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Cook Talk

Quantaties for multiple appetizers
Candi McD
Hi Ellen,
Thanks so much for this site. It is wonderful!!!
OK, I'm sure I'm WAY over thinking this but...
In your planning appetizers for 100 you say I will need 4 18" veggie trays.
If I am also doing a fruit tray, do I need 4 18 fruit trays in addition to the 4 18 veggies trays, or to do I want 4 18" trays total (2 veggie, 2 fruit)
We're feeding 130 and plannning to serve:
Veggie Tray
Fruit tray
Apple slices w/carmel dip (thanks for the reminder to rinse the apples so they don't brown)
Pumpkin cream dip & graham sticks
Thanks for helping all of us novices!!!
I would have paid $20+ for a book to tell me this, I will gladly make a comparable donation. You're much better than a book! : )
Oops forgot to mention. This is appetizers for 130 for about an hour between the wedding and the reception.
Candi McD
OK, after reading further here's what I've come up with. What are your suggestions?
6-8 lb cheese (3-4 kinds)
8 lbs crackers for cheese
fruit trays 6-8 lbs total
veggie trays 6-8 lbs total 2 qts dip
2 qts caramel apple dip 4 lbs apple slices, red & green
2 qts pumpkin dip 3-4 lb crackers
100 people

These folks are always pretty hungry at this point, and generous appetizers lighten the dinner demand a bit.

6-8 lb cheese (3-4 kinds)- Add 4 pounds more, or some spreads or logs
8 lbs crackers for cheese- OK; some could be bread bites-
fruit trays 6-8 lbs total, 4 lbs apple slices, red & green- very short, at least 16-20 pounds including the apples
2 qts caramel apple dip good

veggie trays 6-8 lbs total 2 qts dip; bit short, see the veggie tray page

2 qts pumpkin dip, 3-4 lb crackers OK
You might add a dish of creamy peanut butter, or even better, nutella, here for the young and the young at heart.

Hi Ellen-I love your website! But am having trouble mixing and matching for an event. I'm planning an evening fundraiser for 150 at 6:00-9:00pm. Envisioning heavy appetizers to encourage mingling.

I think I'm reading your instructions wrong when it comes to appetizers. If I'm serving JUST apps your instructions say 6-8 bites pp per hour which would give me 18-24 bites total. But since it is during dinner I need to multiply by 6 right? So that makes 108-144 bites pp ????? I think I'm confused.

If that's correct then I probably have to go with a mix of passed and stationery apps, heartier fare like a sandwich or pasta w/meat plus dessert. Do you have sample menus on your website that include this menu type for say 100 so that I can get an idea of amounts when mixed? Something appropriate for fancier event? Thanks!

Barbara, if this is a come and go, the ones who come early will eat dinner level, while the ones who come later will eat appetizer level, so this is a bit challenging. Too bad you couldn't start at 7!

The 4-6 times is just for a 2 hour after work situation, when everyone is eating dinner level.

So, is this a come and go? Is there a show or something? Will people be sitting, or is it a standing option with just a few chairs for the older or tireder guests? Are you planning a dessert/ sweet selection? The more you can tell me, the closer I can come for you.

Not a come and go. 3 hrs on a Sat. night with an Iron Chef competition as entertainment. 6:00 arrival. 6:30 show starts. Mingling encouraged to view competition but seats for everyone.
Sounds like just apps will require too many bites. So will have to add in some heartier yet "classy" food. Was trying to stay away from standard chicken, pasta & salad. But I might need to go there. We are working out of a commercial kitchen but want to keep labor low because we are all volunteers. Am now leaning toward a more traditional party format.

Passed apps 6:00-7:00.
Cheese, dips, crudite table 6:00-8:00
Heartier Food 7:00-8:00
Cake & coffee 8:00.

mini quiche
chicken satay
spring rolls
risotto cakes
Something else meaty to pass
Cheese platter-sliced, goat cheese,
Brie en croute
fruit platter
spinach dip
bread and crackers

Now, how to add in heartier fare while still keeping the appetizer/cocktail party feel?

"Gourmet" deli platter with a couple of nice side dishes
pasta station (Tortellini with cream sauce and penne with red sauce?) with salad

So how do the apps quantities mix in with the heartier food?

As I read your instructions I get confused as more items are added to menu and others need to be reduced. Do I reduce the amount of cheese if adding sandwiches or go straight by your recommended numbers?
Sample menus for cocktail parties, weddings, luncheons in their entirety might help people like me. That way they can just completely copy your suggested menus or mix and match and not have to fret. Maybe your readers can post their menus and quantities?

Thanks for your advice!

OK, lets go at this a bit differently. 150 people.

mini quiche
chicken satay
spring rolls
risotto cakes
Something else meaty to pass (skip)
You only need 8-10 pieces per person here, actually less than 1 hour-

Cheese platter-sliced, goat cheese, can also do some spreads, 1 pound per 10
Brie en croute- 1 pound per 10
fruit platter- the deluxe fruit tray for 100 would be plenty for this size group at this slot
crudite, 1 pound per 10; dip 1 pint per 10
hummus, 1/4 cup per person
spinach dip, 1/4 cup per person
1/2 pita per person in quarters or 1/6ths, 2 ounces bread, 1 ounce to 1 1/2 ounces crackers

Hearty fare:
How about some baked individual item, such as a chicken kiev, or my chicken dijon or chicken marsala; or a nice beef wellington, or some such? Or an interesting plate of stuffed mushrooms, stuffed cabbage roll, etc and other such? A pasty or empanada plate?

You should look at the full menu for the champagne lunch and the festive family brunch, or the taco or potato bar for some other full menus?

You can still write back. If it saves you time trouble or money, please make a donation, maybe a dime or quarter per guest, to support this site.

Just a quick follow up.
I'm all set with everything listed above for a Saturday evening? I'm just adding in 1 hearty appetizer/food? (I'm thinking some meatballs)

Thanks so much for your help! You've given me great piece of mind! I will definitely donate!

Think of your table item as an individual "small plate" 6-7 inches. If hot, maybe a chicken kiev with a little scoop of rice pilaf?

Or 2-3 small deluxe sliders, (on toasted buns?). All-American Burger, Grilled Wasabi Salmon Slider, Southwest Bison Sliders, Buffalo chicken, etc. These are a little more forgiving about heat.

Your meatball idea would be better as larger meatball sliders- basically, get a starch/ some bread into the mix.

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