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Wedding Planning Tips: Choosing the Food

7 January 2015

Fish & Chip cones, Sweet bar, Cakes, Candy Floss, Popcorn cones.

Choosing your food:

Firstly, before planning your food, check with your venue if they have certain caterers you can use or if the food is already included in your wedding package as many often are. Some places let you bring your own caterers in, so check what the rules and regulations are for this, as well as asking about the drinks available at the venue, or if you need to organise this too. 

Planning the food for your big day depends on how early or late your ceremony is. As you may only need to choose one option for the evening, if you are having an afternoon ceremony that is. If this is the case then it’s much easier to only have to think about one lot of food, and you may want to think about options like having an ‘afternoon tea’ so your guests help themselves, or each table gets three cake stands with sandwiches and sweet treats. This could help save on costs as it should be cheaper than a three course meal option. 

However, if your wedding is in the morning you will need to think about two meals for your guests. It is traditional at weddings to have a ‘Wedding Breakfast’ which is the first meal the Bride and Groom have together since being legally wed! This is usually a sit down event with two or three courses. Then in the evening there is usually some type of buffet food where guests help themselves and the wedding cake is given out too.

When choosing your food you will also need to consider your theme if you have one, or think about the time of year and if your menu will fit in with the rest of your plans.

If you are looking for some non-traditional food ideas, take a look at our list of options below. There is no reason not to have some fun with the food at your reception and it is becoming ever popular to have an old fashioned ice cream cart or fun dessert option available. Here are some ideas we liked the sound of:

Hog roast, this is great for an outdoor wedding.

Everything in miniature! For example, mini hotdogs, burgers and chips in a cone.

Sweet karts or an ice cream van for your dessert option, or popcorn and candyfloss stalls, great fun for the kids and the adults too!

Afternoon or high tea, great option if you only have one meal to plan. 

BBQ, this would be fun for a summer garden wedding for a more relaxed vibe. You could also have a station for roasting marshmallows for dessert too!

Fish and Chips, this is becoming more fashionable to have a van at receptions or just hand them out in miniture paper cones.

Indian or Chinese cuisine, a completely different style of food may fit in with your theme perfectly!

Cheese boards, could be a fun idea for the evening instead of the traditional laid out buffet, give all your guests their own mini cheese and nibbles board!

Canapes! Why not have these instead of a starter to keep costs down. 

Wedding cake, you could serve this as your dessert to keep costs down, so you may want to have three different cake options available, perhaps with different flavours for different tiers. You may need to order your cake up to 7 months before the wedding so remember to plan in advance.


Don't forget to check with all your guests for any special food requirements or allergies they may have, or if anyone is vegetarian.

If you are having a sit down meal think about if you are going to have a separate meal option for the kids.

Set up a tasting before you choose your food! You want to be sure you and your guests are going to enjoy it, so this will help make sure you have made the right choice.

Also remember to think about drinks too! You may need to choose a wine option if you are having a sit down meal with a non alcoholic option for teetotal and younger guests. 

For some wedding cake inspiration, take a look at some of our favourites on our Pinterest board, including some non-traditional ideas too!

Alisha Oakey

Alisha Oakey

Alisha has a design degree and has been working with Richard Designs since 2011, specialising in veil design.


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