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Catering, Food Handling and Awareness *OnTopic* Forum to educate us on safe food handling. Not specifically for Catering or competition but overall health and keeping our families safe too.


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Unread 11-29-2011, 10:13 PM   #1
WSM2
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Question Catering for 85- NEED HELP PLEASE

I'm very new to this catering and was asked by a group at church to cater for 85 people for our upcoming Christmas party. I need help in determining how much to cook.

There will be about 55 guys and 35 gals.

They want BRISKET AND CHICKEN and coleslaw and bbq baked beans.

How much of each should I prepare?

They said they are wanting to keep costs around $8 per person.

Thank you.
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Unread 11-30-2011, 12:33 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSM2 View Post
I'm very new to this catering and was asked by a group at church to cater for 85 people for our upcoming Christmas party. I need help in determining how much to cook.

There will be about 55 guys and 35 gals.

They want BRISKET AND CHICKEN and coleslaw and bbq baked beans.

How much of each should I prepare?

They said they are wanting to keep costs around $8 per person.

Thank you.

It could be a bit tricky to figure out how much meat you will need. Depends on who likes which type of meat. I would suggest asking if they want brisket and chicken served to each person or if it will be self serve.

We get about 20 servings from a 14 lb packer. For chicken we usually go with leg/thigh (quarters). Will each person get brisket and chicken? Will you be serving and controlling portion sizes? If self serve calculate 20% extra for those seconds and large portions.

Cost of ingredients for the beans & coleslaw would be negligible (maybe $30).

For this type of menu we would probably need to go with $10 per head.
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Unread 11-30-2011, 08:01 AM   #3
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Can't be done for that price.
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Unread 11-30-2011, 09:07 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSM2 View Post
I'm very new to this catering and was asked by a group at church to cater for 85 people for our upcoming Christmas party. I need help in determining how much to cook.

There will be about 55 guys and 35 gals.

They want BRISKET AND CHICKEN and coleslaw and bbq baked beans.

How much of each should I prepare?

They said they are wanting to keep costs around $8 per person.

Thank you.
Let me rephrase that.

Cant be done if you want to make money. You want to do your first job for free?

1/3 lb brisket and 1 5 oz. breast per person.
2 full pans of coleslaw and 2 full pans of beans.

YMMV
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Unread 11-30-2011, 12:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSM2 View Post
I'm very new to this catering and was asked by a group at church to cater for 85 people for our upcoming Christmas party. I need help in determining how much to cook.

There will be about 55 guys and 35 gals.
55 guys + 35 gals does not add up to 85.

Who will be providing the plates, napkins, plasticware, BBQ sauce, serving utensils, etc?

Just a quick figure of 25 lbs of brisket, 90 thigh leg quarters, 2 sides each, and buns comes up to about $900.

$8/person is not reasonable.
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Unread 11-30-2011, 01:55 PM   #6
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I would agree with BBQ Bubba & NRA4Life. My initial post was based on this being for your church group and possibly leading to future gigs. The $8 per person would just cover your costs with no profit. At that price the gig would basically be an advertising event for your product. You would want to be sure that you expressed this so that future clients would not expect the same pricing. We started out with two similar types of events and they have led to other opportunities. It all depends on what your expectations are from this initial event.
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Unread 11-30-2011, 02:18 PM   #7
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If it's for your church and you want to donate your time have them cover ALL your expenses...if you want to make a profit look on the internet for bbq catering and see what the going rate is for similar items...
I just bid a 55 person gig with 2 meats, 2 sides, bread, and desert for $15.99 per person...
Good luck!
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Unread 11-30-2011, 04:50 PM   #8
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I think sometimes I feel a little different than others about quote " doing for the church" If it is to help raise money or go to a good cause like feeding the homeless /poor then good I'll donate and help and probably even pay the cost myself. But if it's about church members getting a good meal then I would charge full price. Discount only for a promo to get other events.

At $8 you ain't getting paid. Regular event I would be at $15.50 pp on site. With 1/3 lb cooked brisket and one chicken leg quarter pp and two full pans of each of the sides and include plates, utensils, napkins buns and sauce.
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Unread 11-30-2011, 07:11 PM   #9
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Hell even McDonalds is 6-8 dollars for comperable
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Unread 11-30-2011, 11:24 PM   #10
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Thanks for the replies. That is after all what the site is about.... getting multiple points of view.

I'm not sure how some of you figure I won't be making ANY money on the event.

At Sam's Club I can get 100 Chicken Thighs for around $42.00 + Tax
At another store I can get 90lbs of raw brisket for $ 233.00 + Tax
2 full pans of Slaw- not yet priced out
2 full pans of Beans- not yet priced out.

So let's just say I spend 325 of my own money and then I am able to get $10 Per head to make it $850. Walking away with $525 for a "drop off" catering gig doesn't seem to shabby, right?
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Unread 12-01-2011, 06:44 AM   #11
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Good luck with your gig, sounds like you've got it all figured out. General rule of thumb is 3X your costs. Remember, the cook is legally liable in the event folks get sick and they want to sue somebody. You need to keep hot food hot, and cold food cold. Once you drop it off, you have no control...but you are still the cook.
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Unread 12-02-2011, 01:00 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSM2 View Post
Thanks for the replies. That is after all what the site is about.... getting multiple points of view.

I'm not sure how some of you figure I won't be making ANY money on the event.

At Sam's Club I can get 100 Chicken Thighs for around $42.00 + Tax
At another store I can get 90lbs of raw brisket for $ 233.00 + Tax
2 full pans of Slaw- not yet priced out
2 full pans of Beans- not yet priced out.

So let's just say I spend 325 of my own money and then I am able to get $10 Per head to make it $850. Walking away with $525 for a "drop off" catering gig doesn't seem to shabby, right?
Don't ferget the cost of charcoal/wood rubs/injections as well.. its the little things that come back to bite you in the end as far as what the net proffit is.. As a business owner I guess I look at all the finer details and price fer even the salt and pepper that will be used on the table. Also what about drinks and glasses.. ect.. Not trying to rain on yer parade. Best of luck and I hope it works out that you get more gigs from this one..

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Unread 12-05-2011, 02:00 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSM2 View Post
Thanks for the replies. That is after all what the site is about.... getting multiple points of view.

I'm not sure how some of you figure I won't be making ANY money on the event.

At Sam's Club I can get 100 Chicken Thighs for around $42.00 + Tax
At another store I can get 90lbs of raw brisket for $ 233.00 + Tax
2 full pans of Slaw- not yet priced out
2 full pans of Beans- not yet priced out.

So let's just say I spend 325 of my own money and then I am able to get $10 Per head to make it $850. Walking away with $525 for a "drop off" catering gig doesn't seem to shabby, right?
At $8 per person you are only bringing in 680 in revenue. To bump them to $10 per person (25% increase) you will bring in 850. That's a massive difference for you and also for them if they are already expecting a certain budget.

Also, like Uncle T said you really need to account for every other expense. I'm not sure how you plan to serve or if you are just dropping this stuff off but other things to think about:

Other possible expenses:
plates
utensils
serving utensils
chaffing dishes or something to store the food in
cambro or cooler to keep food hot
fuel to cook the food
rubs, spices and sauces
Soap to clean all your stuff after the job
fuel for you to deliver the goods


I would use any and all of those in negotiating with people when they want super low prices.
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Unread 12-12-2011, 02:31 PM   #14
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I just did a gig for 84 one day and 66 the next

I cooked way too many beans. 4- #10 cans worth of Kerri Hog Apple beans. I knew it was too much but beans are cheap. I could have done half that.
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