Catering Ideas for a Party

Updated November 21, 2016

Sometimes it is easier to have parties catered, rather than cooking the food yourself. A catering menu is usually customised by location, the type of party and what you want served. Catering ideas can be elaborate or low key.

Baby or Bridal Shower Party

Finger foods usually work best for a baby or bridal shower party because the guests mingle around in one single room. Offer choices such as stuffed mushrooms, potato skins, mini spinach quiche, tiny sandwiches, a fruit tray and raw vegetables with dipping sauce. For upscale wedding and baby showers, perhaps offer the food on crystal trays. Arrange the sandwiches, fruits and desserts in interesting shapes and on flattering tableware. The guests will appreciate and remember the party, especially the food and the service provided by the catering company.

Seafood Buffet

Offer a seafood buffet at a party. Some catering companies specialise in certain food, such as seafood. Steamed lobster claws, crab legs, shrimp and bacon wrapped scallops are sure to be a big hit with the guests. Depending on the location and time of year, oysters on the half shell or even a bucket of steamed oysters can be prepared. Cook up a dish of red rice, green beans and coleslaw to complement a plate of steamed seafood. Don't forget to offer plenty of paper towels, as well as cocktail sauce and melted butter for dipping.

Promotion or Retirement Party

Set out plates of warm roast beef, ribs, sliced ham and turkey for promotion or retirement parties. If the catering event is taking place at a small office, perhaps cut the meat selection to two. Offer choices of vegetables such as green beans, broccoli and even a small salad bar. Rice and baking potatoes can be set out as well. Be sure dressings are available for guests who want a salad. Put out a few simple desserts such as chocolate chip cookies, warm apple pie and banana pudding.

Kids' Parties

Be creative when catering a party for a child. Make sure all foods are easy to open with little fingers. Offer cute peanut butter and jelly sandwiches cut into various shapes and sizes. Mini pizzas can be decorated with vegetables to form a smiley face. Slice celery sticks and layer low fat cream cheese down the middle, for a healthier snack. Ham and cheese roll-ups would be a big hit among the kids, as well as mini corn dogs. Offer fruits such as grapes, strawberries and sliced bananas. Most kids would be thrilled to see cupcakes decorated with sprinkles.

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