Snacks and treats to cheer your guests

Published date: 6th February 2019

Guests give up a lot of time to attend your wedding. Basically they devote a day to you, more if they have to travel, and if they’re not looked after the hours drag and tummies rumble. The reception fills a pleasant hour and their stomachs, and an evening buffet keeps their blood-sugar levels up. But there are in-between times where a snack or treat keeps them occupied and cheerful.

What you do and how it’s served depends on your venue, if you’re restricted to their catering, and your budget, but we hope one or two of these ideas strike a chord.

The first snackable occasion is arrival at the reception, or if you have ceremony and reception in the same place, in the gap between the ‘I dos’ and everyone being seated and ready. This is more about fun than fuel – like granny said, don’t spoil your appetite. So think small here: minute sandwiches on a platter or two; tiny sausage rolls or miniature samosas and bhajis. It makes sense to have something that contrasts with the style of the meal, so if there’s chicken or beef to come, do something else now.

Kids will love you forever if you provide them with a tiny pack of sweets – if mum and dad are ok with that. Give them an envelope (less spillage) or pack with their name on as they arrive, with a few Haribo or similar.

Most evening bashes have accompanying buffet, but when people have their dance (and drink) on they dehydrate. Kids get tired and cranky as the night wears on, so they need diverting: solve both problems with tiny ice-cream cones? (One planner we know likes to hire ice-cream vans for marquee weddings, kids go mad for them). Another snack that’s welcome then is melon – melon balls in a cocktail glass, or slices of water melon.

If you have a bar – open or otherwise – bar-food can keep the energy levels up: crisps, Pringles and dips, breadsticks, peanuts and Bombay mix help soak up some of the booze too.

Midnight snacks reward those determined to keep the party going until the wee small hours. Mini pizzas are trendy, but you are more likely to be in need of protein satisfaction than carbs – bed beckons – at this point in proceedings: tiny burgers are always a hit; chicken wings (hot or not); mini spare-ribs; or chipolata sausages served as hot-dogs. A marvellous idea seen recently was mini-burgers served alongside tiny mugs of beer, with shandy an option.

If you want to add a touch of style then include your wedding colours or initials in the snack-fest. Jelly-shots – preferably not alcoholic in case kids get hold of a few – are light and perky. Cup-cakes are easy to decorate, don’t fill you up, and make great displays. Even the mini-pizza thing in the right hands can bring some design to the table – like your new initials. And for a sugar-boost have some lollipops made with those initials again, or the wedding date. Everyone loves lollies.

Talk this over early on with your venue and caterers. Both want your business, and may be happy to let you provide some snack offerings (cup-cakes, lollies, sweetie bags…), and could have some great ideas of their own.

To end with a note of caution: wedding receptions get hot and sweaty as the beat goes on (and on), and people get less discerning about food when they’ve had their eighth drink. Prawns especially can turn left too long in steam heat. Don’t have your wedding remembered as the one with the food poisoning!

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