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Cook Talk

Cooking for 100
Hilary
07/06/07
I'm getting married on 9/22 and I'm having a BBQ buffet for my reception. We have 100 guests to cook for, and I am BBQing chicken breasts and carne asada. How do I calculate how many lbs I need of each type of meat?
ellen
07/07/07
Caterers in the USA usually allow 5 ounces cooked, boneless ready to eat beef PLUS 3 ounces cooked, boneless ready to eat per person party size portions. 2 pound raw boneless beef serves a bit over 4 people 2, Plus 1 pound raw boneless, skinless chicken breast serves about 4 people. So, you want almost 50 pounds beef PLUS 25 pounds chicken breasts.
tank
08/21/07
cooking for 250-325
how many pounds of roast beef do I need to feed about 250-325 people.We will also be serving bake potatoes green beans .how do I buy
in bulk
Cook
08/21/07
I am throwing a surprise birthday party. I am thinking around 75 people will come. I am having a taco theme with all the fixings. I do I calculate how much to cook?
ellen
08/21/07
Tank, roast beef can be anything from pot roast to steamship round to standing rib roast. Depending on the type of meat and service at the event, the amount varies. For example, for a family dinner with modest servings, you need 2 pound boneless raw for 5 people, but for bone in prime rib party servings you need 1 pound raw for each person. Use the plan for 100 meat section and add 10% for buffet style service. Having a line server to carve and serve the meat helps to limit the amiunts taken in buffet style service- if it is completely self serve, add anoher 10%. Green beans about 20 pounds ready to cook per 100. Baked potatoes 1 each- depends on the size- they are sold by count in wholesale cases. Look under wholesale grocers, produce, or restaurant suppliers in your yellow pages.

Cook, interestingly, you need the same amounts for a taco bar as for a baked potato bar. See the baked potato bar button at the top of the main cook talk page and do a search for taco for a bunch of recipes on this site.

sandi mitchell
09/10/07
This year at our ACS Relay For Life event I am the Chair person for the Survivior. So I need to plan a very inexpensive meal to serve 100 surviviors. Any suggestions?
ellen
09/11/07
Replenishing fluids and electrolytes with the meal would be great.
If this is a fall event, I would consider a hearty soup, chili or stew with fresh cornbread or other good bread, appropriate spread such as low fat cream cheese logs, and a marinated veggie salad. It would help if you suggested your cooking situation and whether you will be able to keep hot at service time.
Hot weather? What about gazpacho?
carol worek
09/12/07
how much of ingredients for 100 people for lasagna and salad
Lauri
09/12/07
We are planning to do our food, buffet style, for our wedding in May. Approximately 200 people. We have people willing to help, but I want to be sure to have enough/not too much food. Cabbage Rolls, Turkey (already cut & sliced and frozen until time), Ham (same as Turkey) Rigatoni, and Chicken (fried) When looking at food for 100, I'm unsure how to judge ... do I divide amounts by 5 because there will be 5 main foods? Salad, Veggie Trays, Cheese Trays, Fruit Trays, and potatoes, etc. are already taken care of.
ellen
09/13/07
Carol, salad is on the plan for 100 page, as are casseroles. Lsagna specifically is on the spaghetti page. Buttons at the top of the main cooktalk page.

Lauri, splitting the entrees this many ways for 100 is absolutely the hardest calculation in the kitchen. This is how I would do it:
1 piece of chicken per person
1 cabbage roll per person
2 ounces each deli sliced ready to eat ham and turkey; allow 3 ounces each if thick sliced
Rigatoni, 1/2 cup per person (it will be treated as a side dish by most, especially with the potatoes)
This may sound like a lot, but when you have this many choices, people usually try to eat some of everything, and the waste is higher. You will probably have some meats left over-

Julie
09/17/07
We are having a neighborhood party for 100 people. We have many salads and snacks. We plan to make shredded beef to put on a bun. How much beef do we need to make?

Thank you

ellen
09/18/07
30 pounds raw boneless chuck will make about 22 pounds cooked. With sauce, that is about 100 sandwiches, add a fudge factor if it is self serve.
Sherry
09/24/07
I need an easy recipe for spaghetti sauce (no meat added) which will use canned tomatoes, canned tomato sauce and puree that can be converted to feed approximately 150 people.
ellen
09/25/07
Sherry, you need about 1 1/2 cups per person. I would not make it with just those items, so as to this recipe you are on your own A #10 can holds 12 1/2 cups.
Lisa
10/07/07
Hi Ellen -- We are hosting our own wedding reception -- How many pounds of parsley potatoes would I need for 100 people -- wer are also having rigatoni, cabbage rolls, cabbage noodles, green beans, chicken, salad and dinner rolls. I am also unsure as to how many pounds of rigs we need because of the other food. Any ideas? Thank you
ellen
10/07/07
30 pounds with the other starches. About 12 pounds dry rigatoni should do it with the other dishes. Interesting meal. Get help- read the wedding dinner article.
Avril Evans
10/13/07
I'm making a buffet for a joint 21st/50th birthday party in November (approx. 100-150 people)
How do I calculate how much food to make i.e. sandwiches, sausage rolls, quiche etc etc.
ellen
10/13/07
Get closer to your actual count. Then use my plan for 100 tables, beverage planning tables, appetizer planning page, bbq and brisket page, spaghetti page, sandwich event page, tea party page, baked potato bar page, fruit tray page, veggie tray page, whichever apply, and make an estimate. If you post it, I will be glad to review it for you. Happy birthdays.
Lisa
10/15/07
How many pounds of prepared chicken salad will I need to feed 100 people? On average how many small crossiants can you get out of one pound of prepared chicken salad?
ellen
10/15/07
Depends on whether it is lunch or reception. See the sandwich event page for exact amounts for both. You want about 12 pounds of breads for 100 people for sandwiches.
Dina
11/08/07
Ellen,
I am doing an after work customer appreciation cocktail hour for 100 people. hours ar 6-8pm. I will be serving 4 hot finger appezizers, 2-3 cold finger appetizers, these will be passed. I will also have a vegetable and a cheese platter, tea sandwiches and possibly shrimp cocktail. Lastly, I will do assorted mini desserts. Help!!! How much of each should I plan?
ellen
11/09/07
Sounds elegant. Unfortunately, many of these folks will arrive NOT having eaten dinner and looking for enough food to fill themselves up, that is about 1 1/2 pounds each! Passing does decrease the amounts taken, usually. Do plan for a minimum of 12 bites per person per hour (I assume most will not be staying the whole time?) A bite is one mini quiche, 1 skewer of rumaki or kebab, 1/4 cup dip with chip/bread, 2 little tea sandwiches, 2 wing pieces, etc. Allow 2 ounces of cheese per person, 2-4 ounces veggies/fruit with dip.

For the desserts, make sure they are no bigger than about 2 bites and allow 1 of each kind per person up to 4 different kinds. Yes, people do eat a lot of dessert.

Shrimp cocktail is wonderful, expensive and very messy- if you are in yur store, may I suggest a crab mold or smoked salmon instead?

scope415
01/02/08
Cooking for 225
Daughter's wedding has gone to 225 confirmed guests. We are doing ordheurves and wedding cake as well as beer and wine. How do I even begin to calculate how many platters I need?
ellen
01/02/08
You don't mention the time of the reception or the budget you are working with, or the kitchen/venue at the reception site, all of which affect the plan. Besides reading the answer directly above, you need to consider several other things:

This is a VERY LARGE party to self cater, especially if you do not regularly do meals for 100 or more. You may need to cater part of the food- see the article on planning your wedding dinner.

If the wedding is scheduled at a time when people do not eat before they come, (such as 11 AM or 4-5 PM) people will be looking for a meals-worth of food, that is, about 1 1/2 pounds at the reception. So you would be serving an hor doeuvre meal, which is 3 to 6 times what is planned for simple hor doeuvres before a dinner. Please see the planning guide for appetizers for a place to start. For a meal type situation, you need to plan on about 12 bites per person the first hour and 6-8 each additional hour; discussion of what a bite is, is above.

Once you have settled on a menu, prepare an initial estimate and I will be glad to check it for you.

Tonya
01/03/08
I am organizing a church fundraiser and expecting 120 people. The menu is: Salad, Soup, and Desserts. I plan to have a couple of salad casseroles already made, plus I want to have a salad bar available. How much lettuce and other items should I have available on the bar? How many gallons of soup should be available? I want to have chicken noodle, bean soup, chili soup (and maybe one more...vegetable beef). Is that too much of a variety? For desserts I will have pies and cobbler.
ellen
01/03/08
For 120 people, you would do fine with 3 soups, and one should be vegetarian- maybe the pea/ bean soup, or that could be a vegetarian minestrone type instead? As far as the salad bar, there is an article on salad bars which should help- see the veggie tray section- you should count the number of servings in the casseroles, then subtract from 120, then add back 15 and make that much tossed salad.

I allow 7 1/2 gallons per 100 people. Fpr 120 with several choices, allow 10 gallons, 4 of the main and 3 of each of the others.

What you don't have that you need is a good hot bread. I suggest the simple cornbread on the chili page, with butter, jam, and honey to serve on the side.

stephanie
01/16/08
I am catering a 15th birthday party, there will be 200 guests.. I am making potato salad,mexican rice and carne guisada... I have catered smaller parties,but have no idea how much food I need to get for this one.. Can you please help.
ellen
01/16/08
Teens eat a lot. See the plan for 100 list and double for the amounts. For the guisada, use your recipe with about 35 pounds meat per 100. For the rice see my Spanish rice recipes for 100, you want about 8 pounds dry rice per 100. If you prepare an estimate, I will check it ofr you.
Karen
02/06/08
Dessert Buffet for 150
We are wanting to set up a dessert buffet of bite size desserts. It will include a chocolate fountain with fruit, pound cake etc. for dipping along with other bite size desserts. How much food do we need to plan per person. This is for a Ladies' Retreat. Thanks
ellen
02/08/08
Please see the dessert planning page and the choclate fountain page. Do be sure to cut small portions- 2 to 3 bites- in pretty little cups or doilies so everyone can try several different ones.
Doreen Power
03/31/08
cold cuts,rolls, cheeses, verggie tray, fruit tray
I am doing a buffet for 60 people (dart players) and having assorted cold cuts, cheeses, veggie tras, fruit trays, shrimp tays crackers condiments, pickles etc. no sweets I figure 12 lbs assorted meats but not sure on the chesses etc
ellen
04/01/08
First, I would add a bit more meat; 12 pounds is just 1 slim sandwich each, I would go with 15 pounds if sliced deli thin, 18 at least if thicker.

Cheeses are at least 2 ounces per person if sliced as for sandwiches. I usually allow 20 pounds for 100 people.

Laura
04/02/08
we are cooking for my wedding reception. We are having chicken,rigatoni with meatballs red skin potatoes, rice salad and rolls. How many pounds of rigatoni do I need seeing as this is one of the main dishes? And how much chicken?
Thank you for your help.
ellen
04/02/08
Laura, you don't even say how many people. Use the plan for 100 pages, make an estimate and post it, then I will check it.
Leda
04/07/08
I am doing a wedding reception for 100 the menu is

pulled pork
bar b qued chicken
potato salad
pasta salad
baked beans
vinegar slaw (for the barbque we are in north carolina)

I figured 50 lbs of boston butt
120 pieces of chicken
40 lbs of potatos
7 lbs of pasta
6 cans of # 10 beans (using your recipe)

does this look about right?

also appetizers are

meatballs 300
little smokies 300
cheese 6 lbs cubed
veggie tray (having trouble with the amounts)
cheese ball 6 lbs
crackers

do the amounts sound right on this?

I just want a basic veggie tray, cukes, peppers, tomatoes, carrots and broccoli
not sure how much to buy of each

please help.

thanks

Leda

coco
04/07/08
4/9/08

Hi,
I am searching for two sources of info.
#1)How much ground beef is need to make 120 burgers for a camp for children?

#2)I am also looking for a jambalaya recipe for 120 people, mostly children at a camp.

Thanks for your help with this.
CoCo in Covington, La.

ellen
04/08/08
Easy first. Coco, assuming almost all kids and a few counselors, you would make the patties 4 to the pound. Unless they are junior high or above, you nee only 10% extra above 1 each.
Jabalaya has MANY recipes. Basically for 120 with a lot of kids, you want a recipe with 8-9 pounds of rice as the base.

Leda, you actually probably have more food than you need for 100 people, unless this is a six hour/allday type party. 40 pounds of pork and 100 pieces of chicken, 4 #10 cans of beans. I would use lots of veggies in my pasta salad.

Do look at the sandwich condiment table on my sandwich event page. Do get one batch of Boca burger or Morningstar vegetarian sandwich patties. In 100 people you will need an entree for vegetarians.

Appetizers are plenty. You might consider adding a second cheese ball.

Did you look at the relish trays and veggie trays in my veggie tray section? If those amounts don't help, write back.

Leda
04/08/08
thanks so much for your quick response! and i went back and checked you app page, thanks!

have changed the apps because produce cost in my area are so expense right now and trying to keep cost down for the happy couple

200 meat balls
180 crescent wrapped smokies
spiral tortilla slices w/ cream cheese filling
120
6 lbs cubed cheese
5 lbs chips
2 quarts of dip

does this look better?

thanks so much for your help

also adjusted the main course amounts

44 lbs boston butt bone in (this is already pulled and in the freezer and will be reheating this in a carolina bar b que sauce (very thin watery sauce)

100 pieces of cut up chicken, par boiled grilled the day of and held briefly in roasting pans on very low

40 lbs potato salad
6 lbs pasta for pasta salad
4 number 10 # cans beans
4 large heads cabbage for vinegar slaw,

no need for meatless entrees as there are no vegetarians coming.

thanks so much don't know what i'd do with out your site :)

julie
04/08/08
please give me a receipe for chicken and rice casserole that could serve 100 people.

I really would appreciate it. It is for the homeless shelter.

Tanya
04/08/08
We are having a neighborhood Cinco de Mayo Festival. We are planning on about 15 people. How many pounds of already marinated Carne Asada beef should we get? Also, can you give me an estimate on refried beans and rice?
Tanya
04/08/08
PPLEASE DISREGARD MY PREVIOUS POSTING, I PUT THE INCORRECT AMT OF PEOPLE...
We are having a neighborhood Cinco de Mayo Festival. We are planning on about 150 people. How many pounds of already marinated Carne Asada beef should we get? Also, can you give me an estimate on refried beans and rice?
ellen
04/09/08
LEDA DO NOT PARTIALLY COOK AND HOLD the chicken, if that is what you mean by parboiled it is NOT SAFE. Once chicken is taken out of refrigeration it must be cooked to 150 internal temp before eating or rechilling.

Now the only two suggestions I have about the appies are, you REALLY need at least 15 pounds (12 at the absolute minimum) of cheese and cheese balls.

2 quarts of dip is is less than 1 1/2 tablespoons per person. The usual for 100 people is at least 6 quarts. You need something vegetablish or green; at the very least, make a spinach dip using frozen spinach or use salsa/ picante as one dip.

Julie, see the basic budget entrees sections on the Big Pots index page. Your recipe will need 8 pounds of rice and 60 pounds of chicken pieces.

Tanya, if this is raw beef, at least 1 pound for each 3 people- and with that you would need to grill in some peppers, onions, etc. There are quite a few recipes for rice and Spanish rice for 100 and beans for 100 already posted on the site- don't miss the recipe for borracho beans, the tradional side dish with carne asada. Basically, for both rice and beans, 7-8 pounds dry raw for each 100 people.

Jeff
04/09/08
We're getting married in a couple of weeks and have decided to have a buffet. We are buying all the food pre-made. We are having trouble figuring out how much to buy, pounds of food. The reception will around 5p-5:30p. We are expecting 60 adults and 16 kids, so we are planning for about 90-100. Here is our menu
Pulled Pork BBQ
Baked beans
Potato salad
Meatballs??
Chips
Veggie tray
Cheese tray??
Buns
Tea / Coke
Keg
PLEASE HELP / THANK YOU
ellen
04/09/08
Well, Jeff, you have left this a bit late... usually I say, make an estimate using the tables, the I will check it, but I will make an exception for you.

BUT, do go read the wedding dinner article- link at the top of the main cook talk page.

Count this as 100 people- it is dinner time and people will be hungry.

You need some appetizers, ste up to keep people busy for the hour after the ceremony while you do pictures, change clothes, etc.

SEE APPETIZER PLANNING PAGE_ COVERED IN DETAIL
Meatballs
Chips 6 pounds potato or 8 pounds corn- need dips
Veggie tray
Cheese tray-yes

DINNER
Pulled Pork BBQ-120 sandwiches- about 40 pounds
Baked beans- 3 gallons (4 #10 cans plus fixings)
Potato salad 3 1/2 to 4 gallons
Buns-120
Need 1 pack veggie burgers of some kind for the non-pork eaters
Need condiments- see sandwich event page- pickles, lettuce, etc
Add slaw 2 1/2 to 3 gallons

BEVERAGES- see the beverage planning page
Tea / Coke
Keg
Need some kind of non-caffeinated drinks for the kids
Consider coffee with the cake

If the cake is NOT ordered already, get to it!

Leda
04/10/08
thanks Ellen, oh no i'm going to parboil the chicken to keep the flare to a minimum when grilling. thanks i'll adjust my apps! your a great help!
Carol Lou Reiff
04/21/08
Cooking for 150
I need to know how many turkey to cook for 150 people and scalloped corn
ellen
04/22/08
Go to the planning and shopping article in the holiday cooking section at the top of big pots. Covered in detail.

There is also a whole article on corn side dishes fopr large ghroups.

Diane
04/22/08
I am doing a chocolate fondue for 100 teenagers. they want bananas, pineapple and strawberries. How much of each fruit should I purchase?
Diane
04/23/08
I am serving a fondue fountain for 100 teens. They want pineapple, bananas and strawberries - can you please suggest amounts of each?

How much chocolate will I need?

ellen
04/23/08
Diane, there is an entire section on chocolate fountains and the related dippers, button at the top of the main cook talk page. You would be SO much better off with chafing dishes and a true dipping fondue- read the article and see why.
Michelle
07/30/08
My company is throwing a cook out for our employee's for keeping injuries down on the job site. My job is to research what most people like for cook outs. Potatoe salad verses cole slaw, baked potatoes verses fries, baked beans verses green beans. We plan on grilling steaks (as long as the injuries on the job stay low). We want to make this cook out a wonderful success for all the great work our employee's have done. Your ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Michelle

ellen
07/30/08
What an excellent idea. Will this include the families of the workers? An afternoon of activities (3 leg race, egg toss, wheelbarrow races, etc) can add to the festive atmosphere if family is present.

What most people like best for cookouts seems to be, plenty of food! Especially with heavy work, appetites can be big. I am unsure what you kitchen situation will be for this event, but I would never recommend French fries; either they are done early and get soggy, or they are a real headache, and rather risky, to fry on-site.

You might take a look at the baked potato bar article for your hot potato question.

As far as the salad, I would include both potato salad and slaw as well as baked beans. You want a total of 10 gallons of these sides for each 100 people; about 4 gallons of potato salad and 3 each of beans and slaw.

3 gallons of a special vegetable or salad is also nice- 3 bean salad, artichoke heart antipasto, special green bean casserole are all options.

If you have lots of grilling room, corn roasted in the husk is popular and very festive. Takes a little prep- you have to soak the corn in the husk briefly- but very tasty.

As for the meat, add some chicken halves if this is a large group. Some will be on cholesterol restricted diets.

There are two articles to look at for dessert- the dessert bar guidelines and the sundae bar. Either would be a great ending for your party.

Beverage amounts are covered on the beverage planning page.

Rita
07/31/08
Hi Ellen,
I love your site! I am cooking for a graduation party this weekend for 100 people. I am unsure of the amounts to make and could use some advice. Here is the menu and the amounts I am thinking to make...

Grilled Boneless skinless Chicken Breasts in wine sauce- 3 oz portions (130 pcs)

Ham- This is being provided by someone else

Lasagna w/Meat Sauce- 8 pans (half steam pans)

Hashbrown Casserole- 5 pans (half steam pans)

Taco Salad- unsure of how much of this to make considering the other menu items with meat.

Fruit and vegetable trays- provided by someone else.

I believe the host is also provided chips and other such snacks. I dont' want to run out of food, but don't want to overdo it either.
Thanks in advance for your help!

Ribbon jello- 3 9x13 pans

Sheet cake- half sheet cake

cookie assortment- 4 different cookies for a total of about 200 cookies

Shee

ellen
08/01/08
Not enough desserts. You want a two layer half sheet cake, or a whole sheet, and about double the cookies unless they are very large.

I would not make a taco salad, but a green salad base with the chips and fixings at the side. Green salad for 100 per the salad table on plan for 100. For the fixings see the not out of the trash bag walking taco salad, gives amounts for 25 meal portions, you will want about 50 people worth.

I would add some kind of bread or rice.

Rita
08/01/08
Thanks Ellen!
The cake is a two-layer half sheet, I forgot to mention that. I will add a bar cookie to the assortment also.
The host specifically asked for a taco salad..but I agree with you, it can't hurt to set it out seperately like a salad bar.
So the other item amounts were O.K.?
ellen
08/01/08
Looked about right to me.
Carol
10/12/08
Funeral lucheon...100 people.
We are making tradtional sandwiches, ham or turkey
12 sandwiches per loaf of bread. So I need say 10 loaves but how much meat? We will also be serving assorted salads and desserts
Thanks!
ellen
10/12/08
You need 1 pound deli sliced for each 4-5 sandwiches, depending on cheese, lettuce, tomato, etc.
Rachel
10/12/08
We are planning on a short notice wedding reception with 75-100 guests. What is the best method to cook the Au Gratin potatoes on the menu?

We have Nesco roasters available to cook in and serve out of to keep the food warm. Is it safe to cook the Au Gratin potatoes in a Nesco roaster 2/3 full and cook backup pans in the oven to add to the roaster as needed? Or should we cook all of the Au Gratin potatoes separately and then serve them from the Nesco roaster?

The bride has requested a Jiffy corn casserole that I'm wondering again if it would be best to cook it in a roaster with smaller backup pans or to cook a lot of smaller pans which are then combined into the roaster to keep up to temperature and serve from.

Your advice is greatly appreciated!

ellen
10/13/08
I would precook all the potatoes/ sauce, then add to the roaster as needed- keep hot tightly covered in the oven- or just do in two roasters. You also could do the jiffy corn casserole in two roaster cookwells and serve that way- you can buy the cookwells separately on line (BE SURE to check model numbers for the roasters) or you can just buy/borrow the two extra roasters.

The jiffy casserole transferred from small pans to the roaster wiill not be attractive.

Hortencia
01/09/09
Hi Ellen Great Web Page. Could you tell me if I need more for a Surprise party that I'm planning for my husband the guest will arrive by 6:30pm and end around 10pm

Here's my menu I'm trying to create a budget for.
__
3 cheese balls platters
6 lbs of crackers
20 lbs cheese divivded on the 3 platters

Party Wings- 40lb (4) 10lb bags

Meatballs 24lbs -----Sams 6lb (4)bags

Fruit Tray:
Red Apples -10lb apples sliced
Green Apples- 16lbs apples sliced
Pinapples -(4) 3-4lb 1 per tray
(using (4) 16" inch trays)
Grapes- (green and red) 6lbs divided on 4 trays

Veggie Tray: using (3) 16" party trays
Baby cut carrots - 1lb per tray
Celery- (3) 32oz bag of trimmed heads of celery
1 bag per tray
Cucumbers- 2 spears cut into slices per tray
Broccoli Florets- 6lbs divided on the 3 trays.

Please help me!!! I hope I came close?!
Hortencia

Hortencia
01/09/09
Sorry! This is for 100 people. Hortencia
ellen
01/10/09
Happy birthday, husband.

What you have is good, right amounts, nice choices. What you need is:
-dips or dressings for the veggies and the fruits
-I would add grape tomatoes or cherry tomatoes or orange/red/yellow bell pepper chunks to the veggie trays for color
-Some kind of great carb/bready thing- maybe bruschetta?- about 12 pounds OR about 6 quarts of a heavy chip dip- 7 layer tex mex, bean dip, artichoke spinach, etc with about 8 pounds of corn chips or dipping bread
-I assume there is birthday cake? Dinner coffee is nice with that...

People will be eating dinner basically- most will not eat before coming- so you need to bulk it out a little.

Hortencia
01/10/09
THANK YOU!!!! SO Much. I forgot to add that I am having:

Chicken salad crackers

Pasta Salad 1/2 (50 people)

Potato Salad 1/2 (50 people) some may not like the pasta, vise versa on the potato salad.

Thanks,
Hortencia

Thanks for the corn chip idea and orange/red yellow bell peppers I will add

Yes I will have cake

Is this too much? ANy suggestions

ellen
01/10/09
No, it is not too much. You will probably have some left, but that is OK!
Hortencia
01/12/09
Thank you so Much!!!! I will let you know how everything goes!!!
Winnie Anderson
01/12/09
I need to know how much potatoes i need for 100 people for mashed & Carrots & frozen corn i need for 100 people.
Thank You
ellen
01/12/09
See the vegetable table on the plan for 100 page- button at the top of the main cooktalk page.
shelly
01/19/09
Hi and what a great site? I need to have numbers on how much meat to have for 100 people. I want to BBQ brisket, chicken and sausage and do it buffet style. How much brisket, chicken and sausage do I need to purchase? I will also have baked beans, potato salad and cold slaw on the buffet.
ellen
01/19/09
How to plan a three meat bbq is discussed in detail on the bbq and brisket page, button at the top of the main cook talk page. Work up an estimate and post it, and I will review it for you.
bailey1
03/03/09
I would like your suggestion on a cold wedding menu..i have the place but am short on cash and would like to do most of it myself. We will be renewing our vows so it is alittle less formal..time would be 6 pm and im counting on about 100 people. Am limited on cooking space..have one refrigator and small stove with microwave.. have plenty of room and time to prep ahead of time..will be late July. Any suggestions..if possible would like simple and elegant..@ half guest would be kids. Thank you and love your site.
ellen
03/04/09
See the champagne brunch for 25 and make 4 times the amount. It's a great plan.
tracy
03/12/09
Cooking for 250
cooking for 250 for wedding reception,
pulled pork, roast beef, on small buns,
green beans, hashbrown cass.
tea, kool-aid need to know how much beef and pork? How many cans of green beans? How many bags of forzen hash browns? help
Thanks ellen love your site
ellen
03/13/09
Tracy, all this is alreday covered on site. As I have said before, prepare an estimate and I will check it.
Patty Charrier
03/25/09
I am planning a volunteer dinner for Habitat for Humanity in area I need to know how much ham for 90 ,cheese hash brown casserole ,Broccoli salad
ellen
03/25/09
Use the plan for 100 list and my recipes for 100, less 10%.
Dorothy
04/08/09
How many sandwiches, veggie trays, pickles, squares, cake, tea, coffee & hot chocolate do I need to feed 250 guests after a dance
ellen
04/08/09
You want the dessert bar page for the sweets and the sandwich event page for the sandwiches. Pickles are on the plan for 100 page. Beverages are on the beverage planning page (I don't know the age/mix of your crowd, so I can't tell you how many are hot chocolate vs. coffee). I would use at least half fruit trays instead of veggie trays- at that time of night almost no veggies will get eaten- see the fruit tray page.
laura rode
04/30/09
Cooking for 75
Iam having a graduation party for my daughter, we will be 75 people. Please help me with quantities, my menu is hamberger, hot dogs, bbq chicken, chicken picata, sausage and peppers, penne vodka, eggplant parm, orzo with sundry tomato and mozzerella, potato salad, string bean salad, baked beans, green salad and rolls. Thanks a million!
ellen
05/01/09
Laura, this is too many dishes to do a good estimate. With a small crowd (and 75 is small for this type planning), you would have to have a lot left over in order to make sure everyone gets their first choice.

What this looks like is two separate menus, a BBQ menu and an Italian menu, and I would STRONGLY recommend you go one way or the other with a group this size. Are you expecting 2 different age groups?

I would either eliminate the hotdogs, bbq chicken, potato salad and baked beans, and do the hamburger as big tasty meatballs, or the Italian entrees and at least one pasta side. I also would serve either the orzo or the penne but not both.

Think about your plan and write back and I will try to help.

laura
05/02/09
okay, how about HB, Dogs, Sausage, BBQ chicken, eggplant parm, grilled veggies and shrimp, pasta with fresh tomatoes and mozzerella, potato salad, baked beans, green salad. Thanks
ellen
05/03/09
Good! Now we move into the realm of possibility. I would do 60 each burgers and pieces of chicken (pieces, not quarters), and consolidate the sausage and dogs by using good polish sausage or kielbasa in the sausage and peppers, make about 10 pounds of sausage and equal weight of peppers/onions, skip the dogs except 2 packages of tofu pups or other vegetarian type for meatless option. About 4-5 9x13 each eggplant and pasta (you won't have any pasta left over). 2 gallons potato salad, 1 1/2 -2 beans, and 1/2 the amount of green salad you would use for 100 or a little more.

The thing about the grilled veggies and shrimp is, you need at least 2 ounces of shrimp per person, 3 is better, anytime you serve shrimp, it is VERY desirable to most people. You need about 16 pounds of raw veggies to grill, as you already have the eggplant dish.

Judy Sonsalla
10/07/09
Cooking for baby shower
We are planning a baby shower for my daughter. Our main item will be BBQ with several salads, including potato salad, chips, dips, veggie tray and beverages. We sent 60 invitations and expect probably half that number. How do I calculate the number of pounds of BBQ that we need to prepare when we are unsure of the number of guests?
Karin
10/07/09
When planning my party is there a variation on the amount needed on sides depending on how many you serve. Here's the menu:

SERVING 175

Pulled pork
BBQ Boneless chicken tenders
Bread for the meat
Mashed potatoes
Macaroni & Cheese
Green Beans
Coleslaw
Cake

What is the best way to figure quantities needed without havinf alot left over?

Linda
10/07/09
Can you give me some appetizer suggestions for my stepson's wedding reception? There will be about 100 guests and it will go from 8 p.m. until 1 a.m. We have refrigeration but no cooking facilities in the hall
Thanks
ellen
10/08/09
Judy, if I were you and doing the cooking and serving at home, I would make pulled bef or pork the day before, bag it in zipper freezer baggies in the sauce and put in the refrigerator. Day of, heat and use what you need (pork does NOT reheat well in the microwave, use the stove or roaster), then heat the rest as needed, and put the unused in the freezer.
ellen
10/08/09
Karin, I would do mashed potatoes for 120, mac for 100. 2 pounds raw pork for each 5 PLUS 2 pounds raw boneless skinless chicken for each 8.
ellen
10/08/09
Linda, it is hard to make suggestions with no idea about the budget. Here are some thoughts.

I would suggest some roasters or large crockpots for some meatballs/smokies and hot dips. There is a whole table on amounts for appetizers. Budget permitting, cold shrimp are a sure winner, and whole smoked snapper or rockfish are elegant and delicious. Cold ham and turkey breast sliced with nice rolls. Cold marinated veggie trays with blanched asparagus, baby corn, etc (see the relish tray suggestions at the top of the veggie tray page). Cheese trays/ balls/spreads, 12-20 pounds per 100. Fruit trays, maybe with chocolate fondue for dipping.
Desse rt bar with 4 or more small items and the cake, of course. There is a whole article.

Brenda
11/06/09
We are having a soup supper to raise money for our Fire Dept. We have offered Chili and Chicken Noodle soup in the pass but now want to make Bean Soup. Can you tell me what quantity of Great Nortern Beans to buy to make one large Nesco roaster full of Bean Soup?
ellen
11/06/09
You want to make about 3 gallons of bean soup. That is about 40-50 servings Here is the Navy recipe for 100 people:

Ingredient
BEANS,WHITE,DRY 3 quarts, 2 cups, 6 1/4 pound
WATER,COLD 2 gallons
HAM BROTH (FROM MIX) 5 gallons
PORK,HOCKS,(CURED & SMOKED),FROZEN 2 1/2 pounds -OR- 2 to 3 pounds chopped ham ends and pieces
CARROTS,FRESH,SHREDDED 1 pound, 5 cups (I double this)
ONIONS,FRESH,CHOPPED 2 pounds, 6 cups
PEPPER,BLACK,GROUND 1/8 ounce
FLOUR,WHEAT,GENERAL PURPOSE 13 1/4 ounces, 3 cups
WATER,COLD, 1 quart
I add 2 bunches fresh parsley, chopped, 2 tablespoons marjoram, and sometimes a #10 can of crushed tomatoes.

Method

Pick over beans, removing discolored beans and foreign matter. Wash thoroughly in cold water.
Cover with cold water; bring to a boil; boil 2 minutes. Turn off heat. Cover; let stand 1 hour.
Prepare stock according to recipe. Add to beans; bring to a boil; cover; simmer 2 hours or until beans are tender.
Place thawed, smoked, cured pork hocks in water to cover. Simmer 1 hour; remove from heat; cool. Remove lean meat; chop into small pieces.
Add carrots, onions, pepper and chopped ham hocks to bean mixture. Simmer 30 minutes.
Blend flour and water to form a smooth paste. Stir into soup; cook 10 minutes. CCP: Internal temperature must reach 165 F. or higher for 15 seconds. Hold for service at 140 F. or higher.

ellen
11/06/09
I also usually add celery, 2-3 bunches, sliced thin and simmered with the carrots.
Raymeta
11/11/09
I'm in charge of a church luncheon. How many pounds of potatoes do I need for serving 150 people mashed potatoes?
ellen
11/12/09
55-60 pounds, depending on the other sides and the appetites of your guests.
Kathy
11/12/09
Cooking for 75
Just discovered site; love it. Every yr. we have family weekend b4 Thanksgiving. 1 yr.50 people I did all cooking, used ALL my casserole dishes. Next yr friend catered. This yr. doing all but appetizers and desserts.have 1 dbl oven upstairs, 1 single down, stoves 8 burners, 2 refrigs. My menu: 3 turkeys cooked nite b4 on 250. 2 halfs Honeybaked hams, 2 sliced honeybaked smoked turkey breast, (if pans r 8 qts)2 stuffing, 2 mac&cheese, 2 sweet pot w/ marshmallows, 2 sweet pot casserole w/pecan top, 2 broccoli casserole, 2 squash, 35 lbs green beans, butterbeans, rolls from store, tea, coffee, soft drinks. Should I buy chafing dishes if I do this every year? Never used one b4. Looks like it would really help. (Friend used them last year. Does the menu look like enough? Thanks!
Kathy
11/12/09
Cooking for 75
Also really liked ur mashed potato recipe. Kind of wanted to make them too...Am going to use ur gravy recipe. Thanks!
ellen
11/12/09
You have way plenty food. You only need about 20 pounds green beans for 75 people. Go to this site for info on chafing dishes:

www.eddiesportablepigout.com/steamtable.htm

Remember they can ONLY keep warm, not reheat, so you may want some 18 quart roasters for some of the items.

Brenda
11/19/09
Cooking for 15 to 18 people
Cooking carne guisada rice & beans for 15 to 18 people. How many lbs of meat do you think and also cups of rice.
Brenda
11/19/09
Cooking for 15 to 18 people
Cooking carne guisada rice & beans for 15 to 18 people. How many lbs of meat do you think and also cups of rice.
ellen
11/19/09
Its basically stew, so you want 1 pound raw boneless meat for each 3-4 people, depending on if there are enchiladas or other entree portions along with. 1 pound of rice would be the bare minimum, I would probably do 1 1/2 to 1 3/4.
Mary
11/19/09
I'm making potato salad for approx 200 poeple. I wanted to know how many lbs of potatoes I would need.
ellen
11/19/09
See the first item in the plan for 100 table or any of my eight recipes for potato salad for 100, make double.
Kelly
03/18/10
Cooking for 125-150
Can you give me the amounts needed for a build your own taco bar for a max of 150 people? I want the guested to be able to make a taco salad, taco, nachos, and also have a side dish. I will have the usual hamburger, shredded cheese, lettuce, onions, salsa, sour cream, etc... chips, refried beans, spanish rice, and possibly a corn salad.
ellen
03/18/10
Kelly, you can calculate this yourself using the amounts on the baked potato bar/ taco bar page. Those amounts are for 100, you would use 1 1/2. You would add 12-15 pounds of chips (depends on age of group- teens eat more) and 2-3 #10 nacho cheese sauce or 2 1/2 gallons queso, opening only 2/3 until you see how the appetites are going.

The corn salad is a very nice idea, attractive and much less costly than guacamole.

DeeDee
06/28/10
Doing a reception that is catered, but only has one meat. I want to add a second meat, maybe a pork loin (I will be doing it on my own)... How many pounds of pork loin would I need for 200 guest...? chicken is the other meat.
Thanks in advance!
Rick
06/28/10
Cooking for 75-100
Cooking for my daughters graduation party---can you tell me the amount of each item needed?

chicken tenders
sausage and peppers
meatballs
ziti
potato salad
pasta salad
broccoli and shells
green beans

I would appreciate your help!

ellen
06/28/10
Dee, at least 2 pounds raw boneless for each 6 people.

Rick, this is too be a range in numbers to give you a good estimate. Also, probably too much pasta; how about a veggie medley instead of broccoli and shells.

chicken tenders
sausage and peppers
meatballs
Allow at least 3 ounce each per person. I would do 1 pound raw chicken for each 3, if it were me.

ziti- 8-10 pounds dry per 100

Following are on the plan for 100 list:
potato salad
pasta salad
broccoli and shells (you need about 24 pounds plain frozen broccoli for 100)
green beans 22 pounds. Take a look at my better green bean casserole on the top of the Big Pots page; tastier, holds better

John
07/20/10
I would like to know how many lb. of rice and red or black beans I need to purchase to fix the beans and rice for 100 people, Please
ellen
07/20/10
8 pounds of rice for a side dish, 10-11 for under beans; 8 pounds of beans for a side dish, 12 for an entree
Jacka
07/20/10
I will be cooking for 100 people for a Hawaiian Luau. I will be preparing grilled raspberry glazed chicken tenders on skewers and pineapple and honey glazed ham cubes on skewers. How many of each of these do I need to make? I am also preparing vegetable kabobs, do I need 1 of each per person? Thanks for all your help!
Jacka
07/20/10
I also needed to add that I am also preparing Hawaiian rice, Hawaiian sweet rolls and a toss salad. For dessert I will be preparing: Two 4 layer coconut cakes, Two 4 layer pineapple cakes, 100 mini key lime tarts, 1 Large chafing dish size of banana pudding. I feel this should be enough. Do you agree?
ellen
07/20/10
Enough desserts. You want 5 ounces of chicken plus 3 ounces of ham total per person, and probably 2 veggie skewers.
Jacka
07/30/10
I have also decided to add boiled shrimp to my menu for 100. How many do I need since I will be serving chicken & ham? Thanks for all your help!
ellen
07/30/10
3 ounces edible per person- 1 pound shell on for each 4- is the minimum for this.
Natalie
08/16/10
dessert buffet
Hello, I'm having a party outdoors and would like to have a dessert buffet. Im just not sure when to set it up. It will not be very hot but I want everything to be fresh. I also do not want to take alot of time away from my guests. Can you tell me when they are normally set up? Thank you!!
ellen
08/16/10
Is this in addition to a meal or stand alone? If in addition to a meal, it should be set up when the meal is set up. If stand alone, it should be up when he guests arrive, so they can see their choices.

Depending on the size of the party, you might consider hiring a responsible teen or three to set up, keep filled, and help clean up.

jenny
09/19/10
I am making a chicken and rice casserole for 30 people. How much rice and chicken do I need?
ellen
09/19/10
Jenny, for the chicken, go to the chicken section of the plan for 100 table, select the cut/type of chicken, and use 1/3 the amount for 100. Or, allow 3/4 cup meat per person- 1 pound cooked meat is 2 cups.
Rice for 30 2 1/2 pounds.
ellen
09/20/10
I would use 2 1/2 to 3 pounds rice. Chicken, 1 pound meat or 2 pounds whole chicken is 2 cups, and you want about 3/4 cup per person.
Mary Jane
10/05/10
I am preparing pecan grape chicken salad for a group of 12. They have requested crackers to be served with this. They also want a cheese ball with crackers & peanut butter bon bons. They also want lemon tarts (I will be making 40 tarts.) How much chicken salad do I need and what size cheese ball do I need for 12 people?
ellen
10/06/10
I would make 3 pounds cheese balls, 2 flavors, you will have some left. 2-3 ounces crackers per person. Use 1/8 the amount of chicken salad for luncheon salads for 100 on the plan for 100 page.
Chef Surmi
10/20/10
Dear Ellen:

Next Saturday I will be preparing a brunch for a wedding reception for 100 people. Here is the menu:

* Gravlax on rye toast points (passed app)
* Tuscan loaves and cinnamon raisin sourdough
* Leek and Goat Cheese Quiche with Prosciutto
* Arugula, Pear, Cranberry, and Walnut Salad
* Roasted Vegetables (Acorn, Leek, Mushroom, Bacon)
* Slow-Roasted Pork Shoulder
* Croquembouche (as the wedding cake)

Here are my questions:
- How many pounds of bone-in boston butt would you suggest? (The only info I found so far suggests .75 lb. - 1 lb. per person... whew!!! that's alot!)
- How many pounds of raw veggies (total) would you do?
- How many sides of salmon (or pounds) would you cure?

Thank you ever so much!!

P.S. Do you recommend any books on this subject? I am new to estimating portion sizes.

ellen
10/21/10
No books better than this site for most stuff...

Yes, at least .75 pounds per person for the Boston Butt.

1 pound salmon per 6 people.

Make some of the quiches without prosc., for the vegetarians in the crowd- at least 2-3.

You need 1 pound ready to eat veggies per 4-5 persons. That's about 1 1/3 pound raw per 5.

Jacka
11/10/10
Cooking for 25
I will be preparing a meal for 25 people. The menu will be baked turkey breast, candied yams, green beans, dressing, corn, dinner rolls, bananna pudding, minature cheese cakes or carrot cake, sweet tea. How many lbs of turkey breast do I need? I will be using 2 large cans of green beans & corn, large chafing dish of dressing, large chafing dish of candied yams. Will this be enough for 25 people? I feel that I have more than enough desserts to choose from. Thanks
mary sue
11/30/10
Cooking for 100 beef stew
Ibs of beef, potatoes, carrots,onions/
ellen
12/01/10
Jacka, you want to look at the turkey yield tables to estimate the raw weight of the breasts, you want 6-8 ounces per person cooked for a party size serving. Unless you are devoted to canned vegetables, I suggest 6 pounds each of frozen corn and green beans- tastier- you will have a lot left with the 2 cans each corn and beans. Other items are OK, no leftovers-

Mary Sue, this is a real person. Look at the plan for 100 meat table, use the indicated amount of beef, add the vegetables according to your favorite recipe.

Laura
02/22/11
Cooking for 60

I am planning on serving Beef tips/Carne Guisada over white rice, green beans, and rolls for my baby shower.

Here are my ?'s:
How many pounds of stew meat do i need to buy? or is there a better way of buying the beef.

How many cans of Green Beans? i'm thinking 2 big cans (like the 101 oz) kind.

How much lbs rice will i need to buy if serving is 1 cup or so?

Should i add salad to menu?

ellen
02/22/11
You would do 2/3 of the amounts for 100, all these foods are on the list. I would add salad.
Jessie
02/24/11
I am cooking lunch for 250 boys & men. I will be delivering this to the site and everyone will be helping themselves to the food. I will be preparing Macoroni/Cheese, Green Beans, Tossed Salad, Mash Potatoes & Gravy, & Corn.
I think 4 chafing dish pans of each will be sufficient don't you? I am also preparing ham & fried shrimp. Thank you for your help
ellen
02/25/11
Usually a standard 2 1/2 inch deep chafing pan only serves about 25. Use the plan for 100 page for quantities, you need potatoes and mac for 150 each, at least; green beans for 200, corn for full 250. At least 1/4 cup gravy per person, and 1/3 would be safer with this type crowd.
Pam
03/30/11
Cooking for 150
I am cooking green bean bundles for a church function. I use fresh green beans wrapped in bacon. How many lbs. will it take to feed 150 people? I will place two bunles on each plate.
ellen
03/30/11
Depends a bit on the size of the beans, but around 25 pounds fresh per 100.
kris
06/22/11
Cooking for 125
hi I am doing a grad party for about 125 people taco bar with dips and dip how much groung beef do i need also having fruit and small sandwiches and salads for people who dont want tacos
ellen
06/23/11
Use the extensive guidelines on the taco pabar page, increase amounts about 10%.
Sonya
09/08/11
Im making a cheese fondue fountain for my friends wedding how much, and what types of cheese do I need? do you know any good recipes that will please this many people?
ellen
09/08/11
Sonya, real fondue won't work in a fountain. You need something with the texture of nacho cheese or queso. There is a recipe for this at the bottom of the chocolate fountain article.

If I were trying to approximate a real fondue, I would use a white melting cheese (it is an uncolored, Velveeta-style cheese, available in the southwest under local brand names) and white wine in place of the salsa. I don't know if you will find this in your area.

If you do a google search for "cheese fondue fountain". you will find some companies that rent these and ship them nationally.

Paul
10/04/11
Iam doing a fish fry all you can eat. Is 50 Lb enough.

How many pd's of dry white navy beans would I need.

Also slaw will be served, 3-4 Gallon.

ellen
10/04/11
Is this for 100 people? Fish is OK, but you need to serve it.

You need tartar sauce, 1/4-1/3 cup per person.

At least 8 pounds dry beans, 10 would be plenty.

4 gallons minimum slaw if you are not having potato salad or pasta salad also.

Donna Rains
11/21/11
I am helping to prepare Thanksgiving dinner for 101 people. We are making Turkey and dressing, and I am in charge of preparing all the dressing and gravy. I need to know how much dressing to prepare, please help!
ellen
11/21/11
3-3 1/2 pounds of dry stuffing makes a full 6 quarts, which serves about 40 people with no potatoes, 50 with potatoes.

The Southern baked dressing on this site is really delicious...

Gayla
02/27/12
I am preparing for about 75 people. Taco Soup with Cornbread & Chicken Salad on Croissants. Also, peach cobbler for dessert.
ellen
02/27/12
For the sandwiches, 3/4 the amounts for 100 on the sandwich page.
About 4 1/2 gallons of soup
8 9x13 peach cobblers, same cornbread
Tina Leman
03/07/12
Cooking for 350
I am having a graduation open house for my daugher. We are planning for 350 people. How much hamburger would I need for tacos? We also need to find out how to make corn cassarole for a big crowd. Can it be made in an electric roaster? We are alos having nachos cheese and jalepenos, fruit trays, taco dip and Monster cookies ice cream sandwiches for dessert. Any help would be appreciated.
ellen
03/08/12
Tina, the taco bar for 100 is where you need to go-
add 2 ounces chips and 1/4 cup nacho cheese per person, 1 gallon jalapenos per 100
The roaster is fine for the corn casserole, see the corn side dishes page for a great recipe.
Fruit trays, see the fruit tray page.
Tracy
03/10/12
preparing a seder passover dinner. What would it cost and how much food for 100 people. Menu lamb shank bone, brisket, asparagus, auGratin potatoes, choc. cake. Thanks.
ellen
03/11/12
Tracy, I can't do costs- they vary too much by region and supplier. Look at your local caterers costs, the food is about 1/3 the total.
Heather
03/14/12
Ellen,

I am planning a party for my husband's 30th birthday and I want to do a taco buffet. How could I go about doing this and getting the right amount of foods for everyone?

I'm planning on having wings and pork barbeque at the party as well.

ellen
03/14/12
Go to the taco bar for 100 and do 1/3 the amounts, and you will have plenty.
Kristi
04/13/12
Hi Ellen,

I am volunteering for a church function and we are serving about 100 people. Our menu includes salad, stuffed pork tenderloin, roasted red potatoes, veggie medley, (pre-bought) rolls, and (pre-bought) cake. What quantities should we buy of everything, and do you have any good ideas for a veggie medley side dish that would be low maintenance?

ellen
04/13/12
Use the plan for 100 table to make a first estimate, then post, and I will check for you. Desserts are on the dessert planning page.
Jo
05/20/12
Cooking for 200
Graduation party for 250. Menu is pulled pork as well as shredded chicken sandwiches. Chips, baked beans. Buns.
Jo
05/20/12
Cooking for 200
Graduation party for 200. Menu is pulled pork as well as shredded chicken sandwiches. Chips, baked beans. Buns.
Mary Sandoval
06/12/12
Hi,

We are having a party for 100 people mainly adults, We are serving 3 main entries Tamales, mexican pulled pork and fried chicken. I would like to know how much chicken to order. I have averaged 2 tamales per person and figured approximately 50 pounds of uncooked pork butt for the pulled pork. Please advise if the estimates sound good and again how much chicken to order.

Thanks

ellen
06/12/12
Hi, Jo,
2/3 pork, 1/3 chicken. About 70 pounds total raw meat. Rest is on the plan for 100 table and the sandwich page.

Mary, 35 pounds pork will leave you with leftovers, about 60 pieces of chicken. People like tamales a lot, you might consider a few more.

cindy
06/13/12
Cooking for 50
how much boneless chicken do I need for hot chicken salad for 50 people
ellen
06/13/12
1 pound boneless is 2 cups and you want at least 1/2 cup meat per person.
megan
07/16/12
hello im have a beef taco and chciken fajita bar for about 100 people how much of both chicken and beef do i need to buy?
megan
07/16/12
also i was planning on making the beef for the tacos and the chicken for the fajitas in the roasting pans will that be ok?
thanks
ellen
07/16/12
Please see the fajita page:

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/texmexfajitas.html

and consider doing chicken tacos and beef fajitas. The meat for tacos is so highly seasoned that dark meat chicken works fine.

Karin
07/17/12
Cooking for 130 for wedding
I have BBQ beef and salmon as the main entree for 130 guests, buffet-style. How much beef and how much salmon would I need to order? Also, I am preparing 6 different salads: green, pasta, rice, Greek, and potato How much of each for 130? We have the wedding cake, but need a dessert table. If we serve chocolate squares, lemon squares and macaroons, how many of each would be appropriate?
ellen
07/18/12
I would allow 2 pounds raw beef per 5 and 1 pound of salmon per 5. Consider serving the salmon either cold or smoked for easy prep.

green salad for 50, Greek salad for 100

pasta, rice, potato salads
6 pounds dry pasta
6 pounds dry rice
45 pounds potatos plus fixings

Need rolls, Suggest fruit trays.

Dessert table, cut about 2 inches square, have one of each flavor per person up to 4 kinds, and some extra chocolate.

Yolanda
07/21/12
Cooking for 300
Hi, my fiance and I are getting married in October. We are considering expanding our reception from cake and punch to a full dinner. The caterer I have chosen says he cannot give me an estimate on amount of food or pricing until he has an official count. I'm nervous to tell people we will have a full dinner without knowing if it will fit the budget. Invitations for RSVP don't go out until August 1st. Roughly, we are inviting approx. 225 adults and 100 kids. Our budget for food is $200. Please tell me what we should plan for the foods listed. We want to serve:

Fried Chicken
Mashed potatoes
Mac and Cheese
Baked Beans
Veggie Lasagna (maybe 6 vegetarians?)

Thank you!

ellen
07/21/12
Yolanda, the usual estimate for a fried chicken dinner for a wedding is about $18 per person, not counting cake or beverages. What do you mean, $200?
Yolanda
07/22/12
The cake and some of the food would be donated by family friends. However, we definitely don't have the funds for a $5K-$6K dinner. We'll stick with cake and punch. Thank you.
Cheryl
08/03/12
cooking for 100-150
Hello. I was wondering what are some of the cheapest meals I could make for 100 - 150 people. I need to furnish 2 Breakfasts and 2 three course Lunches over the course of two days.
ellen
08/04/12
What age and mix of people? What activity? What kind of kitchen and serving.

Baking home made breads and rolls cuts costs a lot, as people will eat homemade breads in large amounts- also baked desserts such as cookies or cake, bread pudding or rice pudding.

Baked French toast or baked oatmeal with homemade raisin cinnamon rolls. Egg casseroles.

Chili with cornbread. Beefy vegetable soup with rolls and salad or fruit. Taco bar or baked potato bar.

Lisa
08/27/12
Cooking for 100 / no electricity
Love your site!

I need to feed 100 volunteers who are putting up a playground at a city park. There is no electricity to keep things hot. Three meals. I'm thinking:

Breakfast
Donuts 2-3 per person (pp) for 50
Muffins 1-2 pp for 50
Fresh fruits 1 pp
Yogurt 50 total
Coffee/tea/juice/water

Lunch
Hot dogs 2 pp for 50
Hamburgers 2 pp for 50
Veggie burgers 2 pp for 25
3 salads (green, macaroni, potato)
Fresh fruits
Soda/water

Dinner
Catered

Am I even close???

Thanks!
Lisa

ellen
08/28/12
Donut guilt is endemic and terrible these days. Have bagels. 1 per person, 2 ounces cream cheese, 1 pounce jam. Get mini muffins, and have 2 per person. 2-3 pounds of butter.

Offer granola to turn the yogurt into parfaits, and get 60-70- they keep, and you don't want to run out.

See fruit page for help on fruit amounts.

100 burgers, 100 hot dogs (consider Polish sausage or kielbasa, budget permitting, MUCH tastier). 24 veggie burgers is plenty.

See sandwich page for help on condiments. But DO consider cold cuts and sliced cheeses, they are well-liked at about the same cost and MUCH less labor. If you must cook something, make some mores.

However

Stephanie
10/21/12
Wedding for 75 Guests
Hi Ellen! My Fiance and I are getting married in May 2013 and are trying to figure out the most cost effective way to feed everyone. We found a restaurant which is relatively inexpensive but I wanted to figure out how many pounds of meat we would need to buy to feed our 75 guests. The wedding reception is from 1-4pm. We are planning on buying sliced roasted turkey and roast beef.

Thanks for all your help:)

ellen
10/21/12
Stephanie, you will save a lot of money if you will schedule the service itself for 1 or 2 pm so people eat lunch before they come.

Are you planning a buffet at the restaurant or are they catering the food? Write back.

Stephanie
10/21/12
We are having the food catered, we are having the ceremony and reception at a club house in my parents neighborhood. The other option we were thinking was to do cold cut platters and go to BJ's to purchase. I am trying to figure out which of the two would be a better idea.
donna
11/04/12
how many pounds of mini potatoes ( doing them in the oven) do I need for 90 people

thank you

donna
11/04/12
Also, please, how many lbs. of carrots (also doing them in the oven)for 90 people.

Thanks again
Donna

ellen
11/06/12
about 20 pounds of carrots, 30-35 potatoes.
donna
11/06/12
Thank you so much
Audrey
11/11/12
Cooking for 75to 85
Ellen
We are cooking for a wedding and we are having ham, stuffed chicken breast , mash pototoes, and green bean almondine and sald and was wandering how much we my need to make
ellen
11/11/12
Assuming 85

ham, 1 pound boneless per 5
stuffed chicken breast, 1 piece per person (4 ounces raw meat each

mash potatoes, 35 pounds
green bean almondine 18 pounds

salad, 5/6 the amount for 100

Audrey
11/11/12
Thank You
Danielle
12/11/12
Cooking for 12
I'm making red snapper stuffed with crab meat for the holidays. How much red snapper do I need to feed 12? The other main course will be a leg of lamb.
ellen
12/11/12
If you are serving both, is the fish whole or fillet?
Melissa
01/03/13
I'm hosting a surprise party for my husband's 42nd birthday. I have a budget of $200 for 100 people. What would you suggest as the best options for food? Lasanga? Finger foods? Fajita bar?
Melissa
01/03/13
Sorry, the event will be from 7-11pm.
ellen
01/03/13
Melissa, this is absolutely not a large enough budget for 200 people for a 4 hour party, especially if it includes the cake; it is over the dinner hour and people will come hungry. I would be hard pressed to do a two hour dinner for 30 on this budget.

If this is truly your budget, start the party at 8 pm and have a dessert only presentation, and do most of the baking yourself.

If you are serious, cut back on the menu or the guest list, email me at the contact link at the bottom of the page, or start a new thread, and I will try to help.

Tom
01/15/13
Hi, I'm catering for 50 in three weeks and planning to serve rillette, chicken liver parfait, beetroot salad, Israeli hummus, and mackerel pate on toast. Thinking of 25 medium sourdough loaves and about 35 pounds of schmear alongside a green salad. Is that enough or will people be sorely dissapointed? Bearing in mind that all the foods are very rich and people will be drinking.
ellen
01/15/13
What is event, what time of day and how long is the party? Also, what are the dippers for the hummus?
Tom
01/15/13
Evening, with drinks. The houmous will be eaten with toast. Everything will be eaten with toast. We're going for 25 sourdough loaves sliced thinly and toasted. Thanks!
Tom
01/15/13
And that's 35 pounds in total of liver parfait, hummus, mackrel, beetroot etc.
ellen
01/15/13
If this is at dinner time, I would not do less than 50 pounds total of the tasty things- actually, I would probably go a bit more- if it is after dinner you are OK

And 20 pounds schmear is more than plenty- you will probably have some left.

Bread, 16 pounds or so- don't know how big your loaves are- and you will still have some left. With this menu, I might do less bread and add split mini bagels...

Jan
01/17/13
Ellen, we are having a style show and serving chicken salad for lunch. It will have grapes, apples, celery, pecans and pineapple in it. We are using precooked chicken chunks. There will be about 80 people eating. The chicken comes in 10lb cases. We will also have a jello salad and croissant with a brownie for dessert. How much of the chicken do you think I should order?
ellen
01/17/13
See the discussion on chicken salad in the salad section of plan for 100. Most chicken salads are 1/2 chicken. A 10 pound box is about 20 cups.
Mona
02/19/13
Hi Ellen,
my youth group and I are cooking a lunch for a shelter ( sick kids and their families). We are making Pasta with meatballs, green salad, bread sticks, and cookies. We are cooking for 75 people, how many pounds of pasta, meatballs, sauce, green salad, and cookies do we need to buy?
Thank you
ellen
02/19/13
See the spaghetti dinner for 50-60, make/buy 1 1/2 times the amounts for this group. 1 pound cookies per about 6.
kathy
02/27/13
Helping with a fundraiser for a dog rescue shelter and we are doing red beans and rice. To soak dried red beans how much will 10# grow when soaked in water?
ellen
02/27/13
1 pound dry, is about 2 cups, expands to 6-8 cups when soaked and cooked.
Jon
03/09/13
I am cooking Arroz con Pollo for a group of grade school kids ages 5 through 12. 60 kids plus 15 adults. I have the recipe figured pretty well but I am second guessing myself on the amount of rice. Do you think 18 cups of dry rice sounds about right? I a thinking it might be too much. Thanks.
ellen
03/10/13
sounds like too much. I would ex[ect 6-7 pounds (at max- about 14 cups.
Katherine
04/19/13
I need to fix Mashed potatoes for 350. How may pounds of potatoes do I need. Also do you have a recipe. I also have heard about mixing part potatoes with instant potatoes. Is there a recipe for that.Thank you.
ellen
04/19/13
140-150 pounds of raw potatoes. You could look at the freezable, holdable mashed potatoes recipe on the Big Pots page. I don't use instant potatoes, so can't help with that.
Richel
06/02/13
Cooking for 150
Hi! I need to cook beef broccoli for a 150 persons. How much beef and broccoli should I buy? And if it is not too much to ask I would also love to have your recipe :). Many thanks!
ellen
06/02/13
I like this recipe from the Pioneer Woman Cooks for your recipe:

thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2009/11/jadens-beef-with-broccoli/

You use 1 pound beef for 4 if there are other meat dishes also being served. You use 1 pound per 3 if it is the only meat dish. You buy 1 1/2 times the weight of the meat in fresh broccoli.

You can use flank steak, top sirloin or prime/choice quality top round; don't use select grade, it is not tender enough.

Joeyanne
07/04/13
How many pounds of carne guisada for 200 people is needed?
Thanks!
ellen
07/04/13
I allow 8 gallons per 100 if it is the only meat dish, self serve and you allow seconds
If you are making from scratch, start with about 70 pounds lean, boneless stew meat.
sherlene
09/26/13
Having s 50th birthday party for my husband there will be over 100 guest we having hot wings,bbq wings,meatballs,potatoes salad,pasta salad, bake beans, and cucumber salad how much of each do I need. I don't want to run out I rather have over.Thank you for your time
ellen
09/26/13
Hi Sherlene,

hot wings, at least 1/3 pound per person, 1 ounce each of 2 sauces per person. Maybe 1 pound celery sticks per each 10.
bbq wings, suggest you consider doing legs instead, popular and cheaper than wings, 2 small legs per person.

meatballs, 1 pound per 4
Suggest you have rolls with these; either slider rolls for the newly popular "meatball sliders", or 4 inch rolls or baguettes for meatball sandwiches. About 12-14 pounds. Add about 7 pounds of thin-sliced provolone or jack, also.

potato salad, 4 1/2 gallons per 100
pasta salad, 6 pounds dry pasta per 100
baked beans, 3 gallons per 100

cucumber salad, 12 pounds cukes per 100 and 3 pounds onions, if you don't use onions, increase the cukes.

You might want to add either coleslaw (2 1/2 gallons per 100) or a fruit tray- see the fruit ray page.

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

sherlene
09/26/13
Thank you so much and I will send a donation email me an address and I will be more than happy to send a donation. Thank you once again..sherlene4750@gmail.com
habibat aminu
10/08/13
Cooking for 100 peoples small chops how do i go ab
pls,my uncle wants to lunch his album nd he ask me to make an estimation of small chops for 100 peoples.
ellen
10/08/13
About 5 small chops in 1 pound.
aminu habibat
10/09/13
what types of small chop can i do wit.
ellen
10/09/13
Please tell me what kind of meal you are trying to serve, what is the budget, what kind of cooking facility you have, and PLEASE start a new thread.
sam
11/05/13
Cooking for 50
hello,

i am going to be catering a party, the menu is carne asada/chicken tacos, beans and rice.. not sure how much of each to buy, please advise, its an adult (it may be some kids there) type of party

ellen
11/05/13
Usually, you want about 5/8 beef, 3/8 chicken.

For this party, 12 pounds beef, 6 pounds chicken.
4 pounds dry beans
5 pounds raw rice

All the rest, 1/2 the amount for 100 from the taco/potato bar page.

quana
01/26/14
Hi ellen, my reception is 6/14/2014 and my entire family is doing the cooking, thank god :). Can you tell us how much pds,qts,etc we need in these items for ill say 100 people, its about 90 people right now but ill rather have more left over than run out. Reception starts 2pm so i figure nibble on appetizers, than have dinner at 6 6:30 and be partying at 8 :). What do you think? I need your help so i can start buying things early and storing it. And does appetizers and desserts go at the same table?

Chicken half fried/baked
White rice
Spanish olive rice(must have)
Baked mac n cheese
Shrimp/cocktail sauce. Do we serve this cooked or raw on ice?
Ham
Pig(bbq hog)
Tuna salad
Potato salad
Corn/string beans/tossed salad
Fish(whitings or tilapia baked which is most inexpensive?
Cabbage w/corned beef in it

Appetizers
Rolls
Deviled eggs
Pigs in a blanket
Small cut up sandwich servings
Fruits/strawberries/pineapple/grapes not sure what other fruits, help me
Chocolate fountain 4 fruits white or dark?

Desserts
Red velvet cake(how many?)
Lemon cake(how many?)
Sweet potato pies(how many?)
Toffee,pecan cookies(how many?)
Chocolate chip cookies(how many?)
Wedding cake of course :)

Condiments
Mayo
Mustard
Ketchup
Ranch
Blue cheese
Balsamic vinaigrette
Hot sauce
Cocktail sauce
Tarter sauce
(How much of these do we need)

Thanks so much ellen your the best :)

quana
01/26/14
Oh reception is from 2 till midnight
quana
01/26/14
Oh one more thing my aunt wants to make a lasagna(how muc?) N is it a yay or a nay? Is it to much food? Thanks again. Sry for writing so much
ellen
01/26/14
It is way too much food and too many. For 100 people, you want these maxies (and could do less)

For 2-midnight, you would do an early dinner and a 10 pm snack.

an appetizer table- 3-4 items. Example, shrimp goes here, 1 pound per 5, peeled boiled, on ice.

Then, only 3-4 entrees/meats (lasagna is an entree)

2 veg

2 starch or starchy salad

1-2 salads

So cut down your menu and I can help.

quana
01/27/14
Aww man is it? Ok but for ex i got to rices because some ppl don't eat olive rice so i got plain also, an mac n cheese i a must have :) omg ellen i dont even know what to cut off. Ok shrimps can go, string beans and corn can go, no fountain. Im so greedy an confused so can you tell me from the list what we shiuld keep n how much we need to feed 100 ppl? Thanks again
Matea
03/17/14
I'm having a fundraiser for my church and I was wondering how many pounds of chicken will I need to feed 100 people?
Erin
03/17/14
I have a few questions actually.
I was wondering how much of these food items do I need for 100 people?
Chicken
Green beans
Collard greens
Mac& cheese
Candied yams
Cabbage
Dressing
Cornbread
Yeast rolls

Banana pudding cake
Red velvet cake
Pineapple upside down cake.

Thank you so much :)

ellen
03/17/14
Maria, this depends on the cut of chicken and the recipe, which is why there is a very detailed table for chicken on the plan for 100 page. If you are plating and it is NOT buffet, you can do with about 10% less.
ellen
03/17/14
Erin, that is a classic Southern menu! If it is a large mixed group, do the larger amounts, if it is all ladies or older adults, you can do the smaller amounts where there is a choice.

Chicken- depends on the cut of chicken and the recipe, which is why there is a very detailed table for chicken on the plan for 100 page. If you are plating and it is NOT buffet, you can do with about 10% less.
Dressing- 1/2 cup per person, plus 10%
Do not neglect gravy- 1 cup per 2-3

Green beans- about 22 pounds ready to cook
Collard greens- do for 60 (2/3 of 100); plan for 100 table has amounts for both fresh raw and frozen
Cabbage- about 10 pounds

Mac& cheese- 8-10 pounds dry pasta, 1 quart sauce per pound, 1/2 to 1 pound cheese per pound. Pre-grated does not get as creamy as freshly grated.
Candied yams- 1/2 cup per person, a #10 can serve 20-22

Cornbread- 1 piece per person
Yeast rolls- 1 per person plus a few extra
For 100, 3 pounds butter and how about a quart or 2 of honey or preserves?

Banana pudding cake
Red velvet cake
Pineapple upside down cake
This collection of Southern favorites is very hard to estimate, as preferences vary by region- I would do about 5 9x13 banana, 5 pineapple upside down, and consider doing the red velvet as a sheet cake, 1 sheet, 4 9x13, which is about the same as 4 2 layer. I always offer dinner level coffee from the beverage planning page for this type dessert- don't omit the decaf!

If this saves you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Bob Constance
06/30/14
We are having a Graduation Party at 4PM for 170 indoors. Eating at 4:30 buffet style. We are having Popcorn. The meal is Ziti with meatballs and sausage. Fried Chichen. Salad and Fruit Salad. Here is what I am planning on making.

250 Pieces Chicken
200 Meatballs
15 lbs Sausage cut up
20 Lbs Pasta
25 Qts sauce
200 Rolls and Butter

We are having people bring 6 salads and 6 Fruit Salads.

Also a Full Sheet Cake
Not sure How Much Ice cream to buy with lots of toppings
15 Doz cookies

My wife and I always disagree on how much food is enough. I make twice as much as we need. She barely makes enough. What would be a happy medium for this party? Any other suggestions? Like how to par boil the past so it isn't over cooked?
Sorry to put you in the middle but your help is appreciated. Thanks!

ellen
06/30/14
Cooking for 170
My rate for couples counseling is the same as my request for donations to support the site; a dime per guest.

This is what I would do for this size party.

250 Pieces Chicken- 170, 1 piece per person
200 Meatballs- 40 pounds, takes about 3 quarts sauce per 10 pounds
15 lbs Sausage cut up- OK
20 Lbs Pasta- OK, some left
25 Qts sauce- 20 plenty, some meatless for any vegetarians
4 shakers Parm per 100
200 Rolls and Butter- OK, get good ones, consider Italian or French loaves, 20 pounds

We are having people bring 6 salads and 6 Fruit Salads.

Also a Full Sheet Cake- this is just 60 servings, you might consider a 2 layer sheet
Not sure How Much Ice cream to buy with lots of toppings- 5 gallons if it is just for ala mode, 1/2 cup scoops
15 Doz cookies- plenty

The spaghetti page has a lengthy instruction on pre-cooking and reheating pasta. One simple option would be to turn it into baked spaghetti, sauce and cheese added and baked, see the basic budget entrees section of the Big Pots page for a link.

Hope this helps.

Bob Constance
06/30/14
Cooking for 170
Thank you very helpful! A few questions to verify. you say 40lbs of meatballs is that 200 or do i need to make 5-6 each? Also you have 12 quarts sauce just for the Meatballs is that number included in the 20 quarts of sauce or do i need 32 quarts of sauce? The meatballs I make are baked then I will serve Pasta in trays with trays of Veg sauce and trays of sauce with the meatballs and sausage in it. Thanks Again!
ellen
07/01/14
Good questions.

I don't know how big you make your meatballs, but however big they are, you need a total of about 40 pounds. If they are small, make more. If large enough to make the weight, 200 is OK.

The meatballs will use up 12 quarts of the sauce, leaving about 2 gallons meatless.

Alisa
07/22/14
Hi Ellen,
Glad I came across this website, I seek your expertise for a church bbq chicken or pulled pork dinner sale in August. All dinners include two sides: choice of green beans, corn on cob, potatoes salad or cole slaw; and comes with dinner roll/butter, cake slice and soda. Can or pulled pork sandwich only with, wirhout or on the side slaw. Maximum dinners/
Available is 100. We will begin taking presale orders next week, but expect to have some walk-ins. Look forward to hearing from you many thanks.
ellen
07/23/14
Alisa, it is not clear whether you plan to have both meats? and I am not sure what this means: "Can or pulled pork sandwich only with, without or on the side slaw."

Also,with these 4 items for 2 sides, I will only be able to give you a ball park estimate; preferences vary by region and community. Almost everyone will want potato salad, but the rest are iffy. So you will have leftovers.
About 4 gallons potato salad, 3 gallons slaw, 2 gallons green beans, and 50 pieces of corn (may run out of corn...).

Write back with more info, you can start a new thread.

Kim
09/10/14
Hi Ellen,
Thank you for all the helpful hints. We are planning a graduation party and are have BBQ sandwiches, coleslaw, baked beans and considering hashbrown casserole. We are figuring on 300 to serve.
Can you help us with the hashbrown casserole? I usually make mine in a crockpot but was thinking roasters for this crowd. Thanks
ellen
09/11/14
Kim, how to make a roaster full, about 50 servings, is at the bottom of the breakfast planning page.
mary brunson
09/12/14
planning for a pastor banquet bake chicken breast, fry chicken, ham, mac and cheese, Spanish bean and rice. need another veggie have enough appetizers fruit tray display, 2 layer sheet cakes and assortment of other cakes and peach cobbler.
ellen
09/14/14
Hi, Mary,

Hoping you are planning for 100, this is the estimate:

bake chicken breast, use small ones, 1 pound raw per 3
fry chicken, 60 pieces
ham, 1 pound ready to serve per 5

mac and cheese, 8 pounds pasta, 8 quarts sauce. 8-12 pounds cheese
Spanish beans - 8 pounds dry beans if cooked separately, 5 if mixed with rice
rice- 6 pounds

Suggest you add BOTH salad and veg. 20 pounds ready to cook veg- green beans or broccoli, 1 recipe of salad for 100 from the salad section of the plan for 100 page.

2 layer sheet cake serves 100.

Michele
09/15/14
Hello, I am planning to cook Taco Soup for 80 people. I am looking for some sort of guide to help me make sure I have enough and not way to much. I'll be using ground turkey, kidney, black and chili beans, corn and diced tomatoes. If you can provide a guide for how much to purchase that would be fantastic. Thank you soooo much!

Michele

ellen
09/16/14
Michele, I don't know your recipe. If you look at the beefy tomato soup on this site, which makes for 50, you would want about 1 1/2 times the amounts for 80. It would make 2 roasters.

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/beefsoup.html

If this saves you time, trouble or money, please make a donation, a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thanks.

Judy
01/08/15
Cooking for 225
Ellen, I am part of a group that feeds the homeless once a month. I am now that person in charge of planning & getting the food together. We are doing taco soup/with rice, green salad, french bread. This will be for 200-225 people. Other folks will do the desserts. How much of each do I need. I think I can figure the bread, but not the taco soup. Thank you for your help. Do you have a link for large recipes--100 or so?
ellen
01/09/15
Judy, this site is full of recipes for 100. Go to the Big Pots page. You would be particularly interested in the dozen or so "basic budget entrees", some of which were developed from shelter food plans.

Now, about this menu:
taco soup, allow at least 1 gallon per 15, 1 gallon per 12 is not too much if you permit seconds. Consider skipping the olives and don't make it very spicy- you can have hot sauce on the tables.
rice, serve separately, allow about 10 pounds dry per 100
3 pounds butter per 100
green salad, use the plan for 100 page for salad and dressings
french bread, 12-14 pounds per 100

This is rather a light menu for a main, often only, meal. Consider adding fruit tray or fruit salad (groceries may be willing to donate expiring produce), about 1 pound per 5. Or canned fruit, 1 #10 can per 24. Consider adding a calcium source- 1 pound shredded cheese per1 pound per 24-30. Consider adding a cooked veg such as chopped broccoli, 18-20 pounds per 100.

Keep up the good work, and do read this article of mine:

www.ellenskitchen.com/turkey/turkintro.html

Teresa
02/03/15
Cooking for 50
Baby shower brunch . Yogurt with fruit how much do we need. We have 2 breakfast casserole cake coffee punch water
ellen
02/03/15
about 7 quarts, maybe some left.
eddie
02/19/15
I Wana bbq brisket sausage rice n beans for 100 ppl...how much meat should I buy..?
ellen
02/20/15
40 pounds raw brisket, 20 sausage. Little left.
Kathryn
03/01/15
Hi Ellen, I'm looking to cook chicken and beef fajita meat for our wedding how much meat/ person do we need to plan on for purchasing? Also if we were to do rice, beans, quack ole, sour cream how much of that as well! Thank you
Kathryn
03/01/15
Sorry the head count is 100 people for the wedding
Pat
03/22/15
I need steamed white rice for 100 people. Can you tell me ratio for rice to water. Can I make it all in a large turkey roaster and how long will it take? Or do I need to make it in 2 large heavy foil pans and cook it in the oven? Thanks
ellen
03/22/15
Kathryn, sorry I missed this, hope you found the fajita page, which covers it all. Toppings, check the taco/potato bar page.
ellen
03/22/15
Pat you need 2 roasters , you will be cooking at least 8 pounds of dry rice. Read the baked rice advice, link on the recipe box page, and write back if you need further advice.
liza
04/02/15
Cooking for 175
I need to know how much will i need to make carne guisda, potatoe salad, rice and beans. For 175 people.
ellen
04/03/15
carne guisada, 1 pound raw boneless beef per 4

potato salad, 7 gallons (about 70 pounds of potatoes)

rice, 17 pounds dry

beans, 17 pounds dry or about 5 gallons

.

If this saves you time, trouble or money, please make a donation, a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site. Thank you and happy Easter.

Lucille
06/23/15
Cooking for 170 people
We are preparing a breakfast for 160 people -- how much bacon do I need?
ellen
07/06/15
See the breakfast planning page.
Michele
07/17/15
Cooking for 125
I am doing appetizers for a real estate open house from 4-6 p.m. We are expecting approximately 125 people to come through. We are making the following:

Bruschetta
Prime rib crostini
Cold shrimp
Meatballs
Chicken salad on min croisaants
Salami Skewers
Veggie cups
and 3 desserts

can you tell me how many pounds of meat will I need for each appetizer.

ellen
07/17/15
This must be a very expensive house, as you have picked very costly appetizers and are serving them at a time when people will be starving and eat twice as much as usual. Do you plan to spend $12-18 per person, because that is what you are looking at with this menu. If cost is a concern, eliminate the prime rib and serve the shrimp as Mexican shrimp salad shooters. Write back with your thoughts.
Jan
07/18/15
We are having a wedding with 100 guests. The Bride and Groom want to have finger foods only. Food will be at stations to encourage guests to walk around and mingle.It will be held during dinner time. We are planning on:

Pre-wedding - hummus (6 qts)and tortilla chips 8lbs
mini soft pretzels - mustard -15 dozen
Post Wedding - 250 pulled pork sliders
200 - chicken skewers (3pieces on ea)
200 - beef skewers ( 3 pieces on ea)
12 lbs veggie trays
9qt. smoked olives
tomato boccioni skewers - 250 pieces
watermelon feta skewers - 250 pieces
crostini bar - 3 toppings , 3qts. ea.
cold soup 6-7 oz - 125 servings
charcutiere trays - 15 lbs.
cheese trays -15 lbs
Desserts - 12 dozen mini cupcakes
12 dozen pecan tarts
12 dozen naniamo bars
12 dozen mini cheesecakes
18 lbs. assorted fruit trays
Does this sound like enough food and variety? Anything we are missing?

ellen
07/18/15
What time does it start and how long does it last? Affects quantities. Write back.
Jan
07/19/15
Starts about 6:30pm and ends about 11:00. We will be having a s'more bar around 10:00pm. Really appreciate your assistance.
ellen
07/19/15
This may be more food than you need for 100 guests, and also do be aware that your older guests and people with kids will need to sit down.

Pre-wedding - hummus (6 qts)and tortilla chips 8lbs
Not usual to serve before the wedding and hummus can be drippy. Will the guests be dressed up?
Usually 1 pint per pound of chips, so, more chips or less dip
mini soft pretzels - mustard -15 dozen, 12 dozen
Post Wedding - 250 pulled pork sliders, 200
200 - chicken skewers (3pieces on ea), OK
200 - beef skewers ( 3 pieces on ea), OK
12 lbs veggie trays, OK, Ranch, 3 quarts
9qt. smoked olives, 4-5 not all smoked
tomato boccioni skewers - 250 pieces, 200 plenty
watermelon feta skewers - 250 pieces, 200 plenty. Finely chopped mint and a honey balsamic dressing is dramatic and delicious addition
All the skewers are a lot of work. Trays with watermelon slices and cheese crumbles would be pretty and less work.
crostini bar - 3 toppings , 3qts. ea., OK
cold soup 6-7 oz - 125 servings, no more than 100 and consider shooters instead of bowls, 3-4 ounces each
charcutiere trays - 15 lbs., depends on what is on the tray, if any sliced beef, go at least 20
cheese trays -15 lbs
need crackers, at least 6 pounds
suggest 1 classic relish tray as outlined on the veggie tray page

Desserts
Looks to me like you are way over here. I would not do more than 7 dozen of each for 100 people -
12 dozen mini cupcakes
12 dozen pecan tarts
12 dozen naniamo bars
12 dozen mini cheesecakes

18 lbs. assorted fruit trays, OK

I hope this helps. If I have saved you time, trouble, or money, please make a donation, a nickel or dime per guest, to support this site. Thank you.

Jan
07/25/15
Thanks for your advice and suggestions. I'm glad to hear we can cutback on the desserts. We have enough seating for everyone and will be providing a "Comfort Station" with handiwipes, bug spray etc. Thanks again!
fatima
08/02/15
Cooking for 250
Hi there ellen!
im making poutine for a boarding school about 250 people how many poutie gravy packs do you think i"ll need ?
fatima
08/02/15
Cooking for 250
Hi there ellen!
im making poutine for a boarding school about 250 people how many poutie gravy packs do you think i"ll need ?
Emolyn
10/20/15
I need to organise food and drinks for the club's fundraiser. It is to be a BBQ held at the club grounds. I am expecting 100 people (60 adult and 40 children)Can you help me plan a menu, indicating a serving per adult and per child so that everyone has enough to eat. I am thinks to make a Mexicans hot dogs with soft drinks?
ellen
10/20/15
fATIMA, VERY SORRY TO HAVE MISSED YOUR POST.
ellen
10/20/15
Emolyn, I am not familiar with Mexican hot dogs? In any case, 2 per adult or child over 10, 1 per younger kid. Toppings are discussed on the sandwich planning page. Here is the page for hot dog chili:

www.ellenskitchen.com/forum/messages/43504.html

JoAnn
11/09/15
Hello Ellen. I'm in charge of a church dinner for about 120, and I want to try your baked South of the Border Rice for 100. It calls for long or medium grained rice, but we happen to have a large amount of parboiled rice on hand. If I substitute the parboiled, how will that affect the quantities and the cooking times? Also, some people swear by rinsing rice before cooking. Is that necessary for this dish? Thank you for your help.
Olga
11/09/15
Cooking Baked Ziti (No Meat) for 100 people as a main course. have to bake it at home and then keep it warm for 2 to 3 hours in a warming drawer at the place. Is that safe? Any warnings?
ellen
11/10/15
Joann, parboiled takes a bit less water (10%) and about the same time, no change in quantities. Rinsing is only useful for starchy rices, or if there are weevils. It decreases the B vitamins in the rice slightly.Parboiled definitely does not need rinsing.
ellen
11/10/15
Olga, undercook the pasta just slightly, or it will get pretty mushy.

The total time from out of the oven to into the mouth is 4 hours or less for food safety, and that includes transport time and serving time. Also, it has to be transported hot (see the potato bar page for advice on using preheated ice chests to transport hot, or rent and preheat cambros). So you will have to figure out if you can do this safely.

Note: a preheated cambro can keep just out of the oven hot food safe above 140 degrees up to 6 hours. You might need to do that if your time is borderline.

sally
03/16/16
we are planning our parents 50th anniversary party. To safe money, we are self catering. Guest list is 116. Menu is enchiladas, beans, and rice. We have already "tested" the way I make enchiladas, so, we know who many to make. How many cups or Uncooked long grain white rice do I need, and how many pounds of Uncooked pinto beans do I need? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
ellen
03/16/16
I do 8 pounds raw rice and 8 pounds dry beans per 100 for side portions or 12/12 for generous portions and/or seconds. Congratulations to them and to you! Fruit trays are great with this menu, see the fruit tray page.

www.ellenskitchen.com/bigpots/plan/fruit100.html

Does this help? I am doing a fundraising campaign to remodel the kitchen- please click on the masthead at the top of this page to go to ellensbigpots.com and make a donation. Thank you.

Mema
10/23/16
Hi...How many #10 cans of chicken noodle @6 oz. Servings needed?
Mema
Mema
10/23/16
For 100.
ellen
10/23/16
6n ounces is 3/4 cup, a #10 holds just over 12 cups, or 16 servings that size. 7 cans if you want to have a little left over.
Jana
10/24/16
Cooking for 415
I am wanting to make sure we have enough food for a wedding reception. We have 415 people RSVP'd, all ages. Here is our menu: smoked brisket and pig butt, hot links, green beans, cheesy potatoes and hot rolls. There will also be fresh fruit, cheese and meat set up for guests to munch while waiting on the wedding party to finish up pictures.

My main concern is the green beans and cheesy potatoes. I'm having trouble trying to figure out how much of each I will need. I would also appreciate information on how many pounds of fruit to purchase.

The wedding is at 2 pm and the reception/dinner is at 5 pm.

Thanks so much for your help!!

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