Summertime Meals to Feed a Crowd

Mostly commonly-served summer foods

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Hot Dogs

Whether you’re having a family reunion or a backyard gathering, it can be tricky to figure out how much food to feed a crowd.

You don’t want to run short, and yet you’d rather not blow your food budget on one meal. Here’s a look at the most commonly-served summer foods, and what you’ll need to feel a large (and often ever-growing) group!

FOOD/DRINK TO SERVE
12
TO SERVE
20
TO SERVE
35
TO SERVE
50
TO SERVE
65
Cold Cuts
(3 ounces per person)
2 pounds 3–¾ pounds 6 pounds 9 pounds 12 pounds
Sliced Cheese
(1 ounce per person)
1–⅛ pounds 2 pounds 3 pounds 4–¾ pounds 6 pounds
Bread
(3 slices per person)
2 loaves 3 loaves 5 loaves 7 loaves 9–¾ loaves
Chips/Snacks
(1 ounce per person)
1 pound 2 pounds 3 pounds 4 pounds 6 pounds
Dip
(3 tablespoons per person)
2 cups 3–¾ cups 6 cups 9 cups 12 cups
Hot Dogs
(2 per person)
2 pounds 4 pounds 7 pounds 10 pounds 13 pounds
Rolls or Buns
(2 per person)
2 dozen 3 dozen 5 dozen 8 dozen 11 dozen
Baked Ham
(4 ounces per person)
3 pounds 5 pounds 8–¾ pounds 12 pounds 16 pounds
Salads
(potato salad and coleslaw, also baked beans; ¾ cup per person)
2 quarts 3–¾ quarts 1–¾ gallons 2 gallons 3 gallons
Ice Cream
(¾ cup per person)
2 quarts 3–¾ quarts 1–¾ gallons 2 gallons 3 gallons
Cookies 2 dozen 3 dozen 5 dozen 8 dozen 11 dozen
Cold Drinks
(3 6-ounce cups per person)
6–¾ quarts 3 gallons 5 gallons 7 gallons 9 gallons
Hot Drinks
- Ground Coffee
½ pound ¾ pound 2 pounds 2 pounds 3 pounds
Hot Drinks
- Brewed Tea or Coffee
1 gallon 2 gallons 4 gallons 6 gallons 8 gallons

–courtesy University of Illinois, College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences, Cooperative Extension Service