6 Ways Wedding Food Has Changed Because of COVID

For many, weddings are a bit different due to the COVID-19 pandemic. One aspect that has changed quite a bit is the way food is served to guests at receptions. Since keeping guests healthy is a top priority these days, this is something to learn about as you plan your wedding.

1. Tastings Are Outside or at Home

Tastings are pretty different nowadays, but they’re still happening for couples who are planning to tie the knot. Instead of wedding menu tastings occurring the way they normally do—at your venue, with the coordinator or catering manager—they’ve been adjusted to be more COVID-19 friendly. For instance, many venues are having tastings outside if possible to allow for better social distancing. Other venues are allowing couples to pick up their tasting items to go and to eat them at home or wherever they are comfortable doing so.

2. There Are New Safety Standards for Catering Staff

Plated food at a wedding reception.

An important thing to discuss with your catering team is what safety measures their staff will be taking at your wedding to protect yourself and guests. It’s not abnormal for catering staff and teams to wear PPE like face masks and gloves while serving guests. Many catering companies are requiring temperature checks and health questionnaires before each shift as added protection. These measures all help to put you and your guests at ease throughout your event.

3. Appetizers Are More Individualized

Another way wedding food has changed over the past year and a half is that now guests receive more individualized apps during cocktail hour. Passed small bites on one large communal plate or board are just currently not in vogue. Instead, individualized “bento box” style appetizers are becoming popular. Really, anything that guests can grab and that’s meant for just one person is a good option for health and safety measures surrounding COVID. This could be anything from charcuterie cups with skewered meat and cubes of cheese to cups with chips and dip in them. Feel free to get creative with this aspect of your wedding food to do something that’s safe, yet will really blow guests away!

4. Plated Meals Are the Go-To

A plate of food at a wedding reception.

As mentioned above, fewer couples are opting to serve their guests via buffets or stations at weddings. With that being said, there are definitely more plated meals served at these momentous occasions. This is regarded as the safest method of feeding guests at weddings as of late, causing methods such as buffets and even family style meals to fall by the wayside for the time being.

5. Buffets Are More Controlled

Buffets and stations used to be popular ways to feed guests at weddings. And while they can still be done, many believe there should be more safety precautions in place at this time to make them a reality. One safety measure is to have guests served from the buffet by catering team members rather than having guests serve themselves. Buffet lines should also be kept short in order for guests to maintain social distancing measures. Buffets are definitely on the decline due to COVID, but it’s nice for couples to know that they’re still possible with a few stipulations if they had their hearts set on this type of dining at their wedding.

6. Pre-Plated Desserts Are Now Common

A tray of cupcakes at a wedding reception.

Dessert bars were a huge wedding trend that couples and guests alike were loving for quite some time. Although they’re still desirable and tons of fun, they’re not exactly COVID-19 friendly. For that reason, many couples are opting to have dessert pre-plated and served to guests at their tables instead of allowing them to choose their dessert pieces themselves. This doesn’t mean that guests have to have strictly a piece of cake, though. Couples can choose to have guests served virtually any dessert of their choosing, such as donuts, cupcakes, or even curated cups of candy.

Wedding food is much different than it used to be due to COVID-19, as now keeping the health and safety of guests is top of mind. That doesn’t mean you still can’t provide a delicious food experience for your guests, though!

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