For anyone who has ever attended a wedding or planned a party of their own, an appetizing wedding menu is arguably the most critical detail to any successful reception. After all, when is the last time you walked away from a memorable wedding reception singing the praises of a party's luxe table linens over its multi-tiered chocolate cake? We didn't think so. That's not to say a showstopping wedding reception menu is the only detail that matters, of course—there's always the attire and the favors—but nothing truly sets you up for a successful wedding reception quite like a delectable dinner menu.
Can't decide what to serve? We have you covered. Whether you're planning a formal, sit-down dinner or a relaxed backyard affair, the following four sample wedding menus will help you decide exactly what to dish out to hungry dinner guests, no matter the size of your celebration. Depending on your desired type of reception, each of our wedding menu ideas details the appetizers that are best suited to your soiree along with our suggestions for mouthwatering main dishes. In the midst of planning an upscale cocktail party? Try serving bite-size chicken fajitas or miso-glazed cod with Asian pesto. Authentic dim sum is always a solid savory option when it comes to passed hors d'oeuvres, as are tartlets and other handheld treats. If you and your spouse-to-be are planning a buffet-style reception, consider asking your caterer for a classic carving station and antipasti display, paired with hot dips and a crowd-pleasing pasta station. There's even enough wedding menu inspiration to help inform a laid-back barbecue party, with our choice food options including beef brisket, pork spare ribs, and seven irresistible side dishes. Sit down and settle in with our list of savory and sweet wedding menu ideas–just don't read this on an empty stomach.