June 5, 2020

As a caterer, your service and presentation play a vital role in the success of an event. Not only is it your responsibility to provide savory meals to guests, but it is also important that you facilitate a quality customer experience. Providing excellent service starts with food service equipment and supplies you use so it is essential that you take time to plan out which pieces of equipment you bring to an event. Creating an event checklist streamlines planning so that your catering events go off without a hitch. 

Below is a catering equipment checklist that you can use to ensure that both your clients and their guests are impressed with the quality and presentation of your offerings:

Table Settings

Every event will need table settings that are both decorative and functional. Table setting is essential as this is where guests will be sitting and eating. The type of event will also influence the items you pack— table settings needed for a wedding vary greatly from those needed for an outdoor party.

  • Tablecloths 
  • Napkins
  • Salt and Pepper Shakers
  • Dinnerware
  • Flatware
  • Bread Baskets
  • Candles and Fuel (if required)
  • Glassware

Cooking Equipment

For those who plan to cook on-premise, you will need to bring the necessary equipment. Countertop grills and broilers are an excellent option as they allow you to cook a variety of meals and can be easily transported. Additionally, be sure to contact the venue beforehand to verify the location of electrical connections and to make sure that there is sufficient power for the cooking equipment you bring.

  • Countertop Grills
  • Portable Gas Ranges
  • Countertop Food Warmers
  • Commercial Outdoor Grills
  • Steamers

Serving Equipment

The serving equipment your employees use can make or break your guests’ dining experience. With the right equipment, servers can efficiently distribute meals and beverages so that guests remain fed and happy. When planning, be sure to include extra burners and aprons in the event of an accident.

  • Water Pitchers
  • Chafers and Fuel
  • Serving Utensils
  • Large Oval Serving Trays

Cleaning Supplies

You will likely be responsible for garbage removal and clean up, which requires a variety of disinfectants and trash receptacles. Hand washing stations should also be available for staff to use.

  • Garbage and Recycling Cans
  • Hand Soap
  • Disposable Gloves
  • Disposable Towels 
  • Trash Bags
  • Wipes

Transportation Equipment

If you plan to prepare meals off-premise you will need to invest in transportation supplies so that food can be stored at appropriate temperatures. 

  • Insulated Food Storage for Hot and Cold Staging
  • Disposable Bags
  • Foil Pans
  • Beverage Coolers

Beverage Supplies

Whether you are having staff serve drinks, or are setting up beverage stations, there are several key supplies you will need. Maintaining the temperature of drinks is critical and should be considered when determining beverage supplies to bring to events.  

  • Beverage Dispensers
  • Coffee Urns
  • Disposable Cups
  • Ice
  • Glassware
  • Portable Bars

Final Thoughts

The worst-case scenario for a caterer is to leave behind an important piece of equipment. With this checklist, you can make sure that you always have the equipment and supplies needed to offer the best quality food and service to guests.