When it comes to hosting, there are many moving parts. As a host or hostess, you may find yourself spread thin trying to get everything together for your guests. It can all seem overwhelming, from the venue, the guest list, and most importantly, the food and drinks. Having a solid menu planned out can make or break your brunch.
We are here to help you plan a fantastic brunch for the people you care about. If you’re not sure what to make, you’ll find our top picks for food and drinks that will wow your guests, as well as some tips and tricks to make the planning process as smooth as possible.
Best Time and Day for Brunch
Before you start planning your menu, figure out the best time and place to have brunch. While you can really have brunch any time of day (we don’t judge), brunch is traditionally held in the morning. Just make sure you communicate with your guests about what time works for them.
In the grand scheme of things, brunch is an important time to bond with the people you are spending time with. It’s important to focus more on spending time with your guests and less time worrying about all the pieces of planning.
Keep It Simple
When planning out your next brunch bash, keep your menu simple and easy. By serving your food buffet-style and creating a limited but still tasty menu, you’ll have a lot less to worry about.
The balance of flavors is also important to keep in mind when choosing your brunch recipes. It’s important to have a good mix of sweet and savory so that everyone's taste buds are happy.
Even if your brunch is just a small get-together, planning and preparing the food ahead of time is still a good idea. You definitely lose quality time with your guests if you are running around and cooking the food during the event. Find recipes that you can easily prepare beforehand so you can just eat and enjoy the company during the brunch.
If you bake the dishes a day ahead and heat them the day of the event, you’ll save a ton of time and energy. Simple dishes that can be premade and easily modified for savory or sweet that we recommend that include but are not limited to:
- Breakfast Casseroles
- Cinnamon Rolls
- Breakfast Muffins
- Pasta Salads
These are just simple ideas, but you can get creative with the flavors if you want to create something more unique.
Fabulous Make-Ahead Brunch Recipes
Here are some specific make-ahead recipes that we highly recommend for a tasty brunch.
- Tipsy Overnight Belgian Waffles: These make-ahead waffles are boozy and delicious. The best part about these waffles is that they have to sit overnight for the right taste and texture, so they actually have to be made ahead.
- Quiche Pastry Cups: These mini quiches are perfect for a grab-and-go, buffet-style brunch. They are savory, warm, and easy to make. You can also include whatever ingredients you’d like, from zucchini to ham, for the perfect breakfast bite.
Baked Greek Omelet- Packed with savory spinach and feta, this baked omelet is a delicious dish that’s easy to make in advance.
Of course, your menu isn't limited to these three menu items, but they are a good starting point if you are looking for a place to begin in your planning.
Don’t Forget About the Classics
What would a brunch be without chocolate chip pancakes, French toast, and a side of bacon? You don’t have to go crazy making everyone’s diner favorites, but it can’t hurt to have some sausage ready to heat up or to offer a classic egg dish or two for your guests. And don’t forget the maple syrup!
An easy way to level up your bunch is to also have cold, ready-to-eat options like bagels and herb cream cheese, coffee cake, or banana bread all set to go. You can almost use these as appetizers to the main event—the hot food.
Lastly, no brunch is complete without some fresh fruit. Whether you create a summery fruit salad with strawberries and blueberries or take it to the fall season with some apples and pears, you can never go wrong with the brightness of fruit.
Don’t Be Afraid to Accept Some Help
If you are hosting a big brunch party and don’t have the extra time to make little appetizers for aesthetic purposes, simply have your guests do it themselves. You don’t have to do a full pot-luck, but you can ask guests to bring small items to supplement the main event.
This will make it even easier to cater to everyone's flavor preferences and dietary restrictions. If someone offers to bring their grandma’s famous lemon biscuits, now is not the time to turn those down.
Having the proper setup will help with the overall flow of your brunch. Using a tiny side table to stack all your food and drinks may not be the best idea. Try spreading out your food and beverages on a long table to keep things organized.
You may also want to have a separate station for drinks aside from the food. This makes it easier and more inviting for your guests to come and go as they please.
Make sure that your guests have plenty of space to move around, eat, and lounge accordingly. Having everyone comfortable and content at brunch is a must. As a host, you want to make your guests feel right at home, so create the space for them to do that easily.
Best Beverages for Brunch
Much like the DIY buffet, it's not a bad idea to set up a bar cart so that every guest can mix their own drink. You can just include a few staples that people can choose from, and this will add a touch of elegance to your event. Think Champagne and orange juice, sure, but also have more out-of-the-box options like Bloody Mary ingredients on hand.
If you don’t want to go through all the hassle of setting up a homemade bar, having premade cocktails is always a good idea… and nobody does premade cocktails better than us here at Ohza.
We specialize in the full taste of a cocktail that you know and love, conveniently packed and ready-to-go just for you. Ohza mimosas are the perfect pick for brunch (or any other food-centered event, really).
Again, striving for ease is crucial to hosting a smooth brunch. You can still have delicious food and drink that won’t break your bank or your sanity as a host.
Final Brunch Tips and Tricks
Our final parting gift to you is some simple hacks that will help you win the brunch game.
- When you are in your planning period, make a physical list of everything you need so that you don't buy too much (or too little!)
- Consider making personal name cards for your guests' seats, especially if they are serving themselves. This little detail will add a personal touch to your brunch and make your guests feel extra loved.
- Make sure that your tables are stocked with silverware, plates, and paper towels. Messes happen, so make sure you are prepared for anything.
- Sticking with a consistent theme can help keep the food and menu under control. Your guests will appreciate a fun theme, whether that be a season or color, that makes everything feel cohesive.
The key to hosting a good brunch is simplicity, preparation, and personal touches. You and your guests will love having a meal that is focused on you and them. Spend the time focusing on spending time with your guests by making dishes in advance, encouraging guests to bring their own snacks, and keeping things simple.
Throwing and hosting the best brunch doesn't have to be hard. You just need to know where to start.
Here at Ohza, we believe that life is worth celebrating, and that starts with the people you love. We're here to help make celebrations easier for you. As the brunch master, you’ve earned it.