View Full Version : Food for 40 people

05-28-2010, 04:04 PM
I am hoping the Budget Board experts can help me out with planning for a meeting that I am helping to host next week. One of the things that I have been asked to provide is "heavy snacks/coffee" for the morning. The meeting begins at 10:00 and I was told to prepare for a turn out of approximately 40 people (we did not require RSVPs).

I am ordering off a catering menu for a local restaurant. Is it is reasonable to expect that not everyone is going to eat and not everyone is going to drink coffee? Right now I am thinking about ordering the following:

3 doz. sweet potato ham biscuits
2 doz. assorted muffins
1 large fruit tray
24 servings of regular coffee
12 servings of decaf coffee
36 bottles of water

Does this sound suitable? I have very limited experience planning for this sort of thing, so any advice would be greatly appreciated!!:goodvibes

05-28-2010, 04:31 PM
When people see free food-they eat a lot of it. Coffee drinkers drink more than one cup. I do not think you have enough.

05-28-2010, 04:32 PM
It sounds great! I think I'd do another large fruit tray (one tray per 20 people), and more coffee. I don't think everyone will drink coffee, but I think you want enough for everyone to have some if they want. Plus, some may want a second cup. How long is the meeting? If it's over an extended period people may want another beverage (either another cup of coffee or a bottled water) as it goes on.

Jill in Chicago
05-28-2010, 04:45 PM
Expect everyone to drink 2 cups of coffee. Yes some will not drink coffee, but those who do drink coffee may want a second cup.

You need a minimum of one bottled water for each person, one muffin for each person and one ham biscuit for each person.

There is a chance someone will take 2 muffins or 2 biscuits and you want to be sure to offer the opportunity for everyone to have at least one of each.

The problem with food is that if you planned well there will always be leftovers. You do not want someone at the end of the line, or the end of the meeting, or whatever to go up and there is nothing left.

Plan ahead for leftovers. Find a place in the company refrigerator and post a sign to come and eat the food. Or put it in the copy room or wherever you put community food. Or bring a cooler and take it home. Muffins and Biscuit sandwiches can all be tossed in the freezer for later, so they will not be wasted. Fruit can go in the freezer too and you can use it to make smoothies.

stinkerbelle's mom
05-28-2010, 04:54 PM
Do you know how many invitations to the meeting were sent out? I would probably bump the number up to atleast 45 because there also seems to be "bosses" that find the need to pop in and eat too.

I agree with the water, sandwiches, and muffins being atleast 1 per person. Another thing to consider is that all people don't eat ham whether its religion, person taste or vegetarian.

05-28-2010, 04:59 PM
Thanks for all of the advice! I was worried that wouldn't be enough coffee/food, but sometimes with these things it is hard to tell. I would definitely rather have too much than too little. I'm going to adjust my numbers a bit based on the responses that I have gotten here.

Thanks again!!

05-29-2010, 10:47 AM
Agree with a previous posters about not everyone eating ham and increasing the quantities of coffee and water and especially about another fruit tray

For our morning meetings we normally had assorted bagels & toppings, several different types of donuts and muffins, and fruit trays. Drinks were coffee, tea (make your own), bottled water, and assorted individual juice drinks.

Good luck!

05-29-2010, 11:05 AM
Id just about double what you planned. I agree with the poster. people eat more of free food than they do if they paid...

also Id offer an alternative to coffee or water.. maybe juice?

05-29-2010, 08:15 PM
When I've done this sort of thing in the past for PTA, etc, I offered juice or just hot water for tea for those who don't drink coffe (depended on the weather--hot or cold). I agree with the previous posters, you need more food.

05-29-2010, 08:25 PM
Does this sound suitable? I have very limited experience planning for this sort of thing, so any advice would be greatly appreciated!!:goodvibes

I am glad you are ordering more... another thing that may not be right and all is some people may drink coffee or water and grab an extra bottle to take back to their desk... same for a bagel or sandwich. That could easily be a quick lunch for someone....

05-29-2010, 09:33 PM
what my sis told me when i first started hosting parties was its always better to have ordered more food then not enough. I'm so glad she told me that because people dont always RSVP and always show up. Then you have those people that always bring and extra guest or two. good luck

05-29-2010, 09:40 PM
do you have a Sam's or costco around. You could do 1-2 dz bagels and cream cheese, 2dz muffins, 1dz crossants. Water, coffee(stick to one decaf or caffine) and orange juice and 1-2 fruit trays