Main Dish | April 24, 2018

How to Plan Girl’s Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Have you been assigned the task to cook for Girl’s Camp, Scout Camp, Youth Conference, or another large gathering?  This post will explain how to plan Girl’s Camp food and cook for a crowd; for a few…or a few hundred!

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Teriyaki Pasta Salad is perfect for Girl’s Camp!

 

 

 

Not Our First Rodeo

When I say OUR,  I want to make it clear, I never do this alone! For years, when I lived in Bountiful, I worked many times with two trusted kitchen savvy friends, Jo and Mel. We became quite a team during our years in the kitchen. I’ll talk more about working with a team in the kitchen under the HELP section. I’ve worked on committees, planned, and been the chairperson for Girl’s Camps (ward and stake),  prepared food for Grant to take to Scout Camp, been the Trek cook and Youth Conference cook. We have prepared and cooked food in everything from dutch ovens to fully equipped commercial kitchens, standing griddles and even a few open fires. All of the information on this page has been gathered through trial and error.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Dutch Oven Molasses Baked Beans

The situations and amounts of people have varied over the years. I’ve cooked for 350 with one small kitchen in the mountains, food stored in too many coolers to remember, including an “ice house” one time, which was really just a shed with shelves for ice blocks and room for coolers. In Bountiful, I lived in the same neighborhood for nearly 20 years and worked with my friends on many of the events I named above. We have compiled notes and helped each other, even after I moved down the street to a new neighborhood.  Once you get the hang of preparing food for a crowd, and get over the intimidation factor, you’ll realize you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time, and it is a little easier every time you take on the job of cooking for the masses.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Kash’s Black Cherry Chocolate Dutch Oven Cobbler

How to use this guide

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

I’ve posted by category for easy reference. Hopefully each of the sections will help break down the information. I’ve also included several photos which will link to the corresponding recipe. Just hover over the photo to link to the recipes. Look for *tips* throughout the post, where I’ve inserted little bits of information I’ve learned through the years. The *tips* are relevant to the section they are posted in. At the end of the post you’ll find a compiled list of general helpful bits of information, grouped by category. I’ve also included links to a sample Girl’s Camp menu, a detailed menu, including duties and a schedule for preparing and serving, and a cooking equipment list.

How to Plan Girl’s Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd in 3 Easy Steps: Budget, Help, Organize

After years of answering questions about how to best plan for food for large gatherings, I’ve broken it down into 3 steps that are essential for successful planning.

I’ll also go through a few other important bits of information, such as:

-food/recipe suggestions

-a sample menu

-how to work with a budget

-how to work with food allergies/special dietary needs

-tips that will save you when cooking for a crowd

-the best way to set up a buffet table

-equipment lists

-food quantities for large groups.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
PLANNING is EVERYTHING

BUDGET (and the cost of food when planning meals)

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Determining your budget and sticking to it will be one of the most important factors in successfully planning and cooking for a crowd. Usually a budget has been set, or you are asked to come up with a budget and present it for approval. I hesitate to give a “reasonable” dollar amount because food costs differ according to the area of the country or world where you live. These costs are approximate and will vary from year to year, and depending on location. For planning purposes, I’ve given a sample of how to plan a simple breakfast.

Breakfast is the least expensive meal, with lunch next, and dinner usually being the most costly meal. As a sample, let’s say we are feeding 40 people in 2018 (remember these are approximate costs). These estimates are from Costco:
-20-pack Chobani yogurt:  $16.50.  $33 for 40 yogurt
-Double pack of granola, about 50 servings: $12-15 or use homemade granola
-Fruit (fresh strawberries and bananas) for 40: $40. Usually plan on about 75 cents-$1 per person for fresh fruit at breakfast (strawberries, melon [not watermelon], bananas, blueberries)
-Milk–2 gallons (16 cups per gallon): $6. Serve in water jug
Grand total for a breakfast of yogurt, granola, fresh fruit, and milk: approximately $94. Divided by 40 = approximately $2.35 per person. This does not include any paper products, which I will discuss later in the post.
I’ve given this example to illustrate two things:
1. Breakfast can be very inexpensive. Remember if you are feeding girls, many don’t eat breakfast at home. They will most likely not develop a huge appetite for breakfast when they are away from home, so less is more when planning for breakfast. If the day is filled with physical activity and you want to start out with a big meal, you may also consider supplementing with a mid-morning snack and serve a light breakfast.
2. To show how I break down expenses and map out a budget. With paper costs in 2018, I estimate a simple breakfast of yogurt, fresh fruit, granola for topping, yogurt (not eaten as cereal), and milk will cost about $2.75 per person, including paper products.
Why only 2 gallons of milk? With each gallon yielding 16 cups, that’s 32 cups of milk. Experience shows not every person will drink a cup of milk. Unless it’s chocolate milk 🙂  Which brings me to a *tip* Don’t serve OJ with a yogurt, fruit and granola breakfast, or with a pancake and fruit breakfast. Too many sweet items. Stick with water or milk. Also, if you are serving a pancake breakfast, most will choose milk over O.J.  Chocolate milk seems to override this rule. No matter the menu, most kids will drink chocolate milk, even when served a sweet meal!

If you are serving a cooked breakfast, plan on another $1-2 per person if  you are not including breakfast meat such as bacon, ham or sausage. Meat adds a significant cost to meals. If you are on a tight budget, a better menu for the budget conscious (for hot breakfast) is pancakes and scrambled eggs, syrup, and fruit (if affordable). If you are concerned about running out of drinks, you can pre-pour into cups and allow the girls to refill. Most of the time, they won’t get up to refill drinks. One other item to consider when planning breakfast: often the girls will be pressed for time. They will sleep in until the last possible moment, and rush in and out of breakfast. So not a lot of time spent lingering and re-filling plates.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Homemade pancake recipes. Click on photo for link to recipes!
How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

HELP

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

HOW TO CHOOSE HELP – One of the most important aspects of a successful experience when cooking for a large group is to have a crew of assistants who are hard working, willing to accept responsibility, easy to get along with, and who will follow instructions. It helps to have people who have cooked and know their way around a kitchen, but not completely necessary! I cannot stress enough, if you are in charge of food, you should not be the camp director, or the YW president. Your main responsibility at camp should be Food Chairperson.

HOW MUCH HELP DO WE NEED?  For each one hundred people, I suggest 2-3 adults (besides yourself) to work in the kitchen full time. This means people who are not assigned other duties such as camp director, advisors, nurse, etc. Meet with your committee early and decide how responsibilities will be divided after you get to know committee members. Ask and observe their strengths. Make sure everyone who comes to help has the ability to be on their feet for several hours a day. The most successful camps are where everyone is on the same page as far as working together, enjoying service, being willing to put in long hours, and carrying out their assigned duties. Team players are the type of women you’re looking for. A few men who are wiling to pitch in and help are always welcome in the kitchen as well!
*tip* Don’t sign women up to help in the kitchen if they are looking for a few days aways from home. This is anything but a vacation! There are only a few minutes of down time each day. Fortunately, I’ve been blessed to serve with women who are dedicated to serving like there’s no tomorrow. But I’ve heard stories otherwise! Choose your help carefully 🙂

Three of my favorites, Brenda, Eileen and Melinda. We still laugh about that summer at camp when we were camp directors, music leader and food chair…
How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

USE THE YW LEADERS AND GIRLS – Most of the time at Girl’s Camp, the leaders of the girls and the girls themselves will be involved in the process of preparing the food. You will usually have the assistance of 4+ people in additional to your kitchen crew. Use the help you are given! Give the girls and leaders assignments. It is best to map out what help you will need with each meal before heading off to camp. Meet with the YW President and Camp director and agree on time in the kitchen, including set up, serving, and clean up. This will alleviate stress at camp. Working with the young women is an excellent opportunity to teach the girls a little about food, cooking, and the process involved in creating a meal!

PLAN

The following are key points to take into consideration when planning.

GET ORGANIZED – Organize meetings with your committee as early as possible. Determine the budget and your menu as early as possible, but be willing to make changes as you may need. Don’t set anything in stone too early, and be willing to be flexible. Make sure the menu plan is feasible for your location. If you don’t have ovens available, don’t plan Baked Ziti for 300. If an outside fire pit is not available, don’t plan to eat foil dinners!

VISIT FACILITY- One of the most important tips for planning and executing a successful experience in the kitchen is to visit the kitchen IN PERSON before you get too far into the planning stages. You’ll be able to see what equipment is in the kitchen, what supplies are available, and look at the space. I suggest taking photos to place in your file and share with others who will work in the kitchen. A physical visit to the kitchen will eliminate many headaches down the road.

LIST KEEPER- I’m all about lists! Keeping a detailed list of menus, tasks, timelines for getting meals served efficiently and equipment checklists are a few of the documents I keep in a folder or binder when planning. We compiled the lists mentioned in one printable PDF,  complete with space for your own notes. You can create your own specific checklists using the outlines provided below.

Printable Sample Menus, Duty List, Schedule for prep and Serving and Cooking Equipment List:

Download Now

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

MEAL PLANNING:

FRESH- When planning a Girl’s Camp menu, always consider a few things. First, I like to have one fresh item for each meal. This can be a salad, cut fruit, or fresh veggies with dip. I try to keep it simple and use in-season fruits and veggies to avoid high costs. Don’t try to introduce food that the majority will not be willing to try, such as fish, desserts with nuts (for allergy reasons as well), or anything too spicy. For salads, you can always place nuts or seeds on the side for sprinkling on!

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Grilled Chicken and Kale Salad

ONE WOW MENU ITEM – By this I mean one really good homemade item. For example, on the Baked Ziti dinner night, we make homemade Baked Ziti (at home, before going to camp), add store bought breadsticks brushed with garlic butter, Caesar salad (chopped romaine, grated parmesan by the bag, bagged croutons, bottle dressing), veggie sticks, and dessert made by ward members. Only one of the items is homemade, but totally worth the effort, and makes the meal memorable. 

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Overnight Breakfast Berry Bake with Caramel Syrup

*tip* Which brings me to this thought: you can buy everything from Costco. But it will taste like you bought everything from Costco. Yes, it’s easier to heat up frozen food, but food is such a rich part of your experience, why not go the extra mile and prepare something homemade that will be a part of the memory of Girl’s Camp? I promise if the food is good, the girls will remember it long after they pack up their sleeping bags! I have girls come to me, who are now married with their own families, and who remember food they ate at camp or trek or youth conference. The food was a part of their positive experience at camp, and guess what? They relate experiences to me about cooking for their own little families now, years later!

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Spinach Bowtie Pasta Salad Recipe for 100
How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd


ALLERGIES/SPECIAL DIETS I take food allergies and also vegetarian diets into account, in general. At each meal, we have a gluten free and a meatless item (which is easier than you think!) I’ll illustrate this in the Sample Menu link. For extreme diet/allergy it is best to have one person on the committee be in charge of those with food allergies and work with the nurse and parents to insure the girls with dietary needs are safe.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
Complete Cafe Rio copycat recipes linked on this photo

WEATHER – No matter the amount of planning or preparation, the weather may not cooperate with your menu! If you plan for popsicles in July, and a cold front moves in and the girls are freezing, they most likely won’t want a frozen dessert. Try to plan accordingly. If you are in the mountains, hot chocolate is almost always welcome on a cool morning. During the hot summer months, make sure to have plenty of cold water in coolers with spouts on hand. Place a couple of ice blocks in per day and check water level frequently. Watermelon is also low cost, and serves as a fresh item on hot summer days.

Hawaiian Haystacks for Girls Camp
Hawaiian Haystacks!
How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd
The Best Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies, regular or gluten free!

Random helpful Hints:

FOOD

Shopping/Menu/Food Prep:

Shopping- Sort by non-perishable and perishable items. Assign one or two people to pick up perishable items on the way to camp so they don’t have to load cars and unload at home and then refrigerate. Non perishable items may be purchased ahead and stored at one home.

Delivery- Use a delivery service if possible. Most large orders from US Foods are available for delivery to many camp locations at no additional cost.

Costco- Items can be delivered for a fee. In the SLC area, the Costco on 300 West downtown is best for largest variety, and designed for catering needs. Also, opens at 7:00 am!

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Sam’s Club- We found Sam’s club to have the best prices on paper goods, significantly less than other big box stores.

Food/Cooking tips:

-Cooler Corn is the best, but one half ear is plenty per person.

-Meat: less is more. You’ll need less than you think.

-Prep as much as you can before you leave. You’ll be grateful once you get to camp, especially if your facilities are not professional grade.

-Always grill whatever buns you are using. Grilled buns always taste better.

-The rolls at Walmart are cheap, and perfect for French dips and lots of other little sandwiches.

-Bring a lot of aluminum disposable steam table pans. They are perfect for serving, can be washed out, and thrown away at the end of camp. These can now be purchased at Costco (300 West if in SLC) and Sam’s club in bulk.

-Remember, it takes way longer for items to cook in ovens when the ovens are full (when an oven is full of lasagna pans it will take an additional 30-45 minutes to cook).

-Take items such as lasagna, enchiladas, casseroles out of the fridge at least an hour before placing in oven to allow to come closer to room temp before baking.

-Sometimes it is better to pay for individual bags of chips than large bulk bags.

-Almost any cake recipe can be made in a sheet pan. Make ahead, freeze, then thaw at camp and frost to serve.

-Rice Krispies treats are always a hit and GLUTEN FREE.

-Try to think outside the Baked Potato Bar box! There are countless recipes found online and in cookbooks that will work for large gatherings.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Storage/Organization of food:

-A refrigerated truck is very helpful if a large commercial refrigerator/freezer is not available. Can be rented by the day.

-Organize food in pantry. Have two women organizing as items are delivered or unloaded; one person in charge of walk in fridge, one for pantry.

-Organize by meals instead of items. Keep all items for a particular meal in one place for easy prep.

– Use cardboard boxes for keeping things cool and hot. Take extra boxes or coolers to keep items hot or cold. Baked potatoes, for instance, will keep hot in a cardboard box–with layers of newspaper lining the potatoes–for hours.

-Have committee members freeze washed out milk cartons or 2-liter soda bottles for a couple of weeks prior to camp. Then use the frozen containers to serve as ice jugs to keep food cold in coolers. Then just toss and recycle when the ice is thawed!

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Staying organized:

-Post the menu, along with a duty chart for each meal somewhere prominent in kitchen. This eliminates the need for the committee to wonder or ask WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP?? They can look at the task list and pick an assignment.

-Assign one person to be in charge of each meal. They will give assignments and make sure the meal is prepared and ready to go in time. This helps everyone to know who is in charge of the meal and where to go with questions about the specific meal.

-Keep a list outside of the refrigerator and freezer of all items inside. Cross off as the items are used.

-Assign one person to document after each meal what amounts were used, what was popular, what was not. We record the amounts right next to the menu posted in the kitchen, and also keep a separate notebook in the kitchen for reference.

Printable lists to help you get organized:

Download Now

also, printable blank sheets for you to fill in with your personalized menu and assignments:

Download Now

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Ideas for saving $$

-Always have the girls eat before leaving home and pack a sack lunch. Dinner can also be from home if you’re on a really tight budget. Have each person bring their own foil dinner. It can be leftovers from dinner at home; anything that can be placed in a foil square and sealed and heated up in a campfire.

-Ask someone other than the girls to help make treats for desserts, or provide ingredients to make treats. In our neighborhood, it is common to ask for donations of ingredients such as hot cocoa mix, lemonade mix, and other items that add to the cost of food for camp, but are easy for members of the congregation to pick up while they are at Costco or the grocery store. The items may be dropped at the camp director’s or food chairperson’s home a couple of days prior to camp.

-Ask the bishop and his wife to bring up dessert on the night they visit camp. This can be anything of their choice, but try to coordinate to make sure they are not duplicating something already on the menu.

-If drinks are not in the budget, ask the girls bring their own Crystal Light packets to supplement plain drinking water.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Buffet and getting people thru the line as quickly as possible:

-For every 100  people, set up 1-2 long tables for food and have the girls go down each side of the table. This will allow you to serve several hundred people in about 15 minutes total. For 300 girls, we set up 3 long tables with access to two sides on each table.

—Always set up whatever is the least expensive food item first, with the most costly item last. Rolls, salad, side dishes first, meat last. Always have someone serve the meat at the end of table to prevent waste and provide quantity control. Utensils and napkins should be at the end of the buffet table, plates at the beginning.

-A separate drink table is also highly recommended. The easiest and least expensive drink is, of course, water. A large ice block will keep water cool for several servings and at least a day if stored in the shade. Lemonade is easy to mix in large containers as well.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd


Supplies (see printable list below):

-Ask members of your ward/stake to look through their closets and gather odds and ends: napkins, paper plates, cups, utensils. How many times have you looked in the YW or RS closet and found a dozen or more packages of colored napkins or plates that are 3/4 used? All of these items are perfect for Girl’s Camp. Again, ask for the items to be dropped off to the food chairperson’s home, in a box left on the front porch.

-Label your items from home, and if you borrow items from the church, neighbors, or Scout trailer, make sure they are labeled. It is natural to think you won’t forget where items belong, but at the end of the week, it all becomes a blur!

-Visit the facility ahead of time to see exactly what supplies are available. Don’t assume.

How to Plan Girl's Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

Staying sane/having fun/keeping comfy 

-If it’s in the budget, buy matching aprons or wear color coordinated t-shirts each day.

-Bring own chairs to set up so workers can have back rest and be able to put up feet for a few minutes between meals.

-Earplugs 🙂

-Speaker for music

-Good chocolate and some cold Diet Cokes with fresh limes.

I’ll update this list as I remember tips. I’d love to hear about your experiences/best tips in the comments and have you share this post on Pinterest or Facebook or Instagram with anyone who might benefit from this information. Thanks so much for reading ABK, and have a great time at CAMP!

xo

Si

45 thoughts on “How to Plan Girl’s Camp Food and Cook for a Crowd

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  1. You are a DREAM for posting this! I’m in charge of the food for STAKE girlscamp! 200+ people! Gulp. I have never done this before and so I am freaking out! Plus they gave me extra money so they can have “healthy meals”! Ha ha, kill me now. I am practically drinking in this post! Thank you so much for doing this. If you have anything else please let me know when I will keep checking back on this post in the weeks to come! Thank you thank you thank you thank you!

    1. Thanks Meri!
      It seems intimidating when you start out, but remember not to try to eat the elephant all in one bite! Follow this guide and you will be able to tackle this huge job. Make sure to get some good help as well. An assistant food director will be so helpful. And the healthy meals are easy and can test good as well! Take a look at this sample menu. Many of the items are fresh salads, and the meals are balanced, with some great desserts thrown in as well! Leave comments and questions here I will try to respond as quickly as possible over the next few months as people plan. And yes, check back! new PDF coming in the next couple of days for printing off. Good luck and thanks for reading ABK!
      xo
      Si

  2. You are amazing! I love that you have taken your talent and blessed others life with it!! What a great example you are to me! I make something from your website multiple times per week!

    1. Thanks Lisa! I appreciate your comment. Readers like you make sharing here a great experience for all!
      Have a great day,
      xo
      Si

  3. This is an awesome helpful guide. I have done this a number of times and learned some new valuable information.

    1. Thanks Diana! Come back and leave your best tips on this comment thread. I’d love to have you share!
      xo
      Si

  4. Si, we so need to be in the same ward or stake! I served in our stake YW presidency for several years so have helped a lot of really fabulous food specialists and everything you’ve said here is right on! (especially the part about bringing cold diet coke with fresh limes! Our high councilor always had a cold can of DC for me on the last day of camp and nothing has ever tasted better!) I just shared your blog with our camp food specialist because the two of you are totally on the same page when it comes to feeding big groups of youth and I think she’d love your recipes! xoxo

    1. Jeanelle,
      Thanks so much. I agree one of the best tips is a cold drink at camp! Glad this post resonates with you and hope it helps our your new camp specialist! Thanks for reading ABK,
      xo
      Si

    1. Thanks April! Good luck and check back for updates to the post! And make sure to come back and leave a comment after camp with your best tips!
      xo
      Si

  5. I can’t imagine how long it must have taken you to write this post. It’s awesome and I certainly wish we would’ve had it years ago! It will definitely help alleviate the dreaded large group cooking stress. Some of my favorite and fun memories are cooking with you (and Mel, of course). Sure do love you and your! XOXO

    1. Jo,
      The feeling is mutual! Good times at camp with the MP Stake. Thanks for all of your help with this post! You, Mel and Nick have made so many meals for so many girls over the years. Thanks for all of the good times in the kitchen my friend!
      xo

    1. Melissa, You will love it! Hope this post helps you out as you prepare. Check back for updates. We have a printable PDF that should be up in the next couple fo days!
      xo
      Si

  6. This is a huge help to so many people. Miss our days of cooking for the masses together. You have made every large event I have done seem like a piece of cake!

    1. awww Thank Mel! Those were great days. So much work, but so much fun. Thanks for contributing to this post in so many ways!
      xo

  7. Hi, this all looks so amazing! I’m here in Virginia and excited to try out all your tips and recipes as a first-time stake girls camp food gal. I’ve got a good team with me…no one expecting a vacation, Do you have a blank menu and duties pdf you could post?

    1. Shellie,
      The team is so important! Glad you have a great crew lined up. Come back after it’s all over and let us know how camp turned out, and if you have any tips to add to this post.
      Sure, I could get that added to the list on my PDF. Stay tuned. Are you following along on Instagram? Ill post an update there!
      thanks for reading ABK,
      xo
      Si

      1. Thanks for the instagram update! I just made Erin’s Cali Granola from your blog for yogurt parfaits (soooo yummy I couldn’t keep my hands out of it!). And I have chicken marinating to make Grilled Chicken Kale Salad with Apricot Vinigrette for my food committee to try at tomorrow’s meeting. I have another question about US Foods. What kind of account do you have? Do you get everything from them or are some things okay to get from Costco or walmart? Can you tell me everything I need to know about that source?

  8. Hi, this post has been invaluable! Thank you so much. I have a question. I am the food committee chairperson at Heber Valley later this month and anticipate serving 300 people per meal. (2 meals a day and each ward will do one). We have 9 women full time on our committee. How many YW do you recommend helping out at each meal? Also, what duties do you usually assign YW? I am Jutta’s daughter-in-law- HI!

    1. Hi Julia!
      Love Jutta!
      I’m glad this post has been helpful! Usually 6 YW helping with each meal will be helpful. Sometimes if you get too many cooks in the kitchen it is more difficult to manage. I usually ask for help in setting up all of the paper goods, filling the drink containers, pouring drinks and setting on a drink table, help with any food prep beforehand such as washing and cutting up veggies, cutting any cakes or other items that may need to be cut up, helping with clean up, sweeping and wiping down tables. If they come early enough and everything is set up, I have them eat first so they can help with clean up right after all of the girls eat. Hope this is helpful! Also, I’m posting an attachment today of blank sheets for tasks you can fill in yourselves. Come back and let us know your tips after you go to camp 🙂
      xo
      Si

  9. There is not another guide out there even close to this! Our ward used all these downloads last summer and it was the most organized food/kitchen crew ever! Annnnd the girls loooooved all the meals! Especially the baked ziti! I know this guide came with years of trial and error but it is so appreciated by us newbies!! A total life saver when planning a huge event! Thanks Si!!!💙

    1. Thanks for your comment, Dawn! I’m so glad you’ve found it helpful, it’s definitely been helpful for me to refer back to this when planning any type of large gathering!
      Si

  10. Thanks so much for this post. My daughter kept telling me to check this out. I’ve helped with feeding boys at Aaronic Priesthood camp, but this year I’m over Stake Girls Camp food. Feeding 300. This will help things run smoothly and taste delicious too!! Thanks again!

    1. Cydney,
      Im glad your daughter pointed you our way! Good luck with Stake camp. If you have done the guys this will be a breeze. Come back and let us know if you have any questions and how it turned out for you. We would love to hear any feedback and how camp turned out!
      Best of luck,
      xo
      Si

  11. How do you order from US Foods? Do you have to know a restaurant owner, or can you pick up from warehouse?

    1. Hi Gina,
      If you are planning for a stake or ward, check with US Foods to see if they have your Stake listed. Many church organizations have accounts with US Foods. I have also used Sysco, but prefer US Foods.
      Thanks!
      Si

  12. I’ve done a system similar to this a couple of times, but for some reason this time around I am running into mental blocks and second guessing my meal choices. It will all be good. This is a great resource for people, and is helping spur my brain, thank you.

    I did want to mention that Rice Krispy treats are not gluten free, unless you make them with gluten free rice cereal. Regular Kelloggs Rice Krispy cereal is not gluten free. (more than just Wheat has gluten, and it’s hidden in things like Malt and Modified Food Starch.) They do make a gluten free version however, as does Malt-O-Meal. I wouldn’t want an innocent mistake by a leader to harm anyone. I’ve got a gluten free girl to feed this year (one out of 80 in our ward isn’t bad), but as my husband has celiac I’ve got it covered.

    Thanks again!

    1. Hi Nikki, thanks for sharing the info about the Rice Krispy treats. I’m sure a lot of other viewers will find it helpful, especially if there are any gluten allergies. I’m glad you found the post helpful, it can be hard sometimes to come up with a menu that everyone will enjoy. Thanks for reading ABK!
      xo
      Si

    1. Hi Holly, I don’t currently have a printable version of this recipe. But I believe you can print the page or copy it into a Word document and print it. Thanks for asking!
      xo
      Si

  13. Thank you for sharing this helpful post! I noticed in one of the pictures that you had binders labeled as “Trek.” My ward is taking 50 people to Martin’s Cove in July and I am in charge of the food. I have a pretty good start on the menu, but I would be interested in any menu ideas, tips, tricks, etc. that you might be willing to share. Thanks!

    1. Hi Ella,
      Sorry I missed your question earlier! Many of the same tips I’ve listed here are applicable. For trek, you usually don’t have access to a kitchen, and most of the cooking is best done ahead of time. We have assigned trek families a dinner such as beef stew, which can be made ahead of time at home, frozen and then heated up in a dutch oven at camp. This dinner is served with a roll and dessert for a complete meal. Chili also works well with toppings and tortilla chips or corn chips. Spaghetti sauce can be made ahead and pasta cooked and stored in ziplock bags…On trek I cannot stress enough to keep it simple! Good luck on trek hope this post helps!
      xo
      Si

  14. Hi!! Our Girls Camp will not have access to a kitchen but will only have grills and 12″ dutch ovens. This will be for about 125 people. On top of that…the Stake has only given 2 adults for food committee. We will have access to several girls for help at each meal. Any thoughts on how to organize this and the need of more bodies??
    Thank you!!!

    1. Kim,
      Carefully read this post. Hopefully it will be helpful to you! Print out the lists for easier organizing. You can make most dinners ahead of time at home. Make ahead is your best bet. I suggest items such as: Spaghetti sauce, chili, tacos, tostadas… anything that can be made ahead, With the spaghetti sauce, make ahead, place in ziplock bags and freeze. The frozen sauce is easy to transport, thaw and heat up. Then just add a salad and purchased french bread (spread with butter and grilled) . The girls can be very helpful if you are organized and give them tasks they can complete! They can be involved in everything from preparation, set up serving and clean up. The key is to make everything you possibly can at home! Hope this helps!
      xo
      Si

  15. Hi, I have a couple of questions.
    How did you sweeten frozen berries for your french toast recipe?
    Im cooking for 50 and im not sure on my portortions for forzen to fresh strawberries. Could you give me some guidance?
    Also i love your idea of using scrambled eggs with cheese instead of a meat for breakast. How many eggs would i use if im also serving pancakes for 50?
    And how are you cooking the scrabled eggs? Are you putting scrambled eggs in zip lock bags and boiling?

  16. I made your biscuits and gravy for trek and it was a huge success!! I made the sausage gravy in advance and just had to warm it up right before serving and purchased the biscuits pre-remade and already cooked at a restaurant supply —based on your Great suggestion :). I’m not normally a biscuits and gravy fan but your recipe is amazing!

  17. I was reading this post and saw you mention Kash’s recipe and it peaked my interest…then I kept reading and there she was in your picture!! The best YW leader I’ve ever had! Kash Castleberry!! Love her! She was my leader in the Eaglewood ward when I was in YW 2003-2007. Your information is so helpful! Thank you for posting!

    1. Kari,

      How fun is that! Love Kash, she is a very special woman. Thanks for your thoughtful comment <3
      xo
      Si