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Client Spotlight: Chef Jeff Catering


Jeff Riley is the Owner and Executive Chef of Chef Jeff Catering. Jeff started his culinary career as the head chef at a high-end restaurant and catering small jobs on the side. He loved providing a high-end experience at an affordable price, so Jeff decided to go into business for himself. It was about 14 years ago when he officially launched his catering business and his daughter, Amber Stewart, got her first taste of the catering world.  

I caught up with Amber to learn about her catering story, what kind of events they’ve been catering, and what advice she has for other caterers!

Chef Jeff’s Mission

The Chef Jeff team prepping for an event.
The Chef Jeff team prepping for an event.

Amber always admired her dad’s mission when it came to catering. Chef Jeff has always seen food as a way to help people. Not only does the team provide incredible food to their community at affordable prices, but they also provide job opportunities to folks who are in need. Each year Chef Jeff Catering donates about $30-40,000 in service donations, and Jeff works with area youth to teach leadership and life success skills using his passion for food.

A few years ago Amber quit her cushy job in marketing to move home and work with her dad. She loves his mission, but knew the catering process could easier, better, faster, and smarter;  she just had to figure out where to start! That’s when she found Total Party Planner and read about John’s story.

“Reading John’s story and what he did for his parents really resonated with me. We were both trying to make catering easier for our dads, and once I saw the demo, I got it.”

Catering for the Super Bowl

Chef Jeff’s Menu Production Reports From the Super Bowl.

The Minnesota based team got to experience the Super Bowl from a very unique perspective. Chef Jeff Catering managed a five day Super Bowl catering marathon for a private airline! The airline requested catering for everyone from the crew de-icing the planes, to the celebrities being flown in for the big game. The team catering everything from all-day buffets for the flight crew, meals for the pilots and homeland security in the private lounge, and individual meals for guests flying out on Sunday. It was truly a job for the history books with the team working over 24 hours Sunday through Monday to get everything just right.

“This was probably our biggest job to date, and we couldn’t have managed it without Total Party Planner!”

What suggestions would you offer other caterers who are trying to get organized?

The plated chicken entree from Chef Jeff Catering.

“I think for a lot of caterers and small businesses in general, it is so easy to stick with what you know, but you have to use technology to your advantage. Invest in the tools and resources that will let you get back to doing what you love. We did it old school for a long time, did things the hard way, but Total Party Planner is totally worth the price. We save at least 20 hours a month, and our production team is moving so much smoother. I would tell other caterers to get back to cooking and service. Don’t spend your time on administrative tasks, spend your time doing what you

love!”

“No gathering is complete unless there is great food to bring everyone closer together.” -Chef Jeff

Want to see how Total Party Planner can help transform your catering business? Sign up for a demo to learn more!

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