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Pre-Reception Meals | Wedding Day Meals | Pro Wedding Tips

In the long list of things to do for the wedding day, one essential thing is often forgotten - the food! We're not talking about the food for the reception. We know you locked in your perfect menu ages ago. It's the food for before the reception that is often overlooked. To ensure the happy couple can say "I do" without the interruption of rumbling stomachs, we have a little breakdown of the pre-reception meals to consider for the wedding day.

Wedding Day Meals
Alison Mae Photography

The When and Where of It

Whether the wedding party is getting ready at a hotel, in the comfort of home, or right at the venue, the food should be wherever the whole gang is. The general rule of thumb would be to have ample food and water on hand for the group throughout the entire day. Even if it's just a limited line-up of snacks for most of the day, there should be a few options on hand for everyone (check out our guide on wedding day snacks here). With wedding days lasting upwards of 14-16 hours in some cases, it's crucial to provide your troop with sustenance to keep them chugging until the last guest has left.

Stock the getting ready rooms with a variety of options, from small bites to little meals, so that whether people are looking to graze or just have one big meal or two before the reception they have options. A handful of beverage options will go a long way too. If you're expecting the wedding party to be with you early, fresh coffee to start the morning will be worth its weight in gold! And don't skimp on the water bottles. It's safe to assume most wedding days will be filled with free-flowing boozy beverages, so to keep everyone bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, keep ample water on hand.

Wedding Morning Meals
Chloe Luka Photography


We all know that feeling of being so excited (or nervous) about something that the idea of eating is simply unimaginable. Well, sorry to say it, but on your wedding day you must push through! A smattering of light bites such as pastries, fruit, yogurt, and granola are a perfect way to start the wedding day. Though we would never knock someone for a pre-wedding bacon, egg, and cheese, for those looking to fuel their body without feeling sluggish, a lineup of lighter fare is just the ticket.

Brunch or Lunch

Depending on the timeline of the day, you may want to just start the day with brunch or lunch. When selecting lunch options, be mindful that there is a good chance that hair and makeup will be set, and the wedding party may be in their aisle-ready attire. With this in mind, try to focus on selecting one or two-bite nibbles or other small items like finger sandwiches, veggie platters, and serious charcuterie boards. This is a final chance to properly fuel up your crew before you all head down the aisle, so try to get a rounded meal in here with plenty of protein!

Charcuterie Spread
Sweet Caroline Photography

Don't Forget the Snacks

While we do very much recommend providing at least one full meal to your wedding party, a proper lineup of snacks can really be the star of the show. Keep in mind any dietary restrictions and allergies that members of your wedding party might have. Click here for our wedding day snacks, a list chock full of tips and tricks to keep you fueled and hydrated through the wedding day!

We have a whole list of small tasks that can be delegated on your wedding day, so if the idea of adding one more item to your to-do list seems overwhelming, this is a perfect one to hand off. Share the needs of the day (number of people, dietary restrictions, delivery/pick up times, etc.) with a family member or a trusted member of the wedding party and let them take the reigns. We promise - a well-fed (and watered) wedding party is a happy wedding party! And you and your partner will be so happy to be walking down the aisle with all the fuel you need to party, mingle, and make memories all night long!

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