Preparing Food for Large Groups: 3 Hidden Dangers

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When it comes to preparing food for large groups of people, there are definite tricks to the trade. When done correctly, large-scale cooking can accommodate a wide range of diners easily and effectively. When done (or attempted) without proper care and consideration, it can prove disappointing at best and dangerous at worst.

Fortunately, we've put together this list to keep you from three of the worst pitfalls.

3 Hidden Dangers in Preparing Food for Large Groups 


While it's true that buying in bulk does tend to be cheaper, there are always exceptions. Occasionally, fluctuations in supply and demand force temporary spikes in prices on specific items, and if you're working from a tight budget, price hikes can really do a number on your plans.  

To avoid this scenario, consider buying the non-perishable elements of your meals well in advance; that way you can take advantage of sales and avoid having to buy large amounts of high-priced ingredients. 


Recipes typically come with estimated times for preparation and cooking. When quantities increase due to recipes being doubled, tripled, quadrupled, and beyond, those times also increase. As you're making your plans, be sure to factor in these altered times, as well as adjusting your schedule to allow for rest, bathroom breaks, and the occasional setback. 

Hold Times

When hosting meals on a grand scale, people will often stagger their cook times. This helps them avoid congestion in the kitchen during the prep phase and reduce the stress of everything coming out of the oven at once. 

This should only be attempted after careful consideration, however. According to the FDA, hot foods should be kept at an internal temperature of 140 °F or warmer and should not be kept in holding cabinets indefinitely. In order to practice the safe holding of hot food, therefore, you must double-check your times to ensure that no foods will be held over their limits. 

We Can Help

Here at Thermodyne Foodservice Products, Inc., we have spent the last thirty years supplying quality food warmers for commercial, industrial, and institutional kitchens. To hear more about our premium product lines, or to chat about anything else, please feel free to contact us at any time.

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