Whether you're having a wedding, a family reunion, a company party or just a get together with friends, summer entertaining is more fun with a food bar! No, I'm not talking about granola bars, I'm talking about a self-serve, create-your-own smorgasbord of summer treats. Food bars add a fun interactive element that will make your party a cherished memory. This is a collection of images I found on Pinterest, click on the image to go to the original source.
This is the first thing that comes to mind when I think of a food bar, an ice cream sundae bar! Since the first ice cream sundae was supposedly created in Two Rivers, Wisconsin, this is perfect for a Wisconsin summer celebration. To make your ice cream even more Wisconsin-y, use some Wisconsin ice cream like Babcock Hall or Chocolate Shoppe. Not in Wisconsin? You can still have your favorite sconnie ice cream shipped to your door from Wisconsinmade.com.
Popcorn is one of my favorite snacks. I like to sprinkle on seasonings like the ones from Fireworks Popcorn- their butter burst flavor has the taste of butter without the fat. Since this food bar is for a party, don't worry about calories. Put out some mix-ins like M&Ms, nuts, chocolate chips, bacon bits...the possibilities are endless. Each guest can enjoy a popcorn creation that matches their personality.
Hot dogs are the ultimate summer celebration food! Start with a quality all beef hot dog like the Old Fashioned Wieners from Nueske meats. Everyone has a favorite topping combination, so please the whole crowd with a variety toppings beyond the standard ketchup and mustard. Use hot dogs toppings from across the USA as inspiration- celery salt, tomatoes, onions, neon green relish, sport peppers and a pickle for a Chicago dog, or chili, onions and cheese for a Cincinnati hot dog.
If you want to think outside of the jar with your food bar, try a pickled food bar. This is especially nice if you want to use up jars of veggies you pickled in the fall, or if you don't want to do all the pickling yourself, you can shop for gourmet pickled foods online. I would probably have this bar at a casual event since you don't want to dribble pickle juice all over your nice wedding clothes!