Our Vegan Wedding Menu
Let’s face it: One of the very best things about any group gathering or celebration is the excuse for food. As far as I know, just about everyone loves a good snack or meal. I once read somewhere that the thing people tend to remember most about weddings isn’t the expert decorations or even the perfect ceremony...It’s the food! That’s why when planning our wedding, we knew that the food had to be good! Many of our friends and family are not vegan, which meant that we really needed to step our game up and get creative with our menu. We wanted everyone to end the night with joyful hearts and full bellies, so we made sure there was plenty of food!
Right out of the gate, we discussed our desires to be frugal and to serve vegan food only. With an expected guest list of around 70 people, we weren’t completely certain that things would work out in our favor. We started doing our research on vegan catering companies in our area and we were immediately disappointed. Nearly all of the catering companies in our area focused largely on meat and dairy products, which was exactly what we were hoping to avoid. The few that did have vegan options were out of our price range. So, we had to get creative.
After more research and much deliberation, we decided to serve Chipotle catering along with lots of homemade “extras”. (Josh’s mom, Jill, offered to help us out with the “extras” part.)
While this may not seem like the obvious choice, it was an excellent choice for us, and one that we would recommend to others. Chipotle is surprisingly vegan-friendly, and the total cost was low compared to other catering options. Plus, many of our friends and family are huge Chipotle fans. It just made sense for us.
We went with the “Veggie Spread” which included sofritas and fajita veggies, plus white and brown cilantro-lime rice, black beans, pinto beans, chili-corn salsa, tomatillo salsa, red chili salsa, mild tomato salsa, guacamole, lettuce, crispy taco shells, soft flour tortillas, and chips.
We were provided with chafing pans, steam pans, and fuel. Normally, this catering package also includes cheese, sour cream, serving spoons, tongs, silverware, napkins, and bowls. However, we didn’t want the dairy products and we had already purchased eco-friendly utensils and plates to use, so we asked to exclude these. We were surprised (and very happy) to receive a 25 percent discount for doing so.
On the day of the wedding, we had a friend (Addison) pick up the food about an hour before the reception. When the time came to eat, the food was hot, fresh, and delicious.
It was important to us that our guests didn’t feel limited at dinner, so we provided lots of other menu options, too.
We decided that along with the Chipotle taco / burrito-bowl / salad bar, we also wanted to have a baked potato bar! Josh’s mom cooked up lots of fresh potatoes and added them to the buffet. Along with all of the salsas, guac, and other toppings listed, we provided a ton of other tasty things too!
Shredded Vegan Cheese
Earth Balance Butter
Tofutti Sour Cream
Black, Green, and Kalamata Olives
Sliced Red Onions
I’m sure there was more, but I can’t remember everything. (Too many delicious things to keep track!)
Our favorite part about our menu was the fact that people could mix and match however they wanted. They could put broccoli on their tacos and sofritas on their baked potatoes. It was all about customization!
Along with everything else, we also served:
Vegan Meatball Sliders (On soft fluffy buns)
Jill’s Famous Ramen Salad
My favorite Curried Pasta Salad
Josh’s Three Bean Chili
Traditional (Veganized) Pasta Salad
For dessert, we had our insanely good cake and cupcakes from Healthy Living Bakery, as well as gourmet s'mores (which doubled as our favors - I will share more details about those later)!
There was even more yumminess served at our pre-reception cocktail hour; Crackers, toast points, tapenades, pepper jellies, vegan cheeses, chips and dips, fruit platters, veggie platters, and more!
As for drinks, we decided to buy a few (huge) galvanized metal tubs, and use them as rustic coolers. In them, we had:
A Few Types of Seltzer
We also served iced tea, lemonade, and two types of sangria (recipes coming soon) in glass dispensers.
We even had several bottles of cold, bubbly champagne, thanks to our lovely uncle Jeff!
For anyone who wanted a hot drink, we set up two Keurigs on the deck with a vast selection of coffees, teas, and cocoas.
Overall, there was a ton of food and drinks, and many of our guests raved about how delicious it all was. We did have a few non-vegans who were not particularly thrilled with the lack of meat and cheese, but that is to be expected. Everyone else seemed happy with the menu, and that made us very happy, too.
So, there you have it. If you’re thinking about having Chipotle cater your next event, just do it! We thoroughly enjoyed our experience. The people we dealt with were friendly. It was more affordable than other options. Plus, the food was great and we were able to supplement it with lots of healthy, delicious additions to create a delectable salad / taco / burrito bowl / baked potato bar! The one thing I would change is the lack of a delivery option on catering orders.
If I had the option to do it all over again, I would do it all the same way. However, we couldn’t have done it without the help of our family and friends. They are the ones who got up early to chop veggies, bake potatoes, make chili, pick up our catering order, and more.