Tips for DYIing your wedding reception food

By: Jack Vogt, Tony Roma’s Pitmaster

Turn your favorite snack into a food bar

Think about how your favorite comfort foods could be turned into a food bar. Mac and cheese, baked potatoes, tacos – even desserts – all great options. Serve the main ingredient along with your favorite toppings so that guests can create their own version of a classic comfort food. Food stations are a creative way to showcase your personalities, plus everyone loves personalized aspects of a wedding!

Serve smaller versions of your favorite foods as appetizers

You may not be able to serve all of your favorite comfort foods during your reception, but if there are a few you want to include, try shrinking them down and serving them as finger food. Pairings such as mini grilled cheese and tomato soup, pulled pork or chicken sliders with small portions of French fries, or mini chicken and waffles are just a few of the possibilities. Your guests will love the nostalgia of eating comfort food, and with finger food, you avoid having to rent an extra set of plates and utensils for the appetizer portion of your reception. Win-win!

Read more ideas and recipes by Tony Roma’s Pitmaster in our summer/fall issue of Virginia Bride Magazine
Sample Recipe:

Pulled Pork and Chicken Slider Bar


Pulled Pork and Chicken




Quick Pickled Onion Topping

Prep time: 5 minutes | Rest time: At least 12 hours/overnight | Total time: 12 hours 5 minutes



  • 1 red onion peeled thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tea spoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Pinch crushed red pepper



  1. Combine water, vinegar, salt and sugar in a bowl. Stir until dissolved
  2. Add sliced onions and a pinch of crushed red pepper
  3. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours


Serve alongside these additional toppings for a make-your-own slider.

  • Coleslaw
  • Sweet and Spicy Pickles
  • Bread and Butter Pickles
  • BBQ Sauce Drizzle
  • Sliced Red Onions
  • Bourbon Baked Beans
  • Fresh or Grilled Pineapple Slices
  • Pickled Jalapeno Slices
  • Finely Diced Habanero Chiles
  • Roasted Garlic Spread


The author: Angeline Frame

Angeline is the owner/publisher of Virginia Bride Magazine and the show producer for The Greater Virginia Bridal Shows. She has a degree in Public Administration and Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University. A former model and wedding venue owner- she loves all things wedding , fashion and decorating. In her spare time she likes to write, travel and get new ideas to share with brides.
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