top of page
  • Writer's pictureMcKayla Hatfield

Plated or Buffet? What to consider for the meal on your big day!

When planning a wedding menu, there are many things to consider. But just as important as

choosing the food is determining how it is served. The choice between a plated menu or

buffet-style meal can be made a little easier by considering a few important points.

Formal or Casual Presentation

If you are striving for a very formal and elegant experience, a plated menu is a good choice. The

food is served to each guest individually for a personal touch, and it can be presented on the plate

in an eye-catching way. For a casual wedding, offering a buffet gives guests the ability to get up and

serve themselves at any time and get whatever portion they desire.

Satisfying Every Guest

Almost every wedding guest list includes at least some picky eaters or those with dietary

restrictions. With a plated menu, it can be hard to accommodate these guests, and they may not be

able to enjoy the elegance to its fullest if the food presented includes things they don’t like or can’t

eat. With a buffet-style, you can offer a variety of foods that guests can then choose from to create

a meal they are sure to enjoy regardless of their taste or restrictions.


If your wedding budget is tight, buffet-style menus are typically less expensive as fewer wait staff

are required. Plated menus also require additional time and labor to create the presentations on

each plate for each course of the meal.

Size of the Venue

With everyone getting up and walking around or waiting in line at the buffet, even a large venue

can feel smaller. The area between tables can get clogged with people, and smaller venues can get

uncomfortable in a buffet setting. A plated menu has the benefit of keeping everyone seated, so

only the wait staff is moving around.

Interaction Among Guests

Assigning seats at a wedding can sometimes keep guests apart that would otherwise enjoy being

at the same table. Having a plated menu forces guests to only converse with those at the table, at

least until the meal is over. With a buffet, guests can mingle with everyone while in line and serving

themselves regardless of where they are seated to eat.

As you’re deciding between a plated menu or a buffet, it’s easy to see that both options have their

own benefits and disadvantages. Consider what fits your style and your budget and make the

choice that will add the perfect touch to your dream wedding.

Photography by Studio KH



bottom of page