese. Follow the teaparty button on the main cooktalk page for several articles on tea sandwiches and tea parties, with lots of hints and tips..
Vince
10/19/10
Planning a Bday party for my one year old son. Will have about 45-60 people with 12-18 kids ranging from toddlers to tweens. Thinking about hot dogs and hamburgers. Any thoughts? How many or other ideas?

Thanks!

ellen
10/19/10
What time of day, how long of a party? Grilling might be great to avoid, you could do chicken nuggets and meatball subs for equal popularity and less trouble. Budget? Write back.
vince
10/19/10
Time of day will be from 2pm to about 5pm. As far as budget goes, trying to keep it low compared to previous parties, baptism, shower. I guess anywhere from 3-4 hundred dollars. Have done taco guy in past to avoid girlling, but that gets pricey.
ellen
10/19/10
How about pizza? With the specials on- I like Papa John's- you could do lots at about $10 each; or crank them out of your oven. Big fruit trays. A few veggie trays or some salad for the health minded. Two or three great dips with chips. Maybe meatballs with pretzel toothpicks?
Donna
10/24/10
Hi, having a baby shower Saturday at 2 pm for about 35 Women. Making stuffed (ricotta) shells, meatballs, chicken tettrazini, rolls and salad. (mom 2 be's favorite foods) How much should I make of the shells and Chicken Tett? How many rolls? Should I get a 1/2 sheet cake or full sheet? Thanks!
ellen
10/24/10
If cake is the only dessert, a full sheet or a two layer half sheet.

I would make 4 9x13 chicken tettrazini, serve 3 and send one home to mom-to-be freezer in 2 8x8 pans.

7 pounds meatballs

2 shells per person unless they are the ultra large ones, even the at least 1 1/2.

I would make extras for mom's freezer all around, especially if these are favorites.

Teri
10/27/10
This Saturday I am in charge of making salsa for a deep pit dinner and extra salsa to snack on salsa and chips before dinner. Approximately 50-60 people.
I usually use canned tomatoes....how many ounces should I use?

Thank you!!

ellen
10/27/10
I would make 2 gallons.
vesna
10/28/10
Planning a B day party for our 10-year-old son. We expect about 50 kids and 20 adults. Beside other food, we plan some BBQ. Would 20 lbs of meat be enough?
ellen
10/28/10
Is this the only meat? It would be barely enough probably, if this is cooked weight. If there are any other meats, it would be fine.
joan
11/02/10
Having a dinner at my church for 50 people. Menu includes chicken & waffles, mashed potatoes, corn and lettuce with dsg. I have planned to roast 5 chickens and peel 20 pounds of pototoes. For dessert I have 3 cakes, 2 pies, 3 pumpkin rolls and fruit salad. Is this correct?
ellen
11/02/10
You are very short of chicken. I would do 10-12 for pieces for a dinner this size. Everything else looks OK.
Vicki
11/06/10
Food planning for around 50 people
I am making mac & cheese for a kids birthday party, how many pounds of pasta would I need to make two full trays?
ellen
11/06/10
Depends on the number and size of the kids, and the size of your trays. I allow 1 pound per 9x13 dish.
Bridget
11/11/10
having a baby shower this sunday
having a baby shower for 30-35 ladies and 7-0 little girls ages 3 to 10. I'm serving brisket and pulled pork (should I provide buns for sandwiches?) ; I'm also planning on green beans, cold slaw and macaroni and cheese . In addition, I'm thinking about a vegetable tray and a cheese tray with a sheet cake for dessert. Do I need anything else to eat or is this too much for a luncheon? Do I need some fruit? On the tables there will be mixed nuts and mints.
ellen
11/11/10
I would probably skip the green beans and add fruit. Yes, have buns available, mustard too.
Al
11/14/10
Food planning for 26 people
My Wife and I are planning my sons first birthday party. We will be making a large tray of lasagna, meatballs, sausage & peppers, rolls and a salad. We will also be putting out our a vegetable and cheese platter and spinach dip. For dessert we will have fruit and cupcakes. Is that enough food?
ellen
11/14/10
Yes, plenty. Use 1/4 the amount on the plan for 100 lists for any specific items. See the spaghetti page for help on the lasagna quantities, you definitely want to be able to cut 24 pieces, even if small.
Kate
11/22/10
I am planning a baby shower for about 50 people. We are serving 4 different types of soups and deli trays to make sandwiches with condiments. I am wondering the amount of lunch meat, cheese, and bread that will be needed?
ellen
11/22/10
Go to the sandwich event page, use half the amount for 100.
Jen
11/23/10
How much chicken do I need
I am having 13 people for dinner on Christmas. Planning on chicken parm. How much chicken do I need and would you use cutlets or whole breast?
With it I will be having italian bread and garlic bread. Also a garden salad.
ellen
11/23/10
I would do 20 6-8 ounce cutlets.
nina
12/16/10
Food planning for 50 people
Hi, I'm planning a New Year's Hopping John open house. Menu is:

Hopping John
bread, cheese and fruit platter
chips and salsa
veggie tray
shrimp cocktail

How much of each should I buy for a 3pm start with no end time

ellen
12/16/10
Assuming 50 people, staying a long time:

6 pounds dry black eyed peas
6 pounds bread and crackers
10 pounds cheeses, can include spreads, and balls
4 pounds chips, 1 gallons salsa
veggie tray, see veggiew tray page
fruit tray, see fruit tray page
shrimps- 12 pounds, shelled PLUS 3 quarts cocktail sauce

Tiamiyu Lateefat
12/21/10
Food planning for 500 people
pls I'm planning to cook jollof Rice and Fried Rice for 500 people on my wedding day. How do I go about it. Pls I need answer to it.
ellen
12/22/10
You can't do this; it will take at least 8 cooks and many many servers to do it for you. Allow 14 pounds of dry rice per each 100 people divided between the 2 dishes, if there are plenty of other dishes. The rice for the fried rice is best cooked the day before and chilled.
Janelle
12/26/10
Looking for advice!!
I'm preparing beef stroganoff for 90 people New Year's Eve. I'm planning on pre-cooking pasta...but I'm wondering whether to prepare the meat & sauce ahead of time and reheat prior to the event. Don't want it to dry out! Will be making in "batches"...what are your suggestions? Thanks for your help!
ellen
12/26/10
Please carefully read the instructions on reheating pasta on the spaghetti page. Also, sour cream sauces do NOT reheat well.

I would suggest you use a fine, tender meat (stroganoff was originally made with fillet/ tenderloin). You definitely do NOT want top round...

Linda
01/05/11
light hor d'oeuvres for 50 people
I am having a drop in throughout the day party for my husband for his 75th birthday. I would like suggestions and amounts of food for 50 people. And how much cake?
ellen
01/06/11
This is a tough estimate, as some people will want to make a meal and others just a snack. So ets do the easy part first:

I would do 4-5 2 layer cakes, looks fresher through the day and more interesting. Or 1/2 of any of the dessert plans for 100 on the dessert plan page.

I would suggest fruit trays; cheese trays, maybe with some logs or spreads; a sliced meat deli tray with a basket of good small breads or rolls and the fixings. One good hot dip or pate or seafood mold.

Beverages, do 1/2 the dinner coffee recommendation on the beverage planning page and perhaps a tasty punch. For my Mom's birthday, Dad dis French 75's (1/2 brandy, 1/2 champagne); very cheerful party!

Lucille Stewart
01/08/11
I am planning a surprise birthday party for my daughter on Jan. 21st for 50 people. Can you help with a menu and portions? Thanks!!!
ellen
01/08/11
Lucille, what is the time, approximate budget and age of partiers? Please write back.
terri
01/17/11
having 50 people for a 30th b'day party. Five or six appetizers, green salad, sandwich platter, chicken marsala & penne a la a vodka. How many lbs. of pasta do I make for the penne pasta and how many half trays of the marsala will I need? Thank you!
ellen
01/17/11
For pasta, 5-6 pounds. You need about 13-15 pounds of cooked chicken plus sauce- ask whoever makes it, how many 1 half-tray serves.
Jessica
01/20/11
Food planning for 50 people
Hi I am having a communion party for approx 50 people I plan on making the following:
Baked Ziti, Sausage & Peppers, Hawaiian Chicken, Fried Rice & White Rice. Do you think that is enough of a variety? How much of each do you think I will need I figured at least 4 trays each except on the rices only 3 for them.
ellen
01/21/11
I don't know how big your trays are? So here are some weights and volumes:

Total 4 pounds dry rice, divided into the two dishes to suit your particular group.

Total 6 pounds pasta for the ziti, a bit less if there is meat in it. You will have some left over.

1 piece of chicken per person, plus a bit- about 6-7 chickens

1 pound of sausage per 4.

I would add fruit trays with some pineapple.

Desserts and beverages, of course. maybe some crusty rolls (1 per person) and butter)about 2 pounds).

Peggy
01/24/11
Planning a menu for a weekday evening reception
I'm interested in suggestions for a menu. Serving 50. 30 adults 20 young teens. Do ahead as much as possible.
ellen
01/24/11
What event? What time of day? How long of an event? What budget? More info, please.
Peggy
01/24/11
Planning a menu foa weekday evening reception
We will be hosting a reception for our son, Eagle Scout court of honor. On a Tue, at 6:30 pm. Will last approx. 2 hours. A buffet meal. A $400 budget.
ellen
01/25/11
OK. What kind of kitchen and service makes a difference, but you can tell me more. Assuming you will have about 50 people-

A Tex Mex buffet is VERY popular with this age group and quite economical; it doesn't have to be just tacos, you can do fajita makings, a nacho selection, etc as well as rice and beans, salad and taco makings.

An ice cream sundae bar is a great dessert choice, if you have the facilities, but frankly, any of the dessert plans on the site will be a hit.

If you are doing the cooking yourself and want to cook ahead, an Italian buffet with lasagna as the main course is a very good choice.

What do you think?

Peggy
01/25/11
Thank you,
Gives some direction - choices for my son
Emily
01/26/11
Third birthday party
Hi Ellen:

I am planning my daughter's third birthday party. Approximately 12 toddlers (ages 2-4) and about 25 adults will attend, and the invitation noted that we will serve a "light supper" (the party begins at 4:30pm). Right now, we are planning to serve: fruit salad, spinich salad with dressing on the side, assorted finger sandwhichs (salmon+dill, bread and butter, cucumber and cream cheese, maybe some others), cake and punch. Do you think we should add anything to the menu? Take anything off? Also, how do we adjust portion sizes given the large number of toddlers?

ellen
01/26/11
Toddlers eat about 1/4 to 1/3 what adults eat. and as a rule they do NOT eat spinach salad or any of those sandwiches. Add peanut butter and jelly and ham or bologna.
Aaron
02/11/11
Food planning for 60 people help please
Hi Eillen,
I am planning a party for 60 people for Mardi Gras in New Orleans and have a $500.00 for food. My menu is finger sandwiches, artichoke balls, chicken drummettes, mini muffelattas, fried catfish,veggie and cheese tray. How much of each should i get?
ellen
02/12/11
Aaron, that is a very tight budget for that menu if you are buying all the food ready-made. Are you cooking it yourself? I would skip the finger sandwiches...
Write back.
Aaron
02/14/11
My budget has increased to around 800.00 and the food is ready made. I am not too worried about the budget as i am getting a pretty good deal from the caterer
ellen
02/14/11
finger sandwiches, 4 per person
(I would skip these and do fruit trays...)
artichoke balls, about 4 per person, depends on size, need dip
chicken drummettes, 6 per person, need dips
mini muffelattas, 1 or 2 per person, depending how mini, I would probably do 2 unless they are big enough to cut in half
fried catfish, 2 pieces per person
veggie tray 2-3 ounces per person, need dip
cheese tray 2-3 ounces per person. Need crackers, 1-2 ounces per person.
Kari
02/22/11
Hi Ellen,
I will be having 50 guests (11 of them are children)at my wedding. My menu will be chicken parm, lasagna, sausage & peppers, a salad, and sandwiches: cold cuts on cuban bread(cut up with the toothpicks). How much do I need of each? And can I do away with the lasagna if I make a cold pasta dish(tri-color rotini with spinach, diced tomatoes and parmesan cheese with italian dressing)?
ellen
02/23/11
chicken parm, 6 ounces per person
lasagna, YES SKIP and do pasta salad (3 pounds dry pasta)
sausage & peppers, 1 pound sausage per 4 plus equal weight peppers and onions
salad, 1/2 the amount for 100, see the plan for 100 page
sandwiches 2 pieces per person
about 4 pounds breads

Suggest you need a nibble table for the hour or so between the ceremony and dinner; punch, fruit tray, cheese and crackers, and one dip or spread

JOAN
03/05/11
nacho bar for 50 people. how much ground beef etc?
what appliances to keep thing warm?
ellen
03/05/11
Go to the taco bar page for amounts of toppings, 1/3 to 1/2 cup nacho cheese per person, crock pots on low for the cheese and ground beef.
Kaylin
03/05/11
Food planning for 100 people for wedding reception
Hi Ellen,

I am estimating around 100 guests for my wedding reception. We are doing a tapas style dinner. This is the menu I was planning. Please let me know if you think there is a good variety or too much variety. Also if you could let me know quantities that you think would be sufficient for a crowd this large. It is an evening reception so people will have a large appetite. I would hate to run out of food; however, I would like to save money and not order too much. Let me know what you think a safe quantity would be. Thanks so much!!!

Appetizer
Fruit Trays
Vegetable Trays

Dinner
Black bean soup (vegetarian)
Chicken skewers
Pork skewers
Salad
Bread
Hummus Spread
Bruschetta Spread
Crostini with goat cheese and smoked salmon
Spanish olives
Spanish cheese

ellen
03/05/11
I will get back to this in the next few days-
ellen
03/06/11
This is a nice menu for the event, I might suggest a little re-arranging:

Appetizer
Fruit Trays
Vegetable Trays- suggest relish trays or antipasto as all or part, see info on veggie tray page
Some kind of protein and cracker or bread- could be cheese, dip or spread
Punch or punches/ sangria, some light beverage- two if one is alcohol- inclusive.

Dinner
Black bean soup (vegetarian)- maybe in shooters (cups)- 8 ounces per person- 6 gallons, probably have some left
Chicken skewers- 4-5 ounces raw per person
Pork skewers- 4 ounces raw per person
add about a dozen marinated tofu skewers unless you are certain there are no vegetarians
Salad- choose one of the make aheads
maybe add tabouli? or Jerusalem salad?
Breads about 12 pounds
Hummus Spread- about 18-20 pounds- maybe several flavors
Bruschetta Spread- about 1/4 cup per person
Crostini with goat cheese and smoked salmon- 1 ounce each goat cheese and salmon per person
Spanish olives- black and green- total, 1 gallon
Spanish cheese- several kinds, include a soft cream-cheesy spread, about 16-20 pounds. Some might be on the appetizer table

Add dinner level coffee (see beverage planning page)

I would have the fruit trays, heavy on the grapes and melons.

Maria
03/06/11
Food planning for 40 people -- help please
Hi Ellen,

I will be having about 40 guests at a pre-wedding event (mehndi party) at our house. The event starts at 6:30pm and will be fairly informal. I am hoping that we could order lebanese finger food to keep people going and then do a small bar-b-que later in the evening (the dinner would be very basic -- chicken/lamb kebabs, with greek salad, tabbouli salad, yogurt, hummus, and pita). Based upon this, I am unsure on the quantities to order for the finger food.

The lebanese finger food menu is:
beef kibbe (per dz)
vegeterian kibbe (per dz)
spinach pie triangles (per dz)
cheese pie triangles (per dz)
mini lavash with chicken (per dz)
hummus (per lb)
vegetables for dipping (carrots/celery etc.)

Thanks!

ellen
03/07/11
Interestingly, the usual plan for before-meal appetizers is about 8 per person. So I would order 3 dozen of each, with 4 dozen of the two most popular; 1 pound hummus per 5; 1 pound assorted veggies per 5.

Hope the tattoos are beautiful.

Denise
03/16/11
Food planning for 50 people
Ellen,
For our surprise 70th birthday party for our Pop, Mom wants Prime Rib, Sausage & Peppers, Corn, Delmonico Potatoes, Green Salad, Rolls, Appetizers consisting of Shrimp, Cheese Platter and Veggie Platter. The only thing we daughters feel confident about is the cake will be purchased.
ellen
03/16/11
If this is buffet service, these numbers will be about right:

Prime Rib, 20 pounds boneless ready to eat (about 30 pounds raw)
Sausage & Peppers, 10 pounds sausage, equal weight veggies
Corn, 10 pounds
Delmonico Potatoes, 18 pounds
Green Salad, 1/2 the amount for 100, see planning page
Rolls, 2 small per person (3 ounces) 2 pounds butter

Appetizers
Shrimp, 12 pounds shelled (people love shrimp) plus 3 1/2 quarts cocktail sauce
Cheese Platter, 8 pounds cheeses, 3-4 pounds crackers
Veggie Platter- suggest relish tray at top of veggie tray page, more interesting- or do 1/2 that tray and a fruit tray for 25 (more popular).

Robin
04/13/11
Food planning for 100 people
Hi,
I am helping a friend make steamed rice and veggie stir fry for her daughters graduation party. We are expecting approx. 100 people. Could you please help me with quantities. I believe 1/4 c. dry rice per person, but I have no idea where to start on the veggies. Thanks.
ellen
04/13/11
For each 7 pounds dry rice (100 servings, I add about 15 pounds assorted chopped veggies when I make a veggie rice pilaf. Are you talking rice under a veggie stirfry? If so, what else is being served with it?.
Robin
04/14/11
Thanks Ellen. Yes - I am talking rice under a stir fry. She wants a chicken/veggie stir fry. I didn't hear about the 'chicken' part until last night. I thought of doing teriyaki and green thai curry. The mom is having egg rolls and other finger foods with it. The girl is a bakers apprentice so desserts are of course the focal point. She is doing all of them. Could you suggest chicken portions also. I REALLY appreciate this! Wow, how cool to have found you!
ellen
04/14/11
OK, do 10 pounds of rice.

You want about 30 pounds ready to cook assorted veggies, about the same boneless chicken of that is the only meat.

LaWanna
04/15/11
I need to make 50 lunch meat sandwiches days ahead of the event. How much turkey or ham do I need to buy to make the sandwiches? Can I freeze them?
ellen
04/16/11
You will be very unhappy if you don't freeze them!
margarine all the way to the edges on every piece of bread; mayonnaise does not freeze.
Put soft butter or margarine all the way to the edges on every piece of bread; mayonnaise does not freeze.

Allow 3-4 ounces deli sliced meat per sandwich, turkey freezes better than ham.

Have a separate baggie with fresh lettuce, tomato, etc. in the lunch, they don't freeze.

Millie
04/19/11
After-dinner finger sandwiches for 40
I'm doing after-meal snacks of finger sandwiches for 40 ladies. Making on cocktail bread, turkey with swiss, ham with cheddar. As well as lemon scones, cranberry scones, and shortbread dipped in chocolate. How much do you think I should prepare? Thanks for the help!
ellen
04/20/11
Tasty. I would make about 60 of each.
Maria Brown
04/21/11
having a 50th bday at a bar & grill resturant
I'm having 20 people to a 50th birthday party on April 30 @ 7pm for my husband at this bar and grill casual indoor & outdoor resturant next week.And we know the owner and i can take whatever I want snacks,finger foods and a cake,etc. Can you tell me what kinds of foods on platters I can take? Some children may come too.We plan to keep it inexpensive and have a great time.Thanks,Maria
Dotty
04/22/11
h'ordeurves for 50 engagement party
Want to have an italilan theme. Bruschetta,
Italian sausages, antipasto, shrimp, possibly meatballs. Any other suggestions for our menu? Should we have a sweet?
Corrinne
04/23/11
Food planning for 65 people help please
Ellen, my recipe serves 8. Our scouts are doing a shelter dinner for 65 next Friday, 4/29. How do I increase recipe to serve 65? I plan to do 4 total trays, two with spinach and two with ground beef. I have 14 pounds of ground beef. Will that be enough? Thank you!

12 oz rotini
2 med zucchini (I plan to replace with baby spinach)
2 garlic cloves
1, 48oz jar spag sauce
1 tsp dried basil leaves
2 oz Parmesan cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella

Jessica
04/26/11
Food Planning for 50 people
Event: Communion
Place: House
Time: 2:00pm

Baked Ziti 2.5 lbs
Penna a la Vodkda 2.5 lbs
Chicken & Mushrooms 10 lbs
Loin of Pork 5 lbs
Sausage & Peppers 10 lbs
White Rice 2 lbs
Roasted Potatos 5 lbs
Broccolli & Strping Beans 1 lb of each

Do you think my servings are correct?
Thanks for our help

Kate
04/28/11
Food planning for 20 people
I'm having 18-21 people for a lunchtime First Communion celebration. (8 of these are kids ranging from 6-16 yrs old)

Menu: Deli tray with meat and cheese slices, sandwich fixings (i.e. tomato, lettuce, onion, condiments), bread or rolls or croissants, coleslaw, greens salad, baked beans, veggie and/or fruit tray, chips and dip, dessert (assortment of cake pops and chocolate cross-shaped suckers). I thought of all cold items (except maybe don't need baked beans?), because we'll be coming directly home from church to eat.

Is this enough choices, too much? I would love to know how much of each as well.

Thanks for your help!

ellen
04/28/11
Nice menu for this event. Put the beans in a crock pot on high before you leave and you will have nice hot beans when you return.

For the purpose of this meal, all the kids over 10 will eat like grownups, so I suggest you use the sandwich page and get 1/5 the amount for 100, meat, cheese, bread and condiments; do the meal amounts if you have the beans and the big meal amounts if you don't, as people will have breakfasted early. Do the fruit tray for 25 from the fruit tray page, and you do not need a veggie tray with the salad. Allow 2 ounces chips per person (people will snack on them) and 1/4 to 1/3 cup dip per person, depending on whether it is one the kids like a lot.

A colorful punch would be a popular choice, with iced tea and coffee for the grownups. 2 gallons of punch.

Cyndi
05/04/11
Graduation Party
We an hosting a graduation party for our daughter. We have invited 110 people and are expecting 65. Planning cake, nuts, mints and drinks. Cake size? Ounces on nuts and mints recommended. Plus, I was thinking cans/bottles instead of punch so we do not have to serve?
ellen
05/04/11
See the dessert planning page for a decision on the cake size. Remember that if you don't want to get really really wide, you can have them make a 2 layer sheet cake- just as many servings, half the area, often prettier.
I allow 6 pounds nuts or mints per 100 for adults, teens, I'd suggest you add a chocolate- M&M's?- and do 8 of each.
You can do bottles or cans, but punch is very festive and you can color it with school colors... If you do sodas, see the beverage planning page for help and have coffee for the grownups.
Eliza
05/11/11
Hi Ellen,

Planning an anniversary party in August, 150 people attending. Here's my menu, appreciate your help on qty.

Menu:
Pulled pork (or chicken) sandwiches
Roaster of Beans (beans, ground hamburger, onions, stewed tomatoes)
Potato Salad
Pasta Salad
Mixed fruit salad
Mixed veggies
Sheet Cake
Mixed Nuts
Lemonade

Thanks so much! This is so helpful to see how everyone else is planning their parties. I'm planning on the snack/sandwich buns (the size smaller then a hamburger bun)

Eliza

Kim
05/11/11
Food planning for wedding reception for 50-60 ppl
I am doing the food for my wedding reception.
Serving fried chicken
ham
pasta salad
baked beans
veggie tray
cheese and cracker tray
water
tea
lemaonade
rolls butter

How much do I need to buy for 50-60 people?
I don't want to run out of food but I don't want to spend my wedding day worrying about food.
thanks Kim

ellen
05/12/11
Hi, Eliza, most of these foods are covered on the planning lists, you just use 1 1/2 times the amount for 100. Here are my notes:
Pulled pork (or chicken) sandwiches- 28-30 pounds meat per 100
2 small rolls per person. For other condiments, see the sandwich page
Roaster of Beans, probably need 3 roasters for 150- at least 2; 6-8 pounds dry per 100 to start
Potato Salad- plan for 100 page
Pasta Salad- plan for 100 page
Mixed fruit salad- fruit trays are prettier, keep better, and the leftovers are more usable, see the fruit tray page.
Mixed veggies- plan for 100 page. Might sub cole slaw
Sheet Cake- dessert planning [page
Mixed Nuts- 6 pounds per 100
Lemonade- beverage planning page. Have dinner coffee, or at least some unsweetened ice tea for the diabetics and dieters in the group
ellen
05/12/11
Kim, this is a nice, safe size party to plan, but you need to read my article about the wedding dinner and get some organized help, or you may be the bride going through the trash in her wedding dress trying to find the borrowed cake server (true story...)

Also, you need to plan a nibble table for the hour or so between the service and the meal (photos, etc); punch or the lemonade and 3 items, such as a fruit tray (1/2 the deluxe tray for 100 on the fruit tray page), the cheese tray (8-10 pounds cheeses) and one nice dip or spread on crackers.

fried chicken- 1 piece per person plus 10%
ham- 1 pound ready to eat per 5
pasta salad- see plan for 100, use 2/3
baked beans- see plan for 100, use 2/3
veggie tray- see veggie tray page, have ranch dip
cheese and cracker tray- see above
water- bottled? 1 per person
tea- about 4 gallons, have some unsweet
lemonade- about 4 gallons
rolls butter- get good rolls! 2 per person, 2 pounds butter
Consider adding dinner coffee if you will have a cake

Donna
05/13/11
Food planning for 14 people
We are having a potluck brunch that includes tamales, egg & sausage casserole, fruit, muffins, pastry, raw vegetable platter. I was thinking of making baked ziti to have another main dish, what would you suggest? Thanks!
ellen
05/14/11
I would not do ziti. How about a quiche or baked French toast, or see the Maple Date strata on the festive family brunch page.
Nancy
05/16/11
Food Planning for Buck and Doe 50/60 People.

Hi I am catering to a buck and Doe Stag that is coming up soon. I was thinking of sandwiches, veggie platters, cheese and cracker trays, pickle trays, chips and dip, dessert trays and a cake. How much should I have of each one.

ellen
05/16/11
Nancy use the tables and articles to make an estimate, post it, and I will look at it for you. Look at the sandwich article, beverage planning page, veggie tray page, dessert planning page. Use 2/3 the amount for 100 to cover 60-65.
jeanne
05/18/11
we are having appetizers---little hot dogs, spanekpokia (spell??) cheese/crackers/fruit and artichoke dip. how much of these?
dinner---chicken picata (i know that amount)
how much rice pilaf, salad, broccoli casserole and asparagus??
thank you!!!!
ellen
05/18/11
Jeanne, is this dinner for 50 people? And is it sit down or buffet, and what beverage? Write back.
jeanne
05/18/11
it is a birthday party for my brother---yes, 50 people. I just found your website so I guess I should look more at that too! We are serving wine, beer, and non-alcoholic drinks. It is buffet, but I will have tables set up in the yard so most people will be able to sit. There are quiet a few younger (in their 20's) so it will be fine if everyone does not have a seat. I think I should add a pasta also--just worried I won't have enough---- thanks again
ellen
05/18/11
Lucky brother. Nice menu. I would NOT add pasta, instead, really good rolls or bread- ciabatta, focaccio, etc, about 6-7 pounds, 2 pounds butter

little hot dogs, 3 per person
spanekopita, 2 per person
cheese, 2 ounces per person
crackers, 4 pounds
fruit, 1 1/2 fruit tray for 25 or 1/3 fruit tray for 100
artichoke dip, 1/4 cup per person, 1 1/2 ounces bread or chips per person

chicken piccata (i know that amount)
rice pilaf, 4 pounds dry rice
salad, 1/2 amount for 100 see plan for 100 table
broccoli casserole, 11-12 pounds broccoli pieces
asparagus, 1 pound fresh untrimmed per 4

cake, dinner coffee

Amanda
05/19/11
I am having a graduation party for around 50, most will just stop by few a little while this is what I have
2 lbs pasta salad
2 lbs mac. salad
3 lbs fruit salad
4 lbs tossed salad
cake/candy
lots of soda/water
4 bags of assorted chips
16 lbs sausage
120 meatballs (big ones)
small tray cheese, pep, crackers

not sure if i should add anything else

ellen
05/20/11
You are OK for meat, but I would be concerned about running out of everything else. For example, I would allow 2 gallons for the two pasta salads. The fruit is only one ounce per person, and 3-4 ounces is a typical serving.

I would add 4-5 dozen really good rolls and sandwich condiments for the sausages and meat balls. See the sandwich page.

Amanda
05/20/11
Thank you! I ordered about 78 rolls and also have about 46 deviled eggs. I am picking up more pasta today! Thank you again!
jeanne
05/21/11
Thank you!!! big help
Barbara
05/24/11
Food planning for 100 people June 11th help please
When figuring a cheese plate with ring balogna, how much ring balogna do I figure per person. We are also having cheese, veggie trays, fruit trays, crackers, punch, mints and nuts. I saw your amounts for the other trays. Thank you in advance!
ellen
05/24/11
I allow 2 ounces if mid afternoon, 3 if near a meal time.
Susan
05/25/11
post wedding brunch for 50
Hosting an outdoor brunch for 50 for the day after a wedding for the travelers. Menu:
Quiche, Sausage Casserole
Sliced Ham, rolls, condiments
Small Croissants, muffins, pastries
Fresh Fruit (strawberries, bananans, grapes)
Veggie Tray with dip
Cheese tray
Pasta Salad

How much of each do I need? Thanks.

ellen
05/26/11
Quiche, approx 6; impossible pies are another option
Sausage Casserole- with eggs? about 8 dozen eggs
Sliced Ham, 1 pound per 5
condiments see sandwich pagem use 1/2 amount for 100
rolls, Small Croissants, muffins, pastries- 80 smallish rolls and croissants for sandwiches, about 1 of each of the others per person, two if mini
Fresh Fruit (strawberries, bananans, grapes)- see fruit tray page. Add dip (vanilla or strawberry yogurt, honey, mace or mint)
Veggie Tray with dip- see veggie tray page
Cheese tray- 2 ounces per person, add 2 pounds crackers
Pasta Salad- 3 pounds dry pasta

Need a sweet or dessertbar.

Julie
05/30/11
Hosting graduation party for 60-80 people 2-5pm
17 lbs. pulled pork with buns
2 large veggie trays with dip
2 large fruit trays
100 bags assorted chips
1/4 sheet cake
4 cookie cakes
mints/nuts
assorted water/pop

I know some will just drop in and not eat much. Suggestions? Do I have enough of everything?

ellen
05/30/11
Th only thing you seem really short on is cake, that is only about 12-16 servings (it is the same as a 9x13). I would do at least a half sheet.

You might consider adding salsa or a dip for the chips, 1/4 cup per person.

Jane
06/04/11
need large tray of eggplant parmagiana
I need to make a large tray of eggplant for a party. Will buy the eggplant already sliced, breaded and fried. Not sure how many pounds of eggplant I need.
ellen
06/04/11
Jane, you need about 4 ounces of eggplant slices per person if it is an entree dish, 1 pound for 5 for a side dish.
beraleday
06/05/11
Awesome Blog. I add this Post to my bookmarks.
carina
06/05/11
funeral reception for 50 at home- how much to make
Hi, I'm catering a funeral reception for a friend this coming Wednesday. They will be having lunch at the church at 12 , then burial and arriving at house 2.30/3pm. He would like appetizers and desserts. Should I plan for 8 bites per person?
Thinking of 144 shrimp cocktail, 80 small curry puffs, 80 chicken skewers, 50 almond cookies, 50 chocolate chip cookies and 50 slices blackberry jam cake, 16" fruit platter and 16" crudite platter. Is this too much food? What do you think of the mix? Do I need more desserts and less appetizers?
ellen
06/06/11
Yes, this is a lot of food when they have already had lunch. Also, a lot of meat. Here are some suggestions:

144 shrimp cocktail, OK sauce 1 cup per 5
80 small curry puffs, OK amount, but I would probably go with a milder flavor- unless you are sure this would be liked
80 chicken skewers, OK, or could do a spinach Parm square, frittata square, etc

50 almond cookies,
50 chocolate chip cookies
50 slices blackberry jam cake,
Fine on desserts. Might add some more choc chips- some people do take 2-3

16" fruit platter- Not sure how much fruit this is. You want about 10 pounds edible.
16" crudite platter- would skip. They had lunch, and don't need it now.

See beverage planning page for dinner level coffee and tea.

carina
06/08/11
Turns out they may expect up to 75 people, so I had to up all amounts. But it was a huge help to find your pages for guidance on just about everything one needs for catering. Thank you so much!!!!!!
Glenn
06/17/11
Hi, I am having a party for 50. I am making sausage and peppers and cubed chicken breast and artichoke. The sides are being brought by others but I would like your help on how much of these two dishes to prepare. Also what would be the ratio you recommend on the sausage and peppers. THANKS!
ellen
06/18/11
I would make 1 pound sausage per 4-5, add an equal weight of mixed peppers and onions, PLUS 1 pound skinless boneless breast per 4.
Tommy
06/22/11
Hi Ellen,
I am catering an adult party for 56 guests on Saturday. I have ordered:

1 1/2 trays of penne vodka
1 1/2 trays of Chicken marsala
1 full tray shrimp & garlic sauce (small shrimp)
1/2 tray rice
1 full tray meatballs & sausage
I full tray brocolli, brocolli rabe, potatoes, long hot peppers
1 full tray garden salad

I want to add to it, what would you suggest with the food I have already ordered? Would you increase the chicken by 1/2 etc.? Thank you!! BTW, there will be light apps (chips, spinach dip, cheese platter)for approx. an hour until the guest-of-honor arrives.

ellen
06/23/11
Tommy, please I need either the weight or thye depth of the trays. Trays come in 2", 4", 6" and even 8" depths, amounts ranging from 7 to 31 quarts for a full pan.
Kate
06/28/11
Food planning for 50 people next week
I am catering a birthday party for 55 adults and 31 children next week. I am planning on making chicken cutlets, sausage and peppers, eggplant parm, and penne with vodka sauce. I will also have macaroni and cheese and chicken tenders for the kids. How much of everything would you suggest I buy?
ellen
06/28/11
Kate, this is a site aimed at family cooks and volunteers, and I suggest that pro caterers and aspiring pro caterers use

cheftalk.com
chef2chef.com

With this many items for this small a group. you will have leftovers if you plan enough so everyone gets his/her first choice. I would do about 40 2 piece servings of chicken cutlets, 30 of sausage and peppers, 50 of eggplant and 50-60 of penne. 1 pound tenders per each 5 kids, about 3 pounds dry macaroni (3-4 9x13 pans).

Heather
06/30/11
Having a informal wedding reception Saturday July 2nd...and really am unsure of the amount for 50 people...
Here's the menu:
margarita chicken
coconut shrimp skewers
fruit salad
watermelon salsa
tortalini marinated mozzarella and tomato skewers
stuffed cherry tomatos
crab dip
spinach artichoke dip
chilled boiled shrimp
sauces:
yummy yummy sauce
tartar sauce
coctail sauce
avacado cucumber dip
jamacian jerk dip/sauce
tostitos chip
bagel chips

crazy I know...sure could use the help
Thanks a million

ellen
07/01/11
Heather, I just got this July 1-

margarita chicken- 1 pound per 3 people
coconut shrimp skewers- 2 to 3 per person
fruit salad- use fruit tray page of plan for 100 page, 1/2 the amount for 100
watermelon salsa- for what? about 1/4 cup per person
tortalini marinated mozzarella and tomato skewers- about 2 per person
stuffed cherry tomatoes-4 per person
crab dip- 1/4 cup per person plus 1 1/2 ounces crackers or 2 ounces chips
spinach artichoke dip 1/4 cup per person plus 2 ounces bread
chilled boiled shrimp- at least 1 pound for each 3, plus 1/4 cup cocktail sauce per person

the other sauces, 2-4 tablespoons per person- for example more avocado, less jerk.

Hope this helps and it is not your wedding.

gloria martinez
07/05/11
Sandwiche.s for 40 people 7/9/2011 this Saturday
Want to make sandwiche's divide half tuna and chicken salad.Needing to know how many loaf of bread,can tuna,chicken salad,mayo and what size to get.
ellen
07/05/11
Hi, Gloria,
1 pound loaf makes 8-9 sandwiches, I allow 2 per person for adult crowds with light sides (chips, cookies?) You need 1 cup filling per person, I would split about 2/3 chicken and 1/3 tuna unless you know it is a tuna loving crowd. 80 sandwiches, 50 chicken, 30 tuna, you need 25 cups of chicken salad, which is about 1/2 chicken, or 14 cups, which is 7 pounds chicken meat plus all the fixings from your favorite recipe (or use mine). For the tuna, about 4 pounds, which is about 10-12 cans, or you can get a 6 pound can at the warehouse stores for about the same price. Plus the fixings from your recipe.

Get really good quality mayo- again, a gallon at the warehouse store or restaurant supply is MUCH less expensive.

Sean Fussell
07/06/11
I'm having a cookout for 30 adults and 20 kids how many hamburgers,hot dogs,chicken,and fish do I need for this event.
ellen
07/06/11
Sean. too many choices and not enough info, what kind of chicken/ What kind of fish? What sides? write back.
Dezzy
07/12/11
Food planning for 75 people
Hi i am having a wedding an i need to know how many boxes of rice pilaf i will need to feed 75 people also what size electric roaster will i need and how will i do the bring to a boil part
ellen
07/12/11
You want about 6-7 pounds dry if this is a side dish, an it will fill the roaster. You bring to a boil by setting at 350 or above and covering, then turn to the requested oven heat when the rice is added.
Stephanie
07/13/11
Food planning for 500
I am planning for a multi-family event. We estimated for 500 people. The venue has an a la carte menu that we need to estimate how much to order from breakfast breads, coffee/tea, fruit, eggs, whole fruit, granola.

Breakfast Breads
How many dozen?

Coffee/Tea
How many gallons of coffee?
How many gallons of tea?
Do we need to consider how much coffee to order in relation to how long the event lasts?

Fruit $6/person
Order for how many people? Obviously not everybody is going to eat one of everything.

Eggs $6/person
Order for how many?

Whole Fruit $2.50/person
Order for how many? And do we really need fruit and whole fruit offerings? I would think people would prefer fruit over whole fruit because it is easier to eat.

Granola $6.50/person
Order for how many?

ellen
07/13/11
This is a pricy outfit!

Breakfast Breads
How many dozen? I order 13 dozen per 100

Coffee/Tea
How many gallons of coffee? about 7 gallons per 100, with about 1/4 of that decaf
How many gallons of tea? about 6 quarts hot per 100- or 30 bags assorted plus hot water
Do we need to consider how much coffee to order in relation to how long the event lasts? This is for a meal, or 2-3 hours.

Fruit $6/person
Order for how many people? Obviously not everybody is going to eat one of everything. I do 4 gallons of fruit salad or about 25 pounds fruit per 100

Eggs $6/person
Order for how many?
at least 400 if you are not going to have yogurt or another protein available

Whole Fruit $2.50/person
Order for how many? And do we really need fruit and whole fruit offerings? I would think people would prefer fruit over whole fruit because it is easier to eat.
Skip it

Granola $6.50/person
Order for how many?
This is way overpriced. Get assorted cold cereals or skip it.

You need juice, 3 gallons per 100, and about 20 milks per 100, especially if there are kids.

Stephanie
07/13/11
Breakfast breads
For breakfast breads you said 13 dozen per 100 people. That would be 156 pieces for 100 people? So your thinking that every other person has two breakfast breads? That seems like a lot.

The cost is $45/dozen so if we needed 13 dozen per 100 that would be 65 dozen for 500 people at a cost of $45 a dozen we would be paying $2,925 just for breakfast breads.

ellen
07/13/11
Hi, Stephanie,
Yes, I can only tell you what works for me. You are dealing with a venue that is seriously overpriced. You could look into the price per person of a breakfast buffet, it would probably be more economical.
Many caterers do a box breakfast/ trays at about 8-10 per person. Do you have to order in or can you have an outside caterer supply?
Stephanie
07/18/11
I have been told that at past events like the one we're having that only about 50% of people eat and 100% drink coffee. That being said is 13 dozen per 100 people of breakfast breads still a reasonable estimate?

We also have the option of doing $17 per person which will include breakfast breads, coffee/tea and fruit but then we would have to pay for enough food for all 500 people when past numbers so that around 50% of people eat the food.

ellen
07/18/11
It sounds like somebody you are talking with feels able to advise. Since you have an onsite person, you will probably be more comfortable using their advice. Also, it depends on whether this is people's actual breakfast or a mid-morning snack, which uses about half as much as breakfast.

If you go with the smaller amounts, just be sure you have some back up arrangements. Running out of food makes people quite critical and cranky.

Julie
07/20/11
Food planning for 50 people
I'm planning a light brunch that will take place in two weeks. I wanted to have finger sandwiches (egg salad, chicken salad & cucumber), apple scones, bite size lemon tarts, and a fruit tray. How much of each should I prepare?

Right now I'm thinking the group will be between 50-75 people.

Julie (cont'd)
07/20/11
Food planning for 50 people (part2)
In case it helps with my above post, this is a retirement brunch for my mom. The people coming will be a mix of young and old and there will be some children. We'll also likely have a cupcake cake as dessert. I still need to send out reminder notices to the about 40 people that haven't RSVP'd, but a portion of those people are factored in to my "no more than 75" estimate.
Justin
07/20/11
Sandwiches for 120
We are serving various deli sandwiches to 120 guests. They are going to be constructing their own sandwiches using various toppings that we are providing.

I'm having a really hard time figuring out how much meat/cheese/bread to buy. I have been talking to a few delis and I am getting wildly different numbers on the amount of meat.

Justin
07/20/11
Sandwiches for 120 (cont.)
We are going to be providing meats for turkey, roast beef, and italian sub-esq sandwichses. Should we purchase more of one type of meat due to popularity? I'm thinking Turkey is going to be more popular.
ellen
07/21/11
Julie, nice party. There is an article on site that tells how to do tea sandwiches for a tea of 240 or a tea lunch of 100-120, take a look at that and do 1/2. Covers scones and tarts/sweets, too.

Justin, there is a quantity planning table for sandwiches on the sandwich even page, discusses the variations by age, type of sandwich, etc. Roast beef is usually more popular; about 1/2 roast beef, 1/4 turkey 1/4-1/3 sub (people do make fat sandwiches, or more than one). Check that out and then write back if more questions.

Justin
07/21/11
Sandwiches for 120 (followup)
So I found the Sandwich Event Table you mentioned. According to the table, I should get 36lb of deli meat, 12lb of cheese, and ~190 rolls for a party of 120 people. Is this correct?

And you would recommend that I get 18lb of roast beef, 9 of turkey, and 9 of italian meats?

ellen
07/22/11
Good, I hope that helped. I might do 12 pounds of Italian meats, just for a little wiggle room. All the meats deli-sliced. And remember to increase the cheese a bit if it is not pre-sliced.
annette
08/04/11
I am catering my daughter's wedding reception for 85-90 people. i need help determining the correct amount of food. i am serving: baked ham, boneless chicken tenders w/bbq sauce on the side, baked potato bar w/cheddar cheese, sour cream, bacon bits and butter; green salad w/strawberries w/basalmic vinegarette, premade fresh fruit salad, cold steamed shrimp w/cocktail sauce. beverages: cherry limeade, iced tea, lemonade and water. before wedding party arrives a cheese tray w/crackers. Please help as the time is coming fast!!! Thank you!!!
Victoria
08/04/11
i am Feeding 50 workers on constrution site. i would like to make meatball subs. what would be needed all togeter. needer done this before. and how much meat would i need?
Thank you.
ellen
08/04/11
Annette, hi,

This is a sensible size for this party, good for you! Here are some notes and suggestions.

baked ham, 1 pound ready to eat per 3 people
boneless chicken tenders w/bbq sauce on the side, 3-4 tenders (depends on size) plus 1/4 cup sauce per person

Suggest you add either good bread and butter,n about 10 pounds and 2 pounds

baked potato bar w/cheddar cheese, sour cream, bacon bits and butter;
covered in detail on the baked potato bar page

green salad w/strawberries w/basalmic vinegarette, 8 pounds lettuse, 6 pounds starwberries, 3 quarts dressing

premade fresh fruit salad, 1/2 cup per person

cold steamed shrimp w/cocktail sauce- put these out on the appetizer table, people are greedy for shrimp and if on the entree table will eat a LOT! Appetizer, 1 pound per 5 people plus 1/4 cup sauce per person.

appetizer:
cheese tray w/crackers. 12-16 pounds minimum, part can be spreads or logs, plus 6 pounds crackers, have 1-2 pounds back in case needed.

beverages:

iced tea, unsweetened at least part, 6 gallons
cherry limeade,
lemonade, not sure why both this and the limeade? at least 6 gallons total
water- bottled? 2 per person, you will have some left
1 pound ice per person minimum, 2 pounds if hot, plus 30-40 pounds per ice chest

If you are having cakem consider having dinner service coffee with dessert, see beverage planning page

ellen
08/04/11
Hi, Victoria,

These are serious eaters, you want the equivalent of a 12 inch sub per person, plus 10%; 6 ounces of meatballs per sandwich. So that is 1 pound of raw meat per 3 to 3 1/2 sandwiches.

If you are doing hoagie rolls, get the long ones or get 2 per person, you will have some left.

Rosemary
08/07/11
Food planning for 60 people help please
Hi, a friend and I are organizing a 25th get to gether for approx 60 people. We are stictly staying with finger food. We were thinking cubed meat and cheese platters, 3 varieties of each, and vegie and dip platters. Just wondering how to figure out how much meat and cheese we will need. Is there some sort of formula. I have no problem with the vegies. Thanks for any advice.
Lorraine
08/22/11
Wedding:
100 people:

2 manicotti
3 meatballs
3 ziti
2 chick parm
2 chick, broc, ziti
Plus salad and rolls

Cheese and cracker platters as well

Is this too much food or not enough?

Lorraine
08/22/11
Sorry forgot add that these are full trays not half trays.

Wedding:
100 people:
2 manicotti
3 meatballs
3 ziti
2 chick parm
2 chick, broc, ziti
Plus salad and rolls

Cheese and cracker platters as well

Is this too much food or not enough?

ellen
08/22/11
Rosemary, sorry I missed this, you use the amounts on the veggie tray page, the amounts of meats from the sandwich page, and about 10-12 pounds of cheese, part of which can be logs or spreads. I would add fruit trays and some kind of rolls or bread.
ellen
08/22/11
Lorraine, a full tray is usually estimated to serve about 24 servings.

I would definitely make sure that the Parm pieces are just 3 ounces, or cut, so there would be enough for everyone to have a piece.

You need some kind of veggie, maybe trade out (some or all of) the ziti for eggplant Parm, a broccoli dish, or some kind of roasted veggies.

If it were me, I would also add fruit trays to the cheese and crackers. This is a heavy menu, and that would lighten it up some.

Lorraine
08/22/11
Thanks. I thought this would be too much food but now I am thinking this will not be enough. I thought the need for 3 ziti and 3 meatball was to much and considered dropping it down to two each, however,if each tray only feeds 24 I am not sure. Should I keep it the same and add an eggplant as well?

The actual count is about 87 people.

julie
08/22/11
Food planning for 50 people
hi
I want to make a brocolli cheddar soup for 50 people how much do i need of everything and how to make it?
thank u.
ellen
08/22/11
Lorraine, no, get rid of some of the ziti, you have a lot of food, you need better distribution.

Hi, Julie, if this is the big main course, you need 5 gallons, but if it is just a little cup, only about 1 3/4 gallons. Broccoli soup need to be made fresh day of, they aren't so good if held. There are a lot of different ways to make this, pureed, with and without cram or milk, and so forth. What are your needs here?

ellen
08/22/11
Julie, look at this recipe off-site:

www.venturafoods.com/FS_RecipeView.cfm?rcp_id=BR0356764

Lorraine
08/22/11
Thanks for your assistance and quick response.

I have been playing around on this website almost all day-it is fun and informative. I will definitely bookmark it.

christy
08/23/11
Food planning for 200 people next week help please
Please am planning jolof rice and moi moi for 250 people for a small re-union party.

kindly give me the quantities of the ingredient to be use.

thanks

ellen
08/23/11
Christy, 200 people is not a small party.

For the moi moi, plan to make 20 to 24 pounds of beans using the proportions and methods outlined at this off-site recipe:

www.congocookbook.com/snack_recipes/moyin_moyin.html

At the same site, there is a very good jollof rice guideline:

www.congocookbook.com/rice_recipes/jollof_rice.html

I would make 20-24 pounds of rice, depending on how much meat I were adding, 1 pound of rice is a littl;e over 2 cups.

kyla
08/25/11
Hi im planning a 6th birthday party for 3rd September 2011. FOR 22 CHILDREN AND 21 ADULTS.(43-ppl)
The menu is Chicken & Cheese Sandwiches, Bbq Chicken, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Bread, Sausage Rolls, potatoe salad, leafy salad, coleslaw, mac n cheese. Fruit salad and ice cream for afters. please help me as i am not sure how much (pieces) of chicken per person. And how much fruit salad... fruits will be Mango, Strawberrys, Greaps, melon, pineapple. HELP PLEASE?
kyla
08/25/11
Hi Ellen only me again. I need a response asap please im getting the meat tomorrow. Thank you

Kyla.

ellen
08/26/11
1 piece of bbq per person, 1 piece of fried per person. 1/2 cup of fruit per person (which is about 4 ounces ready to eat.)
Betty
08/30/11
Hi Ellen,

I'm doing some menu planning for a dinner style cocktail for roughly 65 guests. There will be no plated meals, only canapees and bites going around (12 different kinds to be exact, not including 4 different small desserts). I have a wide range of different kinds of "bites" as this was requested by the person throwing the party, however all item are fairly easy and simple to make. I am however struggling with the quantity of each that I should make. I am assuming each person will eat between 21-23 bites.

Thank you for your advice,
-Betty

ellen
08/31/11
Hi, Betty, that is a good count for a 2-3 hour party with dinner replacement appetizers.

Without knowing what the selection is of your "bites", I can only give you some general guidelines per person:

3 ounces of meatballs or sausage bites or meaty type things (counts as 3 bites)
3 ounces of shrimp, crab, etc (counts as 3 bites). Caviar is 3 bites per person with all the trimmings.
2 ounces of cheese with 1-2 ounces crackers (counts as 2 bites)
3-4 ounces of fruits (counts as 3-4 bites)

You are seeing the pattern?

For the rest, 2 bites of most items, 1 if low popularity (anchovy stuff, for example). 1/4 cup dip plus chips counts as 1 bite.

Dolly
09/01/11
50th Birthday party
Hi Ellen, please help.......I'm throwing a 50th birthday party for up to 40 people & have no idea what food to supply & how much Also I'm not a cook & caterers are quite expensive.
ellen
09/01/11
Dolly, what is your budget? Will you serve alcohol
Also, if you plan your party at a time NOT a meal,such as an afternoon reception or tea party 2-4/5 or a dessert buffet 8-10P, the cost and workload is much reduced.

When you say you are not a cook, do you bake from mixes? Roast chicken? Bake potatoes. etc.? More info, please.

Dolly
09/01/11
50th Birthday party
The party has already been planned for 5p.m so dinner is expected. I have a couple of friends that said they would help but I need to tell them what food I want & how much of it. I need help with putting a menu together that isn't to difficult. People will bring their own alcohol.
ellen
09/02/11
OK. Simple menus, low cost.

First a nibble table, fruit trays, cheese, crackers, one or 2 dips or spreads.

Taco bar- very little cooking, can do a fiesta type theme

Roast or baked chicken
-and rice pilaf, marinated cold veggies
-potato or pasta salad (pasta is easier), baked beans and slaw

Creole red beans with sausage and rice, local fried chicken

Any of these sound possible?

chef butta-fly
09/03/11
i am plannin a party for 75 family and friends
Hi am planning a full menu for a high school football team championship with family and friends tex-mex style in Dallas Texas but heres the things its for (platters) 75 guest and the menu needs to be a full menu you of cold foods only full service order with appitizer,entree sooo,salad,dessert you get were I'm going
ellen
09/03/11
I am not too clear on the specifics.
-Are you saying it needs to be cold foods only?
-Are you prepping the food yourself or ordering it?
-How many of the eaters are the football players?

Write more.

Allie
09/03/11
a fall themed backyard party for around 40
I am planning a fall themed backyard party for around 40 people in the beginning of October. I am combining work friends with old friends and basically its a housewarming party but I don't want to call it that. I'm afraid people will bring gifts. Anyway, I don't want to grill (right now I don't even have one) and I don't really want to cater. I plan on some hot and cold dips. And I'm also providing drinks/alcohol. Any suggestions to help me out to reduce cost and not to have tons of leftovers? About 10 of those guests will be small children. Thanks!
LuAnn
09/05/11
Wedding shower for 50 people
For the wedding shower, I can order the deli trays from a store near me - or near the shower site - which is 1 hour away. Would transporting sandwiches, salads, fruit and veggie trays for 1 hour in an a/c car be ok?
ellen
09/05/11
Hi, Allie, a taco bar or taco salad bar (with chips instead of shells) would be fun and not too expensive, and doesn't require much cooking. To save on the beverages, do a white wine sangria or a traditional sangria as your alcoholic drink. See High Wire Gallerey White Sangria.

LuAnn, Near the shower site would be best, as you only have 4 safe hours from the time they are assembled until they should be discarded. Why not see if you can get trays that will fit in a pre-cooled large ice chest?

Jacquie
09/06/11
Food planning for 30-35 People
We are hosting a dinner for families staying at the SECU Family House at UNC Hospitals and I am responsible for boiled potatoes, green beans and peas (canned). How much of each should I buy?
ellen
09/06/11
about 11 pounds of potatoes, 7 each frozen or canned veggies.
Jacquie
09/06/11
Is that 7 bags/cans each frozen or canned veggies or 7 lbs. each?
chef butta-fly
09/06/11
The menu needs to be all cold dishes I am prepping the food my self the head count is 75 total with players,family and friends I need a theme setting idea and recipes for two salads one appetizers, one entree and one dessert how much
would I need to serve 75 people is cold foods only banquet style
ellen
09/07/11
Jacquie, 7 pounds of each veggie for up to 3 veggies for this many people.
ellen
09/07/11
Chef B, the obvious thing is a big sandwich and salad bar, along the "Heroes for the heroes' line, with all the condiments and heavy sides- potato salad and pasta salad and a bean salad of some kind, for example. These sandwiches are covered in some detail on the sandwich page. Chips and salsa and a 7 layer dip for the appetizer.
How about watermelon aqua fresca or Jamaica punch for the beverage, along with iced tea?
If there are 40 or more players, just use the amounts for 100, the players count as 1 1/2 persons.
You could do a tres leches cake as the dessert. Offer a chile and lime fruit cup as the second choice?
chef butta-fly
09/07/11
What type of red mex cold entrees would you suggest
ellen
09/08/11
The only red cold TexMex entrees I have made are the various ceviches and seafood salads, which don't seem to me an economical or popular choice for this crowd; and gazpacho.

You can consider tortas (Mexican hoagies); or taco salads- in that case, the meat can be served chilled, as there is not too much of it.

chef butta-fly
09/08/11
I have to do a full menu with one entree one appetizer 2 salads n a dessert it is a cold menu so what food do you suggest for this menu n the theme is tex mex
chef butta-fly
09/08/11
I have to do a full menu with one entree one appetizer 2 salads n a dessert it is a cold menu so what food do you suggest for this menu n the theme is tex mex
SHIRLEY
09/08/11
I am hosting a Ladies Golf Kickoff Get Together for 50 people. It will be for 2 hours and I need a menu for appetizers and desserts. Wine and tea will be served so I need quantities. The event is from 5:00 - 7:00 and does not include dinner so I need the menu to be easy and tasty. Finger food that will work for standing.
ellen
09/08/11
Chef B, I can't meet all your requirements. There just aren't that many cold TexMex entrees.

Shirley, even though you do not intend this for dinner, it is scheduled exactly at dinner time and most of the guests will come hungry, looking for a dinner's worth of food. You also do not give any hints about the budget range.
Look over the appetizer, wine and cheese, and dessert bar planning menus, and the beverage planning menu, and prepare some initial estimates. Then I will be able to help you. For example, are we talking shrimp cocktail or pepperoni here?

Shirley
09/08/11
My budget range is $10.00 per person estimating 50 people, not including wine. Most of the items will be purchased at Costco.

Suggested menu is:
Turkey and Swiss Wraps - 3 lg platters, 20-24 servings each
Mini Croissant Sandwich Platter - 3 lg platters, 16-20 servings ea.
Meatballs - 3 bags - 60 servings ea.
Orange Chicken - 4 lbs, bite size
Fruit Platter w/Yogurt - 3 med. trays, 12-16 servings ea.
Veggie Platter w/Dip - 2 med. trays, 12-16 servings ea.
Desserts - not yet decided, but something to be eaten by fingers.
Most of the food will be on tables, but some are going to be served by waiters, meatballs, chicken, desserts.

ellen
09/08/11
Shirley, this looks just fine. For the desserts, 3-4 different small desserts, such as mini eclairs, cheesecake bites, medium cookies, small brownies, 1 of each per person.
Debbie
09/09/11
Food planning for 500 people tomorrow help please
Hi Ellen, Great site, thank you for this assistance we all need!

Breakfast: Sausage biscuits for 500 (we think more since 700 of the Hell's Angels will be attending we just learned) but starting with 500 biscuits for this motorcyle rally.

We could just get preformed patties I suppose. But if we had a better deal on bulk we might try that if we knew how much per person.

Thank you-Debbie

ellen
09/09/11
DO NOT start with 500 biscuits if you are expecting 700 big eaters. Start with at least 1000. 1 ounce raw per biscuit; 1 1/2 if they are large.
Michelle
09/12/11
Food planning for 50 high school football players
Hi Ellen, I'm hosting a team dinner for 50 teenage boys and coaches in about a month. I'm serving spaghetti and would like to know how much I should plan on making? Sauce, meatballs, sausage, pasta? Thanks for your help! Michelle
ellen
09/12/11
I would do 1 1/2 times the dinner for 50-60 at the bottom of the spaghetti page.
joanna
09/18/11
Hi! I am having an early evening gathering for 30 to celebrate a friend's naturalization as a U.S. citizen. Would like to have some finger food appetizers, preferably with an international theme, some latin some thai?, and will also have a celebration cake and mini ice cream bon bons for dessert (which I plan to buy). I am thinking about guacamole crostinis, maybe some weet and sour meatballs, need ideas for how to fill out the appetizer menu and whether a large cheese and fruit platter is a good idea. Want it to be a lovely informal gathering with enough appetizers to suffice but am not serving a "meal" . Help please? Thanks
ellen
09/18/11
How about a mini taco bar with the new tiny tortillas?
Jerk chicken wings? or chicken satay?
lime and chili on the fruits in the Mexican style, using watermelon, pineapple, strawberry, grapes and melons in season
Mini empanadas?
Spring or summer rolls, sliced into bites.

for a 2 hour party, I would plan for 12-14 "bites" per person, where a bite is one skewer or good size piece.

Joanna
09/19/11
I do not know of the new mini tacos...will google them now. Thanks! Chicken Satay a definite yes, and empanadas and fruit all sound wonderful. I fear that chicken wings will require too much fuss to eat even though I love them...am in search of forkless bites if possible. Summer rollas are awesome I may need to buy them?
ellen
09/19/11
A local viet or thai restaurant would be your best source for boughten summer rolls. You could use thigh meat strips to do jerk chicken strips.
Tammy
09/29/11
Food planning for 60 people tomorrow help please
We are having a going away party for my nephew who is going in the army.

I just get nervous that we will not have enough food.

Here is what we are having:

3 veggie trays, 1 cheese tray, 2 egg salad sand. trays 1 chicken wing tray, 1 chicken tender tray, homemade salsa & chips, 2 cuban sand. platters & bunches of pizza rolls. That does not include dessert & beverages. Also someone is bringing cut up subways & 1 meat tray.

We should be covered?

ellen
09/30/11
You will run out of chicken tenders, they are very popular. Everything else looks OK.
Melissa
10/04/11
Food planning for 35-40 people
Hi, looking for a little advice. Hosing my daugher's Christening in two weeks and not sure how many feet of sandwich to order. I was thinking 6 feet (3 ft chicken cutlet hero and 3ft eggplant hero). Will also have full trays of mini rice balls, buffalo wings with fixings, pigs in blanket, chicken fingers and half tray of french fries, potato salad, macoroni salad, cole slaw, green salad and an antipasto. There will only be about five kids, the rest will be adults.
ellen
10/04/11
A 6 foot is usually considered to serve about 25, so this is enough, but I would expect you need a 4/2 split unless this group is eggplant loving.
Jessica
10/07/11
We are having my grandmothers 80th birthday party tomorrow. Each family member is bringing a dish. Mine is corn. How many cans will I need to feed 50 people? We are having other sides as well.
ellen
10/08/11
2 number 10 cans, or 25 cups from smaller sizes.
Candace
10/10/11
Food & beverage planning for 30 people
I'm planning an open house for 25-30 people (adults only)at my home and will be in celebration of my husband's life (he passed away recently). It will be held from 3-6 pm and I'm thinking finger foods, etc. Any suggestions? I'm also not sure what and how much to plan for adult and non-adult beverages.
Sue
10/10/11
please help me with a barbercue for about 50 people this is for a 25th wedding anniversary celebration i need it today if possible thank you so much!!!!!!!
ellen
10/11/11
Candace, there are lots of tasty bites in the freezer- how about mini quiches, spanakopita, a nice sliced ham and a bit of cold steamed salmon, good rolls and whipped butter, a nice cheese platter, some cheesecake bites and small brownies. Maybe some fruit platters or dips. 2 pieces of each or 2 ounces of meat each, per person

Sue, use 1/2 of 100, see the BBQ and brisket page to plan. You will have plenty.

Dawn
10/17/11
please help!! I'm hosting my grandson's first birthday party and it will be about 40 people. I'm serving cookie cutter tea sandwiches (chicken, tuna salad and roast beef) chicken wing portions and ribs. How much of each will be required. Thanks so much!!
ellen
10/17/11
Dawn, I need to know what time of day, how long, and the mix of kids vs. adults. Also the rest of the menu. Please write back.
Dawn
10/17/11
Hi Ellen, it will begin at 3:00 in the afternoon until about 6. The ratio is about 15 kids and 25 adults. I will also be serving deviled eggs, cheese and cracker platter and I will have coleslaw with the wings and ribs. Thanks for your help again.
Kathy Richardson
10/20/11
Veggie trays for 60 people, help please
I am responsible for bringing the vegetable trays for a after-funeral visitation. I am planning to have carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, cherry tomatoes, celery, (and homemade pickled okra and pickles). How much of each vegetable do I need? And how much dip?
We are planning on about 60 people. There will be other food. I don't want to have a ton of certain vegetables left over. I realize not everyone will eat of the veggie trays. Thanks for your help!
ellen
10/20/11
Take a look at the relish tray for 60 at the top of the veggie tray page, for help with your quantities. It sounds like it was tailor-made dor your event.
Dawn
10/21/11
Hi Ellen... still waiting for any suggestions you may have. Thanks.
ellen
10/22/11
Hi, Dawn,

For 40 people, assuming this is over a meal time:

tea sandwiches (chicken, tuna salad and roast beef)-2 pieces (about equal to 1/2 regular sandwich). I would make 1/2 beef, 1/4 each tuna and chicken.
chicken wing portions- 6 pieces per person
ribs- 2 ribs per person (you could do more, these are very popular, if you don't mind having some left)

Stephanie
10/23/11
Baby shower for 25 people
I'm planning a baby shower for 25. It's at 11 am. We will be having an egg casserole and waffles with strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and whipped cream on top. We also will be providing syrup and butter. How much fruit do I need? Should I plan on 1 waffle per person or 2?
ellen
10/23/11
Hi, Steph,
If the waffles are small, the size of Eggos, you need 2, if larger, plan for 1 1/2. I usually get 1 quart of strawberries for strawberry shortcake for 8, so I would get 3 quarts of fruit for 25.
Emma
10/27/11
Hi Ellen, I'm planning a 1960's "Mad Men" themed party/dance next month for about 60 people and would love some help. It will just be finger foods - fruit/vege trays, cookies, nuts, etc. - but I would really love for some of the food to fit the theme. Any ideas?
ellen
10/28/11
Great idea, and you are going to love this site:

www.foodtimeline.org/fooddecades.html

JAMES BEARD ON COCKTAIL PARTIES, c. 1965:

"The ever popular cocktail party is an inferior form of entertainment at best, and there is a tendency to make it formal on occasional--something it was never meant to be. By all means have your house looking its best, use your best crystal and china, and have the food impeccably turned out, but don't be chi-chi. The results may be silly. Unless they are small gatherings around a tray with bottles and ice, cocktail parties should be planned so that the service is efficient a d quick. Don't try to set up a professional bar in your house unless you have a barman to go with it, and you will need two if it is a largish party, and more if it is the 'annual crush,' which so many people use as a way to pay their social debts (and it is not really a very polite way). A large party will also need someone to tidy up from time to time. Some guests love to trail through a party leaving a wake of glasses, napkins and cigarette messes. if you must do with a minimum of help or none at all, serve three varieties of drinks--and make good drinks--rather than attempt to offer a selection. The same holds true of cocktail food. Better to have two memorable snacks than hundreds of undistiguished canapes. In the menus provided here there is usually one item or two of substantial food. It goes without saying that the food should be attractive to look at and tasty as well. While the cocktail party is the most popular way of entertaining it can also be the most difficult, since there is so much going on all at once. Don't make your drinks too weak, or your party won't be very lively. Neither make them too generous, or you will have a bunch of drunks on your hands. Plan four drinks per person, and have some supplies in reserve. Neither the host nor the hostess should drink unless it is something light. To give a good party you must be on the alert, though you appear to be entirely at ease. What a delight if can be to settle down later with your shoes off and have a few drinks in peace and quiet."

Sue
10/29/11
Finger buffet for 100 for an 18th party
We're holding an 18th party for my son at a local function room. There are no catering facilities so I need to take the food with me. Can you suggest what I could do for 100 family/friends and how much I need to make. It will need to be cold food as there's nowhere to keep anything warm. Thanks.
ellen
10/29/11
Sue, what time of day, how long is the party, and what is the budget?
Stephanie
10/29/11
Hi I am planning a baby shower for my daughter in late Jan.. The list has gotten pretty large over 50 people so I will be using our local fire hall for it.. Don't want to clean my house... Anyway it will be at 1pm and Jan in Maryland is cold.. I was thinking of chicken salad, mac and cheese (my daughters fav.) and soup? Does that sound weird. Not sure what kind of soup. Maybe chicken and dumplings.. Warm comfort food? How much for that many people Also wanting a hot chocolate bar.. any other suggestions would be welcomed.. I am all over the place.. oh and having cupcakes
Ellen
10/30/11
I would not do chicken salad unless it was a hot dish. Try this one before the party and see if you like it!

Traditional Hot Chicken or Turkey Salad Casserole
9x13 pans (full)

4 cups cooked chicken or turkey, diced (2 pounds)
3-4 hard cooked eggs, chopped or sliced
2 cups diced celery, sauteed
1 tablespoon minced fresh onion, can be grated raw or sauteed
4 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 (10 3/4 oz.) can cream of chicken or mushroom soup- may sub sour cream or ranch dressing
1 cup mayonnaise (not salad dressing)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 pint fresh mushrooms, sliced, sauteed
1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds or walnuts
OPTIONAL:
2 ounces (jar) pimentos, minced
1/2 cup frozen peas

TOPPING:

1 c. grated cheese
1 c. herb stuffing mix, OR crushed potato chips, OR crushed corn flakes
Or skip these and use 1-2 cups of those little French fried onions

Saute all those veggies.

Combine all the dry stuff. Add soup, mayonnaise, lemon juice, peas and mushrooms. Mix well, refrigerate overnight. Top with cheese and stuffing mix. Bake 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

I would make 5 9x13 pans and probably use a large turkey instead of a bunch of chickens.

And since these are white foods, I would probably do a red veggie or tomato soup, or a bean or lentil soup full of carrots and other veggies.

Don't forget the peppermint stick stirrers for the hot chocolate, you can get them on sale after Christmas!

Hope your daughter has a safe and comfortable pregnancy.

ellen
10/30/11
If you want a fancier hot chicken dish, check out this off-site link:
www.cdkitchen.com/recipes/recs/87/Hot_Chicken_Salad_with_Creamy_57831.shtml
G
11/02/11
Food planning for 50 people help please.
Hi Ellen,
I am planning a fall themed surprise birthday party for my husband. for around 50 people. just trying to get an idea on what size trays I should be using to prepare for this amount of people. Any suggestions that you have would be greatly appreciated. THANK YOU.

salad russe,tossed salad,tossed salad,curry chicken
coconut shrimp or (Curry),roti
pigeon peas rice,Macaroni and Cheese,vegetable casserole.
Birthday cake for dessert, fruits. Alcohol beer, hypnotic, grey goose,and fruit punch.

ellen
11/02/11
a 9x13 pan serves 8 for entree, 10-12 for sides. A standard catering tray usually serves 24.

You want about 8 ounces of meats, 4 ounces of each side, 6 ounces of rice, 2-3 ounces of salad. The mac and cheese is a bit odd with this menu? Maybe a different pasta dish?

For the alcohol, see the beverage planning page. Not sure what will be happening with the hypnotic and the vodka? You can write back.

Annie
11/03/11
Food planning for people tomorrow help please
We are having 100 hotdogs.

I need to know how much do I buy of;
Tomate
Onions
Ketchup
Mayonnaise
Relish

ellen
11/03/11
Covered in the sandwich fixings section on the sandwich page.
Kaci
11/08/11
Hi I am planning for 50 people to have dinosaur chicken nuggets. prob 25 children and 25 parents. I have no clue how many to buy please help.....
ellen
11/08/11
Small kids eat about 6, elementary about 10, adults about a dozen, if I were doing this I would price chicken legs and tenders as well, they are preferred by most adults and often less expensive.
Erinn
11/09/11
Hello!
I am planning chicken stir fry for 30 women. Can you tell me approx how many lbs of chicken and veggies I should plan for? Thank you!!!
ellen
11/09/11
Use the plan for 100 table and make 1/3 for a bit of left overs (or as little as 1/4 if they are light eaters). You want basically1 pound boneless raw meat for each 4-5, depending on the sides.
Gerri
11/15/11
How many packages of blackeyed peas would I need to feed 50 to 75 people.
ellen
11/15/11
As one of several vegetables, about 15 pounds for 70 people.
JOSE BAZAN
11/18/11
iam making a green bean casserrole for 50 people how much do i need of each ingredients.
thank you.
ellen
11/19/11
Make one recipe of my Better Green Bean Casserole, recipe in the holiday cooking section at the top of Big Pots.
Cheryl
11/22/11
Hi
I am planning to make a mutton curry for 40 people. How many kg of mutton must I use. I also need to know how many onions and potatoes would be needed. They are all men so fairly big portions would be needed. Also how many cups of rice.
Thank you
ellen
11/22/11
At least 1 kilo per each 9 people. 1 1/2 to 2 kilos rice. Onions and potatoes, use your favorite recipe-
Ang
12/02/11
Anniversary Party
WE are having an annviersary party for about 100 people tomorrow and trying to figure out how much baked ziti to make. The menu is italian wedding soup, baked ziti, salad with various dressings and bread along with cake for dessert and veggie tray. How much baked ziti should we make?
ellen
12/02/11
At least 12 pounds dry; I have done up to 16 for very heavy eaters when it was meatless.
Sylvia
12/08/11
Chirstmas Party
I am hosting a Christmas party for 40 people. We will be serving:
Chicken Pozole
Chips & Salsa
Buñuelos
Christmas Punch
Cake
How much chicken will I need to purchase?
For the Pozole we will have some trays with raddish, shredded cabbage and diced onion, how much of these vegies to I need to purchase?
ellen
12/09/11
One pound of meat for each 4-5 people. About 5 cups of each grated veggie.
Maria
12/12/11
I am hosting a party this weekend for 35 people. I am serving buffet style and am making;
Penne alla vodka
Spiral ham
Meatballs
4 foot cold cut hero
Roasted red potatoes
Salad
I need to know how much pasta, sauce and red potatoes do you think I will need? Thanks.
ellen
12/12/11
That sandwich alone feeds 15 or so- 6 pounds of potatoes, 2-3 pounds of pasta, 5 pounds of ham, 4 pounds of meatballs. Salad, 1/3 the amount for 100 from the plan for 100 list.
rasheeda
12/13/11
I want to organize dinner party for my sons birthday approx 50 people are arriving could you please tell me how many kilograms of rice and how many kilograms of chicken should I need to prepare food for them
Menu:
1.Biryani
2.Chicken curry
Karen
12/13/11
dessert party for 50
I am having a dessert party for 50. The menu is white chocolate cake with raspberry filling. Apple bars with Brown butter frosting and mint brownies. how much should I make of each???
ellen
12/13/11
Rasheeda, OK here it is in pounds and you can convert:

Rice 4-5 pounds
Chicken, 1 pound boneless per 4 people.

Karen, allow one slightly smaller than normal serving of each one for each person. People will take some of everything.

Suzanne
12/15/11
I am having a Christmas Open house for 50-55. I'm having a chocolate fountain w/bananas, pretzels & marshmallows, chips n dip, chips n salsa, bacon wrapped shrimp about 50, shrimp cocktail, about 150 pieces, a cheese tray w crackers, lil smokies-2 packs, swedish meatballs 2lbs, 2 fruit platters, 50 cupcakes, 200 cookies, a vege platter with dip and then misc. candy. Is this enough? It's a 4 hour open house.
ellen
12/16/11
You need at least double the bacon wrapped shrimp, 8 pounds each the meatballs and smokies. Also check the size of the fruit paltters.
ROCKY
12/19/11
i need to serve 50 people menue is rice, chicken curry, chinese choemin , revoli, baked kababa, chicken tikka ,
ellen
12/19/11
Rocky, I can't quite figure out the menu. Do you mean chow mein (rice noodle dish)? Do you mean Italian ravioli or Chinese dumpling type? Are those kababs grilled meat on a skewer? I need some clarification.

As a very general guideline, you want about 1 pound dry rice for each 10-12 people, and about 5-6 ounces total of all the meats, per person.

Bonnie
12/21/11
Open House for approximately 80 people
Planning an Open House for approximately 80 people from 6-10pm. I have the desserts covered, but do not know how many different appetizers I should serve.
ann
12/24/11
50 men lunch /snack tray for a shared lunch
ellen
12/24/11
Bonnie, traditionally at least 6-8, some could be a dip or spread. You need 25-30 bites per person for the 4 hour party, half that for come and go.

Ann, more info please, budget? type event? cooking and serving arrangement?

Liz
12/30/11
Good morning! I'm planning a baby shower for around 45 people.

Our menu is primarily finger foods:

-Ricotta, Fig spread & Prosciutto on bread
-Pimento cheese Sandwich on Bunny Bread
-Turkey & cheddar on Rye w poppy seed mayo, apples & balsamic reduction
-Roast Beef & Horseradish mayo Tea sandwiches
-Walnut Crostini w/ gorgonzola & pear

My questions are:

How many of each tea size sandwich/app should I make? Should I serve something else in addition to these? ( we will be having cake too)

Also, we will serve Mimosas- How many bottles of OJ and champagne do I need? (not everyone drinks)

Thank you!

ellen
12/30/11
For plenty, some left over, have 2 of each piece per person. I would add a beautiful fruit tray with dip- see the fruit tray page.

One bottle of prosecco or champagne makes about 6 mimosas. I would get a case a from supplier who would allow you to return unopened bottles. People will mix their own- non-drinkers can do OJ only.

Cooking
12/31/11
I am cooking my first real party.There will be a total of 50 guest,,
i will be serving Chicken Alfredo,7 layer dip, Mango Chicken on a stick,and shrimp Thimdior. im lost on how much I should charge. the client wants to know the price just for me to cook the for she will go to the store and buy everything I would need..
ellen
12/31/11
Estimate your time including transportation and cleanup, and charge $40 per hour. I definitely would not take a job on these terms...
shannon
01/01/12
planning a birthday party
i am planning a birthday party for my daughter. 30 adults and 10 kids. i plan on doing deli trays. dont know which meats , cheese and breads to buy. or how much of each. i will also be doing a relish and veggie tray. thx!
ellen
01/01/12
If these are little kids, just do 1/3 the amounts for 100 on the sandwich tray page and the veggie tray page. If preteens, add a little more; if teens, do 40% of the amount for 100.
Kerrie
01/01/12
Hi Ellen

I am having my son's first birthday and there are 40 adults/older kids plus babies for 3 hours over lunch. We are planning to do a barbeque with sausages and bread rolls and I don't know how many to buy? Also potato salad, coleslaw and green salads, fruit platter and nibblies.

For dessert my mother in law wants to bring 2 pavlovas and cupcakes, plus I am doing a birthday cake. Is this too much?

Thank you, Kerrie

ellen
01/01/12
Not too much. If you do 1/2 the amounts for 100 for everything, you will have some left, but not much.
Make sure some of the sausages are mild for the kids, or add some hot dogs.
You want about 1 pound of sausages for each 3 adults, and 1 pound for each 5 kids.
2 rolls per adult person, 1 per kid.
Jas
01/01/12
Hi Ellen,
I will be hosting a dinner party this weekend for 40-50 people. I'm planning on making baked ziti and chicken Marsala. What other dish would you recommend with this? Thanks for your help!
ellen
01/02/12
A vegetable dish of some kind- roasted, or eggplant or zucchini or broccoli- and an antipasto salad or appetizer platter. Good bread. Wine.
Mary F
01/05/12
Baby shower for 35 01/15/2012
What a great forum, thank you!
If you have a moment, please advise me on my portions:
Fresh herb/lettuce salad - oz per person?
Bleu cheese burger sliders n " slaw" - a 2"x2" square bun, what oz meat?
Chicken breast panini w pesto - how many 3" x2" slices?
Regional shrimp cocktail a la Mexico - how many oz per person do you recommend ?
Fruit kabobs (how many oz of fruit per person?)
I have an okay idea but since I have found your forum I am thrilled to receive a double check if you have the time. Desserts are all mapped out and I am serving a rosemary hand squeezed lemonade punch, about 5 gallons, along with a cheese platter, a dip and other beverages.
Any assistance would be appreciated, thank you and have a wonderful day.
Mary F
01/05/12
Whoops!
Duh on me! I found your answer to 12/30/11 which is good enough for me to juggle my numbers. Thank you and I will return to your sight as well as give it out as a fantastic resource. Sorry to waste your time.
Mary F
01/05/12
*2 gallons, not 5..darn phone
2 gallons!
Debbie
01/13/12
Hi,
I'm helping to cook for a small volunteer fire department awards dinner. We are expecting anywhere from 40 to 75 people.
Menu:
Tossed salad
Penne with meatballs
Fried chicken
Beef tenderloin sliced with mushroom gravy
Buttered Parsley potatoes

Can you please tell me how many pounds of pasta
and also would 2 full beef tenderloins be enough. I appreciate any/all help I can get.

ellen
01/13/12
Debbie, this is a tough estimate for 2 reasons, first that tenderloin is very popular and will outrank your other meats if it is self serve, and second it is a very very large difference in the numbers- 75 is almost double 40.

For 40 people, these are the minimums I would use:

Tossed salad-approx 5 pounds
Penne with meatballs- 3 pounds dry pasta, 6-8 pounds meatballs
Fried chicken-1 piece per person
Beef tenderloin sliced with mushroom gravy-12 pounds raw
Buttered Parsley potatoes-12 pounds

Erika
01/14/12
Food planning for 100
hello,
we're planning a 90th birthday party with 100 guests, need help with how much we need
menu:
potato salad
macaroni salad
ziti
beans

thank you

ellen
01/14/12
This is not the whole menu?

Assuming many of the guests are near the age of the honoree, you need less than for a younger crowd.

potato salad, about 3 1/2 gallons
macaroni salad, about 3 gallons
ziti, satrting from 8-9 pounds dry pasta
beans, 2 1/2 gallons

Erika
01/14/12
Food planning for 100
hello,
we're planning a 90th birthday party with 100 guests, need help with how much we need
menu:
potato salad
macaroni salad
ziti
beans

thank you

erika
01/15/12
lol of course there will be more on the menu!!! we just were sure of a few things. and actually, she will be the only one that's 90. the rest of us are family!!
ellen
01/15/12
Increase everything about 10%.
Janie
01/15/12
Baptismal Reception
Hi!
I'll be hosting a Baptismal Reception at the end of March for about 30 people but I wanted to see how much per person so I can budget:
~~Chicken salad sandwiches which I like to cut in triangles. How many per person?
~~Macaroni Salad which will have ham & cheese
~~Chips
~~Punch-I'm looking for a nice punch for all to enjoy-any suggestions on a punch recipe?
~~Mini carrot cake cupcakes
My friend told me I'm crazy to plan so early but I don't want to be at the last minute running around like a chicken without a head! (I'll save the chicken for the sandwiches! LOL)
Thanks for your help!! :)
ceeceemac
01/17/12
I want to serve 75 people salmon fillets
Hi Ellen,
I'm doing a Couples Night Out dinner at our church. I want to serve a chicken dish like chicken cordon bleu, chicken piccata or marsala and a salmon fillet as the proteins. There will be 72 guests. How many lbs. of salmon should I get? I'm thinking around 3-4oz. portions of chicken and salmon. Any suggestions?
ellen
01/18/12
Unless it is lunch or you have a lot of side dishes, you want a 6 ounce raw piece for a party portion.

If you actually want 72 portions of salmon, that would be 14+ pounds. If you are trying to estimate what people will want, you need to prepare 60 chicken and 30 salmon, yes that is more than 72, but the only way to make sure everyone gets what they want.

You could ask for meat choice with the ticket sale, that would cut back the extra.

cindy
01/20/12
im planning my son birthday party 50 people are coming i was planning on making hot dogs and burgers how much do i get? help me !
ellen
01/20/12
see the plan for 100 table, use 1/2.
Janice
01/24/12
I am planning a church fashion show this february. I would like to serve hot foods. Could you give me some ideas for 150 people?
Dana
01/24/12
soup for 50
I am making soups for a kids birthday party that will have 50 people, both kids and adults. I am making 2 soups, how many servings should I make of each? Would assuming 30 people would eat one and 30 people would eat the other? That's enough soup for 60 people then. Thank you!
ellen
01/25/12
Janice, Tell me the time of day of the party and the approximate budget per person, and how long a serving period.

Dana, direction, but you are heading in the right it depends on what kinds of soup. More info, please

Brianne
01/31/12
Baby shower for 50-60 people
I am hosting a baby shower in April that will have between 50-60 guests. We are trying to not have any hot food, and do all finger-type food. I have the menu idea that I would like to have, I just have NO idea how much of each!

Suggested menu:
Cranberry chicken salad (don't know how many pounds)
Mini croissants
Hoagie trays- 2 large feeds 26 people
Potatoe salad
Macaroni salad
Cucumber open sandwiches
Pickles
Devilled eggs
Veggie cups with ranch on the bottom
Brusetta and crackers
Cheese platter- 2 large serves 20 people

Suggested dessert menu:
Lemon cupcakes with cream cheese frosting
Vanilla cupcakes with vanilla frosting
Chocolate covered strawberries
A cake
Fruit platter- 2 medium serves 20-25
Chocolate chip cookies ( if necessary?)

I am getting some of the things at a local deli ( such as the chicken salad, hoagie platters, cheese platter, fruit platter, and the cake)

But I am so unsure of how much of each thing I should buy, and also how much of the other items I should make.

Any help is appreciated !! By the way, this website is amazing- this will help a lot of the stress go away! Thanks in advance :)

ellen
01/31/12
Hi, Brianne,

If this site helps, consider hitting the donate button to support the cost of making it available.

Overall this is too much food. Look at comments and write back.

Cranberry chicken salad (don't know how many pounds)- assuming sandwiches mostly, 2 gallons
Mini croissants-50
Hoagie trays- 2 large feeds 26 people
Cucumber open sandwiches- These are fiddly and have to be made morning of, don't really go with hoagies.. you want no more than 1/2 sandwich per person

Potato salad
Macaroni salad
See plan for 100, use 1/2

Pickles- 1/2 gallon
Deviled eggs- 2 1/2 to 3 dozen eggs is not too much
Veggie cups with ranch on the bottom-?? see veggie tray page
Bruschetta and crackers- skip. Fussy and not needed
Cheese platter- 2 large serves 20 people OK

Suggested dessert menu:
Too much
Lemon cupcakes with cream cheese frosting
Vanilla cupcakes with vanilla frosting
Chocolate covered strawberries- 2 per person
A cake - ?? How big?? Why cupcakes?
Fruit platter- 2 medium serves 20-25
Chocolate chip cookies ( if necessary?)

Brianne
01/31/12
baby shower for 50-60 people
with the cranberry chicken salad we want to have that as another option instead of eating hoagies.. so we were going to have the cranberry chicken salad with mini croissants.

2 large hoagie trays will be enough?

veggie cups with ranch at the bottom are just sliced peppers and cucumbers in a clear cup with ranch at the bottom so it eliminates double dipping- i figure 1 cup per guest?

we were doing a decorative baby cake that serves 30-40 people, along with cupcakes (because the person we are throwing the party for loves cupcakes), maybe we can just do a cupcake cake instead.

2 medium fruit platters is ok?

and are the chocolate chip cookies necessary?

ellen
01/31/12
Yes, with the chicken salad, 2 hoagies are enough, do the chicken salad as suggested and above.

Yes, one cup per person, consider adding a couple baby carrots, a celery stick or 2.

Cupcake cake sound great, you can do the vanilla icing pink and blue, with the lemon it will look very baby.

Fruit is fine. Chocolate chip cookies, oif homemade are awfully yummy, but not necessary...

Anna
02/01/12
Getting married in December
This is way in advance, but I need to know what an appropriate menu for 75 people would be for a wedding starting at noon (midweek) Would you suggest a full lunch or just something light followed by cake and dessert options. Any thoughts as to quanities would be a huge help as well. I am going to be doing this myself so I plan to start anything that can be made in advance as early as possible without affecting the food quality.
ellen
02/01/12
First, consider going to either 11 o'clock, in which case you want a full lunch, or 1 PM, in which case you want a lighter reception meal.

You need to plan for 4-5 people not the guests or members of the wedding to set up, serve and clean up. Local churches can be a good source.

Xavier
02/04/12
Surprise birthday party for Mother
Love this page..hope it not too late for some advice.
Having a surprise birthday party Feb.11 begining at 6:30 p.m. and ends by 9:00 p.m. Having trouble deciding on a menu due to time and budget.Decided to prepare the food myself due to not being able to decide on a menu( heavy horderves, or appetizers). We are expecting 30-40 guest.Budget is about $400.

I'm all over the place but this is what I have so far...

fruit trays
pasta salad
deviled eggs
Baked Brie
pinwheels
salad on a stick
assorted crackers and chz.
meat balls (sweet/sour and curry)
wingetts (Three sauces-teriyak,sweet hot sauce,and tomatoe sauce)
rice(jasmine)
birthday cake
? need at least one more dessert(i think)

My goal is to make it as nice as possible because we have never given my mother a party and this is her 60th. Also if the menu is good how much of each item to prepare? HELP ME PLEASE!
I have all day Saturday to cook and prepare 7:30 a.m. -4:00 p.m. My sister will be helping also.Open to any suggestion.

is this possible with this budget? I s the menu resonable for the time of day?

Ken
02/05/12
Wedding planning for 70 people/ self catering
I am having 60 guest attending a backyard wedding. It will be BBQ style. I am trying to figure out the quantity we will need for 60 people. Ideally the quantity I am looking for is for 70 people just in case we have some guests show up.

For Apps:
Cheese platter
Fruit salad
Shrimp cocktail

Dinner:
BBQ chicken breast
Flank steak

Side dishes:
Potato salad
Three bean salad
Pasta salad
Spicy carrot sambal
Caesar salad
Rolls

All the suggestions I can get would be much appreciated!

Thanks!!

Ken
02/05/12
Wedding planning for 70 people/ self catering
I am having 60 guest attending a backyard wedding. It will be BBQ style. I am trying to figure out the quantity we will need for 60 people. Ideally the quantity I am looking for is for 70 people just in case we have some guests show up.

For Apps:
Cheese platter
Fruit salad
Shrimp cocktail

Dinner:
BBQ chicken breast
Flank steak

Side dishes:
Potato salad
Three bean salad
Pasta salad
Spicy carrot sambal
Caesar salad
Rolls

All the suggestions I can get would be much appreciated!
budget is 1000.00 is this possible?

Thanks

ellen
02/05/12
Hi Ken, with care this is possible, but the shrimp cocktail is really pushing the budget. More about that at the end of this note.

I would do 3/4 of 100 to have plenty for up to 75.

Cheese platter- 12-15 pounds. If you make cream cheese logs or balls for part, it counts and reduces the cost. 5 pounds crackers.
Fruit salad- do fruit trays, easier to set up, can be done ahead except the berries, keep better, and the leftovers are more usable. See the fruit tray page, do for 50. Check local produce markets.
Shrimp cocktail- Costly, A Mexican style seafood salad with shrimp and other coastal things and some shredded vegetables already in the tomato-ey sauce, served in 4 ounce clear cups, is more unusual and less expensive.

Dinner:
BBQ chicken breast- 1 pound skinless boneless raw per 4
Flank steak- 2 pounds raw per 5 if served sliced self serve or at least 1 pound per 3 if someone slices and serves

Side dishes:
Potato salad- 3 gallons
Three bean salad- 2 1/2 gallons
Pasta salad- 4 pounds dry pasta
Spicy carrot sambal- 1/3 cup per person
Caesar salad- for 50, use the plan for 100 table
Rolls- 2 per person. 2 pounds butter

Here is a seafood salad recipe from our Central Market, 12 servings:

Spicy Mexican Shrimp Salad

Ingredients

1 pound shrimp, cooked and peeled
2/3 cup olive oil
Juice of 4 lemons
Vinegar from a can of pickled mild jalapeños plus jalapeño slices, to taste, divided use
1 medium onion, minced
4 medium tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 (10-ounce) jar stuffed green olives, drained and sliced
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
2 large avocados

Directions

In refrigerator, marinate shrimp 2 hours or more in oil, lemon juice, jalapeño vinegar to taste and onion.
Add tomatoes, olives, parsley, oregano and salt and pepper.
Mix.
Let marinate 2 more hours.
Before serving, add avocado and some of the jalapeños from the can of pickled mild jalapeños from which the vinegar was taken.

Read more: www.mysanantonio.com/life/food/recipe_database/article/Recipe-Database-Recipe-Details-822183.php#ixzz1lWI48MJ5

ellen
02/05/12
By the way, it is completely authentic to add diced cucumber and sliced celery to this, as well as cooked fish (such as tilapia, or crab), chopped parsley and chopped cilantro. I also like lime juice better than lemon.
Nancy
02/05/12
Rehearsal dinner for 50
I am making the rehearsal dinner food as a gift for 50 people. I would like to heave beef tenderloin, chicken piccata, roasted potatoes, a vegetable, salad and desert. Would you help me with the quantities? Thank you. You r awesome.
ellen
02/05/12
Nancy, you already posted and I already answered.
Angela
02/06/12
Grilled Roasted Veggies
I'm hosting a party for 40 people, one of the items is a grilled vegetable platter. How much vegetable should I purchase? I'm planning on having eggplant, zucchini, squash, peppers and aspragras.

Other items on menue:
Teriyaki chicken skewers
Spinach orzo Salad with tomato and mozz.cheese
cheese and cracker tray
shrimp coctail

ellen
02/06/12
Angela, you have to get enough for the loss of cutting up- for example, 1 pound of fresh asparagus only makes about 9 ounces of ready to eat stalks.

You want about 14 pounds ready to cook/eat, a bit more if you go heavy on the squash, except for the asparagus. If you want a whole dish (very popular) that would require 8 pounds.

Sam
02/06/12
I am trying to plan a boil that has shrimp, sausage, potatoes, corn, and onions. How much of everything should i get?
ellen
02/08/12
shrimp, 1/2 pound per person
sausage, 1/3 pound per person
potatoes, 1/2 pound per person
corn, 1 cob per person, plus 10% if ypou think some folks will want 2
onions, 1/4 pound per person
Renae
02/08/12
For my job we are wanting to do an ice cream bar next week that will feed 250 people. How much of each topping should I have? I know this is a lot of people, but I was thi8nking if someone could help figure it out for 50 all I have to do is multiply by 5!
ellen
02/08/12
Already covered in detail on the Sundae bar on this site, per 100.
jackie marriner
02/09/12
wedding party for 50
hors d'oevue
deviled sggs
grapes /red & green
melon chucks
watermelon slices
cheese and cracker plates planed on 3 different cheese How many types of crackers?
veggie platter .olives .cukes. celery.carrots. small tomotoes
Should I have chips and dips?
dinner
prime rib crusted with herbs
not sure to do craving ham or maybe baked chicken thighs?
rice pilof and mashed potatoes
veggies carrots and ??? what do you think?
salad ,, mixed greens with grape tomatoes black olives , red onions slice.
thougt I would buy crusty italian bread instead of rolls ,help me how much and second meat PLEASE TY
Tanya
02/09/12
Food planning for 100 people
Hi I am planning a wedding reception of about 100 people. I am having meat ball subs and sausage sandwiches...how many of each do I need?
ellen
02/10/12
Jackie, this is essentially a do-it-yourself site and all these foods, including amounts, are in my tables. Here is the additional advice I would give:

Appetizers are fine as is, no chips needed. 2 or 3 kinds of crackers, about 3 pounds total, plenty. About 2-3 pounds each cheese if sliced or cubed, somewhat less if chunks. There is a deviled egg recipe, fruit tray page and veggie tray page.

Chicken for the second meat, get 1 thigh per person, you will have some left but probably not too much, and it can be frozen and used later.
rice pilaf and mashed potatoes- do 3 pounds rice, 20 pounds potatoes
veggies, see the veggie table on the plan for 100 page, use 1/2.

6-8 pounds of bread, 2 pounds of butter.

ellen
02/10/12
Tanya, I would get 1 pound of meatballs for each 4 PLUS 1 pound of sausage for each 5, with equal weigh peppers and onions. People need to assemble their own. Don't forget the sliced cheese, 1 pound per 8 and the other sandwich condiments (lettuce, etc.) as listed in the table on the sandwich page.
Yvette
02/16/12
Birthday party for 30 people in March
Planning my son's birthday party (parents and children-most of which are parents)
Expecting 30 people
I will order the pizza but want to make a simple green side salad with ranch dressing, a cold pasta salad and a small fruit salad as well (my son's favorite foods!).
ellen
02/16/12
Do 1/3 of the amount for 100 or each of these from the plan for 100 page and the fruit tray page.
nancy
02/17/12
graduation
serving 200 people for graduation party
want to make cookies and cream salad
just wanting use vanilla pudding, whip cream,cookies, and milk for the ingredients
any ideas of how much for each would use?
ellen
02/17/12
I use 17 small packages of Jello for 100, so I would guesstimate 8 large packaGES OF INSTANT PUDDING AND EVERYTHING ELSE IN PROPORTION TO YOUR RECIPE.
Sue
02/18/12
Food ideas for niece's 21st family birthday party
My niece is turning 21 and she is looking for food ideas, something different than just a cold cut platter. From
what she told me she is having for sides homemade Mac and cheese, baked beans, chips, and a pickle tray. These all are conducive to just sandwiches, but do you have any other ideas?
ellen
02/18/12
How about chili and sides? Or a big soup of some kind, with less sadndwiches? Or brats or Polish sausage? Or corned beef?
Jacki
02/21/12
graducation party
I am planning a graduation party for about 50-75 people. I am doing cold meat platters (6# ham, 3# roast beef, 3# turkey)and 5# cheese, also serving mac & cheese (making 3# mac), pasta salad (3#), baked ziti (3#), a yogurt/fruit salad, cake, and veggie platter -- do you think there is enough meat above with other sides and for the sides do you think that is enough. We will also have rolls for meat and chips, dip and cake.
ellen
02/21/12
Sorry, Jacki, but that is not enough meat or cheese for 75 people if this is a dinner time party, and you are about a pound short on each of the pastas, as well. If it is at dinner time, I would do at least 18 pounds of meats, 1/2 beef, 1/4 each turkey and ham. Cheese is very close, I would do 7 pounds. Take a look at the sandwich article for discussion.
S.N.
02/24/12
Food planning for 60 people tomorrow help please
planning to make bruschetta as an appetizer for a bday party tomorrow evening for 60 ppl. how do i make the baguettes ahead? I am afraid it will become stale if i make it ahead of time at home before bringing it to the party. any suggestions?
ellen
02/24/12
Unless you really overcook it, it will not get stale on the trip to the party; it was originally designed to use up stale bread. Just assemble (oil and toppings) at the party, or leave for people to dip and spread themselves; toast and garlic-ify before you go.
Bonny
02/25/12
Can you suggest a chicken main dish to serve alongside main dish pork loin, meatballs, baked ziti for a buffet for 40-50 people that is slightly unusual, more different...beyond chicken parm or marsala?
ellen
02/25/12
How about the orange dijon wedding chicken on the Big Pots page.
B.S.
02/25/12
Is it possible to cater a baby shower for 20-30 people for under $300? or could I do it myself for that amount? it's late afternoon so it's not lunch and not dinner....
ellen
02/25/12
Yes, especially if you make all or part yourself. What are your plans?
Lisa
02/29/12
Food Planning for 50 (Outside Party)
We're having a family gathering of 50 people. Since it's outside, we're havning crcokpots of soups and chili, sandwiches and slaw, chips, crackers. Everyone will be bringing something. I need to prepare the 'sign up list' but I'm not sure how many crockpots of Soup and Chili we will need? Thanks and any ideas or suggestions greatly appreciated!
ellen
02/29/12
Hi, Lisa.

I am actually working with a programmer to develop a pot luck app, where you can put in the number and type of potluck and get printed sign up sheets and explanation/food safety guides for the participants. In the meantime:

I do 7 1/2 gallons of soup or chili, minimum, for 100, when it is the entree course for a meal. So if you did about 4 gallons you would have a nice volume. The trick is in how much of each.

1 gallon (4 quarts) serves 12 for sure, more if they are polite. But since you have variety, you may want to ask for 2-3 gallons of chili- how serious are your chili eaters?- and at least 1 gallon each of 4 excellent soups. If the soups are light (tomato bisque, for example), they don't tend to be as popular. Think about what is sold in the sandwich shops; broccoli-cheese, beefy vegetable minestrone, rich chicken noodle, Have at least 1 meat free (pea or lentil or potato, for example) for the non-meat eaters.

Ashley H
03/02/12
Planning 10th Wedding Anniversary for 80 People
Hello Ellen

I see you've helped a lot of people on here. So I am planning a wedding anniversary party for my sister and brother in law. It will be in September. I am trying to get my budget together the party will be from 7-midnight. I would like to do up some potato salad, macaroni salad possibly cold meat and buns or even lasagna veggie tray, fruit tray, nacho tray, green salad. Have never done this before so I am really sure how much of each. What would you recommend for a party of this size? If you could give me a sample menu or something like that with how much of each that would be wonderful! Thanks so much!! :)

ellen
03/02/12
For 80 people, assuming this is at dinner time:

potato salad, about 3 1/2 gallons
macaroni salad 4 pounds of dry pasta
veggie tray, see the veggie tray page
fruit tray, do 3 of the tray for 25 or 3/4 of the deluxe tray for 100
green salad 3/4 the amouht for 100- or combine into the taco.nacho bar below-

possibly cold meat and buns or even lasagna , nacho tray,
A nacho/taco bar would be a simple, interesting and inexpensive main course- in that case, I would probably do rice and beans instead of potato and mac salads.

Rhonda
03/02/12
I'm planning a baby shower for ~50 people in July..considering ham salad, chicken salad sandwiches in finger rolls, tabouli/hummus wraps for my vegetarian guests, italian grinders (cut up), potato salad, taco salad, pasta salad and a spinach/strawberry salad...along with a fruit tray and a caprese pick tray - just small extras there...not sure how much to make of the sandwiches and salads... on the fruit and caprese pick tray I'm figuring two "picks" (toothpick kebobs) each person...am I crazy?? :)
ellen
03/02/12
Rhonda, I don't know about your mental state, but the menu looks a little over the top.

For 50 people, I would eliminate one of the sandwiches- either the ham salad or the grinders- and with the fruit tray and caprese, two of the salads- one of either the potato or pasta salad,
and the taco salad, which does not hold as well.

The reason is, it is too much clutter on the table and you will have too many leftovers if you make enough for everyone to have what they want. Think about it and write back, then we will work on the estimate..

Rhonda
03/02/12
LOL! Thanks Ellen! I think if I let either of the sandwiches go, it would be the ham salad, as I'm purchasing the Italians - less stress on me! I could let the pasta salad go and the taco salad - it's a favorite but it doesn't hold well - you're absolutely right. Let me know what you think on estimates, then. And, I didn't mention before, this will more than likely be attended by a nearly equal number of guys as girls.....
ellen
03/02/12
I agree about the ham salad.

chicken salad sandwiches in finger rolls,1 per person
tabouli/hummus wraps for my vegetarian guests, cut into rolls and allow 2 per person- many non vegetarians will eat one
italian grinders (cut up)- 1 piece per person

potato salad, OR pasta salad 2 gallons is plenty
spinach/strawberry salad 3 1/2 pounds spinach plus fixings

2 picks per for the 2 trays is good- make a few extra fruit.

Ebony
03/03/12
60th birthday party for close to 100 people
I'm planning my dad's 60th birthday party for close to 100 people and want to serve finger foods. I'm ordering the meatballs and the tray is about 4lbs a tray, about how many trays do you think i would need
Linda
03/03/12
I am serving a a macaroni and cheese dinner for church. This is a free community meal at church and we usually have about 50 people. How many boxes of macaroni will I need. I have a recipe for 2 pounds but I don't think this is enough. I don't want to turn anyone away.

Thanks.

Linda

ellen
03/04/12
Ebony, I allow 1 pound meatballs per 5 when it is used as an appetizer with other items, 1 pound per 3-4 as a main dish.

Linda, I make at least 1 9x13 per 10 people. per 8 if the rest of the meal is light. 1 pound of pasta and 1 pound of cheese (I like cheesy) and about 1 quart of sauce per pan.

Debbie
03/07/12
I am planning hor' devores for a rehearsal dinner for 80 people. I am planning on serving spinach dip, cheese straws and nuts,and drinks. How much dip should I prepare?
Zona
03/07/12
How much Thai food for 20 people?
My daughter requested Thai food for her 15th birthday party - 15 teens and 5 adults. The restaurant has "large" trays that serve approx. 12 people each. Would one large tray of each of these be enough food for 20 people or should we order two trays?:

*Chicken Panang (Curry)
*Beef Satay
*Chicken Pad Thai
*Beef Pad See Ew
*Shrimp Fried Rice

We will also have Chinese Chicken Salad - tray serves 15-20 (next larger tray serves 25-30); a half-sheet mango cake, and a fresh fruit tray.

ellen
03/08/12
1 each is more than enough, I just suggest you cook up a pot of steamed rice to go with it.
Renee
03/10/12
Hi, I'm having 50 people for my daughters communion party. I have ordered 1 FULL tray of each....chicken tenders, meatball parm, eggplant rollatini, sausage n peppers, penne vodka, salad and garlic knots. Do you think this is enough. My husband wants to add chicken francese. What's your thoughts????
ellen
03/10/12
Help, how big is your local "full tray" or how many servings? Salad and probably penne will be short...
andy
03/12/12
hi,
I am helping my broter for his weeding menu, 60 people mostly adults.Menu as follow:
1)Appetizers:
Cured meets: amount?
Cheeses: amount?
with some fruits,pickles and veggies
garden salad: amount?
mexican appetizers like tortillas with salsa/guacamole...:amount?
2)Main
Vitel Thonè (beef with tuna sauce): 6lb?
Lasagna with meat sauce: amount?
Potato salad:amount?
Mexican Rice: amount?
Mexican Beans: amount?
Pork Mexican style (serve with tortillas): amount?
3)Desserts:
weeding cake
cheescake: amount?
cookies: amount?
other cake:?
4) white wine: amount?
red wine: amount?
water: amount?
pop:amount?

thanks much for your advice

ellen
03/12/12
Andy, this website is for do-it-yourselfers, so you need to look at the tables and the dessert buffet page and the beverage planning page, and make at least some effort to estimate. Post it, then I will be glad to estimate your entrees and coach on the rest.
Darren
03/17/12
lamb curry for 50
Hi, I'm looking for an authentic Durban take away style lamb curry recipe that'll cater for 50 people. Or how would I go about up scalling a recipe for 4 that I have to 50 or 100. Thanks
ellen
03/17/12
I had fun looking this up. It is a tomato based meat-heavy lamb curry served with a specific type salad over long grain, preferably Basmati, rice and condiments such as and bowls of sliced banana, dried coconut, diced pineapple and chutney, tomato, mint, cashew and coconut paste, vegetable pickle and creamy yoghurt. For bread, golden poppadom or naan. Also a tomato and mint sambal, made ahead so it can blend:

For the tomato and mint sambal, for each 4-5 people:

2 ripe firm tomatoes, diced
4 mint leaves, finely chopped
1 green chilli, finely diced
2 tsp red wine vinegar
pinches sugar

I also learned that Knorr makes a sauce packet, if you want an easy out and can find it...

You would marinate the meat with the garlic, ginger and masala (Ground spices) while you fry up the whole spices. You split the potatoes and add them when the meat begins its long last simmer, about 1 hour. For each 2 pounds of meat, about 1 pound of potatoes.

Durban style curry for 50:

1 1/2 cups oil
6 pounds onions sliced in rings
about 40 fresh curry leaves
about 70 inches of cinnamon sticks

24 pounds boneless lamb or mutton
2 heads of garlic mashed or chopped fine, or to taste
1/4 to 1/3 cup finely grated fresh ginger
3/4 cup masala (Durban curry powder)

1/4 cup each: ground coriander, ground cinnamon
2-4 tablespoons ground turmeric

24 small chilis OR to taste
8 pounds tomatoes, chopped; can use canned tomatoes in juice

12 cup lamb or chicken stock
1/4 cup tomato puree
12-18 pounds potatoes

salt to taste

Fresh coriander among the sambals or sprinkled on top for garnish

How?

Set the meat to marinating. Rub the garlic, chili and masala in the meat cubes and set aside.

Make the tomato-mint sambal (above)and make the traditional carrot salad:

Salad per 4:
2 peeled carrots, shredded
1 small onion, finely diced
1 green chilli, chopped
White vinegar, to moisten

Finely slice onion.
Put the oil into the roaster or large pot, add the oil, place on the heat. Wait for oil to heat up enough to hear the onion sizzle as you add it.
Add the sticks of cinnamon, somewhat broken up, and the curry leaves.
Cook until onions go slightly golden brown. Increase the heat slightly and add the meat and chilis, stir and cook until it just begins to brown.
Chop tomatoes into small pieces or use cans of tomato, place in a bowl, add the other ground spices, and mix to blend. Once onions and meat have browned slightly, add tomato mix and half the stock and stir. Let this simmer for about 15 minutes.
Stir in the tomato puree.
Add the potatoes and the remaining stock, simmer about an hour.
Here most cooks remove the chilis and curry leaves, then adjust the salt.
Garnish with chopped fresh coriander, serve ith the condiments, rice and breads.

Other whole spices which are added by some cooks with the onions: whole cloves, star anise, fennel seed, whole cumin

diane
03/17/12
hello. i am catering a party for 60 people. i am doing sausage & peppers, baked ziti, house salad, chicken drumsticks & thighs, macaroni, potato salad and cole slaw. i dont know how much to make of each. there is also going to be 2 3ft heros.
ellen
03/17/12
Diane, I don't do advice for pro/paid caterers, as I can't accept liability for the answers. If this is a family party, I would do:

1 pound sausage per 6 plus equal weight of veggies
1 piece of chicken per person

green salad, potato salad and cole slaw, do 2/3 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page

the mac and ziti, about 7 pounds total dry pasta but I can't suggest how to divide it, since I don't know your crowd.

brenda
03/18/12
Bake time - Chicken Cordon Bleu for 80 /Saturday
I am catering my sons wedding on Saturday and would like to know an approx cook time for 80 servings of Cordon Bleu. I will be flash frying them after they are breaded, then freezing until 2 days before the events, where I will thaw. I have 200 size full hotel pans for the chafing dishes that I will cook in, figure 20 per pan. I am using a conventional oven and will have to rotate the pans during the cooking. I know I have to reach 165... but would like to know about time and oven temp for this amount. Thanks
ellen
03/18/12
Brenda, post this to the catering boards on these two sites:

Chef2chef.com
cheftalk.com

I would probably cook from frozen, to protect the crispy coating...

Jackie
03/19/12
graduation party for 50
My son wants bbq (pulled pork, sliced turkey, st. louis ribs), he also wants fettcini alfredo with chicken. There will also be about 10 kids there in addition to the 50 adults, so we were thinking on adding pizza too. This is an outdoor graduation party on a Friday evening in June in Florida.
ellen
03/19/12
I would count this as 2/3 of 100- the teens are serious eaters. You can use the plan for 100 table for additional items. You do NOT need pizza; I would add chips and dips/salsa, fruit trays, a green vegetable or salad.

bbq
pulled pork, 1 pound per 5
sliced turkey, 1 pound ready to eat per 5
st. louis ribs, 1/2 to 1/3 pound per person

fettucini alfredo with chicken about 6 pounds dry pasta, rest to you recipe; or I have an Alfredo style sauce on the spaghetti page you might like.

Ashley
03/20/12
I am planning a lunch for about 50 people with a wedding at 2:00 in the afternoon. I would like to do sandwhiches, with a do-it-yourself arrangement of meat, cheese etc. Also chips, veggies, and cookies. How much of each should I plan on? What kinds of meats should I get? Any other suggestions?
Thanks!
ellen
03/21/12
This needs reception-level sandwiches, which are covered on the sandwich page- you need half the amount for 100.

Chips, about 4 pounds with 3 quarts each of 2 different dips.

See the veggie tray page for help, but I would probably do a fruit tray instead- people like them better.

See the dessert planning page for the cookies; again, 1/2 the amount for 100.

rhonda
03/22/12
Hi,
I am preparing a meal for our ladies auxilary district meeting, I have approximately 35 ladies, I am serving chicken penne. I was wondering if you could help me out with the amount of noodles, chicken, and sauce I may need for this amount of people. Thank you Rhonda Mathews
ellen
03/22/12
1 9x13 per 8-10 people depending on the side dishes. 1 pound each boneless chicken and pasta per pan, 1 quart sauce per pan.
debbie
03/22/12
sunday afternoon engagement party for 60
I am self catering an engagement party for my son and his fiancee
I was going to have vegetable and fruit platters shrimp cocktail , deviiled eggs and cheese/crackers for appetizers. Thought I would do a hot buffet for the main course as well as a couple of sandwich platters. Thinking of lemon chicken, roasted potatoes and vegetables and a caesar salad. Cake for dessert as well as assorted cookies and brownies I will be ordering the main course from a restaurant that has small trays for 10-12 and large trays that serve 20-24. 20 pieces of chicken to large tray. How many tray should I order and am I missing anything? Thanks
ellen
03/22/12
You have generous appetizers. I would order 3 trays of chicken, consider at least 1 tray of something that would be vegetarian-entree friendly as part of your vegetables.
debbie
03/23/12
sunday afternoon engagement party for 60
Thanks Ellen

would it be too much to forget about the potatoes and add baked ziti or stuffed shells and eggplant parm.

I'm not an entertainer so Im having a hard time making up my mind. I know most people serve too many dishes. What do you recommend?

How may trays would I need all together?

ellen
03/25/12
That would be fine! 2 trays of starch, 2 trays of veggies
Sandra
03/25/12
Food planning for 60-70 people
Hi Ellen,

I am planning a graduation party for 60-70 people of which about 10 will be teens that may come and go. We are making Pulled Pork, Chicken Paprikash, Sausage and Peppers, White rice, spanish rice with beans, and mac n cheese. There will be a full tray of each of the dishes. Would I need more of any? I will also make a very basic green salad and have a platter of fruit. I was thinking of getting an assortment of baguettes, italian breads and rolls but don't know how many too get. It will be in a hall, mid-afternoon, not backyard.

ellen
03/26/12
A full tray makes 25 or 50 servings, depending on whether it is 2 1/2 or 4 inches deep- most are 2 1/2. So you will have enough food, though the mac and cheese will probably run out. You want 10 pounds of good bread and a classic relish tray - see the veggie tray page- and consider at least one chip and dis/salsa choice- 1/4 to 1/3 cup dip plus 1 1/2 ounces chips per person.
Paige
03/26/12
We are planning a bridal shower for approximately 45-50 people. We are serving meatballs (plain, not sandwiches), mini quiche, fruit (salad most likely), cheese and pepperoni with crackers, and cake (of course). I am in charge of the fruit and the cheese and pepperoni and I have NO idea how much to get. How much cheese (if I buy big blocks and cut it up) would I need? I was thinking of making one large fruit salad rather than a fruit tray--but I am trying to go with what is least expensive. What do you think?
ellen
03/26/12
What I would do is,

meatballs (plain, not sandwiches), 10 pounds
mini quiche, 60
fruit (salad most likely), trays are easier to prep, hold better and the leftovers are more usable; 10 pounds ready to eat (allow for stems, peels, etc.
cheese and pepperoni with crackers,6-8 pounds cheese, 5 pounds pepperoni, 3-4 pounds crackers

Sandra
03/27/12
Thank you Ellen. I did check your veggie tray. I was going to put fruit out too. I'll make an extra mac n cheese. Maybe pack it in 2*1/2 the full size tray.
Elise
03/27/12
Ellen,
I'm looking to have a cookout/family reunion for about 50 people. I'm not sure if I've got the meat proportions right. I'm planning on serving hamburgers, hot dogs, and chicken (the chicken is boneless, about 1/2 pound per piece). I've figured 75 hamburgers, 75 hot dogs, & 37.5 pounds chicken. A good number of these people CAN EAT, but I think I'm going a little overboard on the numbers. What do you think? Thanks!
ellen
03/28/12
Yes, way overboard. I would do at max, 50 burgers; 50 dogs, but get polish sausage or kielbasa, much tastier, and only open half till you see how it is going; and 17 pounds of chicken, split the pieces.
Julie
03/29/12
Food planning for100 people from1pm-5pm
We plan to have:
tuna Sal, Chicken Sal,Broccoli Sal, potato sal
& an oriental sal
ham & turkey
buns
baked beans
fresh fruit
fresh vegetables
pickles
olives
how much of each do we neede?
Magaly
03/29/12
Hors D'Oeuvres for 45 people for graduation party
Hi Ellen, planning a graduation party through a restaurant (have narrowed it down to two) but need to know how many hor d'oeuvres per person I should average to come up with a better idea on per individual cost. I have one restaurant telling me 8 items per and another telling me 10 items per. This will take place at 3pm immediately following the graduation ceremony. Will hor d'oeuvres be plenty to satisfy guests or should we go with a 3 course lunch meal?
ellen
03/30/12
Julie, Assuming these are all for sandwiches
tuna Sal, 1/4 cup per person
Chicken Sal, 1/4 cup per person
ham- 1 pound deli sliced per 6
turkey- 1 pound deli sliced per 5
buns-1 1/2 per person, 2 if smaller
You need sandwich condiments and cheese, see the sandwich page

Broccoli Sal- 2 1/2 to 3 gallons per 100
potato sal- 4 gallons per 100
oriental sal-2 1/2 to 3 gallons per 100

baked beans- 3gallons per 100
fresh fruit- use the fruit tray page
fresh vegetables- use the veggie tray page, Ranch dip
pickles and olives- 1 gallon of each per 100
olives

ellen
03/30/12
Magaly, with teens, you need a lot of food.

If you do horsd' only, you need 12 items per person for the first hour, 4-6 for each additional hour.

Take a look at the cold lunch for 25, maybe some ideas; I would go with a sandwich bar type thing, not a seated lunch.

dee
03/31/12
root beer/coke floats
Hi Ellen,
We are having our annual 'Hamburger Supper' for the entire high school football teams & families in May....about 500 people.

For dessert, we usually just have store bought cookies.
I was thinking about trying root beer & coke floats this year instead.

I thought if we pre dipped the ice cream into solo cups & kept them frozen before the event....then just offered either coke or root beer per request.

How much ice cream & cokes/root beer would we need for appx 500 people....probably pre dip about 300.

or any better ideas for dessert to make it special?

PJ
03/31/12
Food Planning for 60 people for Dessert/Appetizers
Hi Ellen,

We are having an engagement party at 2 PM. This is what I have planned:

7 lbs shrimp (I was going to use the frozen shrimp and thaw and put on a platter--do you think it will be okay?)Skewers of 3 on each?

Large sized meat tray of Italian meats (salamai, proschutto, etc)

Large Antipasti tray

Sushi tray (was just planning on 1 bite per person as not everyone likes sushi)

Large fruit tray (or fruit skewers--but is this too many skewers with the shrimp, also?)

Large vegetable tray

Mini caprese bites (about 150, since I also have the tray)

Hummus, Tzatzki, babaganoush platters w/pita chips, stuffed grape leaves (32 oz of each dip)

Sausage balls

Desserts:

Chocolate cake, "Dump Cake", Pineapple Cake, Red Velvet Cake, Cake Pops, A large cheesecake, a large tiramisu, tray of cannolis & cream puffs & eclairs, tray of cookies

Drinks:
Tea, sodas, beer, wine, chapagne toast.

does this seem like enough or too much?

ellen
03/31/12
Hi, Dee,

The prescooped ice cream will be OK, you would want1/2 cup per scoop for the icecream, and 10-12 ounces soda. Be sure to have about 1/4 sugar free sodas. You might also look at the sundae bar page and the dessert buffet page for amounts and ideas.

ellen
03/31/12
Hi, PJ,

This is a lot of food for a reception 2-5, especially for just 60 people.

7 lbs shrimp (I was going to use the frozen shrimp and thaw and put on a platter--do you think it will be okay?)Skewers of 3 on each?
I never plan less than 3 ounces per person, people are greedy for shrimps. For these frozen shrimps, I would thaw, marinate in Italian dressing and serve with toothpicks on the side- slows down people for how much they will eat.

Large sized meat tray of Italian meats (salamai, proschutto, etc) 2 ounces per person=7-8 pounds

Large Antipasti tray= 3 ounces per person, 10-12 pounds

Sushi tray (was just planning on 1 bite per person as not everyone likes sushi)- SKIP

Large fruit tray (or fruit skewers--but is this too many skewers with the shrimp, also?) make 1/2 the deluxe tray for 100 or twice the tray for 25, on the fruit tray page

Large vegetable tray- OK, but with the antipasto and caprese, I would probably skipped 2 ounces per person= 8 pounds, plus 3 quarts Ranch dressing

Mini caprese bites (about 150, since I also have the tray)- OK, but could be omitted, or the veggie tray could be omitted

Hummus, Tzatzki, babaganoush platters w/pita chips, stuffed grape leaves (32 oz of each dip)- OK; one dolma per person

Sausage balls- 2 per person

Desserts:

Chocolate cake, OK
"Dump Cake", Pineapple Cake, skip one
Red Velvet Cake, have chocolate or this, not both
Cake Pops, ??? not necessary
A large cheesecake, OK
a large tiramisu, OK
tray of cannolis & cream puffs & eclairs, get minis only
tray of cookies, SKIP

Drinks:
Tea, 3 gallons, have at least some unsweetened
sodas, ??? depends on the crowd, probably about just 1 can per person, 1/4 to 1/3 sugar-free

Buy liquor where you can return unopened
beer, 4 per beer drinker
wine, 1 bottle per 4
champagne toast, 1 case

If this saves you some money, please consider a donation to support this site.

PJ
03/31/12
Thank you so much!! This relieve so much of my stress! And, I will certainly consider the support for the site!
Divine
04/01/12
Food planning for 50 people Camp Retreat
Hi! I'm making veggie kabobs as part of a larger menu (stew & coleslaw). Need to know how many kabobs do I need to feed approx. 50 people?

Thanking you in advance,
D.

ellen
04/04/12
You want about 4 ounces ready to cook raw veggies per person- usually makes 2 skewers. Kabobs are a lot of handwork and most people like roasted veggies just as well.
Jeannie
04/09/12
Planning a coctail party for around 150 from 7 - 10 pm in July. I Would like to serve:

Chicken FIngers with dipping sauce (How many fingers and how much dip)

Shirmp - medium size (How many and coctail Sauce)

Meatballs (How many)

Assortment of Cheese & Crackers (Selection suggestions and quantities)

Fruit Trays (What Fruits and how many)

Vegetable Trays (What veggies and how much of each. Dip?)

Macc & Cheese (Ounces per person?)

Stuffed Mushroom Caps (How many per person)

Coffee
Tea
Bottled Water

Terri
04/09/12
Wedding Reception for 200
Planning a wedding reception and doing it ourselves due to cost:

Appetizers - we were thinking 6 per person?

Pulled pork 80lbs uncooked?
rolls 250?
baked beans 6 gal.
mac 'n cheese 5 chafing dish 20X12x2 pans
cole slaw 5 gal.
potato salad 6 gal.

cake.. of course :)

Coffee
Tea
Lemonade
Sweet Tea
Water

Am I on the right track?

Any help on quantities would be appreciated!

Laureen
04/10/12
Hi,
I am making potatoe salad for a baby shower. There will be no more than 35 people. How many lbs of potatoes do I need?
Thanks!
ellen
04/12/12
Terri,

Appetizers - we were thinking 6 per person? OK

Pulled pork 80lbs uncooked? I would do 90-100.
rolls 250?-300 get good ones, bread is cheap, have some butter for people who just want a roll with butter
baked beans 6 gal. OK
mac 'n cheese 5 chafing dish 20X12x2 pans- One dish is only about 35 servings- consider adding
cole slaw 5 gal. OK
potato salad 6 gal.- I would do at least 8

cake.. of course :)

Coffee
Tea
Lemonade
Sweet Tea
Water

See the beverage planning page, have some unsweetened tea and sugar free lemonade available.

ellen
04/12/12
Jeannie

Planning a coctail party for around 150 from 7 - 10 pm in July. I Would like to serve:

Chicken FIngers with dipping sauce (How many fingers and how much dip) 3 ounces chicken plus 1/2 cup dip per person

Shrimp - medium size (How many and cocktail Sauce) 1 pound per 5 plus 1/4 cup cocktail sauce per person- none left- they are very popular

Meatballs (How many)- 1 pound per 5-6

Assortment of Cheese & Crackers (Selection suggestions and quantities) 2 ounces cheese (some can be logs, balls, spreads), 1 1/2 ounce crackers

Fruit Trays (What Fruits and how many)- see the fruit tray page- the deluxe tray for 100 with some extra grapes would be about right.

Vegetable Trays (What veggies and how much of each. Dip?)-see the veggie tray page, 2 ounces (about 6 bites) of veggies, 1/4 cup dip.

Macc & Cheese (Ounces per person?) 1/2 cup per person

Stuffed Mushroom Caps (How many per person)-2-3, you will run out- they are very popular

Coffee
Tea
See the beverage planning page, dinner coffee.

ellen
04/12/12
Laureen, 10 pounds with add-ins should be plenty.
Patty
04/12/12
How many stuffed shells will I have to make for 50 people?
ellen
04/12/12
shells come in different sizes. 3 shells is about right foR the standard size one, if it is buffet, as people tend to take a little more.
Terri
04/13/12
Someones helpful suggestion.. what do you say?
I was asking above about a wedding reception for 200 with pulled pork. I was told I needed a vegetable instead of the potato salad and they suggested Green Beans w/ Almonds. Would you go with the 8lbs of Potato Salad or maybe 40lbs of green beans with almonds.
Jeannie
04/13/12
Macc & Cheese Tartlets
Planning heavy Hors d'oeuvres for 150 people and would like todo Macc & Cheese Tartlets. How many should I plan per person and so you serve thn hot in a chafer
ellen
04/13/12
Terri, I would DEFINITELY do the potato salad, it cuts down on the amount of meat, but you need 3-4 gallons per 100, and 8 pounds is just 1 gallon. Your original estimate is about right.

You could add the green beans, and it would be about 40 pounds. I might do 3 batches of my better green bean casserole on the top of Big Pots.

If I did green beans and no potato salad, I would increase the mac and cheese, adding 2-3 trays.

Rachel
04/14/12
I am planning a barbeque for 50 people tomorrow. I'm serving chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs, lasagne roll ups (made 40), potato salad, cole slaw and a bunch of appetizers. For dessert, cake, ice cream pies, fruit. How much meat, salads and dessert should I prepare? Thanks!
ellen
04/15/12
You left this too late for me to give you a prompt answer.

I would do 6 chickens cut into 8 pieces, 30 burgers, have 3-4 pounds of sausage, kielbasa or hot dogs, but don't open all until you see how it is going. 2 gallons potato salad, 1 1/2 slaw. Desserts 1/2 the amount on the dessert bar page for 100.

Jeannie
04/15/12
Macc & Cheese Tartlets
Planning heavy Hors d'oeuvres for 150 people and would like to do Macc & Cheese Tartlets. How many should I plan per person and do you serve them hot in a chafer?
ellen
04/15/12
2 per person if there are some other starchy appies. Yes, a chafer will do to keep warm, but they need to be heated in the oven.
BER
04/17/12
I'm planning a birthday party for around 50 people.

I plan to make beef BBQ and pasta salad. We plan to have other stuff as well, but I'm more concerned with how much ground beef I need and also how much pasta salad I need to make.

Linda
04/17/12
I am planning a 2:00pm till 5:00pm Social Event/meeting for our Church Ministry of Greeters.
It will be a mixed group of 50 men and women.

I was thinking of all appetizer finger food groups - like a selection of sandwiches, such as, Chicken salad on mini croissants - cucumber with cream cheese on wheat - Salmon and cucumber on wheat - Tuna salad on wheat - Egg salad on white, using very thin sliced bread for these sandwiches cut in triangles.
Grilled shrimp - Pigs N Blanket - A selection of cheeses and cracker - a selection of dips, humus, guacamole, artichoke & chips - fruit platter - A Relish platter - Mini cheese squares from Sam's! A chocolate cake - homemade fresh cookies leaving a nice welcome aroma as they walk in. I would love to hear from you and your suggestions!

Kathleen
04/18/12
Food planning for 50 people on the 29th 2012
Hi Ellen, I am having a wedding reception on April 29th 2012 and I am wondering if 50 people responded how many will show.
I will be making sausage and peppers and penne pasta with a salad. How early can I prepare to make the trays to save me the stress?
Thank you Kathleen
Roz
04/18/12
Food planning for 30 people..help please! Pretty!
Hello Ellen! I was so ecited to see your website. I am hosting a 70th Birthday Party for my dear friend's mother. It will be between 25-30 people and the menu will consist of:
Antipastos
Caprese skewers
Assortment of Cheeses
fruit skewers
bruchetta crostinis
roasted asparagus wrapped in prosciutto
mini Italian club
pizza pockets
shrimp shish kebab spied discampi
crostinis w/sundried tomato jam
orzo salad with spinach and feta

What I was hoping you could help me out with...is how much food would I need for--let's say 25 people. We are doing the food ourselves so any tips would be very helpful.

Thank you in advance for your time and help.

Best,

Roz

ellen
04/20/12
Very nice upscale menu.

Antipastos
Caprese skewers-1 per
Assortment of Cheeses- 1 1/2 ounces per
fruit skewers- fruit trays are easier to prepare and store, look nice and the leftovers are more usable. See the fruit tray page
bruchetta crostinis- depends on sze, 1 1/2 to 2 per
roasted asparagus wrapped in prosciutto-2 spears per
mini Italian club- 1 per
pizza pockets- small? 1 per
shrimp shish kebab spied discampi- 2 per people love these
crostinis w/sundried tomato jam- 1 1/2 per
orzo salad with spinach and feta- with 2 pounds orzo, you will probably have some left.

If it is possible. consider a donation to support the site.

Roxanne
04/24/12
I am planning a Graduation party for between 50-75 guests. I am having it catered and am having pulled pork, italian beef, and grilled chicken. How much of each should i have?
ellen
04/25/12
pulled pork, 1 pound per 5-6
italian beef, 1 pound per 4
grilled chicken, 1 pound boneless per 5.
jayne
04/26/12
I am planning a lunch for about 50 males all around 20 years old. I was thinking something heavy like the Chicken and Rice recipe on here and a masculine salad like Caesar with yummy rolls. For dessert an assortment of bar cookies, brownies and traditional cookies. My question is does this sound like enough? And since they are a bunch of guys around 20 years old, how much should I actually plan to prepare? The other thought was instead of the chicken and rice recipe a couple of heavy soups like White Chicken Chili and Broccoli Cheddar soup. So my other question, which would be easier, Chicken and Rice or soups?
ellen
04/26/12
I would do 2/3 the amounts for 100, or 60-65 servings. I would add one more dish; fruit trays, or a veg. They would like the chicken and rice better.
sarah
04/29/12
Party for 50-60 lakeside over Memorial Day. The food will have a Greek theme. Not Greek, just like the food. How much of the following items should I make. Thanks!

Hummus with pita chips
Tzatziki with veggies
BBQ chicken wings (cooked ahead of time)
Grilled pork loin
Rice pilaf
Greek salad
9" cheesecakes (not Greek, but again, just like them)
So'mores with the campfire

ellen
04/29/12
Dips, 1/4 cup each plus 1 1/2 ounces chips and 3 ounces veggies (see the veggie tray page for help oon the exact veggie amounts.)

Chicken wings, at least 1/3 pound per person, and they easily eat 1/2 pound each.

Grilled pork loin- I buy 45-50 pounds boneless per 100
Rice pilaf-at least 6 pounds dry rice. Baked in the oven is the easiest pilaf for large amounts.
Greek salad- see the Greek salad for 100 on the salads that hold page. Make 1/2 to 2/3 depending on whether it is really 50 or 60.
9" cheesecakes (not Greek, but again, just like them)- I provide 22 pounds per 100
So'mores with the campfire - I supply 1 Hershey bar, 4 marshmallows and 2 double graham crackers per 100. Plus some extra marshmallows...

If this helps, consider a donation to support this site.

Helen
04/30/12
Making mac & cheese, hamburgers, hotdogs, and baked beans for 50-75 people. How much should I purchase
ellen
04/30/12
You need one dog and 1/1 burgers per person, only open half the dogs till you see how they are going. Buns to match, condiments see the sandwich page.

Mac and cheese, 1 pound pasta per 8
Baked beans, 2 +10 cans for 50, 3 for 75

Millie
05/01/12
I was asked to make baked beans for an event that will have around 30 people. Mainly small kids/teenagers. I saw your recipe for baked beans for 100. Can i just divide it by half and make for 50 people. This way in case someone serves themselves to much there is plenty.
ellen
05/01/12
Yes. Actually since there are kids in the count, 1/3 would be adequate. With 1/2 you will have left over- they freeze well.
Kaylee
05/02/12
Help!
I am throwing my best friend a surprise going away party. 63 guest in total. If I make quarter sandwiches, how many loaves of bread, meat, and cheese would I need?
Bonnie
05/03/12
Food planning for 65 people tomorrow help please
I planning a baby shower for 65 people, an going to do a taco bar. Could you tell me how much ground beef an chicken breast I will need to prepare beef an chicken tacos. Thank you
Jeff
05/03/12
Food planning for 50 people in 4 days help please
I am cooking smoked pulled pork sandwiches, hamburgers, hot dogs, baked beans, and potato salad. How much ground beef and how many pork shoulders should i prepare.
Janette
05/04/12
75th Birthday afternoon party
I am planning a afternoon birthday drop in social for my mother in law. I expect approx. 50 guests.
I am hoping to cater from Costco. I am thinking a slab cake, cookies and bars, fruit tray, tea/coffee/juice. Is this OK? How much of each should I get?
thank You.
Lynn
05/04/12
amount of prepared food
we are preparing for a pork bar b que fundraiser for 200 people. How much prepared coleslaw and baked beans do i need to buy?
ellen
05/05/12
Kaylee, depends on time of day, what else is being served; i is always at least one full sandwich per person, can be 2.
ellen
05/05/12
Bonnie, too late, but if you used 2/3 of the potato/taco bar, you had plenty.
ellen
05/05/12
Jeff, 50 people

smoked pulled pork sandwiches, most popular, 1 pound boneless per 3
hamburgers, about 30- hold some back- depends on the crowd
hot dogs, skip, or do a few pounds of Polish sausage or kielbasa

ellen
05/05/12
Janette, 50 people

slab cake, need 4 9x13 or a 2 layer 1/2 slab

cookies and bars, small, 3 per person

fruit tray, 10 pounds, easy and cheaper to do yourself

tea/coffee/juice see the beverage planning page; dinner level coffee.

ellen
05/05/12
Lynn;

5-6 gallons cole slaw (depends on serving size- larger amount if buffet or seconds

6 gallons beans- a #10 can holds 3 quarts, 3/4 of a gallon

Jenny
05/07/12
Am preparing a fruit tray for a Mothers Day tea. 20 preschoolers and 20 mommies (and maybe 5 other adults). Suggestions on something that is EASY prep, and quantities. Thanks
Alison
05/08/12
Party in two weeks 60
Hi, I'm having a party in two weeks. I was going to order party trays (large feeds 20-24)

Appetizers
vegetable tray
shrimp cocktail
crackers/cheese

Main course
baked stuffed shells
italian Meatballs
Eggplant parm
Chicken broccoli and ziti
Chicken cacciatore over pasta
capprese salad
caesar salad
platter of mini sandwiches

Do i have too many choices. How many trays do i need to feed
60. Any suggestions would be welcome.

Alison
05/08/12
Party in two weeks 60
Or would it be better if i ordered chicken piccata over pasta instead of the chicken cacciatore?. It might be a little lighter.
Jessie
05/09/12
Lebanese food for party
Hi Ellen - I am planning a birthday party lunch for about 55 guests. I am going to have make your own falafel sandwiches (including pita, lettuce, tahini and falafel balls), grape leaves, hummus, tabouli and lentil-rice salad. Any suggestions as to amounts of each would be greatly appreciated - thanks!!
ellen
05/09/12
Jennie,

Do berries and grapes, and cut up melons. Do a sweet yogurt dip. Count as 1/3 of 100 and use my fruit tray page.

ellen
05/09/12
Yes Allison, you have too many choices.

vegetable tray- 2 trays, you will have leftovers
shrimp cocktail- people eat way too much of this, I allow 3 ounces shrimp per person, 1/4 cup cocktail sauce
crackers/cheese- 2 pounces cheese, 1 1/2 crackers

Main course
italian Meatballs- 1 pound per 4-5

baked stuffed shells 1 per person plus 10%
Eggplant parm Don 40 servings, then cut small

Chicken broccoli and ziti
Chicken cacciatore over pasta Do ONLY one of these

capprese salad-50
caesar salad- 25

platter of mini sandwiches skip entirely. Have 8 pounds bread or good rolls

ellen
05/09/12
Jessie, nice party.

55 guests. falafel sandwiches
(including pita, 1per person
lettuce, 2 ounces per person
tahini 3 tablespoons per person thinned
falafel balls 6 per person plus some extras
Consider adding some cheese cubes- white cheese or feta? Not authentic, but good for the non-fafafel eaters. Maybe, 4 pounds?

grape leaves, 3 per person
hummus, 1/4 cup per person plus additional pitas or pita chips
tabouli and lentil-rice salad. 1/2 cup each per person.

Susan
05/16/12
How much food for a luncheon
Hi Ellen,
We are having a luncheon following my son's bar mitzvah. There will be 16 kids age 13 and younger and 59 adults. We are having the following cold food which we are getting from a local bakery restaurant: ( We cannot have any dairy foods.)

Turkey and roast beef to make sandwiches along with condiments
tuna salad I can buy by the pound.
chicken salad I can buy by the pound.
bagged potato chips
hummus with veggies
tossed salad
fruit platter
dessert cookies and bars
lemonade and ice tea

How much meat, tuna salad and chicken salad should we have?
How much bread or rolls do I need?
What would you suggest for quantities for the other items?

Thanks!!!

ellen
05/16/12
Count this as 2/3 of 100.

Potato chips, tossed salad
fruit platter
dessert cookies and bars
lemonade and ice tea

See the plan for 100 page, fruit tray page, dessert planning page and beverage planning page.

Turkey and roast beef to make sandwiches along with condiments
Use lunch level on the sandwich planning page, 5/8 beef, 3/8 turkey
tuna salad I can buy by the pound.
chicken salad I can buy by the pound.
You want about total 1 pound salads per 5, but I can't advise on the split- varies by region and family.

Rolls and breads, about 9 pounds.

Alison
05/18/12
Party Sunday for 60
Hi Ellen,
In the above reply did you mean I only need one tray of either the chicken broccoli and ziti or chicken cacciatore?

Thanks so much for all your help.

ellen
05/18/12
If you do one of each,, there will be plenty, but leftovers, if you do just one, do the chicken broccoli.
April J.
05/18/12
Bridal shower for 50 ppl
Hi! I'm catering a bridal shower for 50 ppl. The menu consists of Deviled eggs, cheese & cracker trays, veggie quiche, ham & cheese quiche, broccoli & cheese quiche, sliced meat platters, chicken salad, chicken Alfredo, a. baked pasta dish, a build your own salad, mini cheesecake bites (4 varieties), & a fruit tree. Will u tell me how much of each item is needed? Any advice is appreciated. Thanks!
ellen
05/18/12
April, you need to use the advice and tables on the site to prepare an estimate and post it. This looks like a full lunch with appetizers, in which case, you need about 6 appetizer "bites" or small servings plus the lunch food.

This is also too many foods for 50 people. I would not have accepted this menu.

Elizabeth
05/20/12
My sons first birthday going to be about 65 people
We wanna grill for our sons first bday we wanna have hamburgers, hot dogs, potato salad, egg salad, sour cream and cucumbers, little smokies, veggie tray, fruit tray how much should we do of each there will be about 65 people and how big of a cake should we do and how much lettuce,onions , tomatos should we get
Debbie Babs
05/20/12
Planning a graduation party for a mixture of guests-teens and adults for 8pm to 11pm. Menu can be baked mac and cheese beef patties deviled eggs,
chicken skewers,plain meatballs,fruit platter, veggi salad-about 50 persons total and not a lot of money to spend. Is this a good and reasonable menu and what drink can I serve (non alcoholic)
ellen
05/20/12
Elizabeth, almost all your items are covered on the fruit tray page, the dessert planning page, and the sandwich event page (for the sandwich fixings), or on the plan for 100 page, you would use 2/3 the amount for 100. The only 2 specialty are the egg salad- 1 gallon and the cucumber salad- 1 1/2 gallons.
ellen
05/20/12
Debbie, this is a perfectly OK menu, and you do not need both the beef patties and the meatballs- I would suggest you go with one or the other.

baked mac and cheese,5-6 9x13
beef patties see note above
deviled eggs, 3 dozen eggs
chicken skewers,1 per person- 1 pound boneless per 4
plain meatballs, 1 pound per 4 if you skip the burgers, have dipping sauces
fruit platter, see fruit tray page- 2 times the tray for 25
veggi salad- see the veggie tray page, a classic relish tray would be a fine choice

You need a nice dessert table- see the dessert planning page do for 1/2 of 100

Drink, I suggest lemonade or the apricot punch at the top of the punch thread, or iced tea.

April J.
05/21/12
Bridal shower for 50 ppl
Thanks for your response, Ellen. This is my first time catering a shower, so I'm not sure on what to serve. You said this is too much food for 50 ppl. What would you suggest I cut back on? The shower will be early afternoon. Thanks for help!
Becky
05/21/12
Hello Ellen,

I am having a back yard Baby Shower in September for 55 People, 45 Adults (10 Men & 35 Women) and 10 Children. This is the Menu I planned on:

Finger Roll Platter (24 Tuna Salad)
Finger Roll Platter (24 Chicken Salad)
Finger Roll Platter (24 Seafood Salad)

Roast Beef Roll Up Platter (serves 15-20)
Turkey Roll Up Platter (serves 15-20)
Ham & Cheese Roll Up Platter (serves 15-20)

Potato Salad
Pasta Salad

Cheese & Cracker Tray
Vegetable & Dip Tray

Cake
Beverages

I honestly have no idea if this is too little or too much. What would you add - take away - change about this menu?

Thank you for your advice!

ellen
05/21/12
I would skip either the tuna or seafood roll ups, probably tuna. I might sub fruit trays for veggie trays. Other than that, just about right- 1 1/2 to 2 gallons potato salad, 1 1/2 pasta.
sal
05/22/12
Outdoor Buffet for 80th Birthday
Planning an outdoor party for 80th birthday for approx 45 people. Will serve buffet style. Menu is as follows-would appreciate any advice:

Pre-sliced turkey and Italian hoagies
Meatballs in tomato sauce
Chicken Marbella
Coleslaw
Macaroni salad
Scalloped Potatoes
Sliced Watermelon
Sheet Cake
Cookies

I don't know if I need another side dish, perhaps 3 bean salad. Any suggestions welcome! I will also be having cheese, sausage and cracker trays and various munchies(chips, pretzels) to have with drinks before food is all served.

kathy michaelson
05/23/12
21st birthday party at 8pm for 50
I really need some suggestions. Because the party is at 8 I'm not sure a full meal is in order. However these kids really eat. I was thinking meatballs, pizza pockets, baked Mac n cheeses with various chips dips and snacks. Can you suggest other easy snacks and amounts?
veronica
05/23/12
I am planning the first year birthday party for my grandson, and I want to throw a picnic, I will invite 30 adults and 20 children. the problem is that I have no idea what kind of food will serve as a multicultural celebration. can you help me please?
ellen
05/24/12
You have enough food.

Pre-sliced turkey and Italian hoagies- 3-4 inches per person, 1/2 and 1/2
Meatballs in tomato sauce- 1 pound meatballs per 5
Chicken Marbella- 3 ounces ready to serve (smallish piece) per person
Coleslaw- 1 1/2 gallons
Macaroni salad- 2 pounds dry pasta
Scalloped Potatoes- 15 pounds potatoes
Sliced Watermelon- 1/3 pound per person
Sheet Cake-1/2 sheet cake
Cookies- small cookies 2 per person, or 1 each of several small flavors

ellen
05/24/12
Inside? outside? cooking? grilling? at home at park, more info please.
Cinder
05/27/12
planning on a graduation party for 50 - 60 people: here the menu:
Meatballs sandwiches, white & dark pieces of fried chicken, macaroni salad, baked beans, either a mixed fruit salad or fresh fruit tray, chips, pretzels, bottled water, coffee, lemonaide, cupcakes. How much food should I buy? Any other suggestions for the graduation party would be helpful. Thanks
ellen
05/28/12
Meatballs sandwiches, 4 inches per person
white & dark pieces of fried chicken, 1 piece per person plus 10%
macaroni salad, 3 pounds dry pasta- 4 if very big eaters
baked beans, 1 1/2 gallons
either a mixed fruit salad or fresh fruit tray, fruit tray is prettier, easier, and keeps better

chips, pretzels, 1 pound chips per 10, 2-3 cups dip per pound. 2 pounds pretzels

bottled water, coffee, lemonade, see beverage planning page, some should be sugar free.

cupcakes, at least number coming plus 10%, more if 2 flavors as people will take 2.

steven
05/28/12
Hi i am planning a small wedding in 2weeks nd i would like to serve flank steak ill have 50 people n how many pounds and what side dishes will i need thank u
Colleen
05/28/12
Food planning for Graduation Party from 4-8 pm
I am hosting a Graduation party for 65 adults and 32 children under 14. Here is the menu I was considering:

Chicken parm
Roast beef sandwiches
Chicken nuggets/fingers
Pasta or macaroni salad
potatoe salad
caesar salad

tray of veggies
tray of fruit

2 1/4 sheet cakes (two graduates - each their own cake)
4 dozen cupcakes

ellen
05/28/12
Steven, at least 25 pounds raw. Potatoes- baked potato bar or twice baked or scalloped potatoes? Fresh green beans. A great salad- nothing boring. Grilled tomatoes topped with crumbs and parmesan.
ellen
05/28/12
Colleen I would tweak the menu.

Chicken parm- 50 servings
Roast beef sandwiches-60 servings
Chicken nuggets/fingers- everyone will eat, the adults as an appetizer- 1 pound per 5
Pasta or macaroni salad-6 pounds dry pasta
potato salad- 35 pounds potatoes to start
caesar salad- at least 2/3 the amount for 100- see the plan for 100 list

tray of veggies- see veggie tray page, do for 60- maybe the classic relish tray?
tray of fruit- for 100 see the fruit tray page

2 1/4 sheet cakes (two graduates - each their own cake)- 1/4 sheet cake only serves 18- get two yers or 1/2 sheet cake
4 dozen cupcakes = OK if you increase the above.

sloan
06/01/12
Having a 50th fish fry for husband
Hi, Ellen,
I was wondering if you could help me out with lbs of crawfish & catfish nuggetts for about 50 people on a Saturday in June. We are also having coleslaw as a side with the corn & potaoes for the crawfish.

Thank you
Sloan

ellen
06/01/12
20 pounds of nuggets and up to 25 pounds of crawfish- 18 is about the minimum. Some good French bread or garlic bread- about 7 pounds.
Rodney
06/05/12
Hi, Ellen,
I am having a Jamaica outdoor party for 65 people on Sat. and want to have cocktail Jamaican patties, jerk chicken wings, jerk pork and Jerk chicken plus sides of rice & peas and fried plantain. How much of each should I get?

Thanks

ellen
06/05/12
65 people is 2/3 of 100.

cocktail Jamaican patties, 2 per
jerk chicken wings, 4 pieces per minimum
add a great fruit tray- see the fruit tray page

jerk pork 1 pound raw per 3
Jerk chicken-1 piece chicken per person plus 10%

rice & peas- about 6 pounds dry rice and 2 pounds dry peas
fried plantain- tough estimate- maybe 25 pounds if people like and you have a dip...

ellen
06/05/12
That's about 1/2 plantain per person
sherry
06/09/12
Having a 2nd bday party 24 kids 30 adults 1 g hoagie tray 50 piece fried chicken 10 lbs potato salad green salad pasta salad. Fresh fruits and a full sheet cake? ????
ellen
06/09/12
1 g hoagie tray- usually serves 25
50 piece fried chicken- 60 pieces
10 lbs potato salad- only about a gallon- you want 1 1/2 to 2
green salad- about 6 pounds
pasta salad- 2 pounds dry pasta
Fresh fruits- see fruit tray page
full sheet cake OK
T.S.
06/11/12
Food planning for 30 people
I am having a bbq for 30 people. I am making Italian Sausaage (the hot/mild fat sausage) and Italian Barese Sausage (the thin sausage). How many pounds should I buy?

Also, I am bow tie pasta with a cold sauce for a side dish. How many pounds do you think I need for that?

ellen
06/11/12
5 pounds pasta will be plenty. 12 to 15 pounds sausage- are they heavy eaters? 3-4 pounds French or Italian bread.
Maureen
06/12/12
Having a graduation party for about 60 people in our backyard. Looking to have it catered and looking for a good mix of foods. This is what I am thinking of:

Eggplant Rollatini
Penne ala Vodka
chicken Franchese
Shrimp Scampi or another pasta dish
Salad
What are your thoughts on how much of each and should I go with the shrimp or another pasta dish. The eggplant/penne are for the few vegetarians in the crowd.

ellen
06/13/12
Eggplant Rollatini- most people will take some- about 80 pieces
Penne ala Vodka- full pan is about 8 quarts- 25 serving- you actually need about 2 pans if you have a second pasta dish
chicken Franchese- 60 servings- some people will take 2
Shrimp Scampi or another pasta dish- scampi is an expensive dish for 60 people- you might consider a pasta and seafood casserole or a pasta and veggie casserole such as an alfredo style or primavera style- at least 1 full pan
Salad- make yourself- 2/3 the amounts for 100 on the plan for 100 table

In other words, at least 3 full pans total pasta dishes, you decide how to divide

Bread- 8 pounds

Maureen
06/14/12
Thanks...I do understand about the shrimp scampi it is pretty pricey. I just was looking for something a little different. I will have the eggplant,penne ala vodka, chicken franchese and you are suggesting another pasta? What do you suggest? Thanks again
ellen
06/14/12
What about a primavera style, broccoli, etc, in a light cream-style sauce.
Jessica
06/14/12
Hi, I'm making penne alla vodka, sausage and peppers and salad for 10 - 15 people this weekend. How much should I make of each?
andrea
06/14/12
food for 75
I am hosting my best friends sons first birthday. Approx. 60 adults 15 kids ranging in age. Basically ordering chicken fingers for kids but as for adults: baked ziti; sausage& peppers; chicken marsala. How much meat/ pasta
ellen
06/15/12
Jessica, 2 pounds (2 9x13 pans) penne, 5 pounds sausage, equal weight veggies, assuming 15. About 3 pounds of salad.

Andrea, 7 9x13 pans pasta, 13 pounds sausage plus equal weight veggies, 1 pound raw chicken per 3 or cooked per 4.

Sandie
06/18/12
Hi I am catering a ladies retreat spa day at our synagogue on Sept 22 for 30-35 ladies. I want it to be "girly" food but not too expensive. any suggestions and how much. thanks
ellen
06/18/12
Do you plan breakfast, lunch, snacks? Any theme? And about what budget? More info, please.
mylinda
06/18/12
Food planning for 60 people tomorrow help please
i am having a cocktail hour befor wedding reception for 60 people and am only serving boiled shrimp and hushpuppies for coctail hour..how many pounds of shrimp will i need for 60 people
paula
06/18/12
I'm having a wedding for 50
I need to know how much cold cuts to buy if theres other food I'm serving, such as ziti,chicken and potatos,sausage and peppers, macaroni salad, reg salad, fruit tray.
ellen
06/19/12
Mylinda, 20 pounds shrimp, 1 gallon cocktail sauce

Paula, what is the purpose of the cold cuts? Sandwiches, appetizer? More info, please.

molly
06/19/12
amount of meat needed for polish sausage
hello ellen, i know this is late, tho i am having a coctail hourderve reception for our handfasting ceremony...for 70 people....i am doing amoung other things...polish sausage, and turkey blue cheese meatballs...amount to buy of the meat?..ty......p.s..its this saturday!!...help!!
Patrick
06/19/12
Food planning for 50 people
Cool to see this thread's still going.

I'm planning an event in a week and a half for about 50 people. I'm planning on bread+dip, pasta salad, and veggie plates, along with tea and coffee. How much of each should I get?

Much obliged!

ellen
06/19/12
Molly, blessings. 1 pound ready to eat meatballs per 4-5, 1 pound Polish sausage per 4.

Patrick is this a luncheon and what is on the veggie plate? Is there a serious dessert?

Patrick
06/20/12
Ellen, it's finger-food/snacks for an all-day event. The veggie plate will most likely consist of carrots, broccoli, and celery.
ellen
06/20/12
Patrick, if this goes over a meal time and they are not breaking for a meal elsewhere, you need a lot more food, even if just finger foods. Is it your plan to be vegan/vegetarian? Do you have a budget? is it a couple of breaks? And is it a vigorous thing (for example, I helped plan snacks for a square dance convention- very different from a bridge party). Start a new thread and tell me more.
Ash
06/22/12
Hi Ellen,

first off - WOW to you! - im planning my 6 year old daughters bday at a waterpark and i rented a cabana for 50 but there is no cooking allowed! tring to figure ideas of what i can bring or make. the party is from 11 - 7 but food will be at 2, im thinking potatoe salad? fruit tray? chipe and dip? food wise don't know! i just want something i know wont be too crazy and fulfilling. help..

ellen
06/22/12
6 years old like lots of things, especially that they can mess with themselves- take a look at the kids cookbooks at the local library. Whip cream in cans is GREAT fun and kids love it- can be used to make whip cream sundaes with sprinkles and cherries. All the items you listed are appropriate- kids eat about 1/2 as much as adults, so food-quantity-wise, 2 kids= 1 person.
Joann
06/24/12
Graduation Party for 50
Hi! I am having a grad party in a week for 60 people. We are having hot dogs/hamburgers/potatoe salad/caprese pasta salad watermelon, chips/dip pretzels and nut. Trying to keep it simple. How many hot dogs and hamburgers do you suggest and what other sides.
ellen
06/24/12
70 burgers, 50 hotdogs (Polish sausage is a lot tastier); Did you want the rest of the items also? Sandwich condiments, pickles, etc, are on the sandwich page, for 60 do 2/3 the amount for 100.
Ash
06/25/12
The problem Ellen is there is no cooking allowed.
Ash
06/25/12
disregard my comment, iread the wrong reply. thanks!
Margaret
06/25/12
Hi ellen I'm planning a graduation party at 2:00 this Saturday for 70 ? people. Appr. 30 are teens and I dont know exactly who is coming.I am thinking hero, penne vodka, some sort of chicken, sausage and pepper, eggplant rollatini, grilled veggies, green salad. Cake and fruit. What do you think of the menu and how much of each? Should I add or delete anything? I dont have an extra fridge so room for cold storage is a factor. I dont want to over order but dont want anyone hungry either. Went to a party recently without enough food. Came home hungry.
JMartin
06/25/12
I am planning a bridal shower for 40-50 people
We are having 2 round cakes, 1 fruit tray, party mix, peanuts, pickles, (cheese ball and crackers).
ellen
06/25/12
hero, 4 inches per person, or 2 6 footers
sort of chicken, 1 pound raw boneless per 4
sausage and pepper, 1 pound sausage per 5, equal weight veggies- get rolls for these- 1 pound per 2 pounds sausage

penne vodka, 7 9x13 page- mac and cheese a good alternative for a teen party
eggplant rollatini,6 9x13 pans
grilled veggies, about 15 pounds
green salad, see plan for 100 page
Cake, see dessert planning page
fruit, see fruit tray page.

JMartin
06/25/12
Sorry I something happened to computer before I was done. I needed to ask. This will be after lunch(1-3) .Will 2 round cakes be enough or should I add another cake or cupcakes(how many). will I need more than one cheese ball. How many crackers. Is there anything else you can suggest I have that would go further or change anything. Your suggetions would appreciated. Sorry for the repeat. thanks again,
ellen
06/25/12
JMartin, a round cake serves only 12; fruit tray of 10 pounds,3 pounds party mix, 3 pounds nuts, 2 quarts pickles- have some sweet or bead and butter), 8 pounds cheesey stuff, some can be cream cheese, 3-4 pounds crackers, and some artisan breads are nice with the cheese.
theresa
06/27/12
planning a christing in two weeks for fifty menu
people me nu how much of each chicken broc and zita sausage peppers and onions turkey with stuffing and cranberry sauce raviolis as lazana garden salad pasta salad caprise salad eggplant

shrimp coctail chicken fingers spinach pies franks in blanket bagel bites rice balls

sheetcake eclaires cream puffs italian cookies
brownies carrot cake

how much of each and how far in advance should i start cooking

thank you for advise

ellen
06/29/12
You will have to figure out your own time line, I don't know how fast you work or how many ovens/ burners/ fridges you have to work with.

Also, this is a much more extensive menu that is usually planned for 50. That means that you have to make extra to make sure everyone gets their first choice; for example, if you just have chicken and beef, you can estimate that out of 8 people 5 will take beef and 3 chicken, 8 servings; but if you have chicken beef, turkey and salmon for the same group you have to plan for 5 beef, 3 turkey, 2 salmon, and 2 chicken, 12 servings, which means leftovers. So with this menu, you will have left overs.

shrimp cocktail - expensive choice 1 pound shrimp per 5, 1 cup cocktail sauce per 4-5
chicken fingers- small, 2 per person
spinach pies- 2 per person
franks in blanket- small 2 per person
bagel bites- about 1 ounce per person
rice balls- 2 per person

chicken broc and zita
raviolis as lasagna
I would skip one of these, have 4 9x13 of the other, especially with the pasta salad
sausage peppers and onions- 1 pound sausage per 5
turkey with stuffing and cranberry sauce- turkey breasts would be the easiest- 1 pound per 5; 1/3 cup stuffing per person; 3 tablespoons cranberry per person, 1/4 cup gravy per person
eggplant

garden salad- 1/2 the plan for 100 amount
pasta salad- 3 pounds dry pasta
caprese salad- 1 pound tomatoes per 5, 1 pound fresh mozzarella per 10

sheet cake- full sheet or 2 layer half sheet is 50 servings
eclairs cream puffs - one or the other, 1 per person
Italian cookies- 2 per person
brownies- 1 per person
carrot cake- skip it

You need dinner level coffee, see the beverage planning page, and some kind of rolls and butter.

ellen
06/29/12
By the way, if this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation to support the site.
Chanel
07/01/12
I am planning a week long family reunion for about 50 people.

I need suggestions on how to plan a budget for each person to pitch in for home cooked meals at least 14+ times during their stay.

Also, what are some good home cooked meal(breakfast, lunch and dinner) ideas for such a large crowd?

Thank you!

Lisa
07/02/12
Supplying fried chicken, hot dogs and buns for 60 people for July 4th. There will be lots of sides and desserts provided. How much should I bring? Thanks!
ellen
07/09/12
Chanel, email me at the contact link at the bottom of the page, describing cooking and serving arrangements, approximate budget range, age range of the eaters.

Lisa, sorry I missed you, would have said, 1.2-1.5 pieces chicken and 1 hot dog per person

michelle
07/10/12
we are having a stag and doe in a few weeks and expect around 100 people. We are doing the food ourselves.

Any menu suggestions and amoungs

Pat
07/11/12
Food planning for 30 people tomorrow help please
I am planning a birthday party with 30 guests. I am making sausage and peppers, chicken parm, penne pomadoro, bread and a large salad. This is after 1.5 hours of snack food. Could you please tell me how much penne I need to cook for the group. Many thanks.
ellen
07/11/12
Michelle, time, budget, cooking and fridge facilities, method of serving and amount of help? Write back, Start a new thread.
ellen
07/11/12
Pat,4 pounds dry (4 9x13 pans) will allow leftovers.
Heather
07/11/12
Wedding for 60
Hello Ellen,

I am preparing all the food for my daughters wedding. Menu as follows :
Lasagna (preparing 4 large trays 24 slices per tray), Roast Beef sliced & placed in gravy (32 lbs eye of round), Honey Glazed Carrots (15 pounds), Cabbage Rolls (approx 120),Cheese Tortelini (30 lbs) (red & white sauce, which will be homemade) and Roasted Potatoes.
My question to you is, how many pounds of potatoes do I need approx to feed this amount of people? Pls note the potoatoes are roasted & will be cut in quarters. By the way am I cooking too much food? lol

ellen
07/11/12
Since you have so many other foods, about 15 pounds of potatoes.
Heather
07/12/12
Thank you very much Ellen for your quick response. Am I on que for the other amounts of food?
Lori
07/12/12
Graduation Party Sat 7/14..how much food help!
50 people + about 20 of my kids friends dropping in throughout the day (they are 18). Menu includes:
Sausage and Peppers = have 6 lb hot 6lb sweet enough? How many peppers and onions, rolls?
Chicken Tenders - 2 lg trays 80 pc eac.
French Fries - 2 lg. trays
Green Salad
Pasta Salad- how much
Penne w/Vodka sauce have macaroni (8lbs if needed) not sure how much sauce
Hot dog cart with fixings
Chicken Marsala - 1 large tray
Eggplant Rollatine - 2 large trays
Large Fruit Salad
THANK YOU!
Sharon
07/13/12
Food planning for 25 women for a baby shower brune
Hi Ellen
I am hosting a brunch in a week. I have the following as the menu (vegetarian, mainly)
3 dozen mini rolls with a cheese platter, cream cheese, egg salad
One full smoked salmon - vegetable platter with hummus dip
3 salads:1) green salad with snow peas, asparagus, pine nuts
2)chick peas, oranges, red peppers, scallions
3)Navy Beans With artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, peppers, feta and dill
For dessert I will have a fruit platter and a variety of small squares and bite sized items (people are bringing desserts)
I am making salad #1 and ordering 2 more or can order 3 more. What quantity would you suggest (by the pound) for each salad?
I am also wondering whether I need tea and coffee or just cold drinks
MANY THANKS!
ellen
07/14/12
People really like tea and coffee with desserts.

You can easily make all 3 of these salads.
1) green salad with snow peas, asparagus, pine nuts- about 3 heads of lettuce, rest to taste
2)chick peas, oranges, red peppers, scallions
3)Navy Beans With artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, peppers, feta and dill
For 2 and 3, 1 pound will serve 4

I would double just the rolls, as people will take for the salmon as well.

Betsy
07/17/12
Banquet for 450
I am doing a large banquet for 450 and am making chicken parmesan and beef brisket along with many other items. How can I put the cheese on the chicken without it all sticking together or is it impossible. I'm not "chef" just a cook.
ellen
07/17/12
Betsy, suggest you post this to the pro caterer boards at:

cheftalk.com

chef2chef.com

Claire
07/19/12
Food planning for 40 people tomorrow help please
Hi,

Your advice looks great. I'm helping plan a wedding (christ in 2 days!!) and the meal will be an assortment of rather heavy salads (ham and pasta, beet and cheese, chicken something, egg and mushroom) there will be a cheese starter with fruit and a puff pastry thing with veg in it. Any ideas on qtys for 40?

Claire
07/19/12
Oh Also there will be a green salad, roast veg, and bread.
ellen
07/19/12
This menu is a bit of a challenge for 40 people- more people is easier, because things tend to even out- fewer items are also easier- but here goes.

ham and pasta, 2 1/2 pounds dry pasta
beet and cheese, 1/4 cup per person
chicken something, 1 cup per person
egg and mushroom) 1/4 cup per person
cheese starter- 2 ounces per person, 1/2 cheddar, 1/4 each 2 others, for example
2 pounds of crackers
fruit see fruit tray page
puff pastry thing with veg in it. 1 patty shell or 2 squares per person
green salad, about 1/2 the amount for 100, see the plan for 100 page
roast veg- about 12 pounds
bread- 1 pound per 5, plus 2 pounds of butter.

judy chastain
07/19/12
lemonade for eighty
I am planning to have lemonade at an outdoor wedding in two weeks. The lemonade will be served to guests upon arrival just before the wedding. How much lemonade will be needed. We have other drinks for the BBQ after the wedding
Claire
07/19/12
Thank you so much!
ellen
07/20/12
Judy, 5 gallons is just 1 cup per person.
Danielle
07/23/12
55 People for Baptism. Menu is Sausage, Peppers, Onions. Chicken, Broccoli Ziti and Meatballs.

There will be a salad, also, not made by me!

Thanks!

ellen
07/23/12
1 piece of chicken per person
12 pounds sausage and equal weight veggies
12 pounds broccoli
5-6 pounds dry pasta
Danielle
07/23/12
Sorry Ellen, I didn't explain properly!!

Chicken Broccoli Ziti is all one dish! I was thinking 5lbs Chicken, 5lbs pasta and 2lbs broccoli.

For Meatballs, I was thinking 6lbs of meat.

So do I do 12lbs of peppers AND onions in addition to sausage?

Thanks much!

ellen
07/23/12
Since this is the one dish with starch, I would definitely do 6 pounds of ziti, maybe even one more, it does freeze.

I would do 10 pounds of meatballs.

Then cut the sausage back to 10 pounds each sausage and veggies.

Karen
07/24/12
Food planning for 70 people mid August
Hi,
I'm planning a grauation party for 70ish outside under a tent. Was planning cheese and cracker platters, hot and cold appitizers to start. Making 100 meatballs (good sized), tray and a half of chx parm, full tray of garden salad. How many other full trays would I need? Was thinking a tray of chicken, ziti and broccoli (full trays feed 25) and a tray of sauguge peppers and onion as well as a tray of baked ziti (for the vegitarians). Party starts at 3 and we have cake, cookies and coffee for later. Please advise...I want to be sure I have enough and I have big eaters!!! Thank you!!!
ellen
07/25/12
The thing is, with all these choices people will tend to eat more, and some of each.

100 meatballs (good sized),
tray and a half of chx parm, have small pieces, 3 ounce size, and plan on one per person
full tray of garden salad- need 50 servings, minimum
tray of chicken, ziti and broccoli (full trays feed 25) OK
tray of sausage peppers and onion- OK tray of baked ziti (for the vegetarians)- everyone who has a meatball will want some- do 2 trays.

I would add good bread or crusty rolls- about 8 pounds/loaves

Rebeccs
07/29/12
Food planning for 60 people next weekend. HELP!
HELLO>
We are having a reception for our daughters baptism,we will be having things such as egg, ham, tuna and roastbeef sandwiches, How many should I make as finger sandwiches?
Wraps for kids, PB&J, Tuna, egg, and cream cheese and cucumber, how many?
tHANKS!
ellen
07/30/12
Rebecca, see the tea sandwich page for discussion on amounts of finger sandwiches. Because they are so thin, you basically want two whole sandwiches for person.

You would make 4 roast beef, 2 ham and one each egg and tuna out of every 8.

Kids don't eat cream cheese with cucumber, make these for the grown ups, 1/2 to 1/2 sandwich per person.

I would do PBJ and roast beef for the kids. 1 whole for kids under 10. Older count as adults.

Lisa
07/30/12
We are hosting a 50th birthday party, 40 people, all adults, 4pm til, having Cream of Crab Soup, Meatballs and Veggie Tray prior to dinner. Dinner will be grilled Chicken, burgers and brats, potato salad, cole slaw, green beans & chips with cake for dessert. How much will I need with regard to salads and meats? I was thinking 4qts of each salad and 101oz can green beans. Do I need 1 of each meat per person to be safe?
Robin Rouch
07/30/12
Hi Ellen, I am fixing a Summer Salad as part of a meal for 50 people. Ingredients are fresh tomatoes, chunked cucumber, thinly sliced purple onion, generous amounts of feta cheese & Italian dressing. Can you help me with amounts for that size group???
ellen
07/31/12
See the third salad on this page:

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/salads1100.html

vanessa
08/01/12
cook out for 50
I am having a "burger bar" cook out for 50 . I am planning to serve hamburgers, buffalo chicken, turkey and portabello mushrooms. The sides will include pasta salad, brocolli salad, sweet potato fries, baked beans & rice... How much of all those items do I need.... Thanks
ellen
08/01/12
Assuming adults.
Condiments are on the sandwich planning page. Side dishes are on the plan for 100 page. Sweet potato fries are quite a challenge for this many people- I don't do them when also grilling.
hamburgers, 60
buffalo chicken, 3 pieces per person
turkey- about 10 patties
portabello mushrooms- about 10 patties/sandwiches worth
lyly
08/01/12
Food planning for 60 people on sat help please
Hi Im doin my nieces baptism I have a lil over 50 people I would say.. I'm makin lots of rice, macaroni salad, a shrimps cocktail.. I'm also makin birria wish is beef but everyone keeps tellin me I need 30 lbs of it n I think that's a lil bit to much.. what do you think?
:-)
ellen
08/02/12
Because this stew of chiles and beef/lamb/goat has no veggies, you do need at least 1 pound raw boneless meat for each 3 people, so at least 20 pounds. I would do 25.
Adam
08/10/12
Food planning for 51 employees (options)
Good morning,

I am planning food for an employee outing for 51 prior to a boat ride one week from today.

Options:
1) Barbecue - will likely need vegetarian options as well: Brats, burgers, cole slaw, condiments, buns, chips, napkins, plates, etc.-anything else and what quantities?
2) Purchase Subway sandwiches or Jimmy Johns (would have to ask for funds from staff :(
3) Other recommendation for lunch in park setting

Thanks!
Adam

ellen
08/10/12
BBQ is more expensive than Jimmy John's which sandwiches hold up better than Subways, and they will do box lunches. I am a big supporter of their #12!

You can supplement with 2 gallons of potato salad and a gallon and a half of slaw. See also the beverage planning page.

Dianaslittlekitchen
08/17/12
Catering lunch for 40!
Help!! I have a bad habit of over buying and losing profit!! Please let me know how much I should plan for 40 people for lunch.

Here's the menu...

Sausage & peppers on roll
Caprese Panini
Chicken Caprese Panini
Fusili Pesto

1-green salad
1-slaw
1-orzo pasta salad

THANK YOU!!!!

ellen
08/17/12
I recommend that pros/ paid use the pro catering boards on these sites:

chef2chef.com
cheftalk.com

Alley
08/20/12
I am throwing a surprise party for my boyfriend.. There are approx. 50-55 people coming for food (not including little ones). I was thinking of getting 40 burgers & approx 20 pieces of chicken. We have fruit, salad, mac salad, and beans being made also. Plus a Nacho bar. Is that enough meat? Should I get more? Also do you have any tips on cooking it? (Pre boil- just grill- marinade?)

This is awesome. THANKS SO MUCH!

ellen
08/20/12
I get 1 burger plus 1 piece of chicken per adult for self serve parties, the least expensive chicken is cut up leg quarters. Roast the chicken in the oven.

You need at least 2 grills to do this many burgers at one time. Otherwise, do at least some ahead and reheat in the oven.

Jessi
08/20/12
I am having a bbq the day before my wedding for 50 people and serving dinner of burgers and brats along with apps consisting of meat and cheese tray, hummus filled cucumber cups, and some other apps I have not come up with yet. Can you help me with numbers on these thus far.
ellen
08/21/12
1 burger per person plus 10-12 pounds brats plus a little extra 10% if they are heavy eaters.
Brian
08/24/12
I am having to provide food for a memorial service on Monday. I have very little money and I'm wondering what you think would be a good inexpensive (and easy) menu. I am guessing 50-100 people, but I'm not sure. I was thinking lunch meats and cheeses and rolls for sandwiches. Can you tell me some budget friendly options? Thank you so much!
ellen
08/24/12
First, contact some of the family friends and ask them to bring stuff- cookies, desserts, fruit tray, etc. A good dessert table is part of the success.

Make iced tea- 6 gallons- and have dinner level coffee.

Have a fruit tray for about 1/2 the expected guests- find the on-sale fruits this week. See the fruit tray page.

Deli trays and sliced cheeses are not cheap, you need at least 2 ounces of meat and an ounce of cheese per person. Home made egg salad and chicken salad would be an alternative-

150 eggs plus 3 quarts mayo makes 100 sandwiches- relish, parsley, etc

18 pounds chicken meat (which is 36 pounds leg quarters) and 12 pounds of celery plus 3 quarts makes 100 sandwiches

Deb
08/25/12
how much for 250 people
I'm doing a coldcut and cheese and pickle and buns for midnight lunch for 250 people please help me
ellen
08/25/12
Go to the sandwich page, use reception level, unless it is teens, in which case regular meal.
Felicia
08/25/12
Food planning for 55 people
Having a baby shower Sept 15th serving 55 guest. We are serving finger sandwiches ham and turkey with cheese..chips and dip...cake and punch. How many sandwiches should I make?
ellen
08/26/12
Using thin bread such as the Pepperidge Farm thin- sliced, with 1 to 1 1/2 ounces filling, make one of each for each person.
Casey
08/29/12
Wedding Planning
We are trying to plan our wedding and our menu is as followed for 125 people.

Boston Butt 125lbs
Cole Slaw 3 1/2 gallons
Potato Salad 63 lbs
Buns 200
Baked Beans 5 gallons
mayo 5 gallons?
Salad pickles (for potato salad) 2 quart jars
onions 4(for potato salad)
Mustard 1 quart (for potato salad)
Heads of cabbages 20
Tea 10 gallons
Lemonade 5 gallons
lemons 15
sugar 25 lbs
teabags 100

I was wondering how many gallons of mayo I would need if I am making 63 pounds of potato salad and 3 1/2 gallons of cole slaw.

Thanks in advance for your time on this matter!

ellen
08/29/12
Even bone in, 80 pounds Boston butt will leave extra.

Cole Slaw 3 1/2 gallons- OK
Potato Salad 63 lbs- OK, see one of the many recipes for potato salad and slaws for 100 on this site, do 1 1/4 for these:
onions 4(for potato salad)
Mustard 1 quart (for potato salad)
Heads of cabbages 20

Buns 200- OK, some left, get good ones!
Baked Beans 5 gallons- OK, 4 enough unless they are really big bean eaters
mayo 5 gallons? For the sandwiches, see the sandwich page table on fixings, for the salads, use the posted recipes
Salad pickles (for potato salad) 2 quart jars probably 1 gallon if you also wanty some for the sandwich tray

Tea 10 gallons
Lemonade 5 gallons-m frozen concentrate is a VERY good choice

lemons 15
sugar 25 lbs
teabags 100- use loose tea, see the tea party pages for how to brew concentrate, you need about 1 pound loose tea. Have at least 1/3 unsweetened and get some pink or yello sugar substitute.

If you are having cake, also offer dessert level coffee, see the beverage planning page.

If this saves you time, trouble or money, consider a donation to support this site.

Cindy
08/31/12
outside babyshower for 100 people
Hi Ellen,
I'm hosting my daughters baby shower 9/29 in our backyard..im renting a moonbounce for approximately 15 children and it's co-ed..i would like to use throw away chafing pans and was thinking of meat platters, barbeque ham sliders or sweet and sour meatballs,baked rigatoni,baked beans,potato salad and green salad. Any suggestions..advice or amounts needed..thank you in advance for your time
ellen
08/31/12
Hi, Cindy,

If these are small children, they only count as 1/2 an eater, so I would figure as if 90 eaters-

So, you can use the plan for 100 tables, the dessert planning table and the beverage planning table, just reduce amounts by 10%, for baked rigatoni,baked beans,potato salad and green salad.

I would do 2/3 the amounts for 100 from the sandwich tables for the meat and cheese platters, not forgetting the bread and condiments; then about 18 pounds of meatballs.

molly
09/03/12
goulash for 200 people
hi there ellen!..youve help me in the past so here goes my newest adventure....our bike club is hosting a run..i need to make goulash for 200 people...also salad..how much pasta....sauce, ground beef, etc will i need...i will b able to wing it on the added extras such as peppers, oniong n the like...ty in advance...
ellen
09/03/12
30-35 pounds raw meat for the meat for each 100, with 1-2 cups paprika, in about 5 quarts of water and then a quart of flour dissolved in another quart of cold water to thicken once cooked.

You need at least 12 pounds dry noodles per 100; remember that the water to cook these weighs 100 pounds...

Salad, see the plan for 100 page ofr the salads that hold page.

stacey
09/04/12
rehearsal dinner BBQ - 60 people
Hi! Would love a double check on main "entree" aspect of menu planning. Waterfront BBQ in Southern Maryland, so want to emphasize the seafood items a bit. Approx 60 people total.

steamed clams - 150 clams
shrimp cocktail w/cocktail sauce - 200 pieces
Sausage (combination of Italian & Polish - our heritages) - 15 lbs total
cold salmon fillet - 15 lbs

FYI - will also serve cheese & crackers, rolls/crusty bread, Green Salad, Potato Salad and Cole Slaw. Dessert is Italian almond cookies and s'mores. Beer, wine and hard liquor too.
Thanks!

ellen
09/05/12
Lucky guests!

steamed clams - 150 clams- good to do 3 per person...
shrimp cocktail w/cocktail sauce - 200 pieces-OK, 1/4 cup cocktail sauce per person
Sausage (combination of Italian & Polish - our heritages) - 15 lbs total- OK
cold salmon fillet - 15 lbs- OK

If this saves you time, trouble or money, consider a donation to support the site.

Anna
09/06/12
need to do a buffet for 200 people of assorted petit fours... help!
ellen
09/06/12
See the dessert planning page.
Christine
09/07/12
Catering bridal shower for 55 people!
I'm hosting a shower for my sister but it's my first time making food for a crowd of this size. I appreciate your help with determing how much I will need for the following menu.

Beef Tenderloin
Chicken Salad Sandwiches
Spinach Strawbery Salad
Orzo Salad
Charcuterie Plate (meat, cheese, hummus, grilled veggies)

THANK YOU!!!!

Eyvonne
09/07/12
Couple baby shower / back yard picnic
This site has been very helpful. Thank you!
I am hosting a couple baby shower in one week for 35 adults and 9 children under 7. I have planned the following:

Bratwurst & buns - 1 per adult
Fried chicken - 1 per adult
Potato salad - 2 gallons
Pasta salad - 2 lb.
Baked beans - 1 1/2 gallons
Cole slaw - 1 1/2 gallons
Large vegie tray
Large fruit tray
Cheese & cracker tray
Chips & dip for nibblers
Cupcakes - 1 each(all the same kind)

How does this sound? Too much? Would appreciate any advice you can give me.
Thank you so much!

ellen
09/07/12
Eyvonne, Add the 7 pieces for the kids- add 10% for the greedy cupcake eaters- you are in fine shape and will have a bit left over.
ellen
09/07/12
Christine, For this shower, is this coed, what time of day, and how long? It matters...
Christine
09/08/12
Hi Ellen - This shower is only for women and taking place at 1 pm for about 2 - 3 hours. Thanks!
ellen
09/08/12
Christine,

Beef Tenderloin- pound raw per 3
Chicken Salad Sandwiches- use mini croissants ofr Pepperidge Farm type extra thin bread, 1 per person, regular would be 1/2
Spinach Strawberry Salad- about 3 pounds of spinach, rest to taste
Orzo Salad- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds pasta
Charcuterie Plate (meat, cheese, hummus, grilled veggies)- Could skip the meat with the tenderloin. 2 1/2 pounds cheese, 1 cup hummus per 5, 6 pounds veggies.

Marlana Longora
09/09/12
Food planning for 40 people
I am going to serve lasagna to 35 Football players and Cheerleaders, plus 5 coaches durning a game day lunch. The largest batch i make is 6lbs. How many would I have to make to accommodate everyone. I am also serving a salad and corn cobs and cookies. Please help. Thanks!
ellen
09/09/12
I would count this as 50. As indicated on the spaghetti page, that requires 3 pounds of noodles and corresponding amounts of everything else (see the table, middle of the page.

Maker at least 1 additional 9x13 pan of vegetarian, there will be some none-meat eaters in the crowd.

Add at least 7 pounds of Italian bread; 8 would not be too much.

Make lots of cookies!

Jessica
09/13/12
Food planning for 60 people help please
Hi I'm making hotdogs, hamburgers, chili and sausage and peppers for around 60 guests, along with macaroni salad. How much of each should be enough? Do you think I need any other sides? I'd do a tossed salad but that never goes.
ellen
09/13/12
Do a 3 bean salad or texas caviar, or baked beans. 2 gallons.

Mac salad with 4 pounds dry pasta.

This is too many items. Skip the hot dogs completely; let them eat sausage.

1 hamburger per person PLUS 1 pound sausage per 5 PLUS 1/2 cup chili per person.

Cher
09/19/12
Planning a birthday party for 50 people, do I have enough food?
3 lbs red beans and rice
35 Cup rice pot of Jambalaya
100 finger sandwiches
50 muffulettas
Crab Cheese cake with crackers
Artichoke balls
32 Deviled Eggs
Meatballs and Sausages
Vegetable Tray
Fruit Tray
Red Velvet Cake
Cake Balls
Chocolate Dipped Pretzels
ellen
09/19/12
If these are full size, 10" muffasletta, you have too much food; with the other items, 1/4 full size muff per person is plenty.

If that is dry weight on the red beans and the rice, OK. Cooked, that is only a couple of quarts and you will run out very early.

64 halves deviled eggs is about right.

You might skip the meatballs and add a salad or green veg.

Jennifer
09/19/12
I have to make chicken and veggie stir fry for 50 high school students for an afternoon event. people will be bringing a few other dishes such as rice, meatballs, and sauteed shrimp. How much stirfry do I need to make?
ellen
09/20/12
Approximately 20 pounds ready to cook veggies and 18 pounds meat will make 50 ample servings.
Sharon Hulet
09/22/12
Food planning for 500 people help please
I am coordinating a reception for 500 people and we are making meat trays with turkey, ham and roast beef along with american yellow and white cheese. I have no idea how much cheese or meat of each kind to buy but I presume people would eat more turkey of the three meats.
ellen
09/22/12
Covered in detail on the sandwich page. You are looking at around 250 pounds of meat and cheese. They will eat 1/2 roast beef, 1/4 each of the others.
Tami
09/24/12
BBQ for 500+ guests
My son's school is hosting a bbq for the students and their families. Serving hamburgers, hotdogs, halal option and veggie burgers. Just trying to figure out how much ketchup, mustard and relish we will need! Apparently, we always run out.
CHRISTINA
09/25/12
I am taking on a last minute youth league football tailgate party. I wanted to go potluck and use doodle.com to put a list of food and drink items. Im not sure how much of each to accomadate 50ish people. ie..cases of water, fruit tray, veggie tray, appetizer, dessert...

and so If I need 2 cases of water, do I put them on 2 seperate lines so 2 different peple can sign on?

thanks in advance.
Christina

SHAINA
09/25/12
I am having a party with about 50 people. I know I want to make finger sandwichs but I dont know how many sandwichs I should make so there is enough for everyone. I want to serve other things with the sandwichs but not sure what I should serve. I want to make chicken salad, ham and turkey sandwichs.
ellen
09/26/12
Tami, Tami, use the condiment table on the sandwich page and you will have success.
ellen
09/26/12
Christina, you need to look at the costs of items so they are about equal, for example, that is why I ask for entree for 6 but veg/salad for 10-12.

So 2 cases of water could be 2 people or one, depending on the relative costs of the rest of the items.

I can't do a specific outline for you without the full menu. For example, are you supplying the meat, or are they- you don't mention entrees- who is doing the supplies/ plates/ etc- and is it in families or per person.

ellen
09/26/12
Shaina, please look at the tea sandwich articles. You need the equivalent of 1 whole sandwich on thin bread per person in the middle of the afternoon, but 2 per person if it is near a mealtime.
David Therrien
10/01/12
I am cooking for a b'day party for 50 people. My menu how much food do I need?
Sliced Turkey Breast
Baked Ziti
Chicken Broccoli Ziti
Swill Steak
Mashed Potaotes
Green Beans
Monique
10/06/12
How much cold cuts and cheese is needed for 125 people
ellen
10/06/12
Monique, for sandwiches, go to the sandwich page and use 1 1/4 times the amount for 100.
ellen
10/06/12
David, this is a very unusual menu selection. There are too many entrees for 50 people, and the side dishes are not complementary.

With too many entrees, you have to make quite a bit extra of each to make sure everyone gets their first choice on the first round.

Would this menu work for you?

Swiss steak,
Turkey breast, gravy and cranberry
Pasta Alfredo (side dish for all, main dish for any vegetarians)
OR mashed potato bar with toppings (but not both pasta and potatoes)
Green beans

Write back, and start a new thread.

David Therrien
10/07/12
My original plan did not include potatoes, but the hostess liked the menu selections, but wanted mashed potatoes also.
karen g
10/08/12
I am co-hostessing a baby shower Saturday for 40-50 people.
Making my own meat tray, steamed veggies, tossed salad. I'm planning on 5 lb ham/5 lb turkey/4 lb roast beef. 4 lb each of swiss/american. Rolls/bread-undecided?
Others are making fruit salad, catered fried chicken, potato salad.
Coffe/tea/soda.
I also have ordered a 3 tier cake to serve 50, PLUS 25 cupcakes (for kicks and giggles!).
My concerns are amounts for meat/cheese, tossed salad, and steamed veggies (broc/caul/carrots)
ellen
10/08/12
Cheese good, cut ham and turkey to 3 each, increase beef to 6, 2 nice smallish rolls or 1 1/2 larger rolls per person or 1 pound bread per 6. Condiments, see the sandwich page. 10 pounds steamed veggies, you will have some left. 2 gallons tossed salad, you will probably have some left- Italian and ranch dressings, some lite.
Shannon
10/08/12
Hi Ellen
I am host 2 parties during one day. Its a graduation party for a guy . The first party is from 1-4 pm. I am planning on 40 people attending. Here's what I have down so far:
1st party
2 lbs spinach dip
4 lbs chicken buffalo dip (2 bunches celery 1 box of crackers)
Large veggie tray w dip
Large fruit tray
at least 370 little bites various types
3 lbs cheese w/ 2 boxes of crackers
4lbs of shrimp not sure how much cocktail sauce?
10 bottles of soda
4 bags of chips w 2 dips
2 cases of water
2 boxes kiddie fruit juice
1/2 sheet cake

2nd part party 6:30 pm 35 guests

I am doing a chili bar w all the toppings.

6 lbs ground beef for the chili
4 cans of beans
4 cans of diced tomatoes
2 bags of fritos
2 pans of cornbread
2 bunches scallions
3 bags of shredded cheese
2 onions diced
2 16 ozs sour cream tubs

2 cases of water the rest is byob.
2 cases of soda

ellen
10/09/12
Hi, the menus look pretty good, amounts are a little light for the afternoon, very light for dinner.

For the afternoon party:

1st party
2 lbs spinach dip- 1/4 cup, which is 2 ounces, per person,
4 lbs chicken buffalo dip (2 bunches celery 1 box of crackers)1/4 cup, which is 2 ounces, per person, celery OK, 2-3 pounds crackers
Large veggie tray w dip
Large fruit tray-8 pounds
at least 370 little bites various types- OK
3 lbs cheese w/ 2 boxes of crackers- go 5
4lbs of shrimp not sure how much cocktail sauce?-SKIP; you need at least 8 pounds (10 would be better) to make sure everyone gets some, and it is not desirable to run out- people really miss this- you would have done 1 cup cocktail sauce per 5 with the larger amount of shrimp
10 bottles of soda-OK mix, see the beverage planning page
4 bags of chips w 2 dips- 1 pound chips per 10, 1/4 cup each dip per person
2 cases of water-OK
2 boxes kiddie fruit juice-OK
1/2 sheet cake- only serves 24- get 2 layers

For dinner, see the first recipe on the chili page; you would want 1/2 the amount for your party:

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/chili.html
That's 10 pounds of meat, 3 quarts of tomatoes, 1 quart of tomato paste and 3 pounds dried beans which is about 18-20 cups cooked.

2 bags of fritos- 4 pounds
2 pans of cornbread- at least 3 9x13; 4 would be better
2 bunches scallions-OK
3 bags of shredded cheese- 2 pounds at least
2 onions diced- OK
2 16 ozs sour cream tubs- OK- 3 would not be too much

StefsWright
10/09/12
Fruit and Vegetable Platter for 60 people
I am doing fruit and vegetable trays for 60 people for a bridal shower. How many of each should I do? How much on each? Any suggestions will help. Thanks
karen g
10/09/12
Ellen, thanks! One silly question...Where is the 'Sandwich Page?'
David Therrien
10/09/12
How much food do I need for a b'day party 50 guests. The hostess wants:
Sliced Turkey Breast w/ gravy
Baked Ziti
Chicken Brocoli Ziti
Swiss steak
Mashed potatoes
Green beans
ellen
10/09/12
Stef, look on the fruit tray page and the veggie tray page; you want 2/3 of amounts for 100.

Karen, use the button at the top of the main forum page.

ellen
10/09/12
OK, Dave, I see that you are not in a position to negotiate to improve the menu.

Explain to the hostess that in order to make sure everyone gets their first choice, she will have to have quite a bit of leftovers.

Try to get her to change the chicken broccoli ziti to plain broccoli, or another vegetable or vegetable medley. IT is REALLY too much with the baked ziti and the turkey.

Swiss steak- 1 pound raw beef per 3
Sliced Turkey Breast w/ gravy- need 1 pound cooked per 5. That's 1 pound raw boneless per 4. 1/4 to 1/3 cup gravy per person (1/4 OK here). I pound cranberry per 6-8, have both jelly and whole berry, or see the relish recipe on this site.

Baked Ziti-
Chicken Broccoli Ziti
You need a total of 6 pounds dry pasta, at least 3 non-chicken

If you make a plain veg, 14 pounds ready to cook. Whole broccoli, which would be a better choice and look nicer on the plate, 25 pounds whole raw

Mashed potatoes- 15 pounds potatoes
Green beans- 12 pounds

If this is a paid gig, please make a donation to support the site.

Kim
10/16/12
Food planning for 40 people on Saturday
Hi Ellen,

I am planning a birthday party this Saturday with 40 guests. Approximately 7 of those guests are vegans/vegetarians. It is a late lunch/early dinner party. For the meat eaters, I was planning to serve pulled pork, steak tips, sweet pork sausage. For the vegetarians/vegans, there is falafel, hummus, stuffed grape leaves, zaatar bread, and mousaka (baked eggplant w/onions). I was also going to have sides of mac and cheese, collard greens, and maybe a green salad. How much meat should I get and is there anything else I need to flesh this out?

Thanks so much!

ellen
10/17/12
This is too many meats for this small a group to make a very accurate estimate; you will have some left over, but which, depends on the crowd.

1/3 of 100 people
pulled pork, 6 pounds raw
steak tips, 10 pounds raw
sweet pork sausage, 5 pounds raw

Everyone will eat some of these:
falafel, 3 per person for everyone
hummus, 3 quarts
stuffed grape leaves, 2 large cans, about 120
zaatar bread, about 4 pounds

Consider ratatouille, which is eggplant with no cheese, instead of moussaka, if you have vegans. make 3 to 4 9x13 pans

Add a big plate of feta cheese and olives.

Jeannie
10/18/12
Food planning for 50 people at rehersal dinner
I am planning a rehersal dinner for 12/28/12 for 50 people and I am planning on serving BBQ pulled pork or ham, hash brown casserole, green beans, green salad, rolls (buns). How much food do I need to cook?

Thank you

ellen
10/18/12
Use 1/2 the amounts for 100 on the plan for 100 page. If you want to post your estimates, I will check them.
David Therrien
10/22/12
Food
Just a thank you note...
The 80th b'day party was a huge success. I prepared the menu as per the hosts request. 52 guests attended, mostly verrry seniors, and could they eat. I made full sheet pans of everything. The turkey, mashed potatoes, green beans, and chicken broccoli ziti were hits. I had half a pan of baked ziti and a bowl of swiss steak left. Usually seniors do not eat much, but not this group. Thanks for the help Ellen, and no I didn't make money on this gig.
ellen
10/22/12
You're welcome.
Dom
10/26/12
50 people christening get together
Having curry chicken as an entree. How much pound of chicken for approx 50 people?
Also having a little jerk pork and oxtail as other options but it's mostly the chicken as the main entree.
ellen
10/26/12
Dom, if you have the other two most people will take the curry plus some of the other as a "taste".

1 pound boneless chicken makes plenty for 4 if there are some things added (onions and other veg).

Lisa
11/05/12
need to make cold cut platters, buns, cheese platter, for 50 -70 people

suggestion on how much to purchase?

ellen
11/05/12
Go to the sandwich page, use 3/4 the amount for 100 to have plenty for 75. 1/2 for 50.
tiffany
11/08/12
poss 50 people or more baby shower
I thought i would help a friend out and give a baby shower. Problem i dont have a lot of money, so i am trying to do the best i can with it all. any i deas for food i was thinking may be a taco bar would be the best but what else to have with it. Any suggestions!! please help!
ellen
11/09/12
Look at the spaghetti dinner for 50-60 at the bottom of the spaghetti page. Or do 2/3 the amount for 100 on the taco bar, including the rice and beans.
Willow
11/09/12
I am making dinner for 50 people
. I'm having difficulty knowing how much to.buy
Cheese display
Baked ziti
Roasted chicken
Roasted potatoes
Italian style meatballs
Salad
Rolls and butter
ellen
11/09/12
This is what I would do:

Cheese display- 8 pounds
Baked ziti- 4 pounds dry pasta
Roasted chicken- Use 1/2 the amount on plan for 100, depends on pieces
Roasted potatoes-12 pounds
Italian style meatballs- 1 pound per 5
Salad- 1/2 amount on plan for 100
Rolls and butter- 2 small rolls and 1-2 pounds butter

Dee
11/12/12
Food planning for 60 people Saturday
I am planning a 50th Anniversary party for my parents. Serving little ham sandwiches, chicken tenders, potato salad, chips and veggie tray. Can you give me idea of count I would need?
ellen
11/13/12
Assuming it is over a meal time:

little ham sandwiches, dollar size, 2 per person
chicken tenders, 2 per person unless they are smal
potato salad, 2 gallons
chips5 pounds
Add dip,1 gallon
veggie tray; consider doing a classic relish tray, see the veggie tray page and maybe a fruit tray for 25.

Martha
12/10/12
Food planning for 50 people next week help please
Feeding 50 Mexican Food for a Christmas Luncheon:
Menu: catering Beef Enchiladas and King Ranch Chicken

How much should be ordered? I think 30 servings of enchilada and 30 servings of King Ranch Chicken

or should I order more?

Sides are being brought by others.

ellen
12/10/12
For a crowd of 50, I would order 100 enchiladas, and about 3 "1/2 pans" of casserole. When you have both, many will take both.
maria
12/17/12
Cooking for a party of about 25
Cooking for a party of approximately 25 people.
Sausage, peppers and potatoes
Sausage Bread
Pepperoni Bread
Cioppino
Arancini - 1 just cheese and 1 with proscuitto
Tiramisu Cupcakes
Vanilla Pizzelles filled with Orange Chocolate Mousse

2 people are vegetiarian.

Somebody else is bringing a pasta rustica and doing a pork loin on the grill. He will also be bringing a mozz and pepper tray.

How many pounds of Sausage should I use?

Is 2 of each type of bread enough?

The cioppino recipe I have says it yields 4-6 servings - should i make x3 (12-18 servings) or do I need to do x4?

Is 16 of each type of arancini enough?

Is 18 Cupcakes and 24 pizzelles enough?

Pam Lynch
12/17/12
Food planning for 18-2 people tomorrow help please
I have ordered half trays of: (serves 15)
salad
eggplant parm
lasagna
chicken broccoli ziti
garlic bread for 20
cake

will this be enough...it is a luncheon

ellen
12/17/12
Maria, that is enough for a LOT of leftovers. I would have plain bread with this meal, 3 pounds, especially with the vegetarians.

I would either omit sausage and peppers and do 4 times the soup, or just do 3 times the soup with the cup size, rather than the larger size, bowls.

If you do do sausage, no more than 5 pounds.

Plenty for dessert. Offer coffee (see beverage page, dinner level coffee).

ellen
12/17/12
Pam, I would add one veggie thing, and the artichoke condite on this site would be perfect:

www.ellenskitchen.com/recipebox/artichoke.html

Scroll down. 2 quarts.

Sally b
12/17/12
Hi I'm planning a Xmas dinner party for 45 people ...
My menu is :

Appies: Caramelized onion tarts
Crudités with miso dressing
Wonton wrappers w ahi tuna and mango salsa
Chicken tandoori pizza
Cheese and crackers
Vegetable cocktail samosas

Main:
French onion soup bites ( maybe)
Prime rib ( only have one roaster)
Beans
Roasted potatoes
Mixed green salad
Rolls

Desserts
Baby almond cookies
PC desserts like mini cheesecakes
Mini chocolate lava cakes
Fruit?

Can you please help me with how much of each?

Linda
12/17/12
How many loafs of bread do I need to buy for 50 people and also 100 people. I know what to put on them but not how much to buy in bred. Also how many squares. I know how much fruit and veg. to get. thank you. Linda
ellen
12/18/12
Sally this is a professional level menu (3 cooks in the kitchen, 2 servers), and you need at least 35 pounds bone in or 30 pounds boneless prime rib, which cannot be done in one roaster. Also, there is no dish suitable for the non-beef eaters to use as an entree dish. If you are doing it yourself, you need to rework the menu, please write back and start a new thread.

Linda, 6 pounds for 50, 12 for 100. Squares? If you mean, for example, brownies, 2 each.

Betsy
12/19/12
Food planning for 15
Hi Ellen I am planning a holiday dinner for 12 adults and 3 kids ages 10 to 12. I want to cater the following:
chicken franchese
eggplant parm
penne vodka
fruit salad
tossed salad
Are half pans of each enough?
What else should I have in addition to 3 desserts?
Any suggestions for an appetizer? THANKS! Betsy
ellen
12/19/12
Half pan of each, is just about right. I would definitely have a half pan of broccoli, green beans, mixed roast vegetables or artichoke hearts or other green thing; you might do this as antipasto vegetable for your appetizer.
Nicole
12/26/12
Food planning for 70 people for shower 2/21
Hi Ellen,

Having a baby shower for 70 people. I would like to serve fried chicken, beef ribs, rice and tossed green salad. Can you tell mw how many pounds of each I need?

Thanks
Nicole

ellen
12/26/12
I would do 1 piece of chicken and 1 rib per person, plus some extra ribs if a lot of guys are coming; the salad and rice are on the plan for 100 page, just use 3/4 the amount for 100.
dee
01/01/13
Hi Ellen. I have a baby shower of 50 to prepare for. The menu includes
jerk chicken skewers
Rice and peas
Sauteed cabbage
Garden salad
Tea
Strawberry basil lemonade
I have no idea how much to purchase for this amount of people. Fortunately, cooking is the easy part!

Thanks so much for your help
Dee

ellen
01/01/13
This is what I would do:

jerk chicken skewers- 6-7 ounces raw chicken per person (2 pounds boneless per 5)
Rice and peas-4 pounds each dries rice and dries peas
Sauteed cabbage- 12 pounds raw
Garden salad- 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page
Tea-4 gallons
Strawberry basil lemonade-3 gallons

dee
01/01/13
Thanks so much for the quick response. You are a life saver, and so glad I came across your site. Now, she wants to have beef skewers, so of course I will scale down on the chicken. I assume about the same amount of beef to purchase.

Again, Thanks!!!

Charlotte
01/04/13
Hi

I am cooking for a church youth camp with teenagers and slowly ratio-ing up recipies. There are going to be 100 - my key queries are how much milk will I need for hot chocolate and how much custard to go with sponge pudding or strudel.

ellen
01/04/13
If cocoa is the only hot beverage and winter, 8 to 10 gallons, but half can be pre-mixed dry milk not liquid. 5 cans of real whipped cream and a couple bags of marshmallows?

1/2 cup of soft custard per serving. Make sure you use a 1/4 cup ladle- if you use a larger one, they will take more.

mike
01/09/13
wifes 60th birthday party
how many full trays of food would I need for 65 guest along with a salad any suggestions.I was thinking of fish,beef,chicken.vegetable
mike
01/09/13
65 adults
party starts at 6pm looking to cater it,
ellen
01/10/13
Usual caterer's full tray is 25 servings, so you are looking at 3 trays of entrees, 2 1/2 veggies, 2 salad, 3 starch. Stick with 2 entrees, such as 2 beef and one salmon. Adding a garnish dish such as mushrooms is very mice.

Very nice to add appetizers before dinner, you would want 240-300 pieces or "bites", a bite is one piece or skewer, or 1 ounce cracker plus 1 1/2 of cheese. or 1 ounce chips plus 1/4 cup dip.

Emma Dundas
01/11/13
Been asked to do funeral tea. Going to make sandwiches, mini sausages, mini quiches, houmous and veg and then scones and cakes. No idea of quantities, could you help? :-)
Emma Dundas
01/11/13
food planning for funeral tea
sorry,funeral tea for 50.
ellen
01/11/13
Kind work, Emma.

sandwiches, 1 per person, but cut into tez size- quarters or halves
mini sausages, 1 pound per 5
mini quiches, 2 per person
houmous- 1/4 cup per person and veg- 1 pound per 8

scones- depends on size, one large or 2 smaller (I would go with the smaller) per person
cakes- round or rectangular American style, about 3; little petiti fors type, 2-3 per person

Renee
01/15/13
I am hosting a party for 35 people and having chicken marsala, eggplant rollentini, and sausage and peppers, green beans and roated potatoes with a salad. How many trays of each food do you think I need?
ellen
01/15/13
This is a tough number, because a tray serves about 25 (full size chafing dish, 2 inches deep). One of each would do.
Shirley
01/19/13
Food planning for 40 people tomorrow help please
Tomorrow is my aunt Kim's birthday and i really don't know what to cook for around 40-45 people can you please help im planning to do rice with pigeion eyes and i dont know what kind of meat or something to do it with.
ellen
01/19/13
Get chicken leg quarters, season with Mrs Dash or any Greek or creole seasoning blend, roaster about 40 minutes in a preheated oven. You need about 30 pounds of quarters, cut some into two pieces after cooking.
Bob
01/23/13
Food planning for Sweetheart Banquet 100 people
I am hosting a Sweetheart Banquet for approx 100 people. The menu is spaghetti and meatballs, lasagna, chicken parmesan and salad. I need help in figuring how much product i need for each dish.
Patti
01/23/13
Bridal Shower - 30 RSVPd, still expect 45 plus
Bridal shower for my daughter. 30 RSVPs came in, I expect 45 plus - how do I plan? I have a meat platter for 25-30 (ham/roast beef) and jumbalaya... do I have enough meat/staples for this many? (also included salads, beans, cheese, desserts). Please help.
ellen
01/23/13
Bob, is this a self serve buffet with seconds, a served buffet, or a plated dinner? It affects the amounts. Also, what is the age mix? Will wine or other alcohol be served? Write back.
Marybeth
01/25/13
Book launch for friend - 50 guests
Planning a book launch party for 50 people in two weeks. Menu: filet sandwiches, chunky cucumber salad, cold shrimp and a cheese platter w fruit. . Not sure of quantities of each and how far ahead I can make and freeze or refrigerate. Also, how much champagne, white wine and red wine should I buy?
ellen
01/25/13
Patti, how muchjambalaya and how much of the other items? When does the party start and how long will it last? You are probably right about the 45 people- please write back about the food.
ellen
01/25/13
Marybeth, this is definitely an upscale menu. I need to know what time it starts and how long it lasts.
There is extensive advice about wine and champagne on the beverage planning page- take a look, make and estimate, and include it when you write back.
It woulod help if you start a new thread,
Meghan
01/25/13
BBQ for 30 people?
Will 3 kilos of beef tenerloin and 3 kilos of shrimp enough protien for a party of 30 guests
ellen
01/25/13
Enough shrimp, but I would do 4- 4.5 tenderloin for American appetites-
Marybeth
01/26/13
Book launch for 50 people
Ellen, I looked at the beverage menu and have an idea of quantity. The party is a Thursday night and starts at 7pm. I expect most will be gone by 9ish. It is all women and invitation specifies cocktail party celebration.
I think 8 bottles of white and 5 red will be plenty. A case of champagne (12 bottles) should be enough for the toast. As far as food is concerned, the filet sandwiches will be appetizer size( plates are appetizer size) but not sure how many slices of beef per pound - thought 1/2" slice per sandwich would be fine. Wondered how many days ahead I could cook the beef. Cucumber salad and fruit salad - maybe 5 lbs each- just a guess. Not sure if quantities for cheese tray. The cake is ordered so I am not worried about that. Coffee - I have a big urn- 50 cups decaf? Another question - how many champagne glasses and wine glasses should I get? Thinking they will drink more than they eat! Thanks.
ellen
01/26/13
Freixnet brut is a grand sparkling wine at an affordable price-
I would get 12 white and 8 red in wines that I like, so that if some is left, you will be happy to finish it...

champagne glasses- 1 per- wine 2 per

filet sandwiches,2 small rolls and 3 ounces meat per person- make day before
chunky cucumber salad-
cold shrimp- these are SO popular- at least 1 pound per 5, 1 per 4 would still get eaten up. Cook day ahead and chill. 1 cup cocktail sauce per 5.
a cheese platter w fruit- 3 1/2 pounds cheese, 10 pounds edible fruit

coffee is good- get some real 1/2 and 1/2, and a couple of small bottles of flavored syrup- vanilla and hazelnut

Juanita
01/27/13
Have a 50 person Reception for Court of Honor for my son. It will be a mix of kids and parents which starts at 7, but food won't be eaten until about 8 - many of the guests will have eaten dinner but many will have not. Very hard to keep things hot since it is at a church hall with no ovens. Since I would need to set it all up about an hour and half ahead of time, what menu would you suggest and how much? Needs to be easy to eat and not messy.
Juanita
01/27/13
Also, I was hoping to buy premade platters at Costco for much of it - have ordered a cake but have no idea about a menu. Thanks
Skip
01/27/13
BBQ planning for 100 (mostly men) in March
What quantities will I need? I will be serving BBQ brisket,pulled pork, chicken thighs, potato salad, cole slaw, bbq beans and rolls.
ellen
01/27/13
Juanita, you're right, some will need dinner- but amounts depend on the ages and numbers of kids in the group. More info, please?
ellen
01/27/13
Skip, 1/2 will be beef and a long 1/4 of each of the others- this is what I would do:

BBQ brisket, 1/2 pound raw per person
pulled pork, 1 pound raw per 4
chicken thighs, 1 smallish per person

potato salad, 4-4 1/2 gallons
cole slaw, 2 1/2 gallons
bbq beans, 3-3 1/2 gallons

rolls, 2 smallish or 1 1/2 large..

Juanita
01/28/13
Probably about 25 adults and 20 younger teenage boys - Thanks
Juanita
01/28/13
Probably about 25 adults and 20 younger teenage boys - Thanks
ellen
01/29/13
OK. Just count this as 50, young teens eat plenty. Use the sandwich table, lunch level, get a fruit platter and veg platter, see the respective pages. Dessert buffet, see the page and use the beverage page for help with drinks.
Stephanie
01/30/13
About 50 people who like to drink. May 18th from 4-7pm. What food theme we would be best for this kind of event?
ellen
01/30/13
Glad to see you started a separate thread, which I answered- go see.
Donna
01/31/13
Chicken Salad on Croissant for 60
Planning a luncheon for our women's retreat and going to serve Chicken Salad on Croissant. How many rotiserrie chickens or pounds of chicken will I need?
ellen
01/31/13
1 pound whole raw chicken makes 2 cups of meat, which makes almost 4 cups of salads by most recipes. Check the sandwich page, do 2/3 the amount for 100.
Mary
02/08/13
Planning a wedding reception with a hawaiin theme
could you suggest a menu for a wedding reception with a hawaiin theme for about 100 people.
ellen
02/08/13
Here is a simple menu

Appetizers
Fruit trays
Chicken skewers or shrimp skewers or meatball in tropical sauce
Chips and pineapple salsa or spinach dip
Spam sushi (a genuine Hawaiian specialty)

Dinner
Sweet Hawaiian rolls and butter
Rice pilaf possibly with almonds
A teriyaki meat (chicken or beef?)
A pork dish
Possibly a fish dish
stir-fried Hawaiian vegetables
a second green veg

You might also enjoy this for the tables:

www.food.com/recipe/steves-often-copied-never-duplicated-furikake-chex-mix-360282

You would need 6-7 pounds

Sandra
02/10/13
planning a baby shower, feeding about 64
I am hosting a baby shower for our niece and have seating for 64 so that is what I am planning for to feed. We will only probably only have 40-50. I am serving: lil smokies in bbq sauce, baked beans, chicken salad and ham salad sandwich halves (crust removed), 2 flavors of chips, pepperoni and summer sausage tray, colby and montery cheese cubes, cheese ball, vegetable tray, fruit salad, potato salad, macaroni salad, sweet jerkins. Will have punch, soda, iced tea, coffee and water. Please help, I would like to have too much over not enough. You can email me the answer as well as posting it. I don't always get notifications from sites I post on, so please send a copy of the answer to my email. Kevin_sandra1999@yahoo.com
Jessica
02/12/13
Ellen, your site is a great help to us DIYers. I am catering a party for 75ish people - an anniversary open house from 2-4pm. Along with finger foods & cake, we are serving coffee, iced tea and ice water in beverage dispensers, and punch in a punch bowl.

I was thinking five gallons each of the tea, water, & punch instead of the 6-10 gallons you suggest since we are offering four different type of beverages. Does that sound about right?

ellen
02/14/13
That is plenty! Good work!

If this site has saved you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation to support the site.

Bailee
02/16/13
Hi Ellen,
I am needing to feed about 50 college age girls for three meals, and snacks.

It will be a retreat so meals don't have to be fancy, just filling and semi-easy. Like sandwiches and pizza etc. What are your suggestions, like what not to forget? And how much do you think it will cost?

Thanks!

ellen
02/16/13
What meals? Breakfast, lunch, dinner? And what kitchen facility-
Laura
02/16/13
I am having approximately 80 people for a luncheon and serving approximately 10 different types of salads such as tuna, pasta, oriental, grilled veggies, orzo, couscous, tomatoes and mozzarella, antipasto, toppings to make own salad, plus chicken, salmon, shrimp to add to salads. How many pounds would I need of each?
ellen
02/18/13
Laura, are you asking just about the meats, or about everything? Basic info is to plan for 18-20 ounces total food per person, plus 10% to allow for choices.

I would make some modifications, for example, among pasta salad, orzo and couscous, I would do only 2. Either grilled veggies or antipasto, not both. Up to you, but there is motre waste with more choices.

about 18 pounds meats ready to eat- 6 pounds each, chicken and salmon thin sliced,

about 4 pounds each madetuna salad and mozzarella for the tomato salad

See this page for a detailed description of toppings, etc; since you have so many choices, you would just do any particular one for 40-50 (2/5 to 1/2 the amount for 100):

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/saladbar100.html

You need 20 ounces of bread and/or crackers per person= 10 pounds total

If this saves you time, trouble or money, consider a donation to support the site.

Raul
03/01/13
How much bread for 40 people breakfast?
Wow, beautiful post! Im serving a breakfast for 40 people. I wonder how much bread should I get? There are some dips, a plate of cheeses (around 5 kilo... I hope its enough) and 50 thinly vegetables. Also a big eggsalat of 60 eggs willbe there. But how much bread? I wonder...
ellen
03/01/13
2 ounces each if women (1 pound per 8), 2 1/2 to 3 if men also (1 pound per 5-6). That should be enough cheese. Will you have some fruit or fruit juice?
Debra
03/01/13
Food planning for 50 people
I am catering a cheese and dessert party for 50 people at the end of April. They want a lot of food and big hunks of different cheeses. We will be serving beer and wine. The party will be at 7:00 and the invitations will say heavy appetizers and desserts. I am How much cheese per person would you suggest and how many pieces of dessert should I plan for per person. We will be serving vegetables and dips.
ellen
03/02/13
Debra, cheese and veggies is not heavy appetizers. I would simply put "desserts" on the invitation, as cheese is often offered as part of a dessert selection, and switch the veggies to fruits; this would be perfect. If you put heavy appetizers for 7 PM, many people come expecting to be able to eat a dinner's worth of tiny sausages, ham biscuits and other meaty things.

See the dessert planning page for initial guidance on amounts. The secret of dessert buffets is to allow everyone to have many small pieces, for example, pecan tarts and cheesecake bites instead of pie slices, two-bite bars bars and cupcakes instead of large cakes.

Please see the refs on this inquiry for help matching cheeses and fruits and wines:

www.ellenskitchen.com/forum/messages/40641.html

dana
03/02/13
Food planning fo r 100people tomorrow help please
Im making suasage in peppers potatoe salad, rice chicken breast in lemon sauce, pork roast penne in voka sause,meat balls
ellen
03/02/13
Food planning for 100 people tomorrow help please
This is very late, and a partial menu, no veggies, bread, or salad?

sausage in peppers, 1 pound sausage per 6
chicken breast in lemon sauce, 1 pound ready to eat per 4
pork roast, 1 pound boneless raw per 4

penne in vodka sauce, 8 pounds dry pasta
meat balls, 18 pounds

potatoe salad, 3 gallons
rice 6 pounds dry

Roslind
03/03/13
Ellen I have tp prepare chicken and dumplings fo 50 people the end o March.How many quarts will I need and do you have a recipe for that large quanity? Thanks
ellen
03/03/13
For 50 people, 5 pounds of biscuit mix, or about 22-24 cups of flour for the dumplings. About 12-15 pounds raw chicken. Really good chicken broth. Here are a few off-site recipes, you would do 10 times the recipes for 50:

www.mccormick.com/Recipes/Main-Dish/Recipe-Inspirations-Country-Herb-Chicken-and-Dumplings.aspx

performancefoodservice.com/customer/Recipes/Pages/SouthernStyleChickenandDumplings.aspx

Judi
03/04/13
I am hosting a bridal shower for ~30 women in 5 weeks. Tentative menu is cocktail meatballs, cheese dip with crackers, Napa chinese salad (brides favorite),lettuce type salad, mexican salad, possibly frogeye sald. Dessert is brides favorite of cherries over white cake, and another dessert, undecided. Drinks are iced tea, white wine,coffee,water. How many lbs meatballs should I make? How much wine to buy? Do you have any other suggestions for dessert or general suggestions on menu? Thank you1
Judi
03/04/13
For above post, the time is 12:30 pm on a saturday regarding bridal shower.
ellen
03/05/13
What fun.

cocktail meatballs, 1 pound per 4
cheese dip with crackers, 2 quarts dip, 2 pounds crackers or chips

Napa chinese salad (brides favorite),
lettuce type salad, since you have a nice ethnic theme going here, how about a Greek salad. Good recipe on site under salads that hold on Big Pots, and it holds beautifully.
mexican salad, is this a taco salad? Good recipe on site called "escape from the trash bag" walking taco salad.

I would make 12-16 servings of each so everyone can have more of their first choice and some of the rest. Some leftovers, but not a disaster.

possibly frogeye salad. Suggest instead either a fruit tray for 25 or perhaps tomato salad for color?

I would add 3-4 pounds crusty rolls and a pound of real butter.

cherries over white cake,
dessert, undecided; definitely chocolate! Beautiful color contrast and a favorite. Maybe 3 dozen smallish brownies?

iced tea, 3 gallons, at least 1 gallon unsweetened
white wine, buy a case from somewhere that will let you return unopened bottles. Ladies are unpredictable at this type event.
coffee, use dinner level coffee from the beverage page
water, 16 ounces per person.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation to support the site.

christy
03/05/13
Baby shower food for 30 women at 1pm end of April
Plan is to have miniature tuna/chicken salad sandwiches on split top rolls with chips/dips and a fruit bowl. How many cans of tuna and how much chicken would you suggest for the sandwiches? Thanks!!
ellen
03/05/13
I would make 2 sandwiches per person, 2/3 chicken and 1/3 tuna, maybe 6-8 of a nice cheese spread for any non-meat eaters. 40 chicken sandwiches, do 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken. 20 tunas, 4 regular cans; solid pack is very nice.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation to support the site.

Chelsea
03/08/13
Hi! I'm making food for my wedding with the help of my family, the main dish is Chili but I'm also having mini pulled pork sandwiches on hawaiian sweet rolls. I'm having a hard time figuring out how much pulled pork I will need to buy for mini sandwiches if I assume everyone will have 2. I have about 65 guests. Thank you :)
ellen
03/08/13
For 120 smallish buns, you need about 1 pound raw boneless per 5 persons.
Marie
03/14/13
Food planning for 50 people Saturday help please
Hi Ellen, planning a Japanese Bday party for my daughter Sat.
How much veg sushi should I make since not everyone in my family likes the raw stuff..
thinking california rolls, philadelphia rolls and sweet potato rolls.
How much shrimp should I buy with Brocolli florets to make a shrimp dish, dont know if it will be ginger or teriyaki for a full size pan?
i have other things like 2 pans rice, one pan pasta salad, beef teriyaki, stew chicken, and possibly potato salad for the folks who arent into japanese food.
Thank you
Marie
ellen
03/14/13
Make 4 pieces per person sushi.

1 pound shrimp per 4-5, 1 pound broccoli florets per 5-6. With your other dishes, it looks like plenty of food.

Please consider a donation, maybe a dime a person, to support the site.

Mini
03/15/13
Appetizers for baby shower:
Jerk chicken drumettes
Cucumber rounds with salmon mousse
mini meat empanadas
mini slider burgers
oven roasted shrimp cocktail
endive leaves with chicken salad
Kindly let me know quantities for platters for 20 people
ellen
03/15/13
Nice menu. You need some fruit also.

I would do 2 dozen of each bite item, double for the drumettes, and 5 pounds of shrimp in the cocktails

Laura Wolvers
03/16/13
Food planning for 60 people HELP!
Hello,
We are planning a 21st birthday party for my sister approximately a month from now. Our guest list is around 60 people, and we would like to self-cater as we have a large family who are all willing to dig in and do their bit to help!
We will be buying things like sausage rolls, crips, crackers, cheese, sandwiches, some bags of chicken tikka from Iceland, pizzas, salad, dips, chicken dippers, pasta, garlic breads, onion bahji, samosas, nuts, wedges/chips...etc.
Would you be able to advise us how much we would roughly need for 60 people? We really don't want to buy too little or too much.
Thank you.
ellen
03/16/13
Please tell me the time and length of the party, and whether alcohol will be served.
Jordan
03/19/13
I am planning a bridal shower brunch for 20 people from 11:00am - 1:00pm.

Here is my current meal plan:
-Quiches: bacon cheese and broccoli cheddar
-Assorted mini muffins
-Sausage links
-Bacon
-Self-serve yogurt bar with assorted fruit and granola toppings
-Cold shrimp tomato salad
-Finger sandwhiches: Tomato provolone, turkey pepperjack, turkey bacon ranch

All will be in finger-food/apitizer portions. There will also be a coffee bar, and Lemon Biscotti Cheesecake will be served later in the party.

Is this too much or too little as far as variety? Are the dishes appropriate together and appropriate for brunch... anything I should add or omit? What quantities should I be getting?

Thank you!

ellen
03/19/13
This is a very nice menu with one major flaw, nothing for the non-meat-eating guest. Almost every crowd these days has at least one vegetarian. Also, you could very safely omit either the sandwiches or the shrimp salad (I would omit the sandwiches).

So, make the quiches or at least part of the quiches with no bacon.

-Quiches: bacon cheese and broccoli cheddar- make 4
-Assorted mini muffins- 3 per person
-Sausage links-2 per person
-Bacon- 3 slices per person
-Self-serve yogurt bar with assorted fruit and granola toppings- 1 quart yogurt per 5, stir in a little mace; 2 tablespoons each topping per person
-Cold shrimp tomato salad- yum, 1 pound tomatoes per 4, 1 pound cooked, peeled shrimp per 6- never hurts to have some extra, people love shrimp
-Finger sandwhiches: Tomato provolone, turkey pepperjack, turkey bacon ranch skip, or do just one- how about cucumber and watercress?

Vicki
03/22/13
Food for 60 people at my picnic wedding
Need to know how much for 60 people please

*Fried chicken

(Havent decided which one of these 3 choices, it will be dependent on cost at that time)
Hot sausage
Ham Bar B Que
Pulled Pork

*Buns

*Tortellini Salad
*Potato Salad
*Fruit Salad

Vicki
03/22/13
Update to my post above
The wedding is outdoors, casual picnic, July 13.
ellen
03/22/13
*Fried chicken- 2 pieces per person plus maybe 10 %

one of these 3 choices, it will be dependent on cost at that time)
Hot sausage- would be 1 pound per 5
Ham Bar B Que
Pulled Pork
either would be 1 pound per 5

You need sauce, 1 cup per 4-5
You need sandwich condiments. See the sandwich page, use 2/3 the amount for 100

Tortellini Salad- 4 pounds dry pasta
Potato Salad- 25 pound potatoes

need slaw or green salad- 2/3 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page

Fruit Salad- do fruit trays, not salad, easier, keeps better, leftovers more usable, see fruit tray page

Michelle
04/01/13
Food planning for 60, menu lacking please help
I'm planning a 50th birthday party w/an 80's "come dressed" theme. Looking to have approx 60 guests. My dinner menu is lacking and I was looking for some suggestions.

Fried Chicken - 150 pieces
Mashed potatoes w/Gravy - 15 lbs each
Dinner rolls - 100 pieces
Cheese & grapes platter - 2 L trays (20-25)
Cheese & meat platter - 2 L trays (20-25)
Fresh veggie & ranch platter - 2 L trays (20-25)

And either BBQ pulled pork or Italian beef w/buns.

And was thinking of spaghetti but not sure how much I would need.

I will also be doing Cupcakes instead of a traditional birthday cake (60).

I still feel that there is something I'm leaving out.

Ellen please help I want this to be a memory that is perfect in every way.

ellen
04/02/13
OK, I would tweak this menu.

Fried Chicken - 150 pieces- way too much- do 60 pieces (1 per person) if you are also doing the second meat
Mashed potatoes w/Gravy - 15 lbs each- 20 pounds potatoes, 7 quarts gravy, you will have some left.
Dinner rolls - 100 pieces- OK, but you do not need so much if you also do the meat and buns.. 2 pounds butter
Cheese & grapes platter - 2 L trays (20-25)-OK
Cheese & meat platter - 2 L trays (20-25)OK, but I would do other fruits rather than meats- or do the classic relish tray on the veggie tray page.
Fresh veggie & ranch platter - 2 L trays (20-25)

BBQ pulled pork or Italian beef w/buns-15 pounds meat, 60 buns

The obvious omission is either a hot vegetable or something very 80's like a jello salad (10 packages of jello)

Cupcakes, 60- do 80, some people will eat 2.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

Student
04/05/13
My school is having a mexican bar how much lettuce,tomato,shredded,cheese,sour cream,salsa,refried beans,tortilla chips,melted cheese,chicken breast, and guacamole would I need for 50 people.
Linda
04/07/13
Cookout for 75 teenagers
Having an end of the year party for all the JROTC Teams (Drill, Orienteering, Rocketry, Air Rifle, Academic, Cyber)in May. The only adults will be the instructors and team parents (about 10-15 adults. We are serving hotdogs/hamburgers. Thinking of having sides of baked beans, potato and pasta salad, fruit tray , veggie tray, chips/dip. Have a large cake ordered for the crowd (serves 100)...should we have other desserts too? Serving fruit punch/lemonade/water. Need help with how much of each is needed?
ellen
04/07/13
Student, use 1/2 the amounts for 100 from the taco/potato bar.
ellen
04/07/13
Linda, 75 teenagers is about the same as 100 adults.

hotdogs/hamburgers. 100 patties, 100 dogs, but do hold some dogs back till you see how they are going

baked beans, 3 gallons
potato salad, 4 gallons
pasta salad, 6 pounds dry pasta

fruit tray, see deluxe tray on the fruit tray page
veggie tray, see veggie tray page

chips/dip, 1 pound chips per 10, 6-7 quarts per 100

large cake ordered for the crowd (serves 100)

punch/lemonade/water see beverage planning page. Have some sugar free in each flavor, or at least some unsweetend tea.

David
04/08/13
Okay: Maybe this was covered but I don't recall seeing it. I'm planning to serve beef tenderloin along with green beans almondine (sp?), new potatoes, and roasted cherry tomatoes to 50 people. How many pounds of beef tenderloin should I buy?
ellen
04/08/13
25 pounds raw ready to cook. People love this stuff. Have 4-6 servings of a vegetarian entree for the non beef eaters unless you are sure there are none.
Lisa
04/09/13
My husband is deploying and we are having a beach BBQ on Saturday. There are 57 adults and 23 kids confirmed. BUT--they will be coming and going all day as there is no set schedule. We are cooking at noon and planned on 6 packs of hotdogs, 30 burgers, and I want to order deli sandwiches (already made) for those who come late. I don't want my husband to be a slave to the grill all day. However, I have no idea how many sandwiches to order. As for sides: 5 pounds pasta salad, 5 pounds potato salad, and fruit salad.

Is this even close to enough? Thanks so much!

ellen
04/09/13
You will miss him...

This is at least 2/3 the amount of 100- if you expect more, use 3/4 of 100 as the amount from the planning list such as the dessert planning list and the beverage planning list.

You need more food- you will run out of burgers, salads-

5 pounds pasta salad, save a lot of money, make from a recipe on my site, at least 3 pounds dry pasta
5 pounds potato salad, I would do at least 2 gallons, which is about 16-18 pounds

fruit salad, Fruit trays, see the fruit tray page, would hold better and be easier. Have an ice chest.

Now about the meats and sandwiches.

What you have planned is only enough for about 40. Consider switching the hot dogs to 5 pounds of Polish sausage, kielbasa, or smoked sausage?

You could do one big 6 foot sub, or about 10-12 feet of regular subs

If you are going to grill, consider 60-70 chicken leg quarters instead of the burgers and dogs- some would be cut apart- tastier and healthier than the other choice.

How about adding 6-8 pounds of chips and a couple of quarts of salsa or dip?

David
04/09/13
So back to the beef tenderloin question, is it your suggestion to have a half pound per person? Thanks again. This is very helpful.
ellen
04/09/13
Yes, David, 1/2 pound raw per person if it is self serve.
Rupert
04/09/13
Trying to cook lentil rice, rotini pasta, fried green plantains and mashed potato for approximately 50 people. How much rice, lentil peas, rotini pasta, green plantains and potatos would I need? Thank you!
ellen
04/10/13
Rupert, this is a LOT of starches for 50 people; I would probably omit either the pasta or potatoes if they are all being served at once. Is it a buffet? What else is being served? More info please.
Rupert
04/10/13
I am also preparing tofu, talapia, steamed vegetables (broccoli, carrot, cauliflower), mashed egg plant, and curry chick peas.the potato rice and pasta would be served in small portions if they ask for all on their plate, along with anything else they ask for.
ellen
04/12/13
OK, Rupert, given this menu I would skip the mashed potato entirely.

Plantains, enough for a small serving for every person, they are unusual and people will try them. Maybe 1 pound per 4-5.

Rice and lentils, 3 1/2 pounds rice, 3 pounds lentils; adjust if you want more rice/less lentils

Pasta, 4 pounds dry. A pesto type sauce stirred in would be very nice with this menu and pretty.

Liliana
04/14/13
Food planning for 30 people tomorrow help please
I'll make sausage, peppers and onions for 30 people.How many pounds I need for this?
ellen
04/14/13
If this is the only meat, 1 pound per 3. If second choice, 1 pound per 5 or six.
Stephanie
04/15/13
Catering a friends wedding this summer for 110 people.

She wants the following items:
Penne ala vodka
Stuffed shells
eggplants parm
sesame chicken
sausage and peppers
sauteed green beans
green salad

I just don't know how many half/full trays to make of each for 110 people! Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

ellen
04/16/13
Posted twice, see the other one.
Doozie
04/18/13
Have to feed a girl's water polo team after a game. I've been assigned "sandwiches for 50". Think it would be nice to have something hot for the girls to eat, but don't want to serve the standard sloppy joes or pulled pork that they get at every game. Any suggestions for a sandwich filling that can be made ahead, thrown in a roaster and served conveyor-belt style to starving teens?
Nikki
04/18/13
Doing coldplates for about 200 people
Hi, I am making my own coldplates for my wedding on July 19th, 2014. Was just wondering how much stuff I would need to do the coldplates.

This is what will be on my coldplates...
1 scoop of mustard salad
1 scoop of white salad
1 scoop of coleslaw
1 scoop of macroni salad
turkey
Deli Ham
Tomato
Lettuce

How much of each would i need, including all the ingreadents to go in each?

thanks
Nikki

ellen
04/18/13
Nicki, you have to tell me what size scoops and also, you need an appetizer table. Post more information and start a new thread.

Why You May Need an Appetizer Table
A self-catered meal is a real challenge to the organizers, and things don't always come together as smoothly as hoped. By planning and setting up an appetizer area or "nibble table" which is ready when the guests begin to arrive, the cooks and servers have time to complete the arrangement of the dinner buffet. This is especially critical if there are children among the guests, or there is a wait before dinner, as at a wedding reception.

This does not have to be complicated. Three items, plus a punch, or two if one is alcoholic, are sufficient. Typically, include a fruit tray, a cheese tray and an attractive dip or spread; or you can go with a dinner theme such as TexMex with chips, salsas, Texas caviar and guacamole; maybe shrimps if budget permits.

One appetizer service area is needed for each 100 guests.

Kristen
04/19/13
I'm having a birthday party for my daughter on Sunday from 4-6. We are planning for 50 adults and 20 kids. We're keeping the menu simple- Chicken tenders from Publix, smoked gouda mac and cheese, green beans and dinner rolls. I'll also have a vegetable tray and chips with dip. Of course there will also be cake and cupcakes with ice cream. I have to order the chicken tenders by the pound and I have no idea how many to get. I'll be preparing the mac and cheese myself from a recipe that I like. It calls for 1 lb of macaroni and I was planning to quadruple the recipe. For the green beans I was going to get 3 of the large cans. We're buying the frozen SIster Schubert dinner rolls, how many do you think we should get?

If you could give my your thoughts on everything I would really appreciate it. Thanks so much!

Kristen

ellen
04/19/13
25 pounds ready to eat if the kids are small, or 30 if the kids are over 8-10.

You need at least 6 pounds of dry pasta for this size crowd. The non-chicken eaters will be using it as an entree. You might make one or two more traditional cheddar for kids and the conservative.

3 cans of beans is about right, but take a look at my recipe for ellen's better green bean casserole, it is really delicious.

www.ellenskitchen.com/turkey/greenbean.html

If you get 8 dozen rolls and 2-3 pounds of butter, you may have some left, but not too much.

If this has saved you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

Cynthia
04/25/13
Food for a college graduation party for 80 people
Hi Ellen, I am planning a dinner for my daughters college graduation. I plan on serving Chicken Parmesan with pasta, Green Salad and Garlic Bread. How much of each should I order and do you have any suggestions for an additional vegetarian entree? I'm trying to keep it a simple Italian theme. I will also be serving appetizers and Cheesecake and Tiramasu for dessert.
ellen
04/25/13
Nice menu.

Check with your restaurant/ caterer about how much they estimate per pan. You want about 85 people worth of chicken and pasta. About 8 quarts of sauce (I suggest meatless). 4 pounds shredded Parmesan.

10 pounds of bread.

Consider making the salad yourself, use just over 3/4 of the amount for 100 of salads and dressings from the plan for 100 table.

I suggest you get 50 people worth of broccoli or green beans (10-12 pounds) servings and 40-50 of eggplant Parm for vegetables and vegetarians, this will fill out the table and the plates very nicely and keep your non-meat eaters very happy.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

Ann
04/30/13
Food planning for 75 people
Ellen having a confirmation open house lasting 5 hours. I was thinking :

1/2 100 Caesar Salad
1/2 100 Fruit Salad
Antipasto Platter with cured meats and cheeses 2 oz per person ea cheese and meat
Meatballs 2 per person
Lemon Oregano Chicken 75 pieces
Chocolate Trifle serves 50
1 pound cake with strawberries and whipped cream

Am I on the right track? Do I need more of anything or less or more variety? Thanks

Ann
04/30/13
Food planning for 75
Its me again about the confirmation. I'm also having assorted breads and crackers to go with the antipasto platter. How much do I need?
ellen
04/30/13
You are headed in the right direction, but need some additions.

You need nice rolls or breads- 9-10 pounds plus 2 pounds butter; may 4 pounds crackers
You need a starch, rice, such as rice pilaf, or potatoes, or pasta; see the plan for 100 page.

Meatballs, depends on the size, 1 pound per 4
Chicken is fine

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

chocolate trifle is ok, none left
1 pound cake only serves 8- you need to plan for at least 6- some people will take both.

doozie
04/30/13
Haven't gotten a response to prior post, so retrying. How many pounds of chicken should I plan on cooking if I am serving shredded chicken tacos to 50 water polo players? There will be one other "sandwich" option (no idea what) plus pasta, salad, fruit and dessert.
Thanks.
ellen
04/30/13
Sorry! This is why I ask people to start a new thread. If you post on a thread I already checked that day, or ahead of several others, it is easily missed.

I checked back. The shredded chicken tacos are a great choice for your situation. If you check out the taco bar page, it will give you exact amounts for the meat and the toppings for 100, you just do 1/2. There is a taco seasoning recipe so you don't have to buy all the little packets, here:

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/texmex1.html

Dolly
05/02/13
I am preparing the rehearsal dinner for my nephew and his fiancee. He has asked me to prepare for 50 people. Someone else is doing the meat. The menu is seasoned green beans, hashbrown casserole (using frozen southern hashbrown potatoes), macaroni & cheese casserole, spinach & strawberry salad, and cornbread sticks. Can you help with my grocery list on how much to purchase? Thank you in advance.
Mini
05/02/13
Hi Ellen, Your website is amazing - thanks for your help! I am making stir fry chicken with bell peppers, rice pilaf,glazed carrots, green salad and brownies for 50 people. Kindly let me know quantities to buy. Thanks!
ellen
05/03/13
Mini,

chicken, 1 pound raw boneless per 4 people
bell peppers, at least the same weight veggies as chicken, you need onions, etc.

rice pilaf, about 4 pounds dry rice, 5 if they are heavy eaters

glazed carrots, about 12 pounds

green salad, 1/2 the amount for 100 plan for 100 page

brownies, people love then, 2 per person, 3 if small

If this saves you time trouble or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

ellen
05/03/13
Dolly,

You need to consider seasoning the green beans meatless, or adding a second veg so any vegetarians will have a veg.

green beans, about 10-12 pounds
hash brown casserole (using frozen southern hash brown potatoes), see the recipe at the end of the brunch page
macaroni & cheese casserole, about 5 pounds dry pasta

spinach & strawberry salad, see this thread:
www.ellenskitchen.com/forum/messages/40025.html

cornbread sticks about 2 per person with a few extra -about 1 1/2 pounds butter

If this saves you time trouble or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

Myche
05/05/13
Hi am planning a breakfast for teachers tomm that is for teacher appreciation.. we as MOST schools are tight on budget but want it to be a success. we are serving. bagels / cream cheese / yogurt / oatmeal / muffins / mini croissants / orange juice / hot tea / coffee /strawberries / bannanas
i bought BIG 30 muffins an wanted to cut in half equal to 4 small mini muffins
18 whole bagels to cut in half as equal to one mini bagel
30 yogurts
4 lbs of fresh granola
12lbs of straw berries
100 bannanas
72 packets of oatmeal
50 packets of individual cream cheese

is this a good spread.. thank you in advance for your help

Rita
05/05/13
I'm planning a 95th bday party for my mom; approx. 40 people. How many assorted finger sandwiches would I need and any suggestions for drinks?
ellen
05/05/13
Ok, Laurie, these numbers don't match 50.

Please START A NEW THREAD and tell me how many people, and what you are doing about beverages.

Helen
05/06/13
I am planning a party for 50 people. I want to serve ribs and burgers (turkey, blue cheese, cheddar and plain) for my main course and penne vodka, caeser salad, quinoa salad and soba noodle salads for my sides.

How many ribs and how many burgers do I need?

ellen
05/06/13
Rita,

Plan for 2 sandwiches (made on the very thin party sandwich bread and cut into 3-4 pieces) per person. Have plenty of different small bars/cookies/sweets, even if there is cake.

Have dinner level coffee- use the high decaf amounts and do 1/3 the amount for 100 on the beverage planning page.

have a cold drink- a real lemonade, the apricot punch recipe from the top of the punch thread, mimosas if they are a drinking crowd. Or maybe one of those flavored but unsweetened iced teas.

You are lucky to have this to celebrate!

ellen
05/06/13
Helen,

2 ribs per person plus one patty per person- so people have full choice. You will have some left, not too much.

Donna
05/06/13
Planning a graduation party for approx. 50 people...children and adults.
Dessert Table:
Cupcakes - 25
Choco Pretzel Sticks - 50
Cake Pops - 25

Dips:
Cheese Dip w/ chips
Spinach Dip w/ chips
Creamy Hot Reuben Sandwich Dip w/ pumpernickel bread

Meats:
Ham and Swiss Sliders - 100
Individual Shrimp Cocktail Shots - 100
Pig N' Blanket - 100
Chicken wrapped in bacon bites - 100

Misc:
Popcorn Bar
Jalapeno Poppers - 25
Fruit Kabobs - 50

Drinks:
Sweet Tea
Un-sweet Tea
Lemonade
Water

Does this seem to be too much or not enough or just right?

ellen
05/06/13
You are headed in the right direction, how about a few tweaks?

Dessert Table:
Cupcakes - 25- get 40, people will eat 2 things
Choco Pretzel Sticks - 50
Cake Pops - 25- 30?

Dips:
Cheese Dip w/ chips
Spinach Dip w/ chips
Creamy Hot Reuben Sandwich Dip w/ pumpernickel bread
1 cup each dip per 5, 1 pound chips per 10, 1 ounce bread per person

Meats: plenty, maybe some left
Ham and Swiss Sliders - 100
Individual Shrimp Cocktail Shots - 100
Pig N' Blanket - 100
Chicken wrapped in bacon bites - 100

Misc:
Popcorn Bar
Jalapeno Poppers - 25- maybe skip- very hard to estimate
Fruit Kabobs - 50- at least 70

Drinks:
Sweet Tea 2 gallons
Un-sweet Tea 1 gallon
Lemonade 3 gallons
Water about 1 ppint per person, depends on heat and length of party

Amanda
05/10/13
Food planning for party
Hi! I am planning a birthday party for about 45 adults (if they all show up!) and 13 kids.

I am planning on making some 12 inch deli subs (with fixings on the side), a small stack of PB&J sandwiches for vegetarians, a large potato salad, macaroni salad, a large garden salad, a bean salad, potato chips/tortilla chips, guacamole and salsa. We'll also have popcorn, oreos, cupcakes, watermelon, apples, and pears.

How many subs should I make to accomadate everyone? (and how much meat should I buy?)

ellen
05/10/13
If you have sliced cheeses and rolls, some vegetarians will make/prefer a cheese sub.

12 inch sub serves 2-3. See the sandwich page for very specific guidance on amounts of fillings.

potato salad, 2 gallons (20 pounds potatoes)
macaroni salad, 1 1/2 gallons (3 pounds dry pasta)
a large garden salad, see plan for 100 salads, do 1/2
a bean salad, 5 quarts
potato chips, 1 pound per 12
tortilla chips, 1 pound per 12
guacamole, 1 cup per 4
salsa, 1 cup per 5

Happy birthday. If this saves you time, trouble or money, do make a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

Chris
05/13/13
Graduation Party for 40-50
Hi! I'm planning a casual open house in the park for four families (my daughter and 3 of her roommates are graduating from college). We plan on at least 30 family members - and miscellaneous friends may also stop by.

I need to figure out how much to ask everyone to bring.

1. Sandwich Meat
2. Cheese
3. Sandwich Rolls and Croissants
4. Condiments: Mayonnaise, Mustard, Relish,
5. Veggie Plate/Dip
6. Salad
7. Fruit
8. Chips
9. Paper Plates/Plastic Utensils/Cups/Napkins
10. Cake
11. Cookies
12. Drinks (Ice Tea, soda?)

I'm thinking everyone can be responsible for 3 things on the list.

What do you think?

ellen
05/13/13
It is not clear at all how many everyones you intend to include, so I can't do a guideline for you on what to ask each person to bring. What I try to do is, divide up requests into approximately similar cost groups

For amounts, please use the pages indicated:

1. Sandwich Meat- see the sandwich page, depends very much on type of group and selections
2. Cheese- 1 pound sliced per 10
3. Sandwich Rolls and Croissants (use mini croissants)
4. Condiments: Mayonnaise, Mustard, Relish,
All amounts for fillings, breads, and trimmimgs discussed in detail on the sandwich page. Plan on 1/2 the amount for 100

6. Salad- 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page, top section

7. Fruit- fruit tray page- 2 times the amount for 25 or 1/2 the deluxe tropical tray for 100
5. Veggie Plate/Dip- veggie tray page, or use the classic relish tray amounts

8. Chips- 1 pound per 10 and 1 cup dip per 4-5

12. Drinks (Ice Tea, soda?)
9. Paper Plates/Plastic Utensils/Cups/Napkins
All this is covered in some detail on the beverage planning page

10. Cake- full sheet cake serves 50- 2 layer half sheet does, also, and takes less table space
11. Cookies- 1 each of each flavor up to 4 per person

Pam
05/14/13
Food planning for 150 graduation party open house
Party is from noon to 7pm in 3 weeks
What is best way to serve (set-up)

thinking of -
chicken parm
pasta
pulled pork
cole slaw
green salad
grape leaves
spinach & meat pies
hummus
rolls
syrian bread
Thank you for your input

Pam
05/14/13
Food planning for 150 grad open house noon to 7
Ellen I forgot to list

sausage, peppers and onions

sheet cake

and assorted desserts

Thank you again

ellen
05/15/13
Pam, do you plan to serve the meal foods in 2 rounds (lunch and dinner) with snacking in between, or do you plan to have everything out all day?
Laronna
05/16/13
Food planning for 60 people tomorrow help please
For 60 people how much will I need of the following:
Turkey
Dressing
Mashed Potatoes
Gray
Green Beans
Rolls
Katie
05/17/13
Hi I'm having a 30th birthday bbq for 50 people how much sausage, hamburger, roast chicken piese would I need a d for salad how much for each salad pasta salad, potato salad and green salad.
Jill
05/17/13
Graduation party for 50 people
Hello, I'm planning a graduation party. I am smoking the meat (served on buns) and beans. I am planning pork & chicken, potato and pasta salads. How much do you suggest of each?
ellen
05/17/13
Laronna, it is already calculated. Use this article, do 2/3 of 100 for fast figuring:

www.ellenskitchen.com/turkey/planshop.html

ellen
05/17/13
Katie, I would do:

sausage, 1 pound per 5 PLUS
hamburger, 35 patties
roast chicken pieces- 25 quarters, cut some into pieces
People eat more when there are several choices.

For the salads, use 1/2 the amount for 100 of each from the plan for 100 table.

ellen
05/17/13
Jill,

smoking pork & chicken, 50 people; 20 pounds raw boneless pork, I like shoulder for this; 25-30 pounds bone in chicken
potato salad- half the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 list
pasta salads- 3 pounds dry pasta and trimmings.

Stacey
05/17/13
Help! Communion for 35 adults 15 kids under 10
This is the menu and I want to make sure I have enough food:

Fried Chicken - 60 pieces (equal amounts of breasts, legs, thighs, wings)

Meatballs - 12 lbs

Eggplant Rolletini - 2 trays which per the caterer say they serve about 16 with no other food, per tray...none of the kids eat the eggplant.

Caesar Salad - 6 heads of Romaine with parmesan, croutons etc.

Penne Vodka - 5 lbs

Chicken Nuggets - So many of the kids are picky that I usually have these all warmed up and ready for the kids as well.

Rolls/butter

Of course then we also have a sheet cake, apple pie, snacks, veggie tray, dips, etc.

I wasnt sure this was enough so I am wondering if I should also order some sandwich trays also, or perhaps also add a tray or 2 of sausage and peppers/onions. What do you think?

Stacey
05/17/13
RE: Communion
Sorry - I forgot to say the party is this Sunday 5/19 !!
ellen
05/17/13
You do not need to add any food. In fact, with the fried chicken, you could skip the nuggets- never met a kid who would eat nuggets who wouldn't eat a leg.

The penne is fine if that is the dry weight of the pasta. If it is half pans, you definitely want 3.

Blessings on the child and the family.

Stacey
05/17/13
Communion and Thanks!
Thanks Ellen!!!

So just to clarify, I dont need to add the sandwich platter? or the Sausage? Or you mean I am ok if I add the Sandwich Platter and/or the Sauasage?

Thanks again...this is a wonderful site and just so amazingly helpful!!!!

Thank you for the Blessings.

ellen
05/17/13
No sandwiches, no sausage. You may still have some leftovers...
Renee
05/20/13
I was asked to plan a Teacher and Staff Luncheon for 85 people.
How much of each tray would I need of the following:
Lemon Chicken
Sausage and Peppers
Penne Vodka (lbs)
Green Beans
Salad
Renee
05/20/13
I was asked to plan a Teacher and Staff Luncheon for 85 people.
How much of each tray would I need of the following:
Lemon Chicken
Sausage and Peppers
Penne Vodka (lbs)
Green Beans
Salad
Trish
05/20/13
Food for Anniversary party June 15th
Hi Ellen,
I'm getting ready to start placing orders for the food for my parent's 50th anniversary party next month. Can you let me know if my planning is appropriate for about 50 people (roughly half men and half women) Here is what I have on the menu:

We'll have some light refreshments and fruit before the vow renewal ceremony.

After the ceremony I've planned for-
Cheese platter -a couple different varieties of cheeses (just chunks that people can cut themselves to cut down on prep)
Veggies with hummus
Assorted crackers
Shrimp cocktail

For lunch:
Tray of pasta with sauce (9x12)
Assorted sandwiches and wraps -50?
Baked beans - one full pot
Iceberg wedge salad
Quinoa salad
Fruit salad

Dessert:
small cake for the couple
2 fruit pies - apple & mixed berry (vegan for our healthiest eaters :)
Lemon cupcakes - one dozen
Strawberries Romanoff
Assorted pastries -1 1/2 dozen

I'm not really sure how many sandwiches I need or how much of the salads to make since we have a lot of variety. Sandwiches are being ordered so we won't have to make them and I chose easy salads to make. Any advice you can give would be very much appreciated!
Thanks

Mina
05/20/13
Food planning for 150 people on Memorial Day
Please, can you help me?
I have next Saturday in my home 150 people.
I like to order Penne Vodka, Lasagna Veg, Macaroni Salad, Chicken Frances, Veal Parma, Sausages and Peppers, Chicken nudges, and Garden Salad.
How many full trays I have to order?
I need to do also a sandwich Big, how many feet?
Thanks.
Meena
05/20/13
Food planning for 50 people graduation party
Hi Ellen,
I am planning a graduation party for 50 people. Menu as follows:
Appetizers:
Bacon wrapped dates with cream cheese
Crostini with goat cheese and roasted asparagus
Chicken empanadas
Dinner:
Garlic Bread
Chicken Piccata with artichoke hearts and capers
Oven roasted sweet potato fries
Green Salad
Please help with quantities
ellen
05/21/13
50th anniversary party,Trish,

Cheese platter -a couple different varieties of cheeses (just chunks that people can cut themselves to cut down on prep) 5 pounds assorted cheeses, 3 pounds small crackers
Veggies with hummus-6 pounds veggies

Shrimp cocktail- people love this. For ease of serving and eating consider "shooters" 4 ounce glass, 3 ounce shrimp cocktail- 1 pound per 5

For lunch:
Tray of pasta with sauce (9x12)- only 8 servings- double at least
Assorted sandwiches and wraps -50? OK, but needs some planning- see sandwich page
Baked beans - one full pot??? 1 1/2 gallons
Iceberg wedge salad- requires knife and fork- stick to tossed with blue cheese, bacon crumbles, and dressings on the side; 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page
Quinoa salad-1 gallon

Fruit salad- suggest fruit trays instead, prettier, hold better and leftovers are more usable

Dessert:
small cake for the couple-OK
Now the difficulty with the rest is that people like to try a little of everything, here are some tweaks:

2 fruit pies - apple & mixed berry (vegan for our healthiest eaters :) do tiny tarts, 24 of each
Lemon cupcakes - one dozen- do minimuffin size, at least 36
Strawberries Romanoff- everyone will want some- about at least a gallon
Assorted pastries -1 1/2 dozen get tiny, such as eclairs, 1 per person

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, a dime or quarter per person, to support this site.

ellen
05/21/13
Renee, asked to plan a Teacher and Staff Luncheon for 85 people.
How much of each tray would I need of the following:
Lemon Chicken- 10 per half tray- about 7
Sausage and Peppers- 10 per half tray- 3
Penne Vodka (lbs)- 10 pounds dry pasta
Green Beans- 15 per half tray- 7
Salad- 9 per 1/2 tray- 10
ellen
05/21/13
Mina, 150 people. Full trays. This is what I would do.
Penne Vodka, 6 full
Lasagna Veg, 4 full

Chicken Frances, 4 full
Veal Parma, 3 full- tell them you want small slices
Sausages and Peppers, 2-3 full
Chicken nuggets, 1 full

Macaroni Salad, 5 gallons; might do potato, since you have all the pasta already
Garden Salad, cheap and easy to do yourself, do 1 1/2 times the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page

I need to do also a sandwich Big, how many feet?
6 foot serves 30, 1 is plenty

Have fun. If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, a dime or quarter per person, to support this site.

Hannan
05/21/13
Food planning for 50 people
Graduation party for 50.
Menu:
Salmon
Flank steak
Tomato/Mozz salad
Black bean salad
Green Salad
Fruit Salad
How much of each?
Thanks.
Meena
05/21/13
Hi Ellen,
Please refer to my question for a graduation party for 50. The event is this week-end so your help is appreciated. Thanks.
ellen
05/21/13
Meena, I did answer but for some reason it did not post. Here it is again:

This is a very nice dinner.
2 of each of these:
Bacon wrapped dates with cream cheese
Crostini with goat cheese and roasted asparagus
Chicken empanadas (Assuming small)
You might add one dip or spread (3 quarts) with 1 pound bread or chips per 12

Dinner:
Garlic Bread 6 pounds
Chicken Piccata with artichoke hearts and capers 1 pound raw chicken per 3 (2 full trays if ordering)
Oven roasted sweet potato fries 1 pound per 4
Green Salad use plan for 100 page

I would add a vegetable that non-chicken eaters could use as an entree, such as an eggplant casserole or broccoli mix- 6-8 quarts.

Hope this helps. If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, a dime per person, to support this site.

ellen
05/21/13
Haman
Graduation party for 50.

Salmon 1 pound per 4 PLUS
Flank steak 2 pounds per 5
Tomato/Mozz salad-5 pounds tomatoes, cheese to your taste, at least 3 pounds
Black bean salad- 1/2 cup per person
Green Salad- 1/2 the amount for 100 from the plan for 100 table
Fruit Salad- do consider a switch to fruit tray- holds better, looks prettier, and the leftovers keep better. Do 1/2 the deluxe tray for 100.

Allie
05/23/13
Food planning for 80 people
I am throwing a party and want to make fruit kabobs. There is 80 people attending and I have NO IDEA how much fruit to buy, what kind of fruit, and even if I should do fruit skewers. Is that too time consuming for the amount of people? Please help its in 3 weeks!
ellen
05/23/13
I do not recommend fruit kabobs for this size group.

Do a fruit tray- 3/4 the deluxe tray for 100 or 3 times the tray for 25 from the fruit tray page.

Anne Delage
05/23/13
Food planning for 60 people tomorrow help please
How many salmon fillets (Grams) would I need for 60 people - one day sale only tomorrow so need to buy...menu consists of 3 salads, baby potatoes, chicken & salmon. Appes prior during cocktail hour with awonderful bon bon cake with coffee. Thank you and please answer as soon as possible.
Thank you ladies. Many hugs for your input.
ellen
05/23/13
As second dish, 1 kg per 8 people.
Colleen
05/24/13
Hello im planning my daughters first birthday, invite says 12-4 food served at 1, so should i have a few appetizers? My bf says to tone it down bc i always cook way to much but this is the most i cooked for,there will be about thirty
to thirty five adults and about 8 children 2-12yr,
i have 10 lbs beef, 24 sausage ill cut in half, 48 piece fried chicken and my bf wants meatballs but they come in sets of fifty but that seems like crazy amount of meat, Fifty rolls i will cut in half, friends will be coming after the party and hanging out prob eating all nite, it always seems nobody touches the sides i waste so many sides all the time and my effort so im making 1 half tray of potato casrole,1 half tray warm pasta, 2 big cans baked beans and a few cans of corn, do you have any sugestions its outside and i have all the warming trays, plus there will be birthday cake and other deserts, sorry to bother you thank you
ellen
05/24/13
This needs at most 40 people's worth of food- I would tweak your amounts

10 lbs beef, what for? if sandwiches, 7-8 is enough
24 sausage cut in half, 8 pounds plenty
48 piece fried chicken, 40 is the most you need, 30 would probably do
meatballs- OK to add a pack for the BF

add sandwich condiments, 1/3 the amount for 100 on the sandwich page

50 rolls split- don't do this, get 80 smaller ones

1 half tray of potato casserole,
1 half tray warm pasta,
2 big cans baked beans, only
cans of corn, 2 only

This could do with fruit trays as a side or appetizer- see the fruit tray page

Lisa
05/24/13
Hi. I've been scouring your site and still not sure what to do. I've never hosted even a small party. Now we're helping our son with a stag-n-drag that we're hoping will be for 100-150 people. Having meatballs, sausage with peppers and onions, rigatoni, hot dogs, antipasto salad, scallop potatoes, baked beans, veggie/relish tray along with chips, pretzels and dip. Not sure how much we need since we're having a few different mains. Also, how many keiser rolls for the meatballs/sausage if we have tha rigatoni? Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks
katie
05/24/13
I am throwing my sister's bridal shower in my parents backyard for 50 women at 1:00. We plan to have some light picking foods for when people arrive such as chips/dip, veggie platter, cheese/crackers, spinach dip. We also plan to order some trays of food for lunch. We were thinking one chicken and mushroom in a brown sauce, one pasta either penne a la vodka or baked ziti and then maybe something like eggplant. What do you think? How much do we need for fifty people? We will also have a fruit salad, cake and a few other desserts.
katie
05/24/13
opps sorry we will also have a tossed salad with lunch. How much of that do we need?
ellen
05/25/13
OK, Lisa, 3 deep breaths and you can do this. Since you have not done it before, you may want to purchase some items, rather than making everything yourself, which is why G-d invented Costco. I would tweak the menu as suggested below. If you really think there might be 150, you need to plan enough food for 150, which is very different from 100; you will probably need a second refrigerator to hold everything, it is around 225 pounds of food.

meatballs, 1 pound per 4- 3 cups sauce per 2 pounds
sausage with peppers and onions, 1 pound sausage per 5, equal weight mixed veggies
hot dogs, skip completely with the sausage-
kaiser rolls, 1 per person, could also use hoagie rolls or bolillos
sandwich trimmings- see the sandwich page, do for 100
Add 10 pounds deli sliced cheese for sandwiches and appetizers
Add 2 gallons cole slaw

antipasto salad, see the antipasto tray and veggies on this site
Do 2 gallons antipasto veggies
Do 2-3 antipasto meat platters

rigatoni, 10 pounds dry, 1 quart sauce per pound
scallop potatoes, 35 pounds raw potatoes
baked beans, 6 #10 cans or 10 pounds dry. Do some meatless for the vegetarians in the crowd, there will be some.

veggie/relish tray along with chips, Do 2 classic relish trays and do veggie tray for 50 from the veggie tray page
pretzels- 9 pounds
dip- 1 cup per 5.

Hope this helps. If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, a dime per person, to support this site.

ellen
05/25/13
Katie, 50 women will arrive hungry at 1 pm, so the nibble table is a very good idea. A full tray (12x20x2) is only 20 servings, so I think you are short for lunch. My suggestions below.

chips/dip, 3 pounds chips, 1 cup per 6 dip
veggie platter, suggest instead the classic relish tray on the veggie tray page
cheese, 3-4 pounds thin slice or cubes
crackers, 3 pounds
spinach dip, 1 cup per 4, 3 1/2 pounds bread.

one chicken and mushroom in a brown sauce, you need 50 servings- that is 2 full trays
one pasta either penne a la vodka or baked ziti- 2 full trays
eggplant- 1 1/2 full tray.

tossed salad- 1/2 salad, plan for 100 list

fruit salad, suggest fruit tray instead, 1/2 deluxe tray for 100

cake- 2 layer half sheet serves 50
few other desserts- small bite size ones, 1 each of up to 3.

Hope this helps. If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, a dime per person, to support this site.

Colleen
05/25/13
ellen,
your so helpful thank you so much, i'll let you know how the party goes
Kristen
05/29/13
Food planning for 200 people
I am getting married in a week and decided to fo the ring bolgna and cheese and crackers. How much of each should i plan to have?
ellen
05/29/13
1 pound each per 10
Adyna
05/29/13
Food planning for 60 adults 20 kids
I am planning a toddler's birthday from 2pm-4pm so its not at a meal time so I'm not sure how much food to provide. 60 adults and 20 kids under 5. I'm not sure if I am planning too many food items or how much of each item.

Bulgogi flavored meatballs
Potstickers, vegetarian
Potstickers, pork
Kimbap (Korean style sushi rolls, about 7 or 8 pieces per roll)
Korean noodles, vegetarian/vegan (kind of like Chinese chowmein)
Vegetable platter
Fruit platter

Plus the birthday cake.

Thank you!
Adyna

ellen
05/29/13
Definitely too much. Skip the noodles entirely. The rest are a nice combo-about 3 meatballs per person, 3 potsticker (divide by meat and vegetable eaters), 1/2 roll.

Vegetable platter, see the veggie tray page, do for 50

Fruit platter, see the fruit tray page, do about 1/2 the deluxe fruit tray for 100.

Plan on

Kristen
05/30/13
Thank you. I think 20lb should be 10lb ring bologna 5ib each cheese and crackers? To have a bit more left over for later should i add 10lb more?
ellen
05/30/13
Kristen for this size group, 200, these would be the minimum I would order for appetizers for no planned leftovers. If you want leftovers add more.

ring bologna 14-18 pounds
cheese 20 pounds
crackers 14 pounds

Claudia
06/03/13
Food planning for 40 people tomorrow help please
Hi,
I need helo I have my bbyshower this saturday but Im not sure how much meat or hommie I need to make pozole for a group of 40people. What kind of meat should I get?

Please help.

ellen
06/03/13
Pozole, which means "foamy"; variant spellings: pozolé, pozolli,or more commonly in the U.S. - posole is a traditional pre-Columbian soup or stew from Mexico, which once had ritual significance. Wikipedia

Below is the link to a reliable recipe for pozole. You need to double it for 40 people. It's pork.

www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/posole_rojo/

It is fine to make the day before.

ellen
06/03/13
By the way, Claudia, you could triple the recipe if it is the main course...
Karen
06/07/13
I hosting a Graduation party for my daughter next week. I have about 55 people. Please let me know if you think I have enough food. I'm making 12 lbs. Of sausage & peppers with onions with 8 loaves of Italian bread, 3 lbs. Rigatoni with Broccoli, 3 lbs. Bowties with fresh tomato & basil sauce, 10 lbs. Pulled pork with 30 slider rolls, 11 lbs. Chicken cutlets with vinegar peppers, 4 cups rice (uncooked),& a very large salad. For dessert , 2 trays of cookies, 3 different cakes, a large fruit platter & 2 batches of brownies. Please advise me whether I need in increase or decrease my menu. Thank you, Karen
maddy
06/07/13
Food planning for 40 people..graduation party
i would like to make chicken francese, meatballs, sausage and peppers, penne vodka,lasagne,cold cut platter,tossed salad,bean salad, rolls,fruit tray and cake.
maddy
06/07/13
Food planning for 40 people graduation party
can u give me the breakdown of how much of everything i need? please.
ellen
06/07/13
Karen, This is plenty, you may have some meat left. You want to cut the brownies and make the cookies small, so there is one apiece. You might want to add some cheese to the rigatoni so the people who don't eat meat can use it as an entree.
ellen
06/07/13
Maddy, this is a lot of entrees per 40 people

chicken francese, 1 pound raw per 4
meatballs, 1 pound raw per 5
sausage and peppers, 1 pound sausage per 6, equal amount veggies
lasagne, 3 pans, consider at least 1 vegetarian
cold cut platter- not needed, I would skip

penne vodka, 3 pounds dry pasta

tossed salad, See plan for 100, use a little less than 1/2
bean salad, 1 gallon

rolls, 4 pounds

fruit tray, use a little less than 1/2 the deluxe tray for 100

cake,

ellen
06/07/13
Cake- a sheet cake serves 50, you may want a 2 layer half sheet with some left
Shelly
06/11/13
I am planning to feed 50 people burgers, beans, pasta salad, and a dessert. How much of each of these things should I have?
ellen
06/13/13
For parties you use 1 pound raw beef per 3 patties. Burgers, 1 per person plus: if lots of guys or teens, count 1.5 per person. If adults mixed, 4 patties per 3 people.

Rolls per patty, fixings, 1/2 of amounts for 100 on the sandwich page

2 gallons beans, some left
2 gallons pasta salad
4-5 9x13 desserts, or see half of any of the dessert plans for 100

Vonda
06/13/13
Food planning for 75 people each day
Our youth are going to a week camp and I'm in charge of buying the food. We are serving sandwiches for lunch (ham & cheese, turkey & cheese and bologna) How much bread, meat and cheese should I buy? I'm planning to purchase everything at Sam's Club.
ellen
06/13/13
Vonda, what age kids, how many adults and what else is included in the meal? Is it a day camp or overnight? More info, please.
Christy
06/17/13
manicotti for 150 people
I agreed to make manicotti for a friend's wedding. It will be a spinach, ricotta, and sausage filling, with a tomato and sausage sauce and cheese on top. How much of everything will I need?
Jessica
06/17/13
I am attempting to plan for catering my own wedding to (1) keep costs down and (2) have a unique menu. My fiance and I are having a 50 guest reception and it is a semi-formal affair that we want to be country comfortable with class. We do not care for any of the local catered foods and are hoping to serve a menu of family favorites. I do need advice on quantities, best combination, the best way to prepare ahead, and transport the food ready to transfer to chafing dishes when we get on site as there is not a kitchen at the venue. Below are our favorite things:

Fried Fish
Fried Alligator
Brisket
Chicken/Rice
Mac/Cheese
Sweet Potatoes
Black Eyed Peas
Green Bean Casserole
Coleslaw
Pasta Salad
Hush Puppies
Corn Fritters
Cheese Biscuits

Your ideas, thoughts, advice? Can you help!?

ellen
06/18/13
Hi, Jessica,

The thing is, fried (especially coated meats) does not transport and hold well, no getting around it. Everything else looks do-able.

Best transport are large plastic catering cases called cambros. They can be rented. If they are pre-warmed and the food is hot going in, it will hold up to 6 hours. Here is their website:

www.cambro.com/

What you need to add to this menu is ready to serve in a flash appetizers to put out while your guests are waiting for the photos and the dinner to be laid out. More about that later.

For 50 people, a family style table service is a feasible alternative to a buffet. Have you though about how you want to serve?

You need about 6 people not members of the wedding party to set up the venue, set out the food, and clean up. Churches, diners that close after lunch, colleges, are places to find folks with some experience.

Fried Fish
Fried Alligator
Sadly, skip- they don't transport. Would you consider shrimp cocktail or crab or shrimp remoulade?

Brisket- 1/2 pound raw per person
Chicken/Rice- 1 piece of chicken per person, about 3 pounds of rice
Mac/Cheese-3 pounds dry, 1 quart sauce per pound
Sweet Potatoes- about 16 pounds

Black Eyed Peas- about 9 pounds shelled
Green Bean Casserole- 1 recipe of Ellen's better green bean casserole, on the big pots page

Coleslaw- 6 quarts
Pasta Salad- 2 gallons (about 3 pounds dry pasta)

In bread baskets on table
Hush Puppies- skip if no fish or alligator
Corn Fritters- 2 per person
Cheese Biscuits- 2 per person

For this menu, for appetizers, how about deviled eggs, cheese logs and pimiento cheese (about 5 pounds) with crackers (about 3 pounds), and a classic relish tray (see the veggie tray page)?

You can write back, please start a new thread, and if this saves you time, trouble or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime or a quarter per person, to support this site.

Kay
06/19/13
Having a smaller gathering for lunch (maybe 12-14 guests). Planning to serve Chicken Sonora and Lasagne with garlic bread, fruit salad and a few appetizers (brie, smoked salmon, olive sampler) while the guests arrive.

Should I serve a tossed green salad or a vegetable tray with the meal?

Any other suggestions? Thank you!

ellen
06/19/13
With this meal, I would serve a green salad and either broccoli or roasted mixed vegetables.
Rina
06/19/13
Im having a farewell party with 50 guests... wings, lasagna, rice & beans, roast pork. How much should I have of everything?
ellen
06/19/13
Rina. what else is on the menu, and what are the appetizers?
Melissa
06/25/13
Graduation Party
I am inviting 70 people to a graduation party in two weeks. I wanted to make Pulled pork, Sausage and Peppers, baked ziti, hot dogs and chicken fingers for the kids. Then I was going to order two 6 ft heros and get macaroni, potato, pasta salad, cole slaw and green salad and have rolls. How much do you think I need of each?
Georgina Lobo
06/25/13
Hi We are organising a disco for about 100 people and will be serving hotdogs, as a light snack alongside our bar. As many of the kids will be little, we wanted to provide something more nutritious and so were going to serve hummus with cucumber sticks. How much hummus would you allow per child (and possibly a few adults too?). thanks very much
ellen
06/25/13
Melissa, 2 standard 6 foot heroes is 50-60 servings! I suggest you skip the hot dogs (not good for kids, anyway) and have chicken tenders or chicken legs and either sausage and peppers and or pulled pork, but not both. If you write back when you decide, I will help with the amounts, but do start a new thread!
For 70 people:

baked ziti, 5 pounds dry

potato salad, 2 gallons
macaroni, pasta salad, with the ziti, have only 1, 3 pounds dry pasta
cole slaw, 1 1/2 gallons
green salad, 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page
rolls- depends on what you decide about the meats- let me know

ellen
06/25/13
Georgina, if you have hotdogs, the kids will eat them! May I suggest instead, meatballs- get the 1/2 ounce size, frozen, 10 pounds serves 100, and you can use a nice tomatoey veggie filled sauce with toothpicks- everybody loves meatball! You can even get little slider buns to make mini meatball subs, if you like.

Hummus, 2 tablespoons per kid, but break down and get pita chips if you want it to get eaten- 1 ounce per kid. Grown ups eat it too, maybe 1-2 ounces veggies per person, not just cukes, and allow 1 cup per 5 for the estimated adults.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation to support the site.

Linda
07/06/13
Food planning for 35 people on Wednesday
Having a bridal shower on Wednesday for 35 people. We are planning on a lasagna, veggie lasagna, two chicken and rice 9 x 13 casseroles, 7 lbs. meatballs, tossed salad, and 6 appetizers, rolls and butter. Does this sound like it's enough or is it too much? What would you suggest? How many pkgs of Romaine (3 small heads in pkg)should I get if that is the only lettuce I'm using? Thank you!!!
ellen
07/06/13
Enough food, I would consider one more lasagna, if they are the size that makes 8-10 servings. Maybe add a veg? 7 pounds ready to cook.

4 packages Romaine, unless you add a veg.

Sue
07/13/13
Iam having a party for 55 People just want to make sure I have enough food. 40 pounds of chicken wings, 10 pounds potato salad, 10 pounds of sausage & peppers, 10 mac & cheese, 10 pasta salad, 10 pounds baked beans, Iam also having popcorn & peanuts. Do you think I have enough food
ellen
07/15/13
You will have leftover wings! 30 pounds wings plenty.

The other items you might want to tweak. For 50 people, this is what I would do:

10 pounds potato salad, I usually do 2 gallons (about 16 pounds
10 pounds of sausage & peppers, I would do 10 pounds sausage and then add the veggies
10 mac & cheese, OK
10 pasta salad, OK
10 pounds baked beans, OK

This menu could do with a fruit tray or a green something- bi green salad, broccoli, green beans, etc; about 10 pounds.

Leticia
07/20/13
I'm making carne guisada tomorrow for a baptismal how many piunds of stew meat do I need??
ellen
07/20/13
Assuming you are asking for 50 people, about 20 pounds.
rich
07/24/13
planning a surprise 65th b-day party for mom for 50-60 people. suggested items follows.
pulled pork
antipasta salad
bbq baked beans
shrimp salad
fruit tray
cheese and crackers
feta salad
potato salad
hamburgers and hot dogs

party starts around 1 pm and will go until evening. Any help on how much to buy/lbs. will be greatly appreciated. Thanks

ellen
07/24/13
Plan for 60 and you won't run out.

For age group, consider replacing burgers and dogs with grilled or baked chicken quarters. Actually easier.

pulled pork- 20 pounds ready to eat
hamburgers and hot dogs- 30 and 40, or about 8 chickens
See the sandwich page for condiments and sliced onions

bbq baked beans- 2 gallons

antipasta salad- see the antipasto tray on this site
feta salad- do you mean Greek? See the Greek village salad under salads that hold
potato salad- 25 pounds raw potatoes

Munchy table

shrimp salad- this is SO popular, at least 1 pound per 5
fruit tray- do 2/3 of a deluxe tray, or a few pineapple trays from the fruit tray page
cheese and crackers- 6 pounds sliced/cubed, 3-4 pounds crackers

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site.

About desserts-
add dinner level coffee with the cake, see the beverage planning page
Take a look at the dessert planning page, consider adding some dessert buffet type items, if you plan to go long after supper-

Rachael
07/25/13
I am planning a lunch for after a baptism for approx. 50 people.
We are doing a spit roast(a friend is supervising cooking while we are out so it is nearly ready when we get back)
I just don't know how much meat to order
The planned menu is
Starters: antipasto platters (so people can mingle and nibble until ALL of the hot food is ready to go)

lamb and beef
Roast veg
Salad (2 kinds)
Bread and condiments
and to follow
Mixed cakes/slices
Fruit Platter
Cheese Plate

ellen
07/25/13
A wonderful occasion.

Starters:

antipasto platters (so people can mingle and nibble until ALL of the hot food is ready to go)
Great! On this page there are marinated antipasto vegetables and also antipasto platters, one half way down, one at the bottom.

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/appetiz2.html

I would put the 2 items below with this.
Fruit Platter- do 1/2 the deluxe platter on the fruit tray page
Cheese Plate- 8 pounds assorted, some can be spreads or logs, and 3 pounds crackers- hummus would be a terrific addition, a quart or two

lamb and beef- 20 pounds raw boneless beef,10-12 lamb (or reverse if these are serious lamb eaters)
Roast veg- 12 pounds
Salad (2 kinds)- one needs to be starchy, see the plan for 100 tables and do 1/2 of each type- also see the salads that hold page and look at the Greek village salad
Bread and condiments- about 8 pounds breads

Mixed cakes/slices- a full sheet cake or a two layer half sheet cake

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, consider a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per person, to support the site.

Tammy
07/28/13
Planning party for around 5o people . We are having Navahoe taco's wondering about how much meat and cheese and tomatoes and onions to get?
ellen
07/28/13
Use 1/2 the amount for regular tacos for 100 on the taco bar page, maybe add a bit more meat, since they are a little heavier on meat than a traditional TexMex taco.
Heather
07/30/13
I am catering a rehearsal dinner for 50-60 people. I am making grilled chicken, mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, homemade yeast rolls, and a salad. How much of each should I prepare? From what I hear, they want large portions. Thanks!
Kim
08/05/13
Food planning for 40 adults and 25 children
Hello

I am planning a 1yr Birthday party. Approx 40 adults and 25 children. Adult food selection : sausage and pepper (optional hoagie rolls . A pasta dish (penne alla vodka or baked ziti) not sure if those selection works? Children food chicken tenders with mac n cheese. How much should I prepare? Thanks in advance>> open for other food selection. Thanks!

ellen
08/05/13
Heather, count this as 3/4 of 100. 2 rolls each, as homemade bread is popular. Chicken per the plan for 100 page, see the discussion on how much of what kinds of pieces. 5 pounds dry pasta plus sauce and cheese. 25 pounds potatoes.
ellen
08/05/13
Hi, Kim,

Count kids 12 or over as adults, others as 1/2 adult each.

Adults will eat the chicken, kids will eat the sausages, too. How about make it easy on yourself and do just one pasta dish everyone will like- Maybe a penne alfredo? 5 pounds past, 1 quart sauce per pound.

18 pounds sausage, equal veggies.10 pounds chicken tenders.

I would definitely add fruit trays, see the fruit tray page.

Jessi
08/08/13
Low Country Boil for 25
We are planning a casul family event and looking to host a Fish Fry and Low Country Boil (fryer and boiling pot on site). It will be in the evening @ 7:30pm and will have an attendance of 25 guests. Do you have advice on quantities of each ingredient, sides, and possible presentation/serving suggestions?

We want to keep it simple and fun.

ellen
08/08/13
I don't generally think of frying this much fish as fun- have you done it before?

Allow about 1 pound of fish for every 4 people. Coating of choice. Maybe hush puppies, if someone actually likes to fry...

For the low country boil,
shrimp- at least 1 pound per 4 and 1 pound for 3 would not be too much, budget permitting.
At least 1/2 crab per person if you do crab
2 pounds sausage and 4 pounds potatoes per 10-12.
1/2 ear corn per person- a little more if kids are coming.
1 cup cocktail sauce per 5.
Seasoning to taste

Good French bread, about 4 loaves- pound of butter

Slaw, 3-4 quarts plenty

Potato salad? Wonderful recipes on this site- 1 gallon, start with about 8 pounds potatoes

For ease, do a cold bean salad, marinated antipasto, etc, rather than hot beans, 3 quarts

A fruit tray with watermelon would be good with this, or just a couple of icy cold watermelons.

Beverage ideas, see the beverage planning page. Beer drinkers tend to drink about 4 each.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation to support the site.

Big Chuck
08/13/13
I'm having a Family Gathering with about 50 people. I was wondering will this be enough food ?
4-Slab of ribs
4lbs- brisket
4lbs-pulled pork
4lbs-sausages
3qts of mash potatoe
3qts of beans
6 roasted chickens
3qts of potatoe salad
3qts of baked beans
60 enchiladas(chicken,cheese,beef)
5lbs of small meatballs
salad
fruit
Large pan of cobbler
and 2 pies .
I'm not a expert just looking for some food guidance !! Thanks for your Time !!
ellen
08/13/13
50 people- for one meal, looks like you have more meat than you need (even if these are raw weights), and a bit short on sides.

4-Slab of ribs- you need at least 1 rib per person
4lbs- brisket
4lbs-pulled pork
6 roasted chickens
4lbs-sausages
60 enchiladas(chicken,cheese,beef)
5lbs of small meatballs
I would skip either the pulled pork or the sausages, or both, you would still have plenty

3qts of mash potato- 6 quarts
3qts of beans-
3qts of baked beans- you need a total of at least 2 gallons

3qts of potatoe salad- 1 1/2-2 gallons

salad- use 1/2 of plan for 100

fruit- 1/2 deluxe tray for 100, or 2 simple trays for 25

Large pan of cobbler- 3-4 9x13 pans
and 2 pies- at least 3, 4 if 2 flavors

If this saves you time, trouble or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site, thanks.

Linda Johnson
08/15/13
Food planning for 30 people tomorrow help please
I'm making chicken salad for 30 people. How much will I need to make. I'm using breasts> Will I need one breast per person?
ellen
08/15/13
You need about 1 pound raw boneless per 4 people.

If this saves you time, trouble or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site, thanks.

wendy simonds
08/20/13
Having a baby shower 50 people. I plan to have finger sandwiches, kielbasa, ziti with meat sauce, meatballs,toss salad how much of each do I make
ellen
08/20/13
Hi, Wendy,

Would you consider trimming one item? This is so many entrees for 50 people that you will have to have leftovers in order to make sure people get their first choice.

finger sandwiches, Use thin sliced bread, do 1 sandwich (it cuts into 3-4 pieces) per person. Some should be meatless, you don't have other choices for non-meat eaters.

kielbasa,
meatballs
Do one or the other, not both, about 7 pounds

ziti with meat sauce, since you have the meatballs, or sausages, consider doing this meatless, so everyone can have some. 4 pounds dry pasta, 1 quart sauce per pound

toss salad- use 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page

I would definitely add a fruit tray (see the fruit tray page)and possibly a classic relish tray (see the veggie tray page) or a marinated veg/ gardiniera tray.

If this saves you time, trouble or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support the site, thanks.

Nancy
08/28/13
Food planning for 80-100 people
I am planning a reception following my son's Eagle ceremony which starts at 430pm and should last an hour. I am planning to have the following items and would like to know how much I should make of each:

Meatballs, Pulled Pork BBQ, Coleslaw, Macaroni and Cheese, Chips and Onion Dip, Vegetable Tray with Ranch Dressing, and potato salad.

For dessert we are having a full or half sheet cake and chocolate chip cookies.

Beverages will be punch, water, and tea or lemonade.

Thank you so much with your help of quantities.

ellen
08/28/13
Everyone will arrive hungry and eat like starving persons, which I guess Eagle Scouts often are.

Meatballs, 1 pound per 4 PLUS
Pulled Pork BBQ, 1 pound ready to serve per 5
I would definitely serve crusty rolls with this that could be used as sandwiches, and the sandwich fixings as discussed on my sandwich page. 120 to 150 rolls

Coleslaw, usually 2 1/2 gallons per 100
potato salad, 4 gallons per 100

Macaroni and Cheese, very popular, 1 pound pasta per 10, 1 quart sauce and 1/2 to 1 pound cheese per pound of pasta

Chips and Onion Dip, 1 pound chips per 12, 1 cup dip per 6
Vegetable Tray with Ranch Dressing, use the veggie tray page, but fruit trays would be prettier and more popular, see the fruit tray page

For dessert we are having a full or half sheet cake - full sheet cake only cuts 50 servings. You might do a 2 layer and skip the cookies.

If you do do cookies,do at least 3 2" per person

The adults would be grateful for dinner level coffee, see the beverage planning page.
and chocolate chip cookies.

Lynda Ferrara
09/01/13
House warming party
Hi Ellen,

I'm having 80 people over for our house warming party in our backyard.
We are having mixed kebab meat in rolls, served with tzatziki, cut onion, cut tomato, cheese and sweet chilli sauce.

I need to know how much of each I need.

Also should I make up sandwiches for later in the night? Party starts at 6pm, food served at 6:30pm. Party finishes whenever really.

Various salads are being brought by other guests.

Desert will be cupcakes, cake and ice cream with various toppings.

Some alcohol will be provided.

Do I need more snacks????

Thanks so much in advance, I need all the help I can get :)

ellen
09/01/13
Food planning for 80 people open house
80 people

mixed kebab meat-Star with 1 pound raw boneless per 3
in roll, 2 ounces per person- baguettes would be excellent for this
served with tzatziki, 1 cup per 4
cut onion, about 4 pounds if fine cut, more if coarse or grilled
cut tomato, 6 pounds
cheese, feta?, 1 pound per 8
sweet chilli sauce, new one on me, about 1 cup per 8 (1 ounce each).

I would also provide a tabouli dish or salad, or a baked pilaf as a filler side dish- 5 pounds grain.

Suggest dinner level coffee with dessert, see beverage planning page. Especially with alcohol being served.

Rather than more sandwiches later, how about a big platter of hummus with pita or pita chips and 2 large cans of dolmades (60 per can)?

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per person, to support this site, Thanks.
If this saves you to

kathy
09/03/13
I am planning a wedding reception for 50 people in a few weeks. We have people coming from as far as South Korea and want to do a tradition Thanksgiving dinner. How much turkey breast would I need? Potatoes? Thanks, Kathy
ellen
09/03/13
The entire top section of the Big Pots page is devoted to the traditional Thanksgiving dinner. You want the article on planning and shopping for a community dinner. A pot of plain rice (borrow a steamer/ rice cooker) is never amiss when entertaining Asian Pacific visitors.

Have a happy life.

Amy
09/08/13
birthday party for 60 people
Hi Ellen!
Im planning a lunch birthday party for 60 people.We like meats so i want pretty much meat on the menu.How much should I buy to feed meat and rice lovers like us if I would cook it.Party starts at noon until 3-4 pm.
Beef Stew
Slow Roasted Pork Belly/Porchetta with pan sauce
Spaghetti with meat balls
Chicken breast with mushroom sauce
Mixed Green Salad
Desserts (cupcakes,birthday cake, cookies and there's also fruit trays)
Steamed Rice is a must.
If i would order food, 2 steam table aluminum foil full trays of each would be enough?
Thank you so much in advance Ellen for your help!
ellen
09/09/13
A standard full tray is considered to have about 20 servings, so if you order 8, you will have about 160 entree servings...

What I would do for 60 people is 2 trays of the favorite and 1 of each of the others.

2 trays of salad, 2 trays of some kind of veg and 2-3 of rice (2 is enough with those entrees).

Fruit tray for 50, see the fruit tray page. About 2 cookies each. 1 cupcake or piece of cake each- a half sheet cake serves 25.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site.

Janice
09/18/13
Hi,
A friend asked me to make rice and curry for 100 guests. How much uncooked rice and how much meat will i need.
Thanks so much in advance,
Janice
ellen
09/18/13
12-16 pounds dry rice, about 35 pounds raw boneless meat (it depends on how much and what is added).
Lorrie
09/20/13
I wish I found you earlier! This is my FIRST big dinner I'm trying to pull together. I'm so NeRvOuS! Almost in panic mode :(
I am putting on a dinner for 40-50 people. This is what I bought.
48 chicken breasts
?? Pork Ribs??
55 Corn Cobs (kinda small)
Costco Big Bag of Shrimp
50 Stuffed Potatoes (I'll be making them)
2 broccoli salad mixes
3 Garden Salad mixes
72 buns
1 Huge Veggie tray
1Huge Fruit tray
2 bunt cakes
1 chocolate fudge cake
2 Crab apple Apple Crisps
??? Is this enough Food? Should I add something?? Take away something??
Your help would be greatly appreciated!
tilly
09/20/13
wedding for 120
I am planning for 120. We will have sausage sandwiches with peppers and onions, pulled pork sandwiches, baked mac n cheese, green bean casserole, pierogies, tortellini salad and a fresh salad mix with sides. We will serve cold apps at 3, hot apps at 4:30 and dinner at 5:30. How much uncooked meat should I plan for considering all of the sides and the fact that there are two main meats to choose from?
ellen
09/20/13
Laurie, take deep breaths. You are doing fine; you have plenty of food, in fact you will have some leftovers. Don't know how big a bag of shrimp that is, but if it is less than about 9 pounds, leave it in the freezer- better not to serve than to run out (people are pretty greedy about shrimp), and you still have plenty of food. Ribs-wise, you want about 2 ribs per person, which is in the range of 1/2 pound.

Don't put any meat or bacon on the potatoes, then if you have any vegetarians, the potato can serve as a very adequate entree.

ellen
09/20/13
Hi, Tilly,

I am assuming that all these foods are part of dinner and the appetizers are separate. 120 people.

Be aware that people will at first assume that whatever is offered first is all there is, and thus gobble. If you set up the buffet service table in site, they will be reassured and eat less appetizers.

sausage sandwiches with peppers and onions, pulled pork sandwiches,
Would you consider doing pulled chicken or beef instead? Not everyone eats pork, which is already in the sausages.
Anyway, sausage, 1 pound per 5 plus and equal weight veggies
Second meat, 1 pound raw boneless per 4. Either pork shoulder, chuck roast, or chicken thigh meat.
2 rolls or 4-5 inches baguette per person, which should work out to about 12-14 pounds per 100.

Need pickles, about 1 gallon.
Need thin-sliced onions, about 5 pounds.
Suggest 2 gallons cole slaw. Suggest some extra BBQ sauce at the tables.

baked mac n cheese, 12 pounds dry pasta. 1 quart sauce per pound, 1/2 to 1 pound cheese per pound
green bean casserole, see the Ellen's better green bean casserole on the top of the Big Pots page and do 2 times the recipe. It really is better.

pierogies, size varies so much! Everybody will take some; so go by one small serving per person, whether that is 1 large or 2 smaller pierogies.

tortellini salad- these are usually mixed with an equal amount of veggies, meats and/or cheese cubes. 16-19 ounces frozen or fresh, mixed, makes 8-10 servings.

fresh salad mix- see the salad section at the top of the plan for 100 page

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support the site.

Lorrie
09/21/13
I love you!! Thank You!! I am breathing now.. Maybe a little to fast sat times ;)
ONE more Big Decission!!!
Should I BBQ sauce bothe the ribs and chicken. Or should I BBQ the chicken and do a Garlic & Montreal Dry Rib?
Eeek... Party is tonight ... and can't decide..
Lorrie
09/21/13
Or 1/2 ribs in BBQ and 1/2 Dry?
ellen
09/21/13
BBQ sauce for the chicken, they can dry out. Dry rub for the ribs, with some bbq sauce at serving area or on tables.
Lorrie
09/22/13
:) :D Thank You!!! The dinner and party was a GREAT success! You were right, i had more than enough food and some leftovers. I sure appreciate your help and input. You are on my "favorites" list and I will be finding you again if I have to do something like that again :) :D
jan patterson
09/24/13
Breakfast for 20 people
I'm making breakfast tacos for 20 people.
The burritos are made with breakfast sausage & eggs. Flour tortillas and cheese and hot sauce as additional ingredients. I'm guessing people will eat 2 tacos each. I'm just not sure about the amount of sausage and eggs to get.
Christa
09/24/13
Hi! I am planning the meal for our church's anniversary dinner. We just got our RSVP's back and have 65 definite, but I am planning for a few more just in case people did not RSVP and come. Meat wise I have people making and bringing an 11 lb ham, 6 lb of ribeye steak, some ribs, 2 crockpots of meatballs, and someone baking 20 lbs of chicken quarters and planning to take it off the bone and putting it on a platter. (We are also having mashed potatoes, macaroni & Cheese, corn, green beans, and various salads). Do I have enough meat planned for or would you add another ham? I don't want to run out. Appreciate your help.
ellen
09/24/13
Assuming bulk sausage or chorizo, 3 dozen eggs and 2 pounds sausage if you are making them, or 40 eggs and 2 1/2 to 3 pounds if self serve.
Melissa
09/26/13
Hosting approximately 50 people in two days for a birthday party. I'm making stuffed shells, salad, garlic bread and fettuccine alfredo with brocolli. How much should I make? Thank you!
ellen
09/26/13
Assuming large shells, 2 per person; 4 pounds frettucine. Salad, do 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page. Bread, 6-8 pounds, depends on appetites.
Danielle
10/02/13
Hi! I am catering my daughters first birthday in November. It will be around 50 adults and 10 kids 6-10 years old. I am making everything myself. I was thinking about doing white chicken chili, regular chili, roast beef, and pulled pork. Is that too many main dishes? What should I do about sides? I am trying to keep the cost per person as low as possible. Do you have any other suggestions on cheaper main courses? The party starts at 2 so this would be more of an early dinner I guess. Thanks for the help!
Alla
10/02/13
Food planning for 25 adults
Hi Ellen,
I am planning an anniversary party for 30 people. Below is the main course menu. Can you please recommend appropriate quantaties. I will also be serving hors d'oeuvres prior to that but I got those quantaties down.

Salmon w/ capers & sliced lemon
Spiral Ham
Mussels
Lasagna
Blitva (Swiss Chard & Potatoes Dish)
Tossed Salad (lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, red inions, garlic)
Wild Rice
Italian Bread

Thanks,
Alla

ellen
10/02/13
Christa, hi, apparently you posted while the site was processing 9/24 and I just saw it. That is enough meat, but the person with the ribeyes needs to cut it into strips and mix with veg (mushrooms, bell pepper, onions) as otherwise it will run out entirely. You don't want 50 people sitting around thinking, I didn't get steak.
ellen
10/02/13
First birthday
Danielle, if you need to keep costs down, take roast beef off the menu.
white chicken chili, chili, are tasty, but the kids won't eat it. What about a kid-friendly main meal such as oven BBQ'd or oven fried chicken, mac and cheese or mashed potatoes, maybe green beans or corn? Fruit trays. Rolls. Then you could do a pot of chili for any who would like it, but no sulky kids?

Write back about what you decide and please start a new thread.

ellen
10/02/13
Food planning for 30 adults, anniversary
Alla, there is only one problem with this menu, but it is a big one; with this size crowd, either you need to limit the entrees to 2, or else accept that you will run out of one and have big time leftovers of another.

Mussels- 1 pound frozen per 5
Salmon w/ capers & sliced lemon- 1 pound per 4
Spiral Ham- 1 pound per 5, plus weight of bone.

Lasagna- consider skipping this entirely, if not 2-3 9x13 pans, make one vegetarian in case you have someone who doesn't eat pork or fish/shellfish

Blitva (Swiss Chard & Potatoes Dish)-about 8 pounds each ready to cook chard and potatoes
Wild Rice, 1/2 cup cooked per person- varies by brand- cook up a small amount and measure.

Tossed Salad (lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, garlic) 1/3 the amount for 100 on the salad page

Italian Bread 4 pounds, butter 1 1/2 pounds

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site.

Alla
10/03/13
Food planning for 30 adults, anniversary
Thanks, Ellen! I think I need to keep lasagna, because there will be 4 kids and they will only eat that. I am thinking of eliminating mussels. Do you think Ham is a good idea for an anniversary party? Someone else suggested it thinking it would be easy to prepare, but maybe I should consider steak or sausage instead?
Alla
10/03/13
Food planning for 30 adults, anniversary
If I opted for salmon and steak for the main course, what should be the quantaties for 30 people? I will also do 2 sheets of lasagna (for kids and just in case there are vegetarians).
Thanks!
Alla
ellen
10/03/13
OK to skip mussels. Steak is difficult and expensive for large groups. I would go with something like a steak and peppers, (slices).

Usually with beef and a second meat, party size servings, you want 2 pounds raw beef per 4-5, and 1 pound raw second meat per 4, that would be about 12 pounds beef and 7-8 pounds salmon. You would probably have some salmon left, but it is good cold.

mary
10/06/13
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Rebecca
10/06/13
2pm baby shower for 45 people
Hi Ellen,
We are having a 2pm baby shower for 45 women. I've looked at your website and tried to figure things and am not sure if this is too much food or just right...
Squash soup 8 oz per person (360oz)
Mini Croissant sandwiches (turkey or ham) 60
Appetizer meatballs (5/8 oz) 250 count
Apple tray with caramel dip 30 sliced apples
Hot artichoke/spinach dip with cracker/bread
1/4 cup per person 5 crackers/bread each?
Veggie tray for 50
40 Sugar Cookies
40 brownies
Chocolate Fountain (5 lbs chocolate and 6 dipping items per person)
Thanks so much for your help for those of us who are just uncertain!
Denise
10/08/13
50th Anniversary Party for Parents
My sister-in-law and I am cooking for my parent's anniversary. We were planning to do baked ziti, pasta bolognese, roast chicken parts and sausage and peppers. I have cooked for parties before but never this large. Can you help with quantities? Thanks!
ellen
10/08/13
Food planning for 45 people tomorrow help please
Rebecca,

Squash soup 8 oz per person (360oz)
Mini Croissant sandwiches (turkey or ham) 60- OK
have 6-8 cheese only for non-meat eaters
Appetizer meatballs (5/8 oz) 250 count- 200 plenty
Apple tray with caramel dip 30 sliced apples- too much, 3 ounces apple per person
Hot artichoke/spinach dip with cracker/bread
1/4 cup per person 5 crackers/bread each? OK
Veggie tray for 50 OK, could do classic relish tray from veggie page
40 Sugar Cookies
40 brownies- I would do 2 small per person, rather than 1 larger
Chocolate Fountain (5 lbs chocolate and 6 dipping items per person)-, some left, fine

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site.

ellen
10/08/13
Denise, you don't say how many, so I assume, 50.

baked ziti,
pasta bolognese,
You want a total of 6 pounds pasta, divide, according to local taste.

roast chicken parts, 1 piece per person (a quarter is 2 pieces)
sausage and peppers, sausage, 1 pound per 5, equal weight veggies.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site.

Denise
10/08/13
Thanks for the info Ellen and it is for 50 people. How much meat would you suggest I get for the bolognese?
ellen
10/08/13
1 pound per each 2 quarts.
Stephanie
10/09/13
Food planning for 40 people
I am planning on serving turkey and ham along with mashed potatoes, dressing, gravy, green beans and rolls. How much of each will I need?
ellen
10/09/13
Go to the planning and shopping for large community meals at the top of the Big Pots page. This specific meal is covered in detail.
krisin
10/15/13
Serving grilled cheese for a 1st birthday, for 45-50 people...how much bread and cheese should I buy?
kristin
10/15/13
And what cheese is the best to use for kids and adults?
ellen
10/15/13
April is grilled cheese sandwich month.

Here are great articles on the perfect grilled cheese:
www.closetcooking.com/2011/10/perfect-grilled-cheese-sandwich.html
www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/27/perfect-grilled-cheese-formula_n_3824935.html

2 ounces of cheese per sandwich and 2 pieces of bread- allow 1 per kid and 1 1/2 for adults.

Use a warm, not hot, griddle. Use a 200 degree oven to keep warm or to soften cheese. Cooking time depends on the cheese. American cheese slices will take less time to melt than harder cheese like cheddar, figure a minute or two on each side.
Cover, not tightly, to generate more heat to melt cheese, if you like it a bit soft.

The cheese
The kids will like a thick slice of American cheese
Dry, crumbly, fresh cheeses like goat cheese won't melt properly. Ditto for overly aged cheeses like a parmesan or hard Pecorino. For the true classic flavor, nothing is better than ultra-gooey, not-too-sharp American cheese.
For grown ups, a young cheddar, jack, gouda, Swiss-style cheeses like Gruyère (or its French cousin Comté), havarti, or young Italian and French cheeses like young Fontina, Tallegio, or Brie are great options.
The three optional add-ons are, thinly sliced tomato, very crisp bacon, or fine tuna salad for a tuna melt.
Butter the bread, not the pan, and cover the whole slice. You can also use mayonaisse instead on the outside of the sandwich, this is a standard restaurant trick.

Enjoy.

ellen
10/15/13
By the way, don't forget an assortment of great pickles and olives.
ellen
10/15/13
It occurred to me that if you are planning to cook them all yourself, more or less all at once, you might want to know about this method: Start trays of sandwiches in the oven, open-faced, then finish in a skillet. You'll get ooey, gooey cheese all the way through, plus nice and crispy toast.
kristin
10/15/13
so dont toast the bread first just put bread and cheese in oven first then on skillet?
Kathy
10/16/13
Food planning for 72 Sunday buffet
Garden Club dinner for 72; many older light eaters

Appletizers: Gougere, Roasted Shrimp Cocktail, soup shooters

Stuffed pork loin, scalloped potatoes, roasted vegetables

Apple crisp with vanilla ice cream

12 - 14 lbs shrimp, 3 gougere per person, 1 soup shooter pp

I'm thinking of ordering 20 lb of pork loin which will be butterflied and stuffed with prosciutto, spinach and mozerella. How many 10 x 13 pans of potatoes and how many lbs of vegetables (tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, cauliflower, green beans, carrots)?

We have 7 10 x 13 of apple crisp coming. Enough?

ellen
10/16/13
Kristin, since you will be making 50+ sandwiches and assuming you don't have a commercial grill to that holds 24 at a time, you want a way to both get a head start and to hold as cooked. That is the oven at around 200-250. Make sure the bread is well-buttered/mayo'd on the outside before you put the raw sandwiches in the oven.
ellen
10/16/13
Kathy, what an attractive menu.

I would probably do at least 30 pounds of pork loin, and have someone serve the first round. Remember that raw meat shrinks 1/4 to 1/3.

You need 7 pans of potatoes, and about 20 pounds of mixed veggies.

Dawn
10/17/13
Planning 50th Anniversary Party - from 2-5 p.m.
Hi Ellen! I just stumbled upon this site and THANK YOU for having it!

We are planning a 50th Anniversary party for my parents. It's next week. 80 people have rsvp'd (majority adults). Because it's on a Sunday from 2-5 p.m. we assumed we wouldn't need to have a full meal. Here's what I'm planning:

Spinach dip in bread bowl(s)(with bread pieces to dip)
Onion dip in bread bowl(s)(with bread pieces to dip
Salami/Cream Cheese rolls
Cocktail meatballs
Vegetable Trays with ranch dip (Carrots, Celery, Cherry Tomatoes, broccoli)
Cheese with crackers
Pickles & Olives

For dessert, I'm making a 3-tier cake (14", 10", 6"), and others are bringing cake balls, fudge and cookies.

We cannot have alcohol at the venue, so I'm planning soda, water, and 2 punches (one sugar free, one regular).

Will we REALLY need 100 pounds of ice?
Also, I'm not sure how much of each item to buy.

Also, Is this a lousy menu?

ellen
10/17/13
A very happy day.

Many of your guests will be in the senior range, I suggest a few tweaks for the menu.

Spinach dip in bread bowl(s)(with bread pieces to dip)- OK
Onion dip in bread bowl(s)(with bread pieces to dip- OK
1/4 cup of each per person, 2 ounces bread per person

Salami/Cream Cheese rolls- 2 per person
Cocktail meatballs- 1 pound per 5-6
Vegetable Trays with ranch dip (Carrots, Celery, Cherry Tomatoes, broccoli)- suggest you do 1 classic relish tray (see veggie tray page) and a fruit tray for 100 with plenty of strawberries and grapes, see the fruit tray page)
Cheese, about 10 pounds, some can be spreads or logs
crackers, 6 pounds
Pickles & Olives, about 1 gallon, on the relish trays above

For dessert, I'm making a 3-tier cake (14", 10", 6"), and others are bringing cake balls, fudge and cookies. One of each extra items per person.

ellen
10/17/13
If you have 80 RSVP's expect about 20. If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site.
ellen
10/17/13
That's about 20 extra...
Meenu
10/18/13
A party. E
Dawn
10/18/13
re:Planning 50th Anniversary Party - from 2-5 p.m.
I really can't thank you enough! Donation made; and I'll share this site with all my friends. It's really wonderful that you are helping so many people with planning ... thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU!
Satara
10/21/13
I am having a Oktoberfest party this weekend and going over food portions is exhausting!! I am having 38 adults and 12 children. We are having a 30 pound pig roast, hot dogs, brats, whole rotisserie chickens, mini black forest ham sandwiches, and spare ribs... I am wondering how much of each type of meat to get. I am also having German potato side dishes.
ellen
10/21/13
This is what I would do.

30 pound pig roast, OK, none left
hot dogs, skip completely, unnecessary w/ brats and ham sandwiches
brats, 4-5 pounds
whole rotisserie chickens, 3, cut up
mini black forest ham sandwiches, 1/2 per person
spare ribs, 1 rib per person, plus about 8 extra. Weight depends on size.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site.

Janet
10/22/13
Food planning for 75 people (Friday October 25th)
Hi Ellen,

I am planning a reception for my dad’s funeral and getting some help on preparing the food. It will be after the ceremony which it starts at 11:00am and will be ending 30-40 mins after that. It will be for approx. 75 people. I am thinking of doing fruit tray, veggie tray, sandwiches, cheese and crackers, salad and dessert (squares). I was wondering how much do I need of each, not sure how to calculate all that? I was trying to figure out on average how much people eat in bite size? I am also doing coffee tea, water and maybe pop. Not sure how many drink I will need? Any help will be appreciated. Thanks

Christina
10/22/13
Hi Ellen,
My sisters-in-law and I are planning a 30th anniversary party for my in-laws. We're having pasts and red sauce with meatballs on the side, rolls, turkey, ham, and chicken salad finger sandwiches, garden salad, potato salad, a veggie and fruit tray as well as chips and dip and maybe a cheese and cracker tray. We're doing a buffet style luncheon but are unsure how much of each thing to make and if we should add anything else. We've never done this before and need some help. Please help us!
Thanks!
ellen
10/22/13
Janet, first, I lost my Dad last year, and it seems to me it is hard in a different way every day for a long time.

Janet, this is a fine menu. Here is what I would do.

fruit tray, do for 50, fruit tray page
veggie tray, do for 50, veggie tray page, Ranch dressing.
sandwiches, about 90, cut in 1/2's
cheese and crackers, 5 pounds cheeses, some can be spreads or logs, 4 pounds crackers
salad- use plan for 100 page, do for 50

dessert- 3 pieces per person

You will want iced tea, about 6 gallons, 1/3 unsweetened, and dinner level coffee for the adults, see the beverage planning page. You can do lemonade from frozen for the other choice, easier than pop, about 3-4 gallons. 4 bags of ice.

ellen
10/22/13
Christina, you are headed in the right direction. I assume you are doing for 50 people- if the number increases, or you forgot to count family, please increase.

pasts and red sauce, 6 pounds pasta, about 1 quart sauce per pound
meatballs on the side, 1 pound per 5
rolls, suggest you use rolls that could make meatball sandwiches
turkey, ham, and chicken salad finger sandwiches, 2 pieces per person

garden salad, use salad section of plan for 100
potato salad, same above as, about 20 pounds potatoes. Pasta salad is another option, easier, no boiling and peeling; 3-4 pounds pasta

veggie tray- see veggie tray page, light Ranch for dip
fruit tray- see fruit tray page, yogurt dip

chips- 1 pound per 12
dip- 1 pint per pound

cheese- about 5 pounds, some can be logs or spreads
crackers- about 3 pounds

meg
10/28/13
Hi, I am planning my son's first birthday party!
There will be 6 toddlers and 12 adults. I want to serve fruit salad and other EASY things.
How many ounces of fruit salad will feed this number and do you have suggestions for kid and adult-friendly dishes/ snack/ drinks that won't take too work to prepare. My husband and I want to have enough energy to enjoy the party
And/ or thinking about ordering platters from grocery store...
Thanks so much for your wisdom!
ellen
10/28/13
Toddler friendly and easy to prepare? First, do fruit trays rather than fruit salad, can be eaten with fingers and hold better, and any leftovers keep better and are easier to re-use. Do 1/2 the tray for 25 on the fruit tray page.

Classic baked macaroni and cheese for a hot dish, or a pasta salad with rotini and a mayo-based dressing. See the classic mac and cheese recipe on Big Pots for a terrific recipe.

Slider rolls for sandwiches for tiny hand would be an option, and you would do 1/6 the amount for meal level sandwiches for 100, from the sandwich page. Baked drumsticks are another option- easier than wings.

Offer whatever finger foods in the fruit/veggie department that your kid likes, which can be few or many. For the grown ups, include grape or cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, celery or cucumber sticks, maybe some broccoli or cauliflower- see the veggie tray page- and Ranch dip.

A spurt of canned whip cream instead of ice cream is neater with the cake, and kids love the stuff.

If you do chips, a pound or a pound and a half is plenty. Salsa is a fine dip- a bit less than a quart. Since it's a small group, maybe guacamole?

Juice boxes and little milks for the kids. Maybe white wine sangria or hot mulled cider with or without a spike for the grownups? About 2 cups each.

A pot of good coffee with the cake?

Does that sound like what you have in mind?

wedding planner
10/29/13
I need to know how much tomoato and garlic for bruschetta for approximately 60 people
meg
10/30/13
Thank you, Ellen! You're a cooking and party goddess!
ellen
10/30/13
Wedding planner, if this is for appetizers with other choices, 2-3 crostini each and 1 cup spread per about 20 pieces.
Donna
11/07/13
planning a 1st Birthday for 80 people
The Menu is 13lb Meatball sandwiches,30lb Roast Pork sandwiches, stuffed shells, tossed salad and 20lb potato salad, stuffed shells, need to know how many I need and I'm thinking maybe penne alavodka about 4-5lb??
ellen
11/08/13
2 small or 1.2 large shells per person and you will have plenty without the additional pasta. If these weights are the meat amounts that is fine, if it is the total sandwich weight it is light.
Jasmine
11/20/13
I am having a Holiday Party of about 60 guests, all adults. Main dishes are lasagna and chili, also having hors d'oeuvres, chip and dips, cubed cheese and crackers, etc. Catered latte/espresso/cappuccino bar, champagne, the works. I want to ask guests to bring a salad or dessert, but not everyone or there would be too much. Any suggestions?
Jasmine
11/20/13
I think to ask for salad or dessert from only some, not all, is confusing and might not turn out. So I've changed my mind. I can store the pre-washed, cut bags of lettuce in fridge, dressings do not require refrigeration if not yet opened. That way, I'll direct guests who feel compelled to bring something to bring a dessert. And to please keep in mind that if everyone brought a dessert it would be too much, so don't feel shy to show up without bringing anything!
Linda
11/29/13
I am making sausage and peppers in sauce for about 50-60 people as a side dish, how much of everything do I need? Thank you
ellen
11/29/13
Jasmine, it looks like you solved your own problem, good work.
ellen
11/29/13
Linda, when making this as the second entree, I do 1 pound sausage per 5 and an equal weight of veggies-
Linda
11/29/13
Ellen...thank you!
Di
11/29/13
Food planning for 40 people
We are hosting a 50th wedding anniversary party (for ourselves) for 40 at home and have this menu planned. Not sure about quantities. Grateful for your input a.s.a.p.

3 x 8 oz. brie with various toppings
1 x ? port salut
1 x ? hard merlot
small meatballs
shrimp platter
crudite
tomato bredie
chicken with butternut and apple
rice
bought cake

Di
11/29/13
Thanks Ellen.
We will start at 6:30 pm and would imagine it will go on till 10:30/11:00.

Sorry I was not clear enough.

Appetizers:
3 bries with toppings and grapes
Port Salut is a soft cheese
The Merlot is a hard cheese
small meatballs - # per person?
shrimp platter - # per person if regular size and if bigger.
crudite (not sure what size to get - to serve how many people)

Entree:
tomato bredie (lamb stew with tomatoes). I will be making this dish and am not sure for how many people to make it considering there will be a chicken dish as well)

chicken with butternut and apple (will be ordering this - for how many people, or what quantity).
rice. How much? It will go with both dishes.

This will be an informal dinner with some people being able to sit at tables and some just sitting and holding a plate. It will be easy to eat with just a fork. No extra veg will be served as each entree has it's own in it.

I thought a 1/2 sheet cake would be enough. It has a filling and is quite thick. Nobody will eat a lot of cake. Served with champagne and coffee.

Thanks so much!

ellen
11/29/13
3 bries with toppings and grapes- If these are full size, not too much else-
Port Salut is a soft cheese
The Merlot is a hard cheese
2 pounds each, plenty
3 pounds nice crackers
1 pound grapes per 8- get seedless, maybe 2 colors
small meatballs - # per person? about 4
shrimp platter - # per person if regular size and if bigger. 1 pound per 5, regardless of size, 1 cup cocktail sauce per 5
crudite (not sure what size to get - to serve how many people) With the cheeses, you might do a classic relish tray instead of crudites. See the top of the veggie tray page.

Entree:
tomato bredie (lamb stew with tomatoes). I will be making this dish and am not sure for how many people to make it considering there will be a chicken dish as well)

chicken with butternut and apple (will be ordering this - for how many people, or what quantity).
Since these two are interesting but unfamiliar, it is a tough call. I would do about 25 servings of each.

rice. How much? It will go with both dishes.
About 4 pounds raw.

I thought a 1/2 sheet cake would be enough. It has a filling and is quite thick. Nobody will eat a lot of cake. Served with champagne and coffee.--It's plenty, I must have been a little distracted.

Happy anniversary. If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support the site. Thanks.

Mary Lee W
12/03/13
Food planning 25-30 women for a 2 1/2-3 hour event
Can you help me with food amounts. I will have 25-30 women for a 2-3 wedding shower at 7pm. I plan to do a buffet of heavy appetizers and a dessert buffet.

1 Beef tenderloin sliced thin...How much???5lbs is what I was thinking. Rolls and horseradish sauce.
2 Pimento Cheese Wreath ring and red pepper jelly with ritz crackers
3 Blanched asparagus with wasabi mayo
4 Cocktail shrimp with sauce...Need help???thinkking 5 lbs?
5 Large wheel of brie with andouille sausage filling and topping with wheat crackers
6 Caprese salad skewers
7 Hot Spinach/Artichoke dip with tortilla chips

I will have plenty of cookies, desserts, candies, etc on a separate buffet. I expect everyone to fix only 1 plate. Some may go back after the presents are opened but most of the time the shower wraps up after gifts. I mostly am afraid of running low on meat and shrimp.

ellen
12/03/13
Pretty table! I am going to assume 30 people.

1 Beef tenderloin sliced thin...How much???5lbs is what I was thinking. Rolls and horseradish sauce. go 7 pounds raw, 2 slider size rolls each, 1 cup sauce per 10
2 Pimento Cheese Wreath ring and red pepper jelly with ritz crackers
2 1/2 pounds cheese, 1 1/2 pounds crackers
3 Blanched asparagus with wasabi mayo 6 pounds
4 Cocktail shrimp with sauce...Need help???thinking 5 lbs? Go 6
5 Large wheel of brie with andouille sausage filling and topping with wheat crackers plenty, 1 1/2 pounds crackers
6 Caprese salad skewers 1-2 per person, depends on size
7 Hot Spinach/Artichoke dip with tortilla chips
1 cup dip per 6, 1 pound chips per 15

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support the site. Thanks.

Mary Lee W
12/03/13
That sounds great! You always have all the answers!
tiffany
12/06/13
Planning the local ROTC military ball, including dinner for high school kids and booster club members.
120 people total
Looking for help on portions and how much we need to make.
serving pinwheel apps
salad
penne
meatballs
grilled chicken
alfredo sauce
spaghetti sauce
bread
cupcakes and cakeballs

Appreciate any help I can get. Thanks in advance!

ellen
12/07/13
OK here are suggestions and ideas

pinwheel apps
3 bites per person. Add fruit trays, see fruit tray page, deluxe tray for 100 would be fine

salad- use plan for 100 table, do 1 1/4 times the amount for 100

meatballs- 1 pound per 4
grilled chicken-1 piece per person

penne- 1 pound per 6. Sauce is 1 quart per pound, do 2/3 red and 1/3 white

alfredo sauce
spaghetti sauce

bread- 15 pounds, 4 pounds butter

cupcakes and cakeballs
2 per kid, 1 per adult.

You need dinner level coffee from the beverage page, and other beverages are also covered .

Diana
12/08/13
I'm planning for a party of 50 - Not sure on the amount of food to get and prepare. Please see my menu: Meat Trays, cheese Trays, Veggie Trays, Fruit Trays,Desert Tray, Relish Tray.

Meats are: Ham,Turkey breast,Roast Beef and Chicken salad.

Cheese are: Cheddar,Provolone,Havarti,Swiss,Pepper Jack.

Veggie tray:Cherry Tomatoes,Cauliflower, Carrots,Broccoli,Bell Peppers,Cucumbers,Celery.

Relish tray: Olives, pickles, sweet pickles, marinated mushrooms.

Fruit Tray: Apples,Oranges,Grapes, Strawberries,Mango.

Tray with: cocktail bread,dinner roll,Crackers.

Desert Tray: Cookies,Brownies,Pumpkin Bread Pudding.

Condiments: Mayo, Mustard, Aioli Sauce.

Dips: Ranch, Ranch & Jalapeno, Guacamole, humus,
heated dips:Artichoke, Chili- Cheese dip.

Beverages: Water, Coffee, Tea, hot cocoa, juices.

Again I'm not sure of the amount of food to prepare for this party. any input would be great. I tend to over prepare.
Thank you for all your help.

Regards,

Diana

ellen
12/08/13
OK. 50 people with sandwich trays and assorted other stuff.

Meats are: Ham,Turkey breast,Roast Beef and Chicken salad.
6 pounds roast beef, 4 each turkey and ham, chicken salad 6-7 cups

Cheese are: Cheddar,Provolone,Havarti,Swiss,Pepper Jack.
about 9 pounds sliced: 1 pound each provolone and pepperjack, 2 each havarti and swiss, 3 cheddar

Tray with: cocktail bread, dinner roll (slider type rolls good), 5-6 pounds

Guacamole, 1 cup per 5
humus, 1 cup per 5
Artichoke, 1 cup per 4-5
Chili- Cheese dip, 1 cup per 4-5
This is a lot of dips.

Crackers (or chips)-3 pounds

Veggie tray:Cherry Tomatoes,Cauliflower, Carrots,Broccoli,Bell Peppers,Cucumbers,Celery. Use the veggie tray page to figure your amounts on this- it gives amounts for bite- you want about 6 bites per person

Relish tray: Olives, pickles, sweet pickles, marinated mushrooms. Use the classic relish tray at the top of the veggie tray page

Dips: Ranch, Ranch & Jalapeno, total 12 cups, about 1/3 spicy

Fruit Tray: Apples, 1/2 small per person, need citrus dip to prevent browning; Oranges, 1/2 small or 1/4 large per person, Grapes, 2-3 ounces per person, Mango, 3 slices per person, Strawberries, 2 per person

Dessert Tray: Cookies,Brownies,Pumpkin Bread Pudding. 2 small cookies and 2 small brownies per person. 3 9x13 bread puddings, add a delicious brandy or rum sauce, 1/4 cup per person.

Beverages:
Water, 2 bottles per person
Coffee, Tea dinner level coffee per beverage planning page
hot cocoa, 3 quarts plenty unless a lot of people prefer it
juices, tough call- maybe 1 cup per person?

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, perhaps a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site.

Linda
12/18/13
Christmas Eve Dinner
Please help! I am serving Christmas Eve dinner for 14 and I always overcook and have way too many leftovers. We are having ham and smoked turkey, rolls, and herb roasted potatoes. Desserts are taken care of. h
How many salads/ vegetable/ fruit sishes should I make? I am allowing a cup per person on the sides... There are some football players coming. thanks!
ellen
12/18/13
ham, 1 pound boneless per 3
2 good mustards
smoked turkey, 1 pound boneless per 3-4 (use your best judgement)
3 cans cranberry
rolls, 2 per person, get good ones, or maybe baguettes 1 pound butter

herb roasted potatoes- 10 pounds, some left

salads, 1/6 the amount for 100 from the plan for 100 page OR do 1/4 the classic relish tray on the veggie tray page

vegetable see the shopping for large community dinners in the holiday cooking section at the top of the Big Pots page for discussion on amounts; recipes for MANY veggies can be found in the same section. I would do 2-3.

fruit dishes, one plenty, 2 1/2 to 3 quarts (2 9x13 pans)

You will have some leftovers, but not a lot. Merry Christmas.

Michelle
01/01/14
Hi Ellen,
I really need your expertise. There is a bridal show with an expectancy of approx. 300 people in attendance on this Saturday. I am in a position that i will be serving at this event as a food vendor. Typically we sell hotdogs (street vending),but focusing more on catering in during the Winter season.
My thoughts for a menu is;
Sub / hotdogs / soup / dessert / drinks & chips
for subs Turkey, ham or combo. hotdogs one size 1/4 lb , soups as bowl or cup option and slices of cake for dessert.
I found a large 10lb cooked turkey breast & 8lb ham.
Please help me project how much food i need to buy.

Thank you very much in advance for your advice.

ellen
01/01/14
Michelle, do you need to feed all 300? Is this for purchase or free? More info, please; write back.
Michelle
01/02/14
Hi Ellen,

Good morning! I am hoping to feed all 300 but that's wishful thinking on my part. The food would be for sale. I think i should be prepared for at least 150 of the patrons.

This has truly been a guessing game for me.
PS I am so grateful that you responded.

Thank you,
Michelle

Michelle
01/02/14
Ellen,
Just an added note. I'm flexible on the menu.
Teresa Tom
01/02/14
Food planning for 50 people
I am responsible for making potato salad for 50 adults (retirement luncheon). How many pounds of potatoes should I make?

This is the menu: Bar-b-que, buns or bread, brunswick stew, baked beans, slaw, potato salad, pickles and sauce, homemade cakes (caramel, chocolate, red velvet, key lime, pound), and drinks.

THANKS!

ellen
01/02/14
Teresa, since this is an older crowd with lots of sides, 20 pounds raw potatoes would be plenty.
ellen
01/02/14
Michele, here are my thoughts-

These are mostly ladies with weddings on their minds, you want pretty food!

I would NOT do soup (danger of spilling).
I would do wraps- actually would sell by halves of 12 inch wraps- rather than hot dogs or heroes. Each whole wrap needs 2 ounces deli thin sliced meat, 1 1/2 ounce cheese; cream cheese for spread, rather than mayo or butter; some very thin tomato slices and a leaf of lettuce. You can get red, green, and white wraps, pretty.

Bars and cookies would sell better than cake and eat easier- people want food in the hand, minimum flatware. 200-300 large bars, and you can do some as 4-bite bar plates, such as lemon, brownie, 7 layer and oatmeal/jam/ berry.

Drinks- fine, a raspberry lemonade and a peach or apricot iced tea would be popular, hot coffee, also bottled water; low cost compared to sodas-
which you would also have.

Chips- fine, have some baked.

ellen
01/02/14
Michelle, do please make a good donation to support the site if you do well.
Sashi
01/08/14
Hi, im going to have a birthday party so im not in available with knowledge of Liquor and how much bites should have to be prepared i have only 10 people who using liquor
ellen
01/08/14
There is a chart for this on the beverage planning page. Happy birthday.
roni
01/26/14
01/26/14 I'm having Baby Shower in a two weeks I have 70 guest that confirmed. I plan on having 4lbs. of shrimp pasta 5 lbs. jambalaya 6lbs meatballs 300 finger sandwiches (ham, roast beef and turkey0 Also fruit tray, vegetable tray and cheese tray whole sheet cake, 48 cupcake and cookies is this enough? This is not written in stone I can change menu
ellen
01/27/14
Roni, did you really post 4 times? Please, don't.
Kellie
01/29/14
Hi, planning a backyard engagement party in 6 weeks time. Having a spit but am wondering how many different types of salad we should have and different varieties of sweets? 50+people attending
ellen
01/31/14
Hope it is the beginning of a lifetime of growth.

Suggest you look at the dessert planning page for ideas on amounts- do 1/2 the amount for 100.

2 salads, one starchy; a fruit tray; breads; maybe a hot veg, bean dish or casserole. All covered on the plan for 100 page and the fruit tray page with lots of recipes for 100 on site- you would use 1/2 for 50.

By the way, if this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support the site. Thanks.

bryon Rickard
02/06/14
need help calculating food for 50 women
Veggie Trays
Fruit kabobs w/ dip
finger sandwiches
ellen
02/06/14
Byron, rather than straight veggies, you might consider 1 classic relish tray from the veggie tray page.
I always suggest fruit trays with just a few kabob garnishes. They are simpler to prepare, hold better and the leftovers are more usable. Amounts and dip on the fruit tray page- half the deluxe tray for 100 would be plenty and very festive.
On the sandwich page and the tea sandwich page you will find amounts and recipes for the sandwiches. Essentially, for a meal time, you do 2 sandwiches worth of pieces per person, because the and fillings are so thin.

ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/recep2.html?

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site.

Cherylyn
02/11/14
Hi, I need help please. I am planning a 30th birthday for my son. We will be mostly adults. This will be a buffet style and people may just stop by or stay for the party. We are planning on 55 adults. The menu is:
meatballs in sauce ( 12lbs about 150)
chicken 11 lbs( shake and bake style pcs)
baked ziti 4 1/2 catering size pans
bow tie /broccoli pasta salad (4 lbs dry pasta)
salad
bread
potato salad ( my aunt is making so I don't think this will be a big tray)
we will have an anti pasto tray,cheese /crackers /caprese sticks/ and ???
cake, truffle cake and more desserts. I am mainly concerned if I will have enough food. Thanks for you help.
ellen
02/11/14
Hi, Cherylyn,

meatballs in sauce (12lbs about 150)
chicken 11 lbs( shake and bake style pcs)- I would not do less than 22 pounds boneless
baked ziti 4 1/2 catering size pans- this is only 40 to at most 50 servings
bow tie /broccoli pasta salad (4 lbs dry pasta)
salad-OK
bread-8 pounds
potato salad ( my aunt is making so I don't think this will be a big tray)- it would take at least 2 gallons to have plenty

You could add 12 pounds of roasted vegetables, these can be made ahead and served room temp.

we will have an anti pasto tray,cheese /crackers /caprese sticks/ and ???
With 30 year olds, I would beef this up to include either chips and dips or bread and dip (such as spinach artichoke) 0r humus and pita.

There is a guide for an antipasto appetizer tray on this site, last recipe this page:
www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/appetiz2.html

You want 1 pound chips or bread per 12 and 1 pint dip or spread per pound

cherylyn
02/11/14
Thank You,,, just looked over what I had and the chicken is over 10lbs a package I thought it was only 5.so I am at about 21 pounds. I will beef up the ziti and add the veggies. I had planned on chips and dip but didn't think to mention that so the portion size really helps. thank you so much for the quick response.
ellen
02/11/14
You're welcome. If it saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation to support the site. Even a dime or quarter per guest is a big help.
April
02/20/14
How many pounds of lunch meat do I need to buy to feed 50 people?
ellen
02/20/14
Discussed in detail on the sandwich planning page, button at the top of the main cook page.
Laurie
02/25/14
Food planning for 50 people this weeke help please
Planning a surprise "80" birthday party, serving late lunch. I have approximately 50 people coming. I would like to serve fried chicken, brauts with bun, potato salad, baked beans and cole slaw, carrots and celery with ranch dip. How much of each should I have?
ellen
02/25/14
fried chicken, 1 piece per person
brauts with bun, about 24-28
Consider using baguettes so people can make sandwiches or have some good bread
jar spicy mustard
2 quarts sauerkraut or pickles
potato salad, 5 quarts
baked beans, 5 quarts
cole slaw, 4 quarts

carrots and celery
For this age group range, I suggest the classic relish tray at the top of the veggie tray page with maybe 2 pounds of carrot and celery sticks and 2 cups Ranch dressing added.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Shannon
03/03/14
Hello Ellen,

I'm hosting a party for 50 people. I would like to serve:
Baked Ziti
Italian meatballs
Sausage, peppers, and onions
fruit salad
salad
dinner rolls.
The party will be a buffet style. How many trays will I need for this? Also, how much of each item should I purchase to fill the trays? Thank you!!

ellen
03/03/14
Italian meatballs, 1 pound per 4, with 3 quarts sauce per 10 pounds
Sausage, peppers, and onions- 1 pound sausage per 5 with equal weight vegetables

Baked Ziti- 5 pounds dry pasta, about 1 quart sauce per pound

fruit salad- suggest you do fruit trays instead, prettier, hold better, leftovers are more usable, see the fruit tray page

salad- 1/2 amount for 100 on plan for 100 page

dinner rolls, 2 per plus 1 1/2 pounds butter

simply
03/05/14
Food planning for 700people nigerian jollof rice
please i need to know what ingredients to buy and the quantity in making jollof rice and coconut rice for 700 people in nigeria
ellen
03/05/14
Simply, are these being served together or is it two separate meals? Also is it self serve, or are you serving the plates? Please write back with more information.
Renee
03/17/14
bridal shower for 40
I am planning my future daughter in laws bridal shower (March 30)for 40 people. How much meat/cheese and salad ingredients to buy?

Mini Croissant sandwiches with Turkey/Provolone and Ham/Swiss. Meditteranean Couscous salad (feta, olives, cucumber, tomato), chicken gorgonzola salad with walnuts, fruit salad & mini caprese cups

molly
03/17/14
hello ellen!...you have helped me in the past...heres what I got.....I am making potato and mac salad for our bike blessing.....its for 100 people...I have my basic recipes...but help!!!!!..ty in advanced
ellen
03/17/14
Renee, this is a nice size party.

Meditteranean Couscous salad (feta, olives, cucumber, tomato); it takes 3/4 cup dry couscous to serve 8, so you want about 6 1/2 cups, with additions per your recipe.

chicken gorgonzola salad with walnuts, 6-7 quarts

fruit salad, suggest a fruit tray, prettier, holds better, and the leftovers are more usable. See the fruit tray page.

mini caprese cups, allow at least 2 per person

Mini Croissant sandwiches with Turkey/Provolone and Ham/Swiss.
2 croissants per person, but I suggest you let guests assemble their own, as they are likely to go 5/8 turkey, 3/8 ham, but some will use the chicken salad! allow 7 pounds meat, about 4 1/2 pounds turkey, rest ham, 4 pounds deli sliced cheeses. Consider a couple of quarts of egg salad for any vegetarians, and you might have a big bowl of spring greens (3-4 pounds) and a couple of dressings- raspberry, light Ranch, Italian- on the table.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
03/17/14
Molly, assuming these guys will be hungry, 4 gallons (40 pounds potatoes) potato salad and 6 pounds dry pasta plus add-ins. You can cut back a tenth if exercise is not involved.
sharday
03/21/14
Hi ellen, I am having a baby shower in a month or so with around 55 guest expecting to attend (10 out of the 55 are children). originially I was going to have a BBQ but the place where the event will be held wouldnt allow me to have one due to regulations of the club. so basically now I am just going to order finger foods from the club. I just wanted to know if what I have ordered will be enough for everyone.

Each tray below contains 50 pieces.

1 tray of meatballs
i tray of mini meat pies and sausage rolls
1 tray of cheese spinach FILO triangles
1 tray of potato wedges
1 tray of chicken/beef skewers
1 tray of assorted sandwiches
1 tray of Turkish bread slices with dips
i tray of chips/dips and nut platters

please let me know what you think :)

Thanks :)

ellen
03/21/14
The kids make the amounts equivalent to 50, but unfortunately, you can't get them to split meatballs...
You can save some money by bringing in a few cold trays.

1 tray of meatballs- depends on size, varies a lot, if they are small, you will run out
i tray of mini meat pies and sausage rolls-ok, none left
1 tray of cheese spinach FILO triangles- ok, none left
1 tray of potato wedges- ok, none left
1 tray of chicken/beef skewers- ok, none left
1 tray of assorted sandwiches- ok, none left if they are halves and not wholes
1 tray of Turkish bread slices with dips?? don't know what this is??
i tray of chips/dips and nut platters - you could bring these at a very reduced cost- 3 pounds nuts, 3 pounds chips and 1 quart dip/salsa

I would definitely bring in fruit trays, enough for all, and a tray of something for the kids, unless the sandwiches are very kid friendly.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Staci
04/22/14
"Late lunch" for our wedding - about 200 people
Hi Ellen,
We're thinking of putting together antipasto trays for the late lunch at our wedding. We would do various deli meats and cheeses, crackers(maybe soft bread sticks twists too), olives & grapes. Trying to keep it simple but also to have nice platters. How much of these items do we need per person? How far in advance can we make them?
Thanks!
ellen
04/24/14
Staci, what time is the service and the lunch, the amount depends completely on whether most of the guest have or have not eaten anything before they come, and that depends on the time. Please write back- you could start a new thread, please- and send this information, also length of party, number of kids, and whether alcohol will be served. Thanks.
Staci
04/24/14
"Late lunch" for our wedding - about 200 people
Oh, sorry, I see now that I wasn't very clear. By late lunch I meant during the reception, some hours after dinner. We plan on feeding people dinner about 6 and then to bring out these goodies approximately 10:30. The meal will be BBQ chicken breast & pulled pork (full portions of each meat), various salads and desserts. Lots of food! There will likely only be a couple of children. Alcohol will have been served all evening. About 100 of these folks will have been part of a cocktail party in the afternoon with appetizers served from 4-5pm. If I remember correctly, the caterer plans on about 4 appetizers per person. If you're able to, we could also use an idea of how long it would take a group of say 6 to prepare this. Thanks for your help! :)
ellen
04/24/14
That helps- sort of a midnight lunch.

Do add dinner level coffee for the guests, per the number expected, from the beverage planning page.

Do your platters using reception level sandwich amounts from the sandwich planning page. Cracker? How about adding pita and flatbreads, about 2 ounces total per person You can see the antipasto platters on the appetizer page

For additions- maybe 3 quarts each olives and pickles per 100.

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/appetiz2.html

There are both a veggie based and a veggie plus meat based guide.

ellen
04/24/14
For the grapes, about 1 pound per 8.
Kristen Daniels
04/28/14
PLEASE EMAIL ME!!
I'm getting married June 8th & we are expecting our first child. I also graduate this year in May, so I have a tight budget! I want to have the following at my wedding as the food, but I have no idea how much will be needed to buy of each portion. I'm inviting no more than 50 Guest. •Drink - Tea & Lemonade
•Food- Diced; Watermelon, Cucumbers, Cantaloupe, Grapes, Broccoli. Grilled Hot Dogs. Grilled Hamburgers. Options of; Cheese, Mayo, Ketchup, Mustard, Lotus. Bread; Hamburger & Hot Dog Buns.

• Dressing Dip- Ranch

ellen
04/29/14
YIKES. 50 people (don't forget to count the wedding party) is very do-able.

Tea- about 4 gallons, some unsweetened
Lemonade- about 4 gallons
20 pounds ice

Food-
Diced; Watermelon, Cucumbers, Cantaloupe, Grapes,
This sounds like a Mexican style fruit tray; add some strawberries and a pineapple and serve with a shaker of paprika and lots of lime wedges, 1 watermelon, 3 cukes, 2-3 cantaloupes,4 pounds grapes, 2 quarts strawberries
Broccoli, about 10 pounds or 2 gallons; consider a broccoli slaw or a cole slaw instead
Grilled Hot Dogs. 1 each
Grilled Hamburgers. 1 each
You might consider switching to meatballs and sausage and peppers, about the same cost or a bit less, which can both be done ahead and no one is stuck on the grill day of the wedding. Meatballs, 8-10 pounds 3 quarts sauce
Sausage and peppers, 7-8 pounds sausage, equal weight mixed peppers and onions
Options of;
Cheese, 1 pound sliced per 10
Mayo, Ketchup, Mustard, see sandwich planning page, do 1/2 the amount for 100
add 2 quarts assorted pickles and/or relish
Lotus??? not sure what this is?
Bread; Hamburger & Hot Dog Buns. 1 per each item purchased; you can always freeze extras, or make bread pudding. If you do the meatballs and sausage and peppers, go with baguettes, 1 per each 4 people.

Consider adding

Sooz
04/29/14
Food planning for around 40 people THIS WEEKEND!
We are having a 75th birthday this Saturday for my father in law.
Menu is
Fried Catfish fillets
Shrimp Boil (w/corn cobs, sm red potatoes, sausage, & Onion.
Coleslaw
Beans
Cornbread
Birthday cake & ice cream
Possibly fruit salad
Lemonade
Sweet Tea
Water (bottled)
Sodas (bottled)
Cocktail Sauce
Tarter Sauce

Any idea how much we need of each item? I'm stressed out!

ellen
04/29/14
Fried Catfish fillets- 1 smallish or 2 nuggets per person
Shrimp Boil (w/corn cobs, sm red potatoes, sausage, & Onion)
1 piece corn (can be 1/2) per person; 10 pounds potatoes, 6-8 pounds sausage,

Coleslaw, 1 gallon
Beans, 1 1/2 gallons

Cornbread, 4 9x13 pans, 1 pound butter, jug of honey or syrup

Birthday cake a full sheet or a 2 layer half sheet is 50 servings, a regular round cake or 9x13 serves 12
ice cream- 2 gallons

Possibly fruit salad- can omit, but a nice fruit tray is prettier, easier, and keeps better

Lemonade- 2 gallons
Sweet Tea-2 gallons
have at least 1 gallon unsweetened
Water (bottled)- 2 per person
Sodas (bottled)- 8 2 liter; 3 cola, 2 diet cola, 1 each lemon lime, diet lemon lime and either root beer or ginger ale
1/2 pound ice per person

Cocktail Sauce
Tarter Sauce
Depends a bit on family taste, but about 1 cup cocktail per 5 and 1 cup tartar per 4, if they are saucy folks.

Take deep breaths, what a happy occassion! If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation,maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Sooz
05/01/14
Food planning for around 40 people THIS WEEKEND!
Thank you so much for the great info! The only thing I think is missing is how much shrimp for those 40 people in the shrimp boil?
ellen
05/01/14
Ooops. About 10 pounds would be fine.
Travis
05/01/14
Hello Ellen!

My fiance and I are getting married on October 9th.We are having a small wedding of 65 invited guest of which we are thinking only around 50 will show.

We are thinking of 2 options for our wedding reception. The first, would be platters consisting of meat/cheese/crackers, veggies with dip and fruit trays. We think this may be a bit on the expensive side!

Second option would be having a Sub bar/buffet style sandwich setup. The meats would be ham, turkey and chicken with Muenster, Swiss, American and Cheddar cheeses. Condiments for those sandwiches if you think that would be appropriate for this type of event. We would have Italian and Wheat sub style breads as well.

I would greatly appreciate your insight on quantities of items we would need to purchase for our wedding! Thanks a ton!!

Travis

ellen
05/01/14
Good you are planning ahead.

Please write back and tell me what time the reception starts and how long it will last, also whether you will be serving alcohol. For example, if the wedding is at 1 pm or 7 pm with the reception after, it takes much less food.

Travis
05/01/14
The wedding is at 4pm, reception shortly to follow. Probably are 4:30-5pm until 7pm. Nothing long, just long enough for the families to meet and mingle.

We are doing alcohol but we are doing a BYOB wedding. Both of our families are very laid back and this type of wedding suits my fiance and I perfectly. So I don't see very many people drinking too much.

ellen
05/01/14
OK. This is dinner time, so let's plan for dinner level food- about 1 1/2 pounds per person total.

First, I suggest you have some nibbles ready at once. A self-catered buffet is a real challenge to the organizers, and things don't always come together as smoothly as hoped. By planning and setting up an appetizer area or "nibble table" which is ready when the guests begin to arrive, the cooks and servers have time to complete the arrangement of the dinner buffet. This is especially critical if there are children among the guests, or there is a wait before dinner, as at a wedding reception.

This does not have to be complicated. Three items, plus a punch, or two if one is alcoholic, are sufficient. Typically, include a fruit tray, a cheese tray and an interesting dip or spread; or you can go with a dinner theme such as TexMex with chips, salsas, Texas caviar and guacamole; Italian with bruschetta or antipasto; maybe shrimps or other cold seafood, if budget permits.

You can expand your menu by adding an attractive soup, which dresses up a sandwich meal inexpensively. For 65 people, about 5 gallons.

If you are watching costs, a taco bar would be a festive but less expensive fiesta option- you would do 2/3 the amounts for 100 from the potato/taco bar page. A bit more prep work, but less expense.

If you do decide to go with subs/hoagies, you would use the amounts on the sandwich page, 2/3 the amounts for 100. It also covers rolls and condiments. You would want about 3 gallons of potato salad, maybe 2 gallons of one or two fancy second salads such as corn salad, Texas caviar or 3 bean salad; 2/3 the amounts for 100 of slaw or one of the green salads. Fruit trays and/or relish trays would add to the party atmosphere.

You are welcome to put together a menu and post it for review.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation,maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Adriana
05/02/14
Food planning for 30 people tomorrow help please
Hi,
I am planning a picnic for my engagement party (around 30 guests). Here is the menu:
enu

Appetizers

Tomato & Mozzarella Skewers
Pita and Hummus
Cheese, Italian meats and crackers

Salads
Cabbage salad Romanian style (cabbage, vegetable oil, vinegar)
Caesar salad (romaine salad, croutons, parmesan, Caesar dressing,)

Entrée

Chicken skewers (chicken, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions)
Beef skewers (beef, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions)
Vegetable skewers (mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions)

Sides

Couscous
Wild rice
Pasta Salad

Dessert
Fruits
Cake

Drinks
Wine, beer, soda, lemonade, coffee, tea, water.

Thank you,

ellen
05/04/14
Hi Adriana, this is a rather complex menu for just 30 people-

Appetizers

Tomato & Mozzarella Skewers- 1 each
Pita and Hummus- 1 cup hummus per 5 plus 1 ounce chips per person
Cheese, 1 pound per 10
Italian meats 1 pound per 12
crackers- 2 pounds

Salads
Cabbage salad Romanian style (cabbage, vegetable oil, vinegar) 3 quarts
Caesar salad (romaine salad, croutons, parmesan, Caesar dressing,) 1/3 the amount for 100, see the plan for 100 page

Entrée

Chicken skewers (chicken, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions) 1.2 each (5 for each 4)
Beef skewers (beef, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions) 6 for each 4
Vegetable skewers (mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, onions) 5 for each 4

Sides
Couscous- 30 servings
Wild rice- 20 servings
Pasta Salad- skip!

Dessert
Fruits- do fruit tray for 25, see the fruit tray page
Cake- 2 full round or 2 9x13

Wine, beer, use the beverage planning page
soda, skip
lemonade, 2 gallons
coffee, tea, use dinner level coffee, 1/3 the amount for 100, beverage planning page
water 2 bottles per person

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest to support this site.

M. Harris
05/06/14
Anniversary Party
Hi Ellen!

I'm planning an anniversary dinner for about 45 people. I'm figuring the time would be between 2-5pm. The venue has platters for sale at a reasonable price since we'd have to pay 23 dollars/pp otherwise. We're on a tight budget! A small platter feeds 25 and a large feeds 50. How many platters of each would you suggest? We get to bring our own dessert.

1. Veggies
2. Chips & Salsa
3. Crab Cakes
4. Cheese & Crackers
5. Chicken Tenders
6. Chicken wings

We're also planning for alcohol to be served. My husband wants 1/4 keg which gets roughly 40 12oz cups. How many kegs would you suggest?

ellen
05/06/14
Hi, and happy anniversary.

For 45 people, may I suggest some tweaks?

1. Veggies- replace with fruit, people like better and goes better with cheese, large tray
2. Chips & Salsa- large tray; negotiate for a second, creamy dip on the same tray
3. Crab Cakes- large tray
4. Cheese & Crackers- small tray, sneak in an extra pound of crackers
Consider a tray of something bready like hummus and pita
5. Chicken Tenders- large tray
6. Chicken wings- skip- anyone who likes them will eat the tenders, and wings tend to be both messy and overpriced

For 45 people, beer only, I would do a keg, or at least 3 quarter kegs, check prices. But DO have 3 gallons of lemonade or some other interesting non-alcoholic drink.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support the site.

Sharon
05/08/14
Hi Ellen, great site.
Please help. I am having a greek bar b q for 100 people as an aside to an evening garden marquee party for my 50th in June.
Want to keep it simple with just chicken and lamb kebabs, pitta, dips and greek salad.
Can you advise on quantities of meat please?
ellen
05/08/14
What a pleasant idea.

This depends a little on the age and sOphistication of the crowd, and your budget. Per adult, buffet service, you want 8 ounces raw boneless, split 5/3 depending; more mature tastes, more lamb, tight budget or more kids, chicken.

You might consider roasted veggies as a side. They can be served room temp after preparing ahead.

If you have a middle Eastern Market or a Restaurant Depot, consider adding 2-3 large cans of dolmas/ stuffed grape leaves at about $9 per can (I like Aetna or Aegean brand), 3 pounds of cubed feta and a couple of quarts of olives. I like black, you could do both. Makes a beautiful platter with the dolmas done sunburst style, a ring of olives, and the feta in the middle. Maybe red cherry peppers or tomatoes for even more color with no trouble at all.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support the site.

Lisa
05/08/14
Food planning for 80 to 90
Hi - business open house for clients - 100 invited - anticipate 70 to 80 - Italian wine - Italian beer - Italian food - thinking salad & one dish item like lasagna - standing & mingling - no sit down - must be simple - any advice - thanks!
LAUREEN
05/29/14
Hi Ellen, am catering a 50th birthday for 40 people. Beef & Pork on Spit. How many kilo's are needed. Coleslaw & Potato Salad how much? 40 baked potato's. 2 Cheesecakes & 1 Pavlova. Is that enough?
Vicki
06/03/14
Food Planning 70 people
We are planning a cream can dinner for 70 people. Can you tell me how much sausage I will need for 70 people?
Cynthia
06/04/14
Graduation Party
I am catering as my first gig a friend's graduation party for approximately 35 people and am doing a taco bar (soft tortilla's only). Can you please confirm how many pds of carne asada, pollo asada and carnitas I will need? Also, I am planning on assembling the tacos for each guest - the food will be in aluminum trays set on sternos. Do you have any advice on how to keep the corn and flour tortilla's warm in this environment. I don't necessarily want to have each one wrapped in aluminum foil because then it could be clumsy opening it whether the guest or I do it.
ellen
06/06/14
Laureen, 20 pounds beef, 15 pork, some left over, but everyone gets their preferred choice. 2 gallons potato salad, 1 1/2 gallons slaw.

Dessert depends on the size of the cheesecakes. How about adding a big tray of brownies- chocolate is never wasted. Coffee with dessert, both regular and decaf.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site.

ellen
06/06/14
Vicki, there have been previous inquiries about this type dinner. See this thread and the link it includes:

www.ellenskitchen.com/forum/messages/29727.html

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site.

ellen
06/06/14
Cynthia, you need to read the whole page on the taco/potato bar; it has information on quantities, reheating tortillas, topping amounts. Then prepare an estimate. Then start a new thread, post your estimate, and I will check it.

Also, your plan about making the tacos for people is not practical. If that is your situation, do enchiladas, so they can self serve.

If this is a paid gig, or saves you time, trouble, or money, please plan to make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

carol
06/09/14
I have to make approximately 35 sandwiches on mini rolls. I plan on using ham, roast beef, salami and cheese to make the different sandwiches. Approximately, how much of each deli meat and cheese should I buy? Thank you for your anticipated help.
sandy
06/14/14
Food planning for 60 th birthday for 75 people
planning party menu reads...sausage &pepers ,steak sandwhiches, maybe fried chicken ,macaroni salad, ceasars salad ,toss salad,an lunch meat platter ..do you think i would need more on menu or is this enough? how much fried chicken would you say i need?
ellen
06/14/14
a mini roll takes an ounce of meat and just under an ounce of cheese (about 20 per pound). I would do 1/2 beef, 1/4 each ham and salami.
ellen
06/14/14
Sandy 75
This menu could use some tweaks.

sausage & peppers, 1 pound per 5
maybe fried chicken, 1 piece per person
steak sandwiches, 1 pound raw beef per 5, about 10 pounds bread
lunch meat platter-skip, do a cheese platter instead- 1 pound per 12, 4 pounds crackers

macaroni salad, 5 pounds dry pasta plus add-ins

Caesar salad,
toss salad,
you need a total of 8 pounds lettuce, 3 pounds croutons, 3 pounds grated Parmesan, 2 1/2 to 3 quarts dressings. I would do Caesar for 50 and tossed for 30 (1/3 of 100). See the plan for 100 page

add a fruit tray, do for at least 50, see the fruit tray page

If this is a paid gig, or saves you time, trouble, or money, please plan to make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Ron
06/15/14
Doing a funeral luncheon for 50. Having chicken,potato salad,scalloped potatos How much pasta with meatballs should I make
ellen
06/16/14
Ron, you don't need any pasta with meatballs. Keeping it easy, do 2 pieces/1 quarter chicken per person, 25 pounds potatoes- about 15 scalloped, 10 as salad. If you want to do a pasta dish, do a baked one, such as lasagna or baked spaghetti- or skip the potatoes entirely and do chicken spaghetti, see the baked spaghetti recipe under "basic budget entrees" on the Big Pots page.

Hope this helps. It's a tough time...

Tricia
06/17/14
I am planning our company picnic for 40-45 people. Boss wants to have hamburgers, hotdogs and sausage grinders with pepper and onions. I have a feeling the sausage grinders would be more popular. How many of each meat should i purchase? thank you
ellen
06/18/14
Hi, Tricia,

You really don't need any hot dogs if you are having hamburgers and sausage and peppers. You do need 1 pack of vegetarian burger patties or sausages for any non-meat eaters. Field Roast, Boca Burgers, and Morning Star all reliable brands.

If it were my party, I would have 40 quarter pound burgers and 9-10 pounds sausages plus an equal weight of onions and peppers. 40 each hamburger and sausage buns- you will have some left over. 2 gallons potato salad, 1 1/2 each slaw and beans.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please plan to make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

addy
06/23/14
hey ellen
i have about 55 people coming to a graduation party and i am having fresh ground beef for burgers and hot dogs and sasuge and i have kids coming and i was think pasta for them so how much should i have of all the ideas.
Sharon
06/26/14
Hi Ellen,
I'm having a grad party, about 50-55 people for a few hours, my menu chicken-brocc-penne, sausage-peppers-potatoes, meatballs, and pulled pork (making myself) along with pasta salad and caesar salad.
my question is... a large tray feeds 18-20 people.. what size trays should I order of each? also, a small tray feeds 8-10
I'm at a loss on how much of each I should order???
Thanks
ellen
06/28/14
Hi, Addy,

For 50 people? Kids eat burgers and hot dogs-
ground beef for burgers 1 pound per 4
hot dogs- about 30
sausage- about 10 pounds
For condiments, pickles, etc, see the sandwich planning page, do 1/2 the amount for 100.
If doing pasta, do a baked pasta dish such as mac and cheese, that everyone like, 5 pounds dry pasta, 1 quart sauce and 1/2 to 1 pound cheese per pound.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
06/28/14
Hi Sharon

It is tough to estimate amounts for other people's catering trays; you often end up with leftovers trying to be sure everyone gets his/her choice for the first round. So I can just say, YMMV.

chicken-brocc-penne, 2 large
sausage-peppers-potatoes, 1 large
meatballs, 1 large
pulled pork (making myself), about 8 pounds

pasta salad- 2 pounds dry pasta

Caesar salad- 1/2 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page.

You might add good bread, about 6 pounds.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Julie
06/28/14
Having a pasta bar with two pasta, two meat, two sauces, bread, salad. Dinner at 6:30. when should I start preparing to have the meal served at 6:30?
Julie
06/28/14
Sorry it is for 60 people.
ellen
06/28/14
You need to cook 10 pounds of pasta, you can only use the water twice, and it takes about 20 minutes per gallon to heat the water. So you are talking 4 pots of water, or a lot of time. See the spaghetti page if you decide to deal by reheating.

I would start cooking day before, so all the sauces and meats are just reheated, slad just needs to be assembled. Deal with pasta day of.

Melody
07/05/14
I have to cater 60 people for the wedding occasion, how many kilos of meat should i use for beef stew?
ellen
07/05/14
If it is the only meat, 1 kilo per 10 plus gravy and veggies.
Crystal
07/07/14
Food planning for 50 people in august
Hi Ellen,

I am planning a birthday party for about 50 people. I plan on serving Ziti, stuffed shells, and meatballs. I will also have dips, chips, and caesar salad.

I was wondering how many pounds of ziti, how many shells and meatballs per person?

thanks!

Nancy
07/07/14
planning for a reunion potluck
planning a family reunion potluck for 7-25-14 for approx. 65 adults & 10 kids. I ordered deli fried chicken and the ret of the menu is baked beans, potato salad & rolls but I think we need a few more salads. Any suggestions and how many salads to feed this number of people? Thank you!
ellen
07/07/14
Crystal, good for you for planning ahead!

If the shells are the smaller ones, plan 2 per person, if larger, plan 4 for each 3.

Meatballs, about 15 pounds, make smallish, so it comes out to 4-5 per person.

The ziti, it depends on whether meaty or meatless. Basically, about 4 pounds dry pasta.

The Caesar salad amounts on the plan for 100 page would work for you, doing half.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
07/07/14
Nancy, this is a great idea, and here is what I would add:

some kind of green salad, 1/2 the amount for 100 from the plan for 100 table.

1 1/2 gallons cole slaw, and
1 gallon some kind of interesting thing, such as 4 bean, corn salsa, texas caviar, beet salad, cucumber salad.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

judy
07/11/14
planning a bday party for 35
Hi I am planning on buffet consisting of 10lbs of sausage & peppers, 60 meatballs, 2 half trays of baked chicken, kielbasa & sauerkraut, lettuce salad & german potato salad. I want to also make a pasta dish but not baked ziti...I feel that it gets too dried out....any suggestions?
ellen
07/12/14
You will have meat left. 4 pounds dry pasta with 1 quart sauce per pound; if cheese, 1/2 to 1 pound per pound of dry pasta. But if a summer party, how about a pasta salad- use 1/3 the amount for 100 for any of the recipes on site.

Here are some specialty recipes off site.;

www.epicurious.com/tools/searchresults?search=specialty+pasta

Marie
07/16/14
Menu and amounts for 65 people graduation party
Hi- I am having a grad party this weekend for 65 people. 40-45 adults, 15 teens, and 10 kids under 10 (counted them 2 for 1 for food)
I am catering pulled pork w/mini buns, Italian beef on 3 inch French rolls, smoked chicken bone in pieces, Mac and cheese, and a garden salad. I am making baked beans, pasta salad with Italian dressing, a cherry cool whip salad, and I'm buying coleslaw. Oh, and I ordered a 30 piece crossiant deli sandwhich platter for backup:-) Am I over doing it on the side dishes? And how much beans, pasta salad and cole slaw would you recommend? Thanks so much for your reply!
Mary
07/16/14
I am planning a surprise 40th birthday party for 40 guests. I will be serving baked ham, fried chicken, baked ziti,halushki, garden salad, potato salad,fresh fruit and cake & ice cream. How much do i need of each?
ellen
07/17/14
marie, Since you are doing the mac and cheese, slaw, and green salad, why not skip the pasta salad? It affects amounts, write back.
Marie
07/17/14
Thanks for your reply. Macaroni and cheese is heavy and given the warm weather I thought maybe a cold pasta with a light dressing would be more appealing to adults and the Mac n cheese more for teens and kids. Also planning baked beans since it seems to go with BBQ food.
ellen
07/17/14
Mary,

baked ham,
fried chicken, 1 piece per person
baked ziti, 4 pounds pasta, 1 quart suace per pound, make at least 1 dish meatless, in case any of your guests are vegetarian
halushki, start with 8-9 pounds of cabbage, add in you other items
garden salad, use the plan for 100 table, 2/5 of 100, about 4-5 pounds lettuce/greens to start
potato salad, 18 pounds of potatoes plus add-ins
fresh fruit- see fruit tray page. About 1/3 the deluxe tray for 100 would be about right

cake, a full sheet or a 2 layer half sheet, cuts 50-60 pieces. A regular round cake cuts 12.
ice cream, as a side for the cake, 1 1/2 gallons

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Tanya
07/21/14
Food planning for 70 people tomorrow help please
Help! I am planning a party for 70 people. I need an estimate of how much food for: cabbage rolls, pasta salad, potatoe salad, coleslaw, meatballs, toss salad and rolls. Thanks.
TonyD
07/21/14
I am holding a Community Reunion and have 350 ppl attending..We are serving Hot Dogs, Burgers, Sausage & Peppers, BBQ Chicken (leg/thigh quarters), Mac Salad, Potato Salad, Cole Slaw and Corn on the Cob

Would you be able to tell me:
1) How many lbs. of sausage per persons
2) How many onions/pepper lbs
3) How many lbs of chicken
4) How many Burgers
5) How many Dogs
6) How many lbs of each salad per person

Thanks Sooo much if yoy can help , if not Thanks anyway :)

ellen
07/23/14
Hot Dogs,
Burgers,
Sausage & Peppers,
BBQ Chicken (leg/thigh quarters),
My serious suggestion is, skip the burgers and do the hot dogs steamed in a roaster, so you do not have burgers on grills- with 350 people they are both inefficient and dangerous.

Hot Dogs, about 6 dozen
Sausage & Peppers, 70 pounds sausage, equal weight veg
BBQ Chicken (leg/thigh quarters), about 200 pounds, cut about 1/4-1/3 apart after cooking for kids and elders

Mac Salad, 12 gallons, about 22 pounds dry pasta
Potato Salad, 16 gallons, about 150 pounds potatoes
Cole Slaw- 11-12 gallons, about 75 pounds cabbage
Corn on the Cob- cobbetes, 1 per person, full size, about 300 and break 50 in half; 9-10 pounds butter

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Nicole
07/23/14
Hi Ellen,

I'm hosting an afternoon baby shower for about 45 guests in September. Will you advise if I have an appropriate amount on the menu? The party starts at 2pm and will be appetizers only.

- Veggie Tray
- Shrimp and Crab Claw Platter- 90 pieces
- Mini Croissant Sandwich (w/ assorted meat) - 35
- Mini Veggie Croissant Sandwich (veggie) - 15
- Caprese Bites - 3 dozen
- Vietnamease Rolls - 3 dozen
- Fruit Tray
- Assorted Cheese & Crackers
- 60 mini cupcakes

Drinks:
- 10 bottles of white wine
- 5 bottles champagne
- 3 Orange Juice
- Iced Tea
- Soda/water

Tanya
07/23/14
Food planning for 70 people
Hi. My party isn't until two weeks from now, not tomorrow. Lol.
Tanya
07/23/14
Food planning for 70 people for 25th wedding anniv
Help! I am planning a party for 70 people. I need an estimate of how much food for: cabbage rolls, pasta salad, potatoe salad, coleslaw, meatballs, toss salad and rolls. Thanks.
ellen
07/23/14
Hi, Nicole,

You have tasty plans, and one issue with tasty items is, if you don't have one for everyone, there is disappointment. In addition, you want about 8 items/bites for the first hour, and 6 for each additional hour. So if it were my party, I would have 4 dozen caprese bites at least and 4 dozen viet rolls, cut these in half to make more bites, since they are large. Dipping sauce for these, too.

The amounts of beverages are OK, the assortment depends on the crowd. One of the flavored green teas would be nice, and a little different. With this assortment, soda would be optional.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

TonyD
07/23/14
Thanks you but we have to do burgers too.... we have advertized a certain menu and too late to 86 the burgers. if you could give me the count for them....and how many #10 cans of baked beans

PS just donated, You saved me money , I usually cook for my Brother FF in the FH, and always over buy!

ellen
07/24/14
Tanya, thanks for the breathing room, I will work on this this weekend.
ellen
07/24/14
TonyD,

OK. Cut the sausage by 15 pounds and the chicken by 40 and do about 200 quarter pound burgers. None left. Condiments are on the sandwich page.

Do have a couple packs of veggie burgers or veggie sausages for any non-meat eaters; with 350 people there will be some.

It takes 4 #10 cans of beans to do beans for 100 moderate servings. consider doing a couple of crock pots meatless.

Thanks for the donation!

Jenn L.
07/24/14
I need help please...I am having party of 50, that includes 10 kids under age of 12... We ordered a 35 lb suckling pig and was going to make steak and chicken (legs & wings), maybe sausage And hamburgers and hot dogs...For sides I have Mac & cheese, baked beans, potatoe salad, cole slaw, a broccoli and cauliflower salad, corn on the cob and cornbread.. How much of each should I make? I have never done a party this size and always seem to make way too much food..lol,, and how do I figure out drinks per person? I have 3 cases of water, 9-12 packs of soda and 4 cases of beer,, and maybe will make iced tea..any help, direction and tips you provide will be most appreciated!! Thank you in advance for your help!!
Rosey
07/25/14
Food planning for 40 people next month
Need some help please. I am planning a shower for 40 people and here is what's on the menu

Baked Ziti
Chicken Parmesan
Sausage and pepper with onions
Pasta with broccoli rabe and sausage

How much will I need to buy of each?? Thank you!!!

Kay
07/26/14
Bridal shower for 80 woman
Italian themed, pasta with 2 sauces. Meatballs and chicken breast strips, how many lbs. of each meat will I need.
Also doing a dessert bar with 4 different dessert how many of each should I do?.
ellen
07/26/14
Jenn, skip the steak- even with the roast pig, steak is so attractive, you would need a lot.

chicken (legs & wings), get leg quarters, do 20-25, cut about 1/3 to 1/2 into 2 pieces after roasting. Wings are so expensive now, and don't grill too well.

Get 1 pack of vegetarian sausages, do in the crock pot, in case of any non-meat eaters. Consider adding a gallon of fried apples or apple sauce with the pork. Maybe 3 quarts of bbq table sauce?

maybe sausage-skip

And hamburgers and hot dogs- skip; do a cold meat and cheese plate if you think you need more- I would not.

Mac & cheese, 4-5 pounds dry pasta, 1 quart sauce [er pound, 1/2 to 1 pound cheese per pound

baked beans, 1 1/2 gallons (2 #10 cans)
potato salad, 18-20 pounds of potatoes
cole slaw, 1 1/2 gallons
a broccoli and cauliflower salad, 1 gallon
corn on the cob, 1 piece per person, maybe a few extra if they are cobbettes; 2 pounds butter

cornbread,4-5 9x13 pans

You have plenty of beverages, but 3 gallons of iced tea, 1 unsweetened, would be welcome and save on the soda.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
07/26/14
Food planning for 70 people
Tanya, here are some ideas:

cabbage rolls, depends on size- 1 1/2 per person if large, 2 if smaller
meatballs, about 20 pounds, 3 quarts sauce per each 10 pounds

pasta salad, 4 pounds dry pasta plus add-ins
potato salad, 25 pounds potatoes
coleslaw, 2 gallons, may have some left

toss salad, do 2/3 the amount for 100 on the plan for 100 page, both salad and dressing

rolls, 2 smallish per person, about 9 pounds total, 2 pounds butter

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
07/27/14
Food planning for 40 people
Hi, Rosie,

Because a growing number of people are not eating meat, you need to plan for at least one meatless dish, so I would suggest you do one pan of either the ziti or the pasta with broccoli rabe meatless.

Chicken Parmesan- plan 1 small piece (4 ounces raw) per person
Sausage and pepper with onions- plan 1 pound sausage per 6, equal weight veggies

Baked Ziti
Pasta with broccoli rabe
Do a total of 6 pounds dry pasta. I can't advise how to split it- you know youe crowd better than I do- but with 6 pounds you will have enough, and maybe some left over.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
07/27/14
Food planning for 80 women, bridal shower
Hi, Kay,

Meatballs
chicken breast strips,
Crowds vary on whether they are chicken people or meatball people, but since this is ladies, I would go with more chicken. I would do 20 pounds raw boneless breast and about 10 pounds meatballs, which will take about 3 quarts of sauce.

Also doing a dessert bar with 4 different dessert how many of each should I do?
People LOVE to indulge in desserts at this kind of party. Here, bigger is not better. My suggestion is, do practically bite size bars or pieces and make one of each per person. Or for example, if thinking about cheesecake, do the minis, or a cookie sheet with a thin layer of crust and a thin layer of cream cheese top, cut into squares.

You can pick up more advice on the dessert planning page; you would do 3/4 the amount for 100, rounding up.
If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Jenn L.
07/27/14
Hi Ellen,
Thanks so much for the info..I made a donation, I appreciate you helping me out and for your great suggestions!
Hubby went out and bought some food already,,d'oh.. So he had bought 11lbs of chicken legs, 12 lbs of chicken wings, ( he swears they will come out great, we shall see..lol) and had bought 6 lbs of flank steak..he is dead set on having steak as well,, I will take your suggestion and not make sausage or hamburger or hotdogs,, I have a few in case kids want,,and I don't have to worry about any non merat eaters. Ty for the idea of apples,, thinking maybe a warm compote or something..my only question now is how much more pounds of steak to get?
ellen
07/27/14
OK. This is a very tough estimate with the pork and the other stuff, you are going to have a lot of something left; but I would have on hand 8-10 pounds of flank steak, but grill the last 4-5 pounds only after you see how it is going.
Emory
08/04/14
Hi Ellen,

On Saturday we're having a grad party for about 50+ people. Mostly young adults or older guests with about 4-5 young children.I'm not too concerned about the food proportions, but I was curious about drinks.
We were planning on having bottle beer and alcoholic drinks for the adults. Additionally, we're going to have iced tea and bottled water. As a signature drink we were going to have blueberry lemonade. I was wondering how many servings of the lemonade I should make.

ellen
08/04/14
About 4 gallons... Over ice this should be plenty.
Maria
08/06/14
Birthday party for 52 people
Hi Ellen, I'm having an outdoor kids birthday party with 42 adults and 12 kids(all 4 and under). I have about 4 additional adults that didn't respond but may just show up.

Do I have enough food:
Full tray serves 30-35: Penne vodka, chicken marsala, skirt steak, chicken stir fry with fried rice

9 foot sub

I am making a cold pasta salad, salad, and potato salad as well as a pulled pork.

Maria
08/06/14
Birthday party for 52 people
I forgot to add to the above post: for the kids I am making chicken nuggets and french fries since most will not eat the catered food.
ellen
08/06/14
Maria, too much food! The 9 foot sub alone would feed 35 people.

Sugest you cutthe sandwich to 6 foot, skip the fried rice, and pulled pork, do only one of either the potato or pasta salad, I would say potato, since you have a pasta dish. You will still have leftovers, but not so much.

Skip the French fries, they don't hold and why encourage kids to eat what is not good for them? They would eat the sandwich or steak. A simple fruit tray or even baby carrots and Ranch dip would be a better choice.

Have some French bread or rolls, about 5 pounds, and a pound or 2 of butter.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation,maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Diane
08/06/14
hosting an RV gathering for 50. Breakfast & Dinne
Hi Ellen. We are hosting and RV outing at a very nice campground with great kitchen facilities. We are planning to prepare an entire breakfast for the group. For dinner we supply the main entree the rest is group pot luck. We are thinking of a breakfast casserole that we can put in multiple crock pots, along with the usual biscuits and gravy the group loves For the dinner we want to bake chicken Can you give us suggestions This is our first time as hosts
Dean
08/07/14
Hi Ellen,

Hosting a birthday dinner for 40.

We're thinking of the following:
Roast Beef
Chicken Fingers
Baby Back Ribs
Bread and Cheese

Any suggestion on amount for each?

Dean
08/07/14
Hi Ellen,

Hosting a birthday dinner for 40.

We're thinking of the following:
Roast Beef
Chicken Fingers
Baby Back Ribs
Bread and Cheese

Any suggestion on amount for each?

ellen
08/09/14
RV gather for 50 people
Hi, Diane

There is a really good sausage and gravy recipe on this site.
www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/sausage.html

You might consider a make ahead chicken that can be frozen, then reheated on site. Both the wedding chicken dijon and the chicken marsala on this site get raves.
Take a look at the festive family brunch on this site. The maple date strata might be perfect. My baked French toast and the baked oatmeal are also great choices- fruit tray- mmm.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation,maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
08/10/14
Dean, Birthday for 40
Dean, most of the time, if you have roast beef and ribs, nobody gets serious about chicken fingers

Roast Beef, boneles, 18 pounds
Chicken Fingers- 6 large per 4 or two small/two bite size per person
Baby Back Ribs, 1/2 pound per person
Bread, 5-6 pounds
Cheese, 1 pound per 10-12
Fruit tray, a green salad, starchy dish or salad and possible even a vegetable would be excellent additions.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation,maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Christina
08/21/14
Hi Ellen,
Having a party for 50 people in 2 weeks.
Thinking:
Penne alla Vodka
Baked Ziti
Grilled chicken cutlets
Meatballs
Sausage and Peppers
Italian hero

Plus guests are bringing an assortment of appetizers and desserts. Any suggestion on how much of each dish I should make. Any help is greatly appreciated - first time hosting a gathering this big.

ellen
08/29/14
Penne alla Vodka
Baked Ziti
Total of 6 pounds pasta, you divide- could go 1 more pound on the more popular

Grilled chicken cutlets
Meatballs
Sausage and Peppers
This is a lot of different meats for only 50 people, so in order to give everyone his/her first choice, you will end up with leftovers. This is what I would do:
1 small chicken piece per person (3-4 ounces raw)
1 pound meatballs per 6
1 pound sausage per 8 with an equal weight of veggies

Italian hero - a 6 footer makes 24 servings- a lot with your other meats. You could skip, or make little bites on skewers as sort of an appetizer thing. Or get the standard 12" ones cut into 4-5 pieces, and get about 24 pieces.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation,maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Jim D
09/02/14
Food planning for 40 people in 2 weeks help please
50th party with 40 adults and 10 children
how much would we need?
Pot of Chili & cornbread
sausage and pepper trays
cavatelli & broccoli trays
Eggplant trays
and
about 5 large pizza's? (1 item on each)
as well as assorted veggie platters, chips, etc.
Thank you so much
Ebbie
09/03/14
I would like to cook curry shrimp for anniversary party. How many pounds of shrimp would I need to feed 70 people?
ellen
09/04/14
Ebie, head off, shelled shrimp, 1 pound per 4.
Bonny Stauyffer
09/07/14
Food & drink planning for 120 adults 16 children
having a 5 hour "open house in 4 weeks" Menu includes:
Italian meatballs, dollar roll sandwich platters (ordered with ham, turkey and chick salad) chips and dip and frozen fruit salad
beer, soda, water, lemonade, kids small jug drinks. Approx 40 beer drinkers. How should I figure count on each item. Thanks- need to know now as I need to shop now.
Kayla
09/08/14
baby shower catering for 50
I am catering a baby shower for 50. The "mama" (lol :]) has requested

turkey and cheese finger sandwiches
egg salad finger sandwiches
pineapple/cream cheese finger sandwiches

potato chips with ranch dip
spinach dip with crackers
a fruit tray with strawberries, grapes and pineapple with marshmallow fruit dip
pink punch
lemonade

the cake and cookies are counted for. my questions is how big are finger sandwiches if I use regular loaf bread? How many of each type should I make?
How many "party size" chips would I need for 50 as well as crackers, ranch dip and spinach dip. How many gallons of each drink should I provide?

Kevin
09/09/14
Suprise birthday party for 60 in November
Having a surprise bday party mid November at 7pm there will be wine, beer, juice, water and of course the cake..what do I do with food? Party is at a venue with no real kitchen so everything has to be pretty much ready to go...not looking to do a full on dinner since its at 7pm but I do want something for people to munch or eat while there besides bday cake

Thanks

Dawn
09/10/14
Food planning for 55 people help please!
Hey Ellen, Myself and my co-director are cooking a spaghetti dinner at my church as a thank you dinner from our VBS, please help with how much I should buy. We're having salad, spaghetti with meat sauce, garlic bread sticks and dessert! How many lbs should I buy of each? Thank you so much!
Terrie Miller
09/10/14
Food planning for 60 people tomorrow help please
Hi, I am having a graduation party for my daughter. Her friends are around her age, 26.
1. Lasagna in chafing dish
2. Butt Roast in chaffing dish
3. Side dish (?) in chaffing dish
4. Hot Mexican cheese dip in crock pot
5. Chafing dish full of salad. Not sure what dressing I should serve with the salad.
6. Large Veg tray
7. Large fruit tray
8. Rolls
9. Possible going to have meatball sandwiches
10. Possible going to have Corn casserole

How many chafing trays should I have for the Lasagna, Beef and side dish. Any good idea for the side dish....I need something that is not time consuming.

What dressing should I get for the salad

Thank you for your help.....Terrie

ashley
09/13/14
i am planning to make pizza casserole for 50 football players on Friday before a game how much hamburger would you recommend using?
ellen
09/14/14
Hi, Bonny

120 people

Italian meatballs, about 15 pounds, 5 quarts sauce
dollar roll sandwich platters (ordered with ham, turkey and chick salad), each 12 pieces serves 5-6. You know whether they are heavy eaters.
chips and dip, 10 pounds chips. 10 pints salsa/dip

Consider adding a fruit tray, the deluxe fruit tray for 100 on the fruit tray page, would be about the right amount

frozen fruit salad, about 3 1/2 gallons

soda, about 4 cases, 1/2 cola, 1/4 sugar free, 1/4 assorted other flavors
water, 2 bottles per person
lemonade, 6 gallons
kids small jug drinks, case assorted

Approx 40 beer drinkers.
A keg would be just right (160 bottles). Or a half keg and 2 cases of other beers

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support the site. Thanks.

Laura
09/15/14
Hi Ellen, Thanks in advance for your wonderful advice! I am planning a cocktail party (3 hours long, most people should have had dinner before) for about 80-100 people. We are planning to serve trays of artisan meats and cheeses, along with grilled vegetables, maybe croissants/bread, and desserts. How much do we need to provide for that number?
ellen
09/16/14
Hi, Dawn,

This exact meal, spaghetti dinner for 50-60, is at the bottom of the spaghetti page. That should solve your problem!

ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/sphagetti.html

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
09/16/14
Hi, Terrie.

I am sorry, I can't always do overnights!

1. Lasagna in chafing dish- 1 1/2 pans
2. Butt Roast in chaffing dish- 2 pans
3. Side dish (?) in chaffing dish- 2 pans
4. Hot Mexican cheese dip in crock pot-1 gallon
5. Chafing dish full of salad. Not sure what dressing I should serve with the salad. See the plan for 100 salad section, do 1/2 the amount of dressings for 100, types are given
6. Large Veg tray- do for 1/3 of 100- 1 pound ready to eat per 10. 1 pint dip per pound
7. Large fruit tray- do for 1/3 of 100- 1 pound ready to eat per 10. 1 pint dip per pound
8. Rolls- 2 smallish per person, about 7 pounds, 2 pounds butter
9. Possible going to have meatball sandwiches- not needed
10. Possible going to have Corn casserole- popular, 1 1/2 to 2 pans

How many chafing trays should I have for the Lasagna, Beef and side dish. Any good idea for the side dish....I need something that is not time consuming.

What dressing should I get for the salad

If this is a paid gig or saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
09/16/14
Hi, Ashley,

Pizza casserole for 50 football players on Friday before a game? Each 9x13 pan would serve about 5-6. At least 14 pounds if it is heavy meat.

If this is a paid gig or saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
09/16/14
You want to plan about 20 "bites" per person for a 3 hour , non-meal party. Assuming about 6 pieces of sweets, leaves 14 savory. One bite is about 1/2 ounce meat or cheese plus a cracker; 1 ounce veg, 1 dolma, 6 olives, 2 small pickles, 1/2 deviled egg, 1 ounce fruit, etc. 1 cup dip or spread plus 20 chips makes about 10 -12 bites. Play around with thsi- if you want to write back, post your ideas and do start a new thread.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
09/16/14
Hi Kayla,

50 people

turkey and cheese finger sandwiches
egg salad finger sandwiches
pineapple/cream cheese finger sandwiches
If this is at a mealtime, you plan 2 sandwiches per person, but crusts off and cut into 3-4 pieces/fingers
I would do 1/2 turkey/cheese and 1/4 each egg and cream cheese.
Pepperidge Farm makes a thin slice bread in white and wheat that is perfect for this, each 1 pound loaf makes 10-12 sandwiches.,
Per person; 4 slices thin bread, (I do 2 white, 2 wheat)1 ounce cheese, 1 ounce turkey, cranberry jelly is very pretty and tasty on these sandwiches; 1/2 egg; 1 ounce cream cheese and about 1/3 ounce canned crushed pineapple in juice.

potato chips with ranch dip, 1 pound chips per 12, 1 pint dip per pound

spinach dip with crackers, 1 cup per 5, 3 pounds crackers

a fruit tray with strawberries, grapes and pineapple with marshmallow fruit dip; per person, 2-3strawberries, depends on size, 1 pound grapes per 12, 2 pineapples; 1 cup per 8 dip

pink punch
lemonade
How about a simple strawberry or raspberry lemonade? 4 gallons. The add a sugar free green iced tea, 2 gallons.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support the site. Thanks.

ellen
09/16/14
Hi Kevin

surprise bday party, 60 people
wine, beer, juice, water, cake.

A no-kitchen venue invites some platters or trays premade, you can do these at home or buy them ready-made.

You could do 2 30 piece sandwich trays from Jimmy John's or 120-160 pieces of pinwheels or wings, plus a local large (6 pounds or more) fruit tray, for example

If you do chips and dips, you want 1 pound chips per 10 and 1 pint dip or salsa per pound.

You might look at the relish tray at the top of the veggie tray page- great for 60, olives, pickles, etc

If you want to write back, do start a new thread-

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please consider a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support the site. Thanks.

Jacqui
09/21/14
Hi Ellen, doing a gathering approx 50 people. Being billed as an after dinner wine & cheese event. Was thinking of doing 7.5lbs of cubed cheese, 3 lbs of salami & ham, 5 lbs hummus, a bunch of rice crackers (like 8 packets). Does this sound like a good amount? Want to make sure I won't be short. Thank you!
LUTCHIE
09/30/14
Food planning for 60 people for wedding
Hi Ellen, I am going to get married on january 11, 2015. I cannot afford catering company so my friend suggested that we should just make our own food and buy wedding paper plates and stuff so not to worry about cleaning.
How many ham do i need for 60 people? I plan to buy a whole thing one that just ready to go in the oven, how much for green salad?, bread? and pasta? bottles of wine? and juice for the kids? THank you so much.
Jean
10/01/14
1st birthday party for 32 + 8 kids this Saturday
Hello Ellen!!! I am having my daughter's 1st birthday party this coming Saturday. There are appx 32 adults and 8 children (all under 8). I ordered 1 full tray of penne a la vodka, 1 full tray of eggplant parm, 1 full tray of meatballs, and 2 subway sub trays. I am making a large bowl of salad, pasta salad, broccoli salad and a tray of crackers and cheese. There will also be chips with dip, a 1/2 sheet cake and assorted cookies. Does this sound like enough food? Would you recommend adding something else? Thank you so much!!! :)
pat
10/01/14
Hi Ellen, I am having a baby christening immediately following worship next Saturday. There will be 50 guests .
Menu:
fruit salad
salami/cheese and crackers
raw vegetable with dip
empanadas and tostones
chicken skewers
How much of each do I need and do you have any suggestions in regard to this menu
ellen
10/02/14
Jacqui,

7.5lbs of cubed cheese, OK, but chunks would be better- slows people down, better cheeses
3 lbs of salami & ham, need 3 pounds each
5 lbs hummus, OK
need veggie tray to dip hummus, about 4 pounds

a bunch of rice crackers (like 8 packets). -
You need at least 3 pounds of crackers, and I would add 2 packs of fresh pita cut in 6 wedges each

This would benefit from a fruit tray with a few pounds figs and dates and/or dried apricots, and 3-4 pounds seedless grapes

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
10/02/14
Lutchie, good for you for starting early, and this is a very nice size for a DIY wedding. Please read the article on the Big Pots section about catering your own wedding.

You will do best with an appetizer plan and a meal plan. After you read the article, either start a new thread or write my email using the contact link at the bottom of this page, with your ideas, and I will be glad to help.

ellen
10/02/14
Jean, this is plenty of food. I would add just a tray of some kid-friendly fruits, see the fruit tray page for ideas.
32 adults and 8 children (all under 8). I ordered 1 full tray of penne a la vodka (probably none left), 1 full tray of eggplant parm, 1 full tray of meatballs, and 2 subway sub trays. I am making a large bowl of salad, pasta salad, broccoli salad and a tray of crackers and cheese. There will also be chips with dip, a 1/2 sheet cake and assorted cookies.
ellen
10/02/14
Pat, here are amounts and a few suggestions:

fruit salad- suggest fruit trays instead, easier, prettier on the table, and the leftovers are more usable- see the fruit tray page
salami/cheese and crackers
1 pound salami per 10, 1 pound cheese or spread per 15
6 pounds crackers per 100= 3 pounds
raw vegetable with dip- use vegetable tray page
empanadas-2 small per person
tostones- 1 plaintain per each 2 people, about 5 pieces per person
chicken skewers- 1 pound raw boneless chicken per 3

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Jenny
10/06/14
Hi Ellen,
I am having a fourth birthday party for our son. It will be a lunch. I don't know exactly how many people will be coming yet (i would guess 25-30 kids and 30 adults or so), but was trying to determine serving size for preschool kids (and maybe some sibs). How many children does a 9x13 pan of Mac and cheese feed?

Also, I'm thinking about 3 different salads (1 leafy, 1 grain, and 1 legume) for the adults. When calculating from a recipe, do I assume 1 serving of each per person per salad or a fraction of a serving since there are 3 salads? (There won't be meat in any).

I am also going to have a veggie tray with various dips and cake and ice cream. is this enough? If not, suggestions would be welcome.

I look forward to your advice.
Thank you.

ellen
10/07/14
4 tablespoons, 1/4 cup is considered a serving for a preschooler; basically, 2 kids= 1 adult for calculation purposes. So your 30 kids and 30 adults would be well covered by doing 1/2 the amounts for 100 on this site.

A full 9x13 pan holds 3 to 3 1/2 quarts. Assuming this is your entree dish, you want 6 9x13 pans.

Make the green salad for 50, about 4 1/2 pounds. Make a gallon and a half of each of the others.

With this menu, I would do a fruit tray rather than a veggie tray - kids like it better , anyway.

Cold sliced sandwich meats and cheeses and good bread or buns would be an appropriate addition. Do reception level and get slider buns, kids like this size and less waste.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Dana
10/09/14
Food planning for 50 people for Saturday - HELP
Hello,

I'm giving my husband a birthday party and i want to make sure i have enough food.

i am expecting 50 people.

i have bbq rib tips (20 lbs)
fried chicken (96 pieces)
string beans (i don't know how many pans i need)
macaroni and cheese (i don't know how many pans i need)
corn
potato salad (how many lbs do i need)
meatballs (about 3 bags)

please help - thanks!

ellen
10/09/14
Hmm, too much chicken!

bbq rib tips (20 lbs - ok
fried chicken (96 pieces)- 50 pieces plenty
meatballs (about 3 bags)- ??? 5-8 pounds plenty

string beans (i don't know how many pans i need)- 12 pounds or 2 #10 cans
macaroni and cheese (i don't know how many pans i need) 5-6 pounds dry, 1 quart sauce per pound, 1/2 to 1 pound cheese per pound
corn- 10 pounds
potato salad (how many lbs do i need)- 2 gallons plenty

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Samantha
10/17/14
Food planning for 70 people for next weekend
I'm making pasta sauce meatballs, and sausage and peppers and onions for 70 people and need to know how many pounds of sausage rope.
ellen
10/17/14
For 70 people, about pounds meatballs and 14 pounds sausage plus the equal weight split between peppers and onions.
Tracy
10/19/14
Food planning for 70 people for a party
Hello there. I could really use your help. I am planning a Mexican fiesta for my grand daughters 1st birthday. I am doing a build it yourself nacho and taco bar.
I want to have pulled chicken, pulled pork, hamburger taco meat and briscuit. I have no idea how much meat to prepare. If most of the meat is shredded, how many pounds of each would you recommend? I will also have sides that go with the tacos and nachos. Rice, beans, fruit tray, veggie tray, mini sub sandwich tray and snack chips. Thanks for your help!
ellen
10/19/14
For 100 people, with mixed meats, I usually prepare 35 pounds of meats, which suggests you need about 27 pounds. Deducting a few pounds because of the sandwiches, I would do about 14 beef total, and divide the rest (10 pounds) between chicken and pork (4 meats is a lot for just 70 people, 3 would be fine).

There is fruit tray info on the fruit tray page, veggie tray info on the veggie tray page. The small sub tray is estimated at 15 pieces, serves 5-6.

Chips, sauce, and jalapenos for nachos are covered on the taco bar page.

Most of the rest of your questions are covered on the taco/potato bar page, take a look, figuring 3/4 of 100, then write back if you need to.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Carrie
11/06/14
Hello! I am planning an event for 175 people. Menu includes penne pasta, chicken, meatballs, hot sausage, potatoes, green beans and salad. My question is, how much sausage should I buy?
Lucy b
11/07/14
Hello! I'm planning my picnic style wedding reception in six months. Ceremony at 11-ish. Then various pre-wrapped cold sandwiches(caprese, turkey, veggie, vegan, cucumber, etc.) a fruit based salad, and a german potato salad possibly and homemade pickles. I'm also thinking about a cheese board. Then cupcakes. Is this enough of a menu? Im expecting about 60 people. How much do you think I should make? Is the cheese board too much? Any help would be greatly appreciated! :)
ellen
11/07/14
Lucy B, you definitely want the cheese board, and I would add a couple of other dishes, people will be lunch hungry.

pre-wrapped cold sandwiches(caprese, turkey, veggie, vegan, cucumber, etc.)
You want the equivalent of 1 1/2 regular sandwiches per person; people prefer to take 3 1/2's or 5-6 quarters different flavors

a fruit based salad, Do fruit trays, prettier, keep better, and the leftovers are more usable, see the fruit tray page

german potato salad 25 pounds potatoes, there is a recipe on this site
ADD pasta salad, 4 pounds dry pasta
ADD 2 of the following; slaw; broccoli salad/slaw; bean salad or Texas caviar; corn/blackbean salsa; carrot salad; 1 1/2 to 2 gallons each for 60
homemade pickles, about 3 quarts.

cheese board, 8 pounds cheese, some can be spreads or logs, 4 pounds crackers

cupcakes, 1 flavor, about 66, 2 or more flavors, about 72.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

ellen
11/07/14
175 people, sausage
Carrie,

175 people. Menu includes penne pasta, chicken, meatballs, hot sausage, potatoes, green beans and salad. question is, how much sausage should I buy?

Don't know how much chicken or meatballs you are planning, but when I do sausage as a third meat, I do just 1 pound per 5-6, with an equal weight of onions and peppers.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a nickel per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

amanda
11/23/14
I am hosting a bridal shower in January for 40 people. Here is my menu, do I have too many items? And how much of each should I make?

Finger sandwiches
Cesar salad
Caprese skewers
Green curry turkey meatballs
Pickle roll ups
deviled eggs
cheese platter
Cupcakes
Chocolate covered fruit
Chocolate covered pretzels

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