How to Create Your Own Dessert Buffet

How to Create Your Own Dessert Buffet

When you think of sweets at parties and celebrations, the mind normally tends to drift toward cakes and cupcakes. Although these are still the traditional norm for most celebratory get-togethers and other festive occasions, another trend has been sweeping the party scene by storm and seeing more popularity lately, and that trend is the dessert buffet.

What is a Dessert Buffet?

This trendy party idea has always had deep roots in Italian weddings, where they have what is called a ‘Viennese table’ or ‘pastry table,’ essentially a table with all kinds of desserts on it. Along with the cake and/or cupcakes, you can often find bite-sized treats like tarts, cake pops, macarons, candy, fruit, and brownies among many other sweet selections.

One great thing about a dessert buffet is that you are not obligated to make everything for it! We recommend either having guests or a few helpers make and/or bring desserts to contribute to the buffet, and you can even buy some desserts from a local grocery store or bakery to use that goes with the theme you want. Anything goes!

Dessert buffets have really been gaining traction at weddings and birthday parties, but they are a great idea for just about any kind of party, and the best thing is that they can be completely tailored to the celebration and customized with any sort of desserts you want.

Planning Your Dessert Buffet

First of all, you have to decide what your dessert buffet’s menu is going to consist of. For example, do you have any items that are absolutely necessary? If so, make sure that those are your priority, because you can build around those with your theme.

Next, you want a bit of variety in your dessert bar, so you can divide it up into categories, such as chocolate and non-chocolate items, just depending on the items you specifically want on your dessert buffet.

Then, you’re going to want to think about the location and theme of the party, how many guests you’re anticipating, and how long you’re expecting the celebration to last, because these factors relate directly to how fancy or simple you want these buffet desserts to be.

Now, think about the buffet table itself. How big do you need it to be? Is one regular sized table going to be enough or does it need to be a bigger space? You’re going to want to make sure that you put the dessert buffet in a spot that is easy to see. As a pro tip, we recommend using a disposable tablecloth that way when the party is over, you can just fold together the entire thing, crumbs and all, and throw it away for easy cleanup.

Get extra creative and either put them in front of a nice backdrop, or you can make or buy a backdrop to match the theme of the party, this part strictly depends upon how crafty you want to get. Plus, you can make or find little figurines, photographs, or other bits of decor that match or accentuate the theme and scatter these pieces in between the desserts.

So, now you’ve thought of the food, the table, the placement, and even some of the decor. Now, you’ve got to think about how you’re going to present and serve these desserts. For cupcakes, cookies, and other single desserts, you can opt for tiered trays to add some height to the table. Make each tier match with items similar in ingredients, color, what-have-you. Put small, individual desserts such as hand-made candies and chocolate-dipped strawberries in cupcake liners for less mess and a cute, fun pop of color. Elevated cake plates also make great dessert displays. Candy always looks great in glass containers and even mason jars, especially if they’re color-coordinating candies. We highly recommend making little note cards or something to indicate what each dessert is to make sure that anyone who might have allergies can avoid any terrible accidents, and just to let everyone know exactly what they’re eating.

Popular Dessert Buffet Ideas

We’ve found a few of the most popular dessert buffet ideas to share with you, and we hope they will help inspire you to create the perfect one for your special occasion.

Candy Buffet

Whether you want your candies to match the theme of your party by color or any other detail, or if you’re just wanting to have a fun candy dessert buffet, glass apothecary jars are a great way to go, along with small metal tins, mason jars, or even plastic divided trays. When it comes to displays with candies that aren’t individually wrapped, make sure that the opening of the container is big enough to get the candy out, and have handy tools such as tongs, small scoops, or whatever will make candy extraction easier.

Cake, Cupcakes, Cake Pops, and Macarons

This option is popular at weddings, but it can also carry over well to other celebrations and occasions. Generally, all of these desserts match in color and sometimes in flavors as well. The cake pops and macarons stand out against the traditional party desserts, adding a creative and sophisticated flair to any dessert table. Tiered trays and tall cake plates are a great way to display these goodies.

Bite-Size Desserts

For a table full of bite-size desserts, you’re going to be thinking about things like mini cupcakes, macarons, dessert bars, and other sweets made small or cut into smaller pieces. Bite-sized desserts fit well on tiered trays, cake plates, and flat trays. Tongs for grabbing, or even cocktail toothpicks inserted into each piece makes for easy dessert retrieval. Think about what desserts would fit best with the theme, or how you can incorporate the theme into the desserts.

Cookies and Donuts

For a dessert bar just about everyone will love, go for hand-held treats like cookies and donuts. You can either match them to your theme or just have a variety of different cookies and donuts arranged in and on eye-catching containers and displays. If you or someone else is going to be making any of these treats, they can easily be matched to the colors or theme of the party as well.

Try Creating Your Own Dessert Buffet

So, whether you’re planning a family get-together, a corporate event, or any other sort of celebration where you’re looking for fun and creative ideas for desserts, then a dessert buffet may just be the way you want to go!

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