Help With A Party

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Master of the Pit
Original poster
OTBS Member
Jan 25, 2007
Was approached today by a friend of mine and asked if I could make some BBQ for a birthday party she is going to have for her husband in May.

I asked her what she had in mind and how many people she was planning on having….

She would like, Brisket, Ribs, pulled pork, baked beans and corn on the cob (if I do this I will use Ducthâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]s corn in the cooler trick). She would provide all the rest…rolls, sauces ,plates , ect…It would be for 20-25 people.

My quesstimate is 8 racks of lion backs one 10-12lb packer brisket and two 8-9lb butts…does this sound about right ????

Next thing is of course the pricing…. While I can figure out what my cost will be for meat, propane, wood, tin foil ect… I donâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]t know what the mark up should be for my services, went to smokey bones site and saw what their prices were and thought that would be highway robbery….. any suggestions and or advice would be greatly appreciated.
Is your friend a good friend? Will you get reimbursed for buying the meat? If both yes, then dont charge for your time. Cooking the meat will be time consuming as it is and that should be a nice enough present.
As long as you get paid for the meat and have the time to do the que, then there is no need to charge for the smoking of the meats. If me I would cook before hand and freeze and then reheat the day of the party for you don't have to pull the all night long smoke job. I cook for the local FFA stock show and do it the week before then reheat the meat and save myself a lot of time. Just my .02 worth
I'd do 2 12-14# packer briskets. I did a supper for about 25 guys this past fall, pheasant hunter friends. I smoked 3 briskets and 2 B.Butts. Maybe my butts were so-so, but they really went after the brisket. But I just sliced the flat and chopped the point for "burnt ends". Just my opinion. May even want to throw in some chicken, women tend to like chicken better.

I'd charge a plenty, and if a good friend cut it in half. Your look'n at a lot of work and stress. The stress comes from "oh ____ I hope they like it all." Its hard for me, anyway, 'cause I want to make them say "wow, how'd you do that?".

It's really hard to charge I think, but I've had people think its easy and free labor. The charge should show how hard it is.

You should make enough so that you and Bud can go out to dinner w/the money you made. A good friend would want that anyway.

Good luck and keep us posted!
When you freeze, do you have a particular way that you reheat? I've heard a few different suggestions like placing in a vacuum sealed bag and reheating in hot water...
When I did my briskets, pheasant supper & x-mas party for employees, I kept the juices/fat when I foiled and after slicing I poured the juices/fat over the slices and wrapped in foil or put in plastic container. I then reheated in a large roaster and everything went good. The pulled pork had a finishing sauce on it before I froze and I just reheated that also in a roaster. Could even do the reheat in a smoker as long as the meat has plenty of moisture.

Just don't reheat for too long, evaporated moisture will dry it out and make it.................well it will be less desirable(experience has taught me this).
When we reheat we use the pit. We cook shoulder clods for the FFA dinner and we plastic wrap then foil, cook until desired temp. Once we get to the desired temp we poke a whole in the wrap and drain the juices off the clods. We bring down to a reasonable temp before we freeze the meat. We also freeze the left over juices. The day of the meal we fire the pit up and bring the meat that was thawed out over night up to about 150 degrees or so. Slice and put the juices back onto the meat once it is been heated up on a pan. We feed about 200 ppl every year and never have any complaints, it also saves us a lot of headaches because we are not up all night cooking. Thats the way we do it and it taste really fresh.
Thanks all for your replies.... my friend doesn't expect for me to do it for just cost... the other thing to think about is the snowball effect...if I did it for her for X amount then if others ask I would nead to follow suit.

Not sure If I'll do the cook ahead thing, but it sure sounds like it would be the easier way to go.... still pondering on that one.
Is this a real friend or aquiantance? I don't charge friends for my labour onlt aquiantences or folks I don't know.

Did she say how many men and how many women?
Just my opinion here, and nothing more.
Usually if a "friend" asks you to cook/cater for a function, you're not as close a friend as the guests at the function, even if you are invited.
I say charge 75% of the going rate for a caterer in your area. Not that your food won't be as good, but if you're asking, then this is obviously your first time.
I agree with the poultry comment. Women do tend to prefer chicken.
Yeah, definetly a friendly aquiantance, not a close friend...somone I see at christmas party's and such and a couple other functions a year. I had invited her and her husband to our 4th of july bash last year and we made bbq, so it's kind of a compliment that she would ask me and not go to a smokey bones type place being that I know she's not expecting a price break from me.

Gunslinger, that's about were my head was at to price wise...I asked her if she wanted chicken and she said she was making a grilled fish dish

It will be mostly couple's, about half men and woman and probably a few kids as many ribs per person on average should I plan for???
Geez that estimate I'd have to make 20 Can't wait to see your new creation in June.


Hiya Carl, yeah I was planning on doing a triple batch of Dutch's beans and his corn on the cob for a crowd trick. BTW thanks for the link.

Man O Man does that plate of yours look mighty fine!!!! Is that whatcha been up to today.Those ribs look killer good!!!! is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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