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Catering in Raleigh for Early Afternoon Weddings

Posted in: Catering in Raleigh NC

We recently touched on the types of food to serve at a morning wedding reception, and today we’re going to hit the finer points of catering options in Raleigh for early afternoon weddings. Early afternoon wedding receptions are becoming more and more popular.  Many couples are looking to save money at every turn and these times are often great for outdoor weddings and receptions.  Just like with morning weddings, early afternoon receptions can be more affordable than those held in the evening.  These tips should help make planning your reception a breeze.

We frequently get asked “Should we have a full meal or just hors d’oeuvres and dessert?” The rule of thumb here is to serve a meal if it’s meal time. Your guests will expect it. To give you an idea of typical meal times:

  • Breakfast – Between 8-9AM
  • Lunch – Between 12-1PM
  • Dinner – Between 6-7PM

If you can avoid these times, then hors d’oeuvres and dessert are appropriate without including a full meal.

Raleigh Wedding Catering Tip: When sending out wedding invitations, make sure to note what kind of reception you’re having. This helps your guests prepare for your big day and lets them know if they need to eat a full meal before attending.

Raleigh NC Wedding Catering Boxed Lunch

For the food, we recommend something light. If you are going to serve a meal during an early afternoon wedding, then consider a fun alternative, like a gourmet boxed lunch with cute, personalized boxes.

Finger foods are trendy any time but work especially well for early afternoon weddings where couples don’t want to budget for a full meal.  Miniatures, a hot 2014 wedding trend, work great for finger foods and often have a bigger impact on your guests than their full sized counterparts.


For dessert, we have a couple of really great ideas that will blow your guests away. First, think outside the box. How about an ice cream truck? Ice cream trucks are hip, exciting, original, and allow your guests to take a trip back to childhood. We also love cupcake towers. Not only are they really trendy but they’re interactive too. With an assortment of flavors and extra toppings … who wouldn’t enjoy these tasty treats?

raleigh nc summer wedding catering ice cream truck

Catering in Raleigh for early afternoon weddings can be as easy as calling Catering by Design. We’re a Wedding Wire Award Winning Caterer three years in a row – 2012, 2013 and 2014! We’d love the opportunity to serve you and your family a meal to remember. Contact us today!