One of the easiest ways to derail a grocery budget – or a wedding budget! – is cooking for people with food allergies. Products that are gluten-free, dairy-free, and the like can be significantly more expensive. If you are planning a wedding on a budget, then you will want to think carefully about how to handle your food choices in such a way that will fit your needs and wants while also staying within your budget.
Budget Wedding Food Scenarios
Scenario 1: You have severe food allergies or specific dietary needs, but your guests don’t.
If you have a strict diet for religious reasons, moral choices, or food allergies, then you already know how to cater to your own diet. But will you ask your guests to eat the same way? There are two basic choices in this scenario. One option is to serve your guests a meal that adheres to your vegan diet, your kosher diet, your gluten-free diet, or the like. This is the preference of many couples, but it can also become very expensive to create a meal based around special diets, and it might be out of your price range if you are planning a wedding on a budget. Another choice is to offer more standard fare to your wedding guests but to have a special meal prepared to suit the dietary concerns of the bride and groom.
Scenario 2: You eat a standard diet, but some of your guests have strict dietary concerns.
This is a tricky scenario to deal with, because you want your guests to be happy and comfortable, but perfectly meeting everyone’s different dietary needs and preferences perfectly at your budget wedding just isn’t possible, especially if you are having a large wedding. Not everyone can eat dairy or gluten. Not everyone chooses to eat meat. Many people avoid carbs or sugar like the plague. So what is the savvy bride to do? Fortunately, most people with food allergies or strict diets know how to manage their own diets when they are eating out. They may choose to eat before they come, or they may pick and choose what foods best fit their dietary needs. One of the most practical food options for a group of guests with diverse dietary needs might be to offer a buffet with a variety of food choices and small cards that list the ingredients in each dish, to assist those guests with dietary concerns.
Are you planning a wedding on a budget with diverse dietary needs? Share your tips with us!
Photo credit: mattlemmon
About the author
chicken farmer in Jackson, Mississippi. She has bachelor's and master's degrees in English.
She planned her own budget outdoor wedding five years ago at a state park in Florida, on the
waterfront of a natural spring. She wishes that she had known more about budget weddings back
when she was planning hers, because she comes up with new ideas all the time that she wishes
she had incorporated into her own wedding plans! In addition to saving money, Kelly's passions
are reading, writing, parenting, planning, traveling, and living an environmentally friendly life.
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