Throwing an elegant holiday get-together doesn’t have to be stressful. Buffets make dinner parties easy: dishes are served simultaneously and kept warm, while guests can help themselves and choose exactly what they want. All you’ll need for a holiday buffet is table space, chafers and food warmers, plates and silverware, and plenty of holiday cheer!
Here are a few tips for hosting a simple and delicious holiday buffet.
Planning Your Buffet
One of the toughest challenges when planning a holiday buffet is trying to decide how much food is needed. Fortunately, there are a number of general principles you can follow when planning your menu and recipes (see sidebar). Some additional advice:
- Offer both hot and cold foods on a buffet.
- Use recipes that can be made in advance.
- Assume your guests will taste everything on a buffet, but try to anticipate which food selections will be most popular. Serve more of those options than the general portion guidelines suggest.
- Remember that the more choices you offer, the longer it will take guests to go through the line. Take this into consideration when planning your party timeline. If time or space is of the essence, consider offering fewer choices.
- The more choices you offer, the smaller your calculation of individual portion size should be.
- If the thought of running out of food causes you stress, keep a few non-perishable treats and sides on standby.
- Don’t forget the final step – plan how guests can return dirty dishes and dispose of trash.
Set Up a Self-Serve Beverage Bar
The last thing you want is to spend your own party fixing drinks – set up a beverage bar so your guests can help themselves. Stock it with:
- A variety of beverage choices, both alcoholic and non.
- Assorted pre-cut garnishes (lemons, limes, olives, etc.).
- Plenty of ice and an ice scoop or tongs.
- Napkins in festive holiday colors.
- Appropriate glassware for the selection of beverages.
Decide on Decorations
When it comes to table decorations, think small. Save space by displaying low arrangements in lieu of a large centerpiece. Use small holiday accents, like poinsettias, pine sprays or frosted pine cones to fill any empty spots on the buffet table.
Prep Ahead of Time
Make as much of the food ahead of time as you can. If you’re organized and ready when the party starts, you’ll be better able to attend to and enjoy your guests.
If you’re having a good time, your guests will have fun as well.
We’ve Got You Covered
Broadway Party & Tent Rental makes holiday entertaining easy with our wide selection of rental equipment for parties and events. Not sure what you need to make your holiday buffet party memorable? Give our Minneapolis party rental experts a call! We’ll make sure you get everything you need – right down to the Festivus pole!