How to Host a Brunch

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on

Whether you are throwing a brunch for two people or twenty people it is always good to be prepared. Brunch is a meal that is served from anywhere between 11 am – 3 pm. The term is a mixture of “breakfast” and “lunch”. The origins of how it began are up for debate, but it is clear in terms of how it started in the United States. In the 1930s Hollywood stars, making their way across the country on trains, would stop in Chicago and enjoy a late morning meal. Brunch was a smash hit, thanks to the celebrity nod of approval.

Brunch is very big tradition with my in-laws. Whenever there is a special occasion/holiday where brunch is served, everyone in the immediate family comes together with a dish and then we have a variety of delectable items to eat. The reason that our brunch get-togethers are so successful is that there is a lot of careful planning that goes into them.

When you plan out the elements of brunch early, you will have less work the day of and have more time for fun with company. Brunch is meant to be a relaxing lazy meal and the host of the party should be able to enjoy the brunch as well. Take a look at the tips below so you can relax on brunch day!

Create a Menu

Menu should include:

  • Easy eggs
  • Brilliant breads
  • Fresh Fruit
  • Party Pastries
  • Beautiful Beverages
  • Crazy Cocktails
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Easy Eggs

Eggs are a must at brunch, but they do not need to be complicated. Create eggs that can be made in a large batch and are easy to serve. Scrambled eggs are easy to make in large quantities. Another popular option is a make ahead breakfast quiche. Mix the ingredients the night before and bake it the morning of your brunch so it is nice and hot when your guests arrive.

Popovers Photo by Allison of Culinary Cupcake

Brilliant Breads

A basket of bread is always welcome at brunch. Toast is easy to prepare the morning of the brunch and is loved by many. If you are feeling adventurous try serving biscuits, popovers, muffins, or bagels. Always have butter and jam to serve with breads.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on

Fresh Fruit

Fresh fruit will help balance out all the heavy foods people will ingest during brunch. The fruit can be prepared the evening before and served cold or at room temperature. Berries are easy to throw in a bowl and serve. Citrus fruits can really pack a punch of flavor. Cut up some melon for vitamins and a low number of calories and fat. While bananas and apples aid digestion. Serve whichever fruit is in season near you locally for a fresh bite.

Photo by JÉSHOOTS on

Party Pastries

Pastries act as the dessert of the meal. They are light in texture, but decadent in taste. Croissants and Danishes are popular choices. Creating them completely from scratch is time consuming, but bakeries have perfected them. Buy a variety and watch them disappear at brunch. If you would like to make them at home, take a shortcut by using a pre-made crescent roll mix, and make them the night before.

Photo by Brigitte Tohm on

Beautiful Beverages

Make sure to have a bevy of beverages on hand. The usual staples of brunch beverages are coffee, water, and tea. Have sugar and cream to accompany the hot beverages. Include orange or apple juice for those who prefer it.

Photo by Sabel Blanco on

Crazy Cocktails

Many feel that brunch is more complete with a cocktail. Popular and easy cocktails to make are Mimosas and Bellinis. All it takes is some champagne and the proper fruit juice. If you want to have your guests self-serve from a pitcher, pour the juice in a pitcher and let it chill in the fridge. Right before serving, pour in the champagne. Try creating your own cocktail based on what juicing fruit is in season around you locally. It will taste fresher and give your brunch a fun twist.

Set the Table Early

Set the table the night before. You will be less pressed for time in the morning, and you can make sure you have all the utensils, plates, and serve ware you will need. Brunch is a messy meal so always have extra napkins on hand.

The Table

  • Tablecloth
  • Fresh Flowers
  • Table Setting Basics
  • Basic Table Setting
  • Semi-formal Table Setting
Tablecloth Photo by Allison of Culinary Cupcake


The tablecloth is the canvas while the food and your table settings are your works of art. For a brunch, a calm pastel tablecloth or a neutral-colored tablecloth can really make your brunch dishes look like they pop.

Gerbera Daisies Photo by Allison of Culinary Cupcake

Fresh Flowers

Fresh flowers can add a bright spot of color to the table. Putting bouquets in a vase of water the night before will give the flowers a chance to open up. Try to use flowers that are large and look fuller, that way you do not have to buy as many, overall saving you money. Gerbera daisies or hydrangeas are good choices due to their shape. Always cut flower ends at an angle to increase surface area, and allow the flowers to absorb more water.

Table Photo by Allison of Culinary Cupcake

Setting a Table for Brunch

Brunches are not very formal affairs. When setting a table for brunch it is best to go basic or semi-formal with the table setting. When it comes to using the utensils, you want to arrange the flatware according to what you will be using first to be on the outside and work your way inside.

Table Setting Basics

  • Place the plate on the center of the placemat.
  • Lay napkin on the right side of the plate.
  • Place the flatware on the table in order from the outside in.
  • The fork is to the left of the plate.
  • The knife is always to the right of the plate, and the blade faces in toward the plate.
  • The spoon is always to the right of the knife.
Basic Table Setting Photo by Allison of Culinary Cupcake

Basic Table Setting

A Basic Table Setting includes:

  • A fork to the left.
  • The plate in the center.
  • The napkin to the right of the plate.
  • On the napkin, the knife on the left and the spoon on the right.
  • The drinking glass to the upper right of the plate.
Semi-formal Table Setting Photo by Allison of Culinary Cupcake

Semi-formal Table Setting

The Semi-formal Table Setting includes:

  • A salad fork to the far left. The entrée fork, close to the plate.
  • The plate in the center.
  • The napkin to the right of the plate.
  • On the napkin, the knife on the left, the dessert spoon in the middle, and the soup spoon on the right.
  • The drinking glass to the upper right of the plate.
  • A teacup or coffee cup to the right of the drinking glass.
Photo by Valeriia Miller on

Have a successful brunch! Remember to have fun!


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