The biggest roadblock an event planner can hit is always going to be perfect food. Planning an event can be hard enough without finding food that everyone can agree on; and with vegetarian and vegan diets going mainstream, it can be tricky to find and provide options that suit everyone’s diet and palate.
The solution isn’t a grand buffet spread worth twice the cost of the venue. Bagels are easy and quick, and who doesn’t salivate at the sight of a freshly-stocked bagel bar? From the freshly baked bagels and the wide selection of toppings, a bagel bar holds something for everyone.
From plain to sesame seed, a bagel comes in many forms, and everyone is bound to like at least one flavor. Plain flavors like whole wheat, multigrain, and salt and strong, savory bagels like onion, garlic, and poppy seed are always fan favorites! If you’re hosting children or people with sweet-tooths, chocolate chip and cinnamon raisin are bound to attract positive attention.
Don’t stop at bagels and butter, though. Toppings are essential, and you can get even more creative here. Cold, hot, spicy or sweet, the possibilities are endless. They don’t have to be spreads, either. Try fish, meats, and veggies too, as well as various fruits and cheeses in thin slices spreadable form.
If the idea of a bagel bar is starting to sound appealing, it’s time to start planning. You don’t have to assume everyone likes bagels, leave some room for the skeptical. Try halving or quartering bagels for taste-testers or picky guests, and encourage curiosity with spoons and napkins. The toppings should be laid out with tongs and spoons, and include plates for those who want them.
Setting up the tables is the best part, aside from eating the bagels yourself. Arrange the bagels however you like, but try keeping things organized for the best results. Keeping things in boxes is always an option, and make sure to label the different kinds. Better yet, use a stacked platter system on a stand that lets you showcase each type on a different tier.
As for the toppings, cream cheese, fruit jams, hummus, and peanut butter are a few of the spreadables you could include, and the future is only brighter from here. From fruits like strawberries and apples to veggies like bell peppers are always popular, and don’t forget cheese! Provolone, cheddar, swiss, and even pepper jack go well with deli meats like turkey, ham, and roast beef.
Finally, you can finish the spread with drinks. You can provide juice in a punch bowl and include water bottles and coffee for those who want it. If it’s cold out, try offering hot chocolate mix or tea bags with hot water – don’t forget cream and sugar.
Not only is a bagel bar an easy option for the host, it’s a fun snack for the guests and a blessing for any cleanup crew. It’s much easier to throw away napkins and pack away extra bagels and spreads than it is to clean up a table full of messy foods.
Don’t be hesitant to host a bagel brunch, it’s a popular choice for a reason! If you’re still hesitant, try researching bagel places near you, and check your local supermarket for toppings and snack platters. Be the hero of your office or club, and enjoy the bagels while you’re at it.