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Food and Cakes

Help me choose my buffet menu!

We're having a buffet where we choose 2 entrees and 3 side dishes. Rolls and butter are also included. We will be having our tasting in a coupe months, but we need to go in with an idea of what we want to try. 

  • Smoked Pork Chop
  • BBQ Pork
  • Roast Pork w/Gravy
  • Lemon Herb Chicken Breast
  • Baked Chicken (bone-in)
  • BBQ Chicken
  • Roast Beef w/Gravy
  • Roast Turkey w/Gravy

Side Items
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Baked Potato
  • Potato Salad
  • Corn
  • Green Beans
  • Coleslaw
  • Toss Salad w/Dressing
  • Baked Beans
  • Pasta Salad
  • Macaroni Salad

Also, notice there are no vegetarian entree options. That's a little concerning for us as we have 1 vegetarian who might be attending. All the side items are vegetarian (with the possible exception of baked beans) at least. 

What entree and side choices would you like to see as a guest?

Re: Help me choose my buffet menu!

  • ShesSoColdShesSoCold bend over and I'll show ya mod
    Moderator 5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its
    I think the lemon chicken breast and roast beef would be your best universal entree options. I also think you should really try to get them to do a veggie pasta primavera or eggplant Parmesan for vegetarian entrees. For sides, I think I'd personally go for the tossed salad, green beans and mashed potatoes.
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  • I would choose the lemon herb chicken and whichever you liked better of the roast beef or the roast pork.  Not that I think the two are similar, but that it would depend on how rare the beef was versus how moist the pork was, stuff like that.

    For the sides, unless you can get your venue to agree to provide a third veggie entree option, I'd do the baked potato (especially if they can provide stuff to bulk it up - chives, cheese, salsa, etc. in addition to butter and sour cream), the tossed salad and the green beans.  Is there any way the pasta salad is something that could be bulked up to be a more substantial veggie option, and you could pay extra to add that as a fourth side?

  • I'm with PPs on the lemon herb chicken as a definite (as long as its tasty) as well as the roast pork w/ gravy or the roast beef as your second entree.

    Also, you definitely need to make sure that they're able to provide a vegetarian entree for those guests who require one. Please don't make your vegetarian guests eats nothing but sides - they need something more substantial than that.

    I also second the tossed salad, green beans, and mashed potatoes as the sides. They are the ones most likely to appeal to everyone, and that gives you a good balance of starches and veggies.
  • I guess my answer might depend on indoor vs. outdoor and style of wedding (the menu options suggest more informal). 

    *avoid anything with bones
    *avoid BBQ sauce unless it's an ultra-casual backyard jeans kind of affair (and even then, probably avoid it unless you're cool with people not realizing they still have BBQ sauce on their sleeve and then hugging you in your dress)

    If it's warm weather I'd probably want cooler sides like the salads instead of mashed potatoes

    Given what's left of your entree options once you eliminate bones and BBQ sauce, I would say mashed potatoes, corn and/or green beans, and salad are going to go best with what's left.

  • As someone who hates salad dressing and mayo, I would be disappointed if you only offered your "salad" items as they all appear to be dressed.  
  • Smoked pork chop and lemon herb chicken

    baked potato, green beans, tossed salad

  • I'm also on board with the Lemon Chicken and either Roast Beef or Roast Pork.  Anything with a bone in (i.e. the other chicken options) are just hard to eat in my opinion.  Mashed potato, green beans, and salad as the sides. 
  • Entrees: Lemon herb chicken and BBQ Pork get my vote

    For sides: Tossed salad; green beans; and pasta salad would get my vote. If the pasta salad sucks, then baked potato. 

    I'd ask your venue point blank how they handle vegetarians. If they say "they eat side dishes", then you need to ask if you can have something delivered for the vegetarian. I'm not a vegetarian, but I think it's shitty to ask them to fill up on bread and salad.


  • Thank you everyone for your input! I'll definitely be asking the venue about what they can do for my one possible vegetarian. I don't want to pay an extra $240 for one meal (that's what it would cost to add an extra entree if they were able to come up with a vegetarian one). Most casual receptions around here don't have vegetarian options, but I agree that I should be providing a proper meal for the one who would like it.

    What are some vegetarian entree options that I can speak to my venue about?
  • Since you're having a buffet and this seems to be more of a casual food caterer (and I assume the $240 is because you would be providing enough for everyone to enjoy instead of a solitary meal for just the one person?), then I would probably recommend a veggie lasagna or other baked pasta dish.  Most people would likely partake and it should hold up on a buffet.  The only problem with this is you need to make sure that there is actually enough for everyone plus the vegetarian once they get up there - since omnivores will eat vegetarian food, but not the other way around, it can be common for the vegetarian dishes to be gone or nearly depleted on a buffet by the time the people who actually need the special accommodation get up there.

    You could also ask if they are willing to provide just a solitary meal.  If you do, I tend to favor things like vegetable napoleons (I've had a few excellent ones with roasted red peppers, portobello mushrooms, zucchini, and goat cheese or mozzarella) or a stuffed vegetable filled with a rice or quinoa pilaf (generally an acorn squash in season or zucchini). 

  • doeydodoeydo Southwestern Ontario member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    My votes:
    Entrees: Lemon Herb Chicken Breast and Smoked Pork Chop

    Sides: Mashed Potatoes, Toss Salad w/Dressing, and Green Beans.
  • theartistformerlyknownastheartistformerlyknownas peaced out. member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers First Anniversary
    edited October 2014
    kvruns said:

    Smoked pork chop and lemon herb chicken

    baked potato, green beans, tossed salad

    Ditto this, but only if the green beans are fresh and not from a can.

    I've never had roast anything from a buffet that didn't taste like shoe leather. It's always disgusting. All the gravy in the world can't save overcooked roast beef. Barf.

    See if you can get one separate meal for your veg friend instead of adding to the buffet. If you have to add it to the buffet, I would ditch one of the meats and have the lemon chicken plus a crowd-pleasing veg entree like veg lasagna or cheese ravioli.

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