Barbecue Menu Ideas For Special Events

Posted on: 27 December 2019


Even though barbecued food is typically considered casual cuisine, you can make it work for any type of special event or occasion. Since barbecued main courses and accompanying side dishes encompass a wide range of foods, you'll have no problem pleasing your entire guest list with the menu.

While barbecue is traditionally associated with outdoor events, such as 4th of July backyard blowouts and Memorial Day celebrations, you can also offer it at even the most elegant of indoor gatherings, such as wedding receptions. Other types of special occasions that you can serve barbecued foods at include kids' and adults' birthday parties, anniversary and graduation soirees, holiday gatherings, family and class reunions, and bridal and baby showers.

Barbecue-inspired menus are ideal for outside venues, including country barns and parks, which provide easy access to grills. If you're holding the party in an indoor space, such as reception and banquet halls, you can also treat your guests to grilled foods by hiring a caterer. You can either go with a catering company that specializes in barbecued foods or have your favorite local BBQ restaurant provide the lunches or dinners. 

As another option, if you're short on money, use the BBQ restaurant as menu inspiration, and prepare the food yourself. This will work best for smaller, outdoor get-togethers so that you can use your grill.

Here are some barbecue menu ideas for your next special event:

1. Smoked Meats 

The stars of any barbecue-inspired menu will most likely be the smoked meats. Depending on the size of the event, start by choosing one, two or three different types of meats, such as barbecued ribs, smoked sausage or salmon, and pulled pork. Give guests the option of choosing their favorites either prior to the event or during it by providing a buffet-style spread.

If you have vegetarians on your guest list, accommodate them with a few meatless options, including grilled tempeh, tofu, or even soy-based burgers, hot dogs, and sausages. 

2. Side Dishes 

After you've chosen the meats, pick a few different barbecue-inspired side dishes to round out the meal. Some classic ideas include potato or macaroni salad, coleslaw, and French fries or potato chips. 

If you want to give the menu a more gourmet twist, surprise your guests with side dishes such as a fresh watermelon, feta and jalapeno salad, a caprese salad, grilled corn with herb butter or pesto sauce, or a seasonal green bean and peach salad. 

Contact local barbecue restaurants like Grumpy's Bar B Que Roadhouse to see if they have catering options you'd like to use for your event.