2018 Wedding Trends Every Caterer Needs to Know

From the decor to the drinks, we’re seeing the unique touches that take weddings from “standard” celebrations and turn them into a personalized experience. Every year Pinterest reports on the trends with the highest search volume. These are the biggest food and drink trends caterers need to know for 2018!

A Bigger Bash

How often will all of your loved ones be in one place at the same time? Many couples are taking advantage of the opportunity and extending the celebrations with after-parties, next day brunches, or pre-wedding dinner parties that go beyond the standard rehearsal dinner. Caterers can take advantage of this trend by offering discounts to clients on pre or post wedding parties.

Food Matters

When searching for a wedding caterer, I repeatedly heard, “no one will remember how good the food was.” Whether or not there was ever any truth to this, food matters to me, and apparently it matters to others too! Couples are no longer picking a standard package of poultry, beef, and seafood—instead, they giving their guests a food experience that reflects their personal style, like southern fare, food trucks, and signature cocktails. High-end casual foods like gourmet burgers and wood-fired pizzas are making their way onto wedding menus for elegant but down-to-earth celebrations. 

Interactive Food Stations 

Another way couples are creating a food experience is through interactive stations. Build-it-yourself taco bars, mac and cheese bars, and sundae bars are a huge hit, and allow guests to personalize their food. In addition to giving guests options, fun stations like pretzel displays, grilled cheese stations, and DIY mimosa bars can also double as a decorative feature.

Signature Cocktails

While the signature cocktail is nothing new, we are seeing more herbal-infused cocktails and self-pour options. Mobile cocktail bars are popping up left and right, giving guests a fun and unique bar experience. Caterers are also seeing a big local trend on the rise—many couples are looking for ways to make their celebration meaningful while supporting local businesses. Providing drinks from local breweries and distilleries ticks both of these boxes. For more 2018 cocktail trends, check out this blog post.

Creative Desserts

More and more couples are forgoing a wedding cake and opting for unique dessert options. Mini pies, assorted fruit tarts, doughnut displays, croquembouche, and cookie buffets are all big for 2018. For those couples who decide to go the more traditional route, rustic cakes are out, and modern cakes are in. Searches on Pinterest for metallic cakes are up 476% since 2017! Crepe cakes, rice krispie cakes, and macaron towers are also hugely popular this year.


Late Night Snacks

By far one of the most popular trends cropping up at weddings is the late night snack! After dinner has been served, cake has been cut, and guests have had a few hours to dance and drink, a late night snack is always appreciated. Easy handheld foods like pizza, french fries, or milk and cookies help keep guests satisfied and sober(ish)!

Trends come and go, but we are excited to see couples consistently putting more of an emphasis on the food and drinks served at their weddings. As menus become more specialized, your workload increases. Make sure you have systems in place to manage longer events, bigger menu packages, and more staff! Sign up for a demo of Total Party Planner to see how we can easily manage events and grow your catering business.