Wedding Harvest Table Ideas

Wedding Harvest Table Ideas

One of the fastest-growing food trends for weddings and events is to have a delectable feast available to guests on a harvest table. Chef Johnny Hamman from Slippery Spoon Kitchen takes us behind-the-scenes at an event at Blaawklippen to teach the in’s and out’s of the perfect harvest table.

Having a Harvest Table at Your Wedding:

One of the nicest things about having harvest tables is that there are no set rules. There are different types of harvest tables offering a large variety of foods that you can serve to your guests.

What Type of Food to Serve on a Harvest Table

The traditional harvest table mostly includes food like bread, cold meats, cheeses, the cheese’s preserves and possibly smoked salmon. One of the biggest things you need to consider when choosing your selection of food is that it should be something that can stand out for a long time. Also, try to choose food that is delicious when served at room temperature. Raw vegetables are gaining in popularity – it is something that is fresh, delicious and perfect for health-conscious guests.

cheese platter at wedding wedding cold meat platter

Seasonal Foods

If you have a Winter wedding good options are things like root vegetables, lots of rich and indulgent cheeses and freshly baked bread. If you do decide on hot foods for winter, make sure to serve it in thick ceramic bowls that stay hot for longer.

For a Summer wedding go with sweet, tropical fruits such as peaches and watermelon. Light salads are also more suitable for this time of year.

Foods like bread and salmon are an all-year thing. And as South Africans, biltong is also a safe bet anytime.

summer fruit harvest table

How Much Food do You Need on a Harvest Table?

When it comes to the quantity of food to serve on a harvest table things get a bit tricky. Each wedding and situation is different. You would need to consider how many guests you are inviting and what type of crowd they are. (we all have a few friends who can eat more than their fair share) What is the theme of your wedding, and what is the tradition. Some cultures tend to serve way more food than will ever be necessary.

The standard serving suggestion is approximately 150g per person. It can be 50g beef, 50g pork etc. And you can work with one slice of bread per person.

Keep in mind that a harvest table is generally an appetizer, replacing the standard wedding canapes. So remind your guests that this is not the main meal and they should stick to snack-sized portions.

fresh salads weddings bread for harvest table

Eating Etiquette

Johnny tells us that he has experienced people who do not take their plates that was provided and then stand by the table and just eat. So make sure the people take their plates. It’s also good to remind them that it is not dinner nor lunch, so they can take snacks sized portions and move away from the table so that the other guest can also get.

Prep time for the harvest table should be as close to serving time as possible. Don’t have the table prepared two hours before the guests get to eat since the food will have to stand out. An efficient team of three people should be able to set up the table display on approximately 45 minutes. It is a great idea to have a chef at the table to assist your guest, but it is not required.

harvest table food at weddings

One of the biggest benefits of having a harvest table is that people can help themselves. So you won’t need to worry about waiting staff serving the food.  Another added bonus is that these delectable displays of food also look absolutely beautiful. Doubling up as a unique decor element for your wedding. A harvest table is your one chance to make a mess and it will still look beautiful. You can display the food on absolutely anything and think outside the box.

The only con, according to Johnny, is the propensity for flies. You will have to prepare with citronella candles etc.


Thanks to our collaborator:

Johnny Hamman from Slippery Spoon Kitchen