How to Plan Your Menu for Catering Business


By: Ana Margarita A. Olar|

In any food based business such as a resto, food cart, or catering business, the menu will be the focal point whether your business will last or not. Here are some tips on planning a menu especially for a catering business.

Know your specialty.

In planning a menu for your catering business, the first meal that you should offer in your menu would be your specialty dish. And then from it, you can add the variety of foods that complement your specialty. If you can cook Italian cuisine, offer side dish that compliments it such as vegetable salad or fruits or grilled and fried finger foods.

Know the food preference of your target market.

In a catering business, of course, you are offering foods for different events, occasions, and different guests. You should consider the food preferences of you clients and their guests. For a children’s party, you should offer a menu for the kids (finger foods, chocolate fountain, etc) and the adult guests.

For formal events such as business meetings you can offer fine dining meals or you can serve simple meals which are “leveled up” such as tender pork adobo with pineapple and side dish of vegetable, deboned fried fish drizzled with sweet and sour sauce topped with carrots and pickles. Be creative and imaginative with your dish.

Consider your customer’s budget.

With catering business, you should offer foods that satisfy your customer’s tummy and won’t hurt their pockets as well. Offer menus with utmost consideration of how much they are willing to pay. In budgeting, you can offer menus with in season ingredients from the fishes, to the vegetables and fruits. In season products cost lower and more often they are freshly picked.

catering menu (2)

Have a unique concept.

Some guests have their own idea of the event’s theme. Is it under the sea party? Then offer sea foods or food treats for kids that are shaped like sea creatures. Is it French themed or Italian? Then offer foods in line with your guest’s theme.

Consider the nutritional value of your menu.

While you are trying to satisfy your customer’s cravings you should also look into the nutritional content of the foods that you offer. You can point these out to your customers and use these tactics to stand out from your competitors.

Aside from these tips, make sure that the foods are prepared carefully, the fruits and meats are washed well before cooking, and the cook and servers observe sanitary practices while handling the food so that you’ll maintain your high standards and credibility with your customers.