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Jan 21, 2014 08:53 AM

Food Quantities for a Party

I'm planning a party for about a dozen friends soon, and am wondering how much food to make. It will be a soup party, with black bean, Portuguese kale, and Paraguayan meatball soup, and there will also be bread, salad (probably cole slaw) and dessert. We are in the upper reaches of middle age, and don't eat as much as we used to. Would a cup and a half of soup per person be a good amount to plan on? I don't mind some leftovers, but don't want to be left with quarts and quarts.

This is always a problem for me, and I appreciate any help you can give.

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  1. I used to do a lot of soup parties. The thing is, most people want to try all 3 soups so you need to account for that. I personally would make 6 to 8 servings of each, knowing that leftovers freeze so well. But then, soup for lunch always makes me happy.

    1. I agree with Gretchen. I would do eight servings for each soup. It's not that much extra, I would think. If everyone has a half just have an extra two servings per soup. And yes....soup for lunch is a perfect thing.

      1. I will third what Gretchen said. Make 8 servings of each; whatever you don't eat will freeze (I freeze kale & sausage soup ALL the time!). Pull out a container when you don't have anything else made for lunch, let it defrost on your desk at work, and reheat in the microwave. Voila! Lunch. :-)

        1. I read this as you were having one type of soup that included those ingredients. If that's correct, I'd plan two cups of soup per person. Soup freezes well and people often tend to eat a little more at parties, in my experience, because it's spread out and you're socializing and people continue to slowly munch.

          1. I read it as 3 soups like others - and agree people will want to try all three (if that is correct).

            The amount you'll need to make in this situation will also be directly impacted by the size of the bowls/mugs/cups you are serving the soup in.

            People will want to try all three - they will also fill up their container to a volume that seems appropriate (not necessarily full, but if you are using something wide they also won't just put a 1/2 cup of soup in if it barely covers the bottom of the container). Having the right size serving vessels will help you control portions and reduce soup being tossed down the sink so that they "don't run out of room" to try another soup . . .

            Just another consideration.