How to Calculate the Amount of Food for the Party

       Even experienced agencies and planners are nervous when ordering food and drinks for events. After all, not often the number of guests invited comes to the real event. And the tastes of the guests may differ. But you would always want to have enough food for all and fewer leftovers to be wasted.

      We offer your attention the general advice to which you can evaluate the amount of food. It is worthwhile, also, to listen to the experienced advice of catering companies and then you definitely will not miss!

        In this article, we will only consider the required amount of food for your party. With drinks, we'll figure it out in the next article!

        Necessary calculations

 Step 1

        It is necessary the approximate number of guests! Well, if you are joining the party on our website, then you will not forget about anyone exactly! You can control the number of guests on the page of your event. It is worth adding a couple more guests to the planned number in case someone finds out about your grandiose party and suddenly decides to join.

 Step 2

       First of all, you need to decide on the time of the meeting. This is a very important factor in the desire of a person to eat depends on the time of day.

       Guests will always eat and drink - more at night than in the day. Now you need to decide on the type of party: is it lunch, where there will be a full meal, or it's an easy cocktail party, where there will only be serving of appetizers. Perhaps it will be a themed party where specific dishes will be served, for example, a Mexican party with tacos and burritos or a pirate party where sea dishes can predominate. And do not forget about the pizza party and barbecue!

 Step 3

         The age range is the second important factor. Tastes of 10-year-olds and older people can differ significantly. Therefore, consider this also when calculating food and drinks. Every adult will consume 1 pound of food, children, about 1/2 pound.

         Remember that we give only some recommendations because the choice of dishes is very individual. Some people will eat more than expected, others simply will not come, and still, others will bring with them a couple of gluttonous friends. Therefore, it is better to cook a little more food, than not having enough food for all the guests.



        For parties that serve only snacks and finger dishes, you need to provide 5-8 types of snacks in the first hour of the party per person.

        If the main course is included, you can cut snacks up to 3-4 snacks per person an hour before the main course and 2-3 snacks in the following hours.

        Below we have provided a table of ideas in  which the basic questions by quantity of appetizers for your party are specified: 

The quantity of salad needed For a large crowd, salad is an excellent choice. You can apply ready-made salad or make a salad bar, where everyone can mixed salad themselves. If you do not have a main dish, make sure to add seafood mix or chicken breast or veal for your salad. Approximately one guest should get 4 ounces of salad.For leafy vegetable salads, plan on about one cup per person
The quantity of vegetables When served with a sauce, calculate about 8 pieces of vegetable per guest.
The quantity of chips required

For chips as an appetizer before dinner, when they are served with a sauce or alone, calculate 3/4 to 1 pound for every 10 guests.

Add more, if not the main course will not be served later.

The quantity of cheese and crackers If you serve cheese and crackers, calculate about 4 ounces of cheese per guest, about 1 1/2 pounds of crackers for every 20 guests.
The quantity of sauce If the sauce is provided for your snacks, then you will need about a pint for every 10 guests. One 20-ounce bottle of popular ketchup will suffice. For mustard and relish, 10-ounce bottles should be plenty


 Main dishes.

           The main rule for the main course: 6 ounces per person for the main meat dish, 6 ounces of the main course of pasta and 2 ounces per garnish per person.

The quantity of Meat or Pisces Most guests eat about 6 ounces of meat or fish, provided that side dishes are offered, salads and snacks.
Quantity Potatoes and cereals For potato puree or baked potatoes, calculate 1.5 potatoes per person. For rice and other cereals (couscous, for example), compute ¾ cup of cooked cereal per guest.
Quantity Pasta

If the pasta is your main course, then you will need about 4-6 ounces of pasta per person.

If the pasta is your extra dish, then you will need 2-4 ounces of pasta per person.

Quantity Pizza Pizza with various fillings can become a wonderful main dish at your party. Count on that one big pizza is about 2-3 people. If you still have additional main dishes, then it will be enough to have 2 slices of pizza per person.
Quantity Sandwiches If you serve as the main course - then it will be enough to have 1.5 - 2 pieces for each guest, provided that snacks and salads are still served.
The quantity of bread For bread, you'll need about 2 rolls per person. Consider that you can offer guests Tortillas instead of bread.


           When it comes to dessert, it will be enough to have a small piece of something sweet and fruit. To serve more variety with heavier grill items, consider an assortment of individual desserts like cookies and watermelon slices, assuming your guests will eat about 2 each. But, do not forget that nowadays many will be on a diet, and many dessert treats can remain almost untouched.

Pie and Cake One slice of cake or pie per guest if it’s the only thing you’re serving, half a slice each if serving 3 or more desserts.
Jelly 1 serving per person
Cookie About two cookies per person
Ice Cream One ball of ice cream per person


And so, we reviewed all the portions of necessary food and hope that these tips will help you organize an unforgettable party! Let us remind you that we will provide advice on the number of drinks in the next article!

Your Cockktail 

by Anna Potri