Arlington, VA122 Inexpensive Wedding Caterers near you

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Arlington Inexpensive Wedding Caterers

Browse these inexpensive wedding caterers with great ratings from Thumbtack customers in Arlington.

Top Pro
  • 24 years in business
  • 97 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Michele Z.
Verified review

Private chef for a wedding/baby shower for a client with special food requests (Autoimmune Paleo Diet). Chef was eager to work with food restrictions and had a fantastic attitude. Guests loved the food and raved about their interactions with the chef. Would hire again in a heartbeat.

Top Pro
Mercedes Jo Events
4.9
from 65 reviews
  • 9 years in business
  • 115 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Artranda H.
Verified review

Mercedes Jo Events & Catering was so delicious, high-quality buffet for our wedding. Working with Mercedes was simple and enjoyable! With a huge variety of options,Mercedes was able to customize the perfect menu. This vendor provides first-class food and service at a very reasonable price.Mercedes is worth every penny! People are still talking about the wonderful food she prepared. I would definitely recommend her to anyone on a budget, food was delicious. I will be using her again for any future events. Thanks again

Top of the City Catering
4.9
from 59 reviews
  • 6 years in business
  • 85 hires on Thumbtack
Kimberly A.
Verified review

Maribel and her team were amazing! She is way more than just a caterer! She made our wedding beautiful, well organized, and stress free. The food was great! Couldn't be more satisfied!

Eleven Courses Catering
4.8
from 57 reviews
  • 119 hires on Thumbtack
Jeamine Y.
Verified review

I cannot recommend Eleven Courses more. I worked with Megan as my coordinator and she was such a delight! She was very professional and easy-going to work with and answered all emailed questions quickly--I can honestly say that throughout the process I felt I was in good hands. I never felt uncomfortable asking about pricing or any strange questions or requests we had and the guidance Megan provided was much appreciated. We traveled a couple hours to Owings Mills, MD (we live in Springfield, VA) to attend our tasting at their offices. We met Jim and Megan in person, and the tasting decided it for my husband and me. We immediately knew these were the caterers for our wedding. The food was incredibly delicious and now, several weeks out after the wedding, our guests are still talking about how tasty everything was. Their prices are amazingly reasonable, especially given how beautifully presented and delicious their meals are--they have an affordable price point, however, the service and food delivered is that of the super-pricy, high-end caterers (services which I often use in my firm and am well-familiar with). It was very much appreciated how they didn't nickel and dime us and were proactive in helping out and finding ways to make the wedding special. We consider ourselves incredibly fortunate to have hired Eleven Courses for our caterers and intend to hire them again, should we plan another huge celebratory bash.

  • 16 years in business
  • 64 hires on Thumbtack
Jan D.
Verified review

My parents' 50th wedding anniversary party was a special celebration made all the more enjoyable because of the wonderful menu and service provided by Chef Myles and his team. Chef Myles was easy to work during the planning stages and was the consummate professional on the day of the event. I whole-heartedly recommend Chef Myles and the Chefs2GoCatering Team and look forward to working with them again in the future.

Sweet Bazil, llc
5.0
from 30 reviews
  • 4 years in business
  • 24 hires on Thumbtack
Jenn B.
Verified review

Chef Celestine and the entire crew at Sweet Bazil are amazing! We hired them for our wedding on October 13, 2018 and I couldn't be happier with the choice. Not only did I receive multiple compliments on the food and decor, but the entire team's professionalism made a complicated day so easy! Planning a wedding without a wedding planner was difficult and stressful but Chef Celestine, Danielle, and staff made it so easy. They were with us every step of the way, agreeable to last minute changes, and even helped us with the stuff we didn't know we needed. I could not recommend them enough! Oh and if you don't get the mac&cheese, you are missing out! if a thousand good stars were possible then I would leave a thousand star review!

Catering Reserved
4.9
from 30 reviews
  • 1 year in business
  • 38 hires on Thumbtack
Jen M.
Verified review

Everything about our experience with Catering Reserved was incredible. Dianna Gilbert showed immense professionalism, and was the perfect caterer for our wedding reception. We are so grateful for everything she did and would not hesitate to recommend her, and the company.

Epicurean Nutrition Catering
4.6
from 25 reviews
  • 10 years in business
  • 38 hires on Thumbtack
Gigi M.
Verified review

Esther catered for my Bridal shower and wedding cocktails. Service was superb, presentation was great and the food was amazing with generous portions. I highly recommend Epicurean Nutrition Catering.

  • 12 years in business
  • 49 hires on Thumbtack
Kievette L.
Verified review

We can not express into words the phenomenon job that Extravagant Affairs did for our wedding on 11/05/2016. From the time that we chose them to handle our catering needs to the very end of our special day, their team handled every detail with the highest level of class and commitment. Our guests are still talking about the excellent food selection. If you are looking for elegance, price affordability, and professionalism, I would definitely recommend them

N&M Divine Cuisine & Events
5.0
from 21 reviews
  • 28 hires on Thumbtack
John A.
Verified review

Mary and her crew did a fantastic job catering our wedding luncheon in northern Virginia. The food and service were terrific.

  • 2 years in business
  • 26 hires on Thumbtack
Lindsey D.
Verified review

Chef B was an unbelievable delight to work with. My husband and I had her cook breakfast for us on our wedding day, and she was professional, responsive, kind, and the best mix of attentive and not intrusive in the least. Chef B, thanks for making our day so special. It was the perfect start!

Top Pro
Chef Nikki S.
4.9
from 19 reviews
  • 2 years in business
  • 20 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Kiana H.
Verified review

I’ve known Nikki for a couple years now and her food has been fantastic. She’s actually catering my wedding and I can’t wait.

Top Pro
  • 2 years in business
  • 13 hires on Thumbtack
  • Top Pro on Thumbtack
Mary R.
Verified review

Everything about our experience with Sandra and her staff was superb. We had a 50th wedding anniversary buffet dinner with a Hawaiian theme for 26 family and friends. Her creativity, responsiveness and attention to detail was evident in all phases of the day and evening. Our guests raved about the menu and the ladies who prepared and served the meal. When they left everything was cleaned up superbly. We highly recommend Creative Visions !

  • 5 years in business
  • 19 hires on Thumbtack
Charlita W.
Verified review

I will definitely be using Soleia’s Wedding and Event Planning again!! They went above and beyond! Thanks again for making my Daughter’s Graduation Party a great success!!

Karen Wilder Events
4.6
from 12 reviews
  • 22 years in business
  • 24 hires on Thumbtack
Natasha N.
Verified review

Karen Wilder provided catering for my New Years Eve 2016 wedding. The food was excellent! Everything was well seasoned, tender, and flavorful. My wedding did not have a traditional kitchen with a stove, we used chafing dishes. Nevertheless, the food was hot as though it had just come out of the oven! We had a cocktail hour where her staff passed around appetizers - the lamb chops, sushi, and Maryland crab cakes were exceptional! The bartender was quick to serve drinks, and made very good drinks. She also delivered drinks to guests' tables. The staff cleaned up afterwards, and contained any left over food for us after the event. You cannot go wrong with this food! Top notch!

  • 2 years in business
  • 2 hires on Thumbtack
Sukumari T.
Verified review

They did a really great job at Whitney and Dexter's wedding . Very personal and reliable.

  • 13 years in business
Shantia F.
Verified review

Kokamo's catered my tenth wedding anniversary dinner. The friendliness and professionalism of his staff was impeccable! Any questions or special requests we had was handled smoothly by Chef Perkins' team. The seafood macaroni and cheese was awesome! I would recommend to any couple looking for wedding caterer or private in home chef to use them in a heart beat!

Papi Cuisine
5.0
from 10 reviews
  • 4 years in business
Richelle W.
Verified review

Papi Cuisine has always delivered on proving exceptional service to me when I have used them for both my wedding and my son’s graduation party. Quality delicious food while giving you a world class service every time. I will definitely use them again! - Richelle

  • 4 years in business
  • 8 hires on Thumbtack
Vince S.
Verified review

Ordered for food do 35 post-wedding brunch. Menu was organized and easy to pick from. Jaclyn was responsive and helpful with sizing food plates and making recommendations. Everyone was super thrilled to see the amount of food (had some leftovers) and everything was tasty. Would definitely order again.

Classic Catering
4.8
from 6 reviews
  • 8 hires on Thumbtack
Katarina D.
Verified review

I had an amazing wedding Thanks To sandy and Her team!! She was very helpfull and explained in detail to me everything so I had full confidence in her and the Team so I can enjoy may day! Thank you Classic Catering for the amazing buffet, staff, decor, and being there 100% on time and deliverying what You said you would. I will you use anytime and reffer you!!

Q E Cuisine
5.0
from 2 reviews
  • 2 years in business
Michelle R.
Verified review

Hiring Q E Cuisine was an awesome choice. I have worked with them several times and was never disappointed. They are not expensive. They come in start working and don’t stop until they are finished. Very respectable people. Food is AWESOME. They catered a wedding for us and a family reunion. I will recommend them for any event. Thumbs up

Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

How do you find a good caterer?

Reviews, interviews and menu tastings will help you find the right catering choice for your big day. Start by screening possible wedding caterers based on past reviews. If a caterer you are interested in has a review that concerns you, ask them about it; how they respond will be very telling. Next, ask about their availability for your wedding date.

If the wedding caterer is available on your date, it’s time to talk about menus and prices. Be clear about what your maximum budget is find out what choices this will allow you. Caterers may custom-create a menu for your event, or they may have menu templates within different price ranges that can guide your decision. A clear budget gives the caterer clear parameters within which to work and offer creative suggestions. Schedule a menu tasting to confirm you love your wedding menu. Once you have a menu and date, and have paid a deposit to reserve the caterer’s services, confirm additional details including when the food will be delivered to the site, what kind of service will be provided, how many servers will be onsite and for how long, and who is responsible for setup and cleanup. The more specific your contract, the fewer worries you’ll have on your wedding day. Get more smart hiring tips here.

How much does wedding catering cost per person?

Wedding catering costs will always vary based on the number of guests you’re inviting, the menu you want to serve, and the way the food will be served to your guests. As you interview wedding catering companies, you’ll be presented with a cost per person for various menus. On the low end, wedding catering may cost approximately $15-$18 per person. This would include prepared food only, with no setup or service of any kind. The starting price for a simple buffet meal with minimal service typically averages $22 per person. Opting for the same menu with all organic ingredients could raise your costs to about $33 per person. A moderately upscale menu (finer ingredients, more elaborate presentation) could range from $24 to $34 per person. High-end wedding catering cost truly has no limit. Lobster, filet mignon, specialty seafood, organic ingredients — menu choices like these can boost your cost per person up to $150 and more.

What should you look for in a caterer?

A delicious meal is a critical element of a successful wedding, with happy guests fondly remembering your fabulous wedding food. The right caterer for you will be:

  • Available: Even the best caterer is no good if they aren’t available on your wedding date. Ask early before you get your heart set on someone.
  • Affordable for you: Find a caterer that you can afford. Having a spending plan ahead of time will mean you won’t overspend on food.
  • A good personality fit: Wedding planning is stressful, so work with someone that you can get along with and communicate with easily.
  • Experienced and recommended: Ensure the company has a proven track record with events of your size and the references to back it up.
  • Transparent about money: Steer clear of shady pricing. Find a caterer who is very clear about costs and is happy to talk you through budgets and pricing options.
  • Transparent about food: Find someone who is clear about where they source their food from and where it is prepared.

How much should catering cost for a wedding?

The cost of wedding catering will reflect the level of service, the menu you choose, the luxury you desire and the number of guests you invite. Where you live also plays a major role in your wedding catering costs. The regional cost to do business and local cost of food will affect your catering bill. There is no set price for wedding catering, because each wedding and each menu is different. This is why many caterers provide a per-person price. This allows you to break down what it costs to feed each person based on the menu you want. Working with your caterer, you can adjust menu items, service level and more to accommodate your budget and guest count. Keep in mind that wedding catering costs are not just for the food. The bill reflects all the components that go into commercial food catering: a commercial kitchen, ingredients, staff, insurance, marketing and more. Here are some examples of average costs:

  • Three-course plated meal, moderately upscale, for 125 in Los Angeles: $14,000. Because of staffing costs, a true plated meal costs about twice as much as a staff-assisted buffet.
  • Buffet meal, standard menu, for 100 in Los Angeles: $5,000.
  • Per-person cost for hors d'oeuvres, dinner and nonalcoholic beverages: $24–$37, depending on menu selection, in Southern California.
  • Drop off prepared food for 50: $1,000 in North Carolina. Price does not include any service, setup or breakdown.

How do you serve food at a wedding?

Food service at your wedding will affect your catering costs and influence the atmosphere of the reception. Buffet style is more informal; plated meals are a bit fancier; family style encourages sharing. Read about the different food service styles to select your preferred wedding catering choice.

  • Buffet: Caterers can drop off prepared foods for a DIY and budget-friendly buffet option where you set everything up and food is entirely self-service. For a fuller-service buffet, the caterers set up food, oversee the buffet throughout the event, and clean up afterwards. For food only, prices per person might average $16-$18, while a service buffet may start around $20-$22 per person. Adding food stations can increase per-person costs by at least $3-$5.
  • Family style: Servers bring large platters of food to guest tables in courses. It’s less formal (and less expensive) than a plated meal, but more formal and higher-cost than a buffet. You’ll need large tables to accommodate the platters, so plan accordingly when renting furniture for the event.
  • Plated: A plated event is a formal dining experience; waitstaff serve your seated guests for each course, fill their drinks, and attend to them throughout the dinner. A plated dinner is typically the most expensive option for both food and service.
  • Food trucks: Similar to buffets, with food trucks your guests get their own food and bring it to their table. A food truck gives a relaxed and playful vibe to your reception.
  • Cocktail reception: If you don’t want a formal seated dinner, you can opt for a wide assortment of passed appetizers at an extended cocktail hour reception.
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