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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 05-19-2010, 05:50 PM   #1
Goin Que Que
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Default First catering job questions.

A friend at work asked me to cater BB ribs, thighs or whole chicken and some beans for about 50 people. This will be my first catering job and I’m not sure how to quote the price. Instead of trying to figure out how much food per person I just asked him to tell me how many slabs of ribs and pieces of chicken he wanted. I can get Foster Farms chicken thighs for .99 to $1.19 per pound and Costco Swift BB for under $3. I will be using my large offset to do the cook with so I have to take in consideration the cost of wood and charcoal.
Do you guys have any suggestions on pricing? Or should I tell him the amount of food per person and price it that way? What is a good portion per person? Sorry for all the questions but it’s my first catering job.

Thanks in advance!
John
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Unread 05-19-2010, 08:35 PM   #2
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I don't have any experience with catering theighs and ribs yet but I would guess 4 bones per person and 3 thighs. 2-3 10# cans of beans. See what those with more experience think. Your total cost x 3 is a start. Or take cost cost and what it is worth to you and divide that by 50 to get the pp price.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 08:54 PM   #3
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Your cost by 3 is a good start. Once you do a few, you'll learn how to "tweak" numbers.
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Unread 05-19-2010, 09:41 PM   #4
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Thanks guys
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Unread 05-20-2010, 05:56 AM   #5
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$600. 25 slabs BB's or 18 slabs st louis, 55 thighs, 1 big pan of beans.
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Unread 05-20-2010, 06:28 AM   #6
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Decide what it is worth to you to do the job. You are looking at one day of prepping/shopping and another day of cooking. These may not be whole days, but you will be surprised at how much time it takes. Plus you pretty much can't so anything else on those days. Plus you have the wear and tear on your pit add $100 on top of everything else for that. Do you have to serve too or is it a drop off?

I cooked last week for 80 (down from 150 due to rain) charged $1500. 12 racks spares, three half pans slaw, 40 chicken thighs, 6 half pans beans, 6 half pans taters, 5 butts, 3 briskets, 3 half pans corn & black bean salsa and 12 pounds smoked sausage, plus pickles, japs, onions and 2 trays bacon wrapped cream cheese filled japs. Plus brownies and bread pudding. Had beans, taters, butt, and a few racks of ribs left over. Started this cook with the taters and beans on wednesday night.

I try to make $1k per gig and this was about right, my costs were somewhere near $500. Don't forget to consider foil and rubs as a cost. Plus The foil half pans and lids plus full pans. I have an exel spread sheet that I use to keep it all tallied.

Good luck and remember to charge appropriately because there are those that make a living at this.
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Unread 05-20-2010, 07:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tony76248 View Post
Decide what it is worth to you to do the job. You are looking at one day of prepping/shopping and another day of cooking. These may not be whole days, but you will be surprised at how much time it takes. Plus you pretty much can't so anything else on those days. Plus you have the wear and tear on your pit add $100 on top of everything else for that. Do you have to serve too or is it a drop off?

I cooked last week for 80 (down from 150 due to rain) charged $1500. 12 racks spares, three half pans slaw, 40 chicken thighs, 6 half pans beans, 6 half pans taters, 5 butts, 3 briskets, 3 half pans corn & black bean salsa and 12 pounds smoked sausage, plus pickles, japs, onions and 2 trays bacon wrapped cream cheese filled japs. Plus brownies and bread pudding. Had beans, taters, butt, and a few racks of ribs left over. Started this cook with the taters and beans on wednesday night.

I try to make $1k per gig and this was about right, my costs were somewhere near $500. Don't forget to consider foil and rubs as a cost. Plus The foil half pans and lids plus full pans. I have an exel spread sheet that I use to keep it all tallied.

Good luck and remember to charge appropriately because there are those that make a living at this.
Excuse the hijack.

Did you get paid for 150 or 80 people cooked?
Even with 5 meats, did you run out of anything? Obviously everybody wasn't taking all 5.
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Unread 05-20-2010, 01:06 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tony76248 View Post
Good luck and remember to charge appropriately because there are those that make a living at this.
I, too, apologize for the hi-jack, but have something to say about the pricing for your catering gig.
I completely agree with Tony! I am trying to "get legal" with my own BBQ and catering company. It is very costly. I can only say that if ALL of us are doing it legally, then we make a better name for the industry, as a whole. We also stand to benefit because the potential customer knows that whomever he goes to will charge about the same, so he will then decide on other factors beside price, like quality, customer service, etc. This is where we can really shine.
Take the price issue out, and then the competition will benefit everyone in the other areas listed above. Competition can be a great tool for building up the industry, and this ensures more work for all of us.
Steve
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Unread 05-20-2010, 01:11 PM   #9
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John. Go to this site and download these BBQ catering calculators for free. They will be a tremendous help to you in pricing your gig.
Steve

http://www.freewebs.com/susquehannab...ringthings.htm
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Unread 05-20-2010, 02:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bbq Bubba View Post
Excuse the hijack.

Did you get paid for 150 or 80 people cooked?
Even with 5 meats, did you run out of anything? Obviously everybody wasn't taking all 5.
I have a minimum of $1500 I charge based on the fact that I like to make it worth my while. This gig was for a branch of Merrill Lynch, I cook twice a year for them and always charge the same. Once there was only 50 folks and last fall there were 175. I have did this gig about 6 times and it started after I catered a three day golf tournament a few years ago.

I actually had two butts, two packers, another 10 pounds of sausage and 12 racks of ribs (I cook the ribs on site) that I didn't cook because I knew the weather was gonna keep some folks away. I have a deal with them where I am charging them for minimum 150 guests ($10 ea) but will cook enough for 200 and charge them extra if it comes to that. I count the plates to determine how many guests I cooked for.

I ran out of just the chicken and yes folks do take all five meats and amazingly they eat it all. I was telling my wife that they couldn't possibly eat all that they were taking and we paid close attention and they were. In the past we couldn't tell but this year with the rain we were much closer to the tables and able to see it all get gobbled up. We had almost all of the desert left over, my guess is that they were too full to eat it.
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Unread 05-24-2010, 10:32 PM   #11
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I sure would like to have a copy of your spreadsheet. I am doing a fundraiser for 125 people and while I am not charging for my services (nor am I paying for anything) it would be nice to figure out what an event like this would cost.

THX
Leona


I have an exel spread sheet that I use to keep it all tallied.
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Unread 05-31-2011, 10:49 PM   #12
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I agree with wannchef, I want to see your spreadsheet. I am going to be doing a fundraiser here this summer and need help organizing our catering.
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