Cater Your Own Wedding: 10 Best Food Bars On A Budget That’ll Impress Your Guests!

by Susan Paige
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Average American weddings cost nearly $34,000.

If you’re planning your wedding, cutting out as many expenses as possible might be one of your main priorities. But there are some things you can’t get rid of.

One of those things is food.

But that doesn’t mean the food you serve has to put you into debt. You can decide to cater your own wedding instead.

Make sure you take a look at these 10 best food bars that’ll help you stay in budget and impress your guests.

1. Potato Bar

Potatoes are the ultimate comfort food. And because there are so many different ways you can make potatoes, your potato bar can look however you want it.

Fan of baked potatoes? Provide baked potatoes with a range of toppings, such as cheese, onions, bacon, butter, sauces, hard-boiled eggs, and more.

Prefer mashed potatoes? Switch up the toppings and let your guests create their own bowl of mashed potatoes.

You can even create a french fry or potato wedge bar that includes multiple potato flavors with several sauce options.

And you don’t have to settle for just one of these choices. If you can’t pick your favorite type of potato, include them all. Set up a potato bar that offers baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, french fries, potato wedges, etc.

2. Burger Bar

If you like the idea of a french fry bar, you might want to create a burger bar to go with it.

This option is simple, quick, and cheap. And you can do most of the prep work the day before your wedding. All you have to do the day of is grill the burger patties.

Aside from the meat itself, make sure you burger bar has buns, lettuce or spinach, different types of cheese, other meats like bacon and salami, onions, peppers, other preferred veggies, pineapples, mushrooms, and a few different condiment choices.

As a side dish, you can serve corn, beans, a fruit salad, and, of course, your french fries.

3. Mac and Cheese Bar

Mac and cheese is a childhood favorite, but that doesn’t mean it’ll be out of place at an elegant wedding. Playing with the cheese choices and adding toppings will mature the dish.

Start the bar with a basic mac and cheese. Then give your guests the option to add other types of cheese, bacon, bread crumbs, veggies, and more.

This bar is a good option for both adults and children alike.

4. Coffee/Hot Cocoa Bar

Coffee and hot cocoa are good alternatives to alcoholic beverages. Whether you aren’t a fan or alcohol or you know some of your guests won’t enjoy it, coffee and hot cocoa are comfort drinks that’ll give your guests the energy to make it through the dance floor, photo booth, and other festivities.

Here’s what you’ll need for each one.

Your coffee bar should have plenty of creamers, different types of milk, and other syrups and flavorings. You may also want to include whipped cream. Depending on the weather, you can choose hot or cold coffee — or both.

For the hot cocoa bar, make sure you have whipped cream, sprinkles, candy canes, marshmallows, and plenty of extra chocolate.

5. Breakfast Bar

If you’re planning a morning wedding, your guests might appreciate a breakfast bar instead of dinner or desserts. But breakfast bars aren’t limited to morning weddings. Nothing tastes better than pancakes for dinner!

There are several different ways you can set up a breakfast bar.

For example, you can provide a pot of oatmeal with a variety of toppings. If you like something a little more sugary, you can set up a waffle or pancake bar with syrups, whipped cream, fruits, and chocolate.

You can even create a cereal bar.

Eggs, English muffins, french toast, bacon, sausage, and bagels also make good additions to any breakfast bar. Just pick your favorite breakfast and build from there.

6. Taco Bar

Over the last few years, the popularity for tacos has exploded. In fact, there are over 60,000 Mexican restaurants in the United States.

But this is only one of the benefits of having a taco bar at your wedding. Taco bars are also inexpensive, easy to serve, and simple to set up. Still not convinced it’s right for your wedding? You can find out more benefits here.

And you don’t need much. If you have taco shells/tortillas, meat, tomatoes, onions, lettuce, cilantro, avocado, and salsa, you’re all set.

7. Snack Bar

If you’re trying to save money (or if your wedding takes place in the middle of the afternoon), you don’t have to serve a full meal. Instead, you can create a snack bar.

Set out several different types of cookies, such as chocolate chip, oatmeal, M&M, or peanut butter, and add some milk to create a milk and cookie bar. Arrange some pretzels with a few condiment choices to create a pretzel bar.

You can even set up a popcorn bar. Include a few different types of popcorn, various seasonings, and other toppings like M&Ms.

Want to get creative? Come up with a bacon bar. Let your guests pick from chocolate covered bacon, traditional bacon, maple bacon, and more.

8. Ramen Bar

Ramen is another easy choice for a wedding bar. You can offer your favorite type of noodles or give your guests a few different options.

Then set out different toppings. This can include meats, tofu, hard-boiled eggs, scallions, vegetables, and broth. Give each of your guests a bowl, and let them pick and choose what they want in their ramen.

9. Sushi Bar

There are a few different ways you can set up your sushi bar.

The simplest way is to serve several different types of sushi. As your guests walk down the bar, they can take a roll of each flavor or stick with their favorite.

But you can also make sushi bars a little more interactive.

Instead of laying out the already-made-sushi, you can provide all the ingredients your guests will need to create their own. This might not be a good idea for large weddings with a lot of hungry guests, but if your wedding is small, your guests might enjoy making their own sushi.

10. Ice Cream Bar

An ice cream bar is an easy way to serve dessert, especially for a summer wedding.

You can give your guests the option of creating a cone or a bowl. Then give them a few different ice cream flavors to choose from.

After that, make sure there are several toppings. This might include sprinkles, syrups, candy, whipped cream, and more.

Cater Your Own Wedding with These 10 Food Bars That’ll Impress Your Guests

Cater your own wedding — it can be a money-saving option, but it can also be a disaster if you don’t know what you’re doing. These 10 food bars will impress your guests and take the stress out of the food prep.

Trying to stick to a wedding budget?

Click here to learn some important tips that’ll help you save money on your special day.

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