Who doesn’t love a catered lunch? With all the fun and quirky food being created in restaurants and food trucks alike, there are many options when it comes to finding something everyone will enjoy. Whether you’re looking to cater a corporate lunch for employees, guests, or important meetings, we’ve broken down 10 lunch catering ideas for you below.
1. Boxed Lunch Sandwiches
These are classic lunch catering ideas. Not only can you customize each box if you wanted to, but these lunches usually come with little sides or desserts to accompany the sandwich. An example of a boxed lunch is a pesto chicken salad for the sandwich, chips, and a decadent chocolate chip cookie.
Your favourite restaurant may offer boxed lunches as their catering option so it’s never a bad idea to check out their catering menu.
2. Taco Lunch
Tacos are one of the best lunch catering ideas available. Tacos are so popular these days and they can easily be turned into a vegetarian option. Set-up all the different ingredients for this lunch and you have a fun little DIY-taco bar!
Some great options include sautéed peppers, onions and mushrooms, grilled chicken and seared steak. Next, be sure to include all the fixings like guacamole, salsa, sour cream, tomatoes, beans, rice, tortillas, and whatever else may be available to you. The possibilities for a taco lunch are endless!
3. Fresh Salads
You can’t go wrong by selecting fresh salads as part of your catered lunch. Some salad ideas to consider are quinoa tabbouleh made with yellow quinoa, cucumbers, tomato, pickled onions, chickpea hummus, mint, and parsley.
Another salad option is the kale caesar made with shredded kale and brussels sprouts, crispy lentils, caesar dressing, and manchego. There are many options for great salads that there’s sure to be something everyone can enjoy.
4. Baked Salmon and Grilled Sweet Potatoes
This one has our mouth watering already! Baked salmon in a honey mustard sauce with grilled sweet potatoes covered in a maple chipotle butter and sunflower seeds is one option. You can switch out the vegetables to focus on just one vegetable or offer a medley. This is not only a delicious option but a healthy one too.
5. Gourmet Pizza Party
Pizza parties aren’t just for kids! Why not have a gourmet pizza party as your catered lunch? Leave the traditional pizza toppings like cheese and pepperoni behind and opt for something a little more non-traditional like arugula, smoked meat and ranch dressing.
Get more than one pizza and your staff or guests can pick which pie they’d like best. Again, these lunch catering ideas offer endless possibilities so have fun with it.
6. Charcuterie Platter
Another classic option but an oh-so-good one. Not only are charcuterie boards a simple but high-end lunch idea, they’re also pretty mess-free as there are no dipping sauces (making them perfect for meetings).
These boards include bread, crackers, a variety of different meats, and some vegetables. A lot of caterers offer pre-made platters, but you can also customize these if you would like a little less or more of something.
Sliders are one of the favourite lunch catering ideas during summer. If you’re having your lunch outside, this is a tasty option to consider. You can even have a different variety of sliders available so everyone can try something new. Turkey and sesame slaw, slow-cooked pot roast, honey, and ale pulled chicken, the list goes on!
Why not include waffles in your catered lunch? This option can be included at any time of the day as waffles are so versatile. Waffles and fruit for breakfast, chicken and waffles for lunch. Breakfast foods are getting increasingly more popular so we’re sure your guests will enjoy this fun idea!
9. Vegan Options
It’s never a bad idea to include some vegan options in your lunch offering. If you have any vegans present, they will be happy you thought of them. Even if no one in attendance is vegan, it’s still something everyone else can eat so it’s a win-win!
Some vegan catered lunch ideas include spicy buffalo chickpea wraps, spiced lentil, sweet potato, and kale whole wheat pockets, and zucchini noodles with basil and pumpkin seed pesto. You’ll definitely have some healthy options on hand!
Wraps are all the rage and gyros are always a fan favourite. Each one of these little wrapped packages includes charred lamb, beef or pork, tomato, and onion, drizzled with a refreshing tzatziki sauce, enveloped in a fluffy pita. You can also get this option plated for those who may not want to eat the pita. Gyros also offer different options to suit a wide variety of tastes.
These 10 lunch catering ideas are just the beginning, but they give you a lot of good options to start with. Depending on how often you provide catered lunches, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to try different ideas.