Are Hor d’oeuvres Enough?

If you are trying to save on your wedding reception costs, some people consider serving hor d’oeuvres instead of a full meal. There are several factors to consider when trying to replace a full meal with hor d’oeuvres, but the quality of your wedding day should not be compromised.

If you are only serving hor d’oeuvres, you will have to adjust the timing of the wedding accordingly. Most guests — especially those with children — will want to have enough time after the wedding to eat a full dinner. Serving nothing but hor d’oeuvres will also significantly shorten the length of your wedding reception. Generally, guests won’t stick around to dance into the night unless there is a full meal to help soak up some of that alcohol.

You might be surprised that there are some very affordable full-meal options that will price competitively with serving nothing but hor d’oeuvres. For example, you don’t have to offer more than two options for the dinner — an option with meat and an option without.

Generally, pasta dishes are an inexpensive dinner option and can be very satisfying because you can offer large portions. In addition, pasta works well when serving the food “family style.” Each table would pass around bread, salad, and pasta dishes — allowing each person to select their own portion size.

If you are looking for a simple, short wedding and reception, then offering hor d’oeuvres is a reasonable choice. If you want a long, festive night, work with your caterer to find some affordable options.