Entertaining Guests with Food Restrictions
Entertaining friends and family throughout the holiday season can be stressful. Factoring in the ever-changing dietary restrictions of your guests can make it even more so! Perhaps someone you know is gluten intolerant or vegan or diabetic or practicing the paleo diet. Suddenly your favourite party menu is out the window and you have no idea what to serve.
Here are a few hosting survival tips to make the holiday season more enjoyable for everyone. It doesn’t have to be complicated and your efforts will surely be appreciated.
It never hurts to ask!
Rather than trying to figure it all out yourself, send your guest an email or give them a quick call. Ask them what their food restrictions are and if they have any suggestions for you. Perhaps they can bring their favourite gluten free cracker or some almond milk to have with coffee. If you have a menu in mind run it past your guest to identify any problematic ingredients you may have missed. Rather than being offended, most people will be touched that you took the time to consider their needs.
Label your appetizers with ingredient cards. It’s much less stressful for a guest to read what is in a dish and simply avoid what they want or need to – no guessing games, no gambling. If you are serving packaged foods keep the packaging in case your guests needs to take a peek at the ingredient list. You never know – maybe you’ll introduce them to a new product they love!
Easy Side Dishes
Prepare a few simple salads and/or vegetable dishes to ensure no one goes home hungry. Use ingredients like quinoa, wild rice, nuts, seeds and avocado to boost the protein content for those unable to eat the main protein source.
Talk to our nutritionists
That’s what we’re here for! Bring by a list of foods your guests can’t eat and we will help you find some recipes or ingredients for them.
Hummus & veggies (if buying hummus or other dips check for milk ingredients!)
Smoked salmon with lemon & capers
Raw vegan “truffles” or energy bars
Roasted nuts and seeds
By Kate McMurray Certified Holistic Nutritionist