When deciding on a catering company in Austin (or elsewhere), there’s plenty to consider. Cost, cuisine specialty, and experience catering the kind of event you have in mind all spring to mind for most of us, but there’s another variable in the equation which can often go overlooked by those deciding on a professional caterer.

As the title of today’s blog no doubt already gave away, the variable we are alluding to is that of dietary restriction. It’s vital to consider the possible dietary restrictions and needs of your party when narrowing down the list of potential caterers because it’s not merely a matter of preference — it can often be a health and safety issue.

Dietary restrictions are often compulsory due to allergies and such, but even if they are not, our Austin catering company at Alchemy Catering is happy to tailor our menu to you and your party’s particular needs. In today’s blog, we’ll explore some common dietary restrictions and requests we receive, after which we’ll write a few words about how our business is predicated on the idea of catering our services to whatever the event at hand calls for. In brief, that means we do our best to be characterized by our flexibility, attention to detail, and commitment to serving delicious, varietal foods of all kinds!

Dietary Restrictions At Catering Events

As mentioned above, below we will offer up a few of the more common allergies and dietary requests we receive at Alchemy Catering. This should give you an idea of what you can ask your attendees to make sure everyone is full, healthy, and happy at the end of your event’s meal!

Our two cents on gathering this information from your event attendees is as follows: we recommend taking account of your attendees’ dietary preferences and restrictions, making a distinction between the two while you request that information. This is because you will need to comply with all dietary restrictions listed (within reason), whereas dietary preferences can be subject to budget, the rest of the party’s wishes, and other factors.

All that being said, we at Alchemy Catering are more than able to handle any and all requests you might throw at us — it’s one of the things that separates us from other Austin caterers, as a matter of fact!

Now, without further ado, let’s dive into the aforementioned dietary restrictions which are frequently requested of us.

Gluten Allergies

Over the last decade, awareness of conditions caused by gluten has increased considerably. Gluten, a wheat protein found in many breads, can also be an ingredient in a good number of other foods as well, such as soy sauce, beer, soups, or even salad dressings. While we are more than happy to cater to whatever preferences you have, we’d recommend determining if your attendees have a gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease, the latter of which being an autoimmune condition which can cause serious intestinal damage alongside other significant problems. This will help guide your catering company of choice in terms of deciding which menu items should be eliminated altogether.

Nut Allergies

One of the most pervasive food allergies around is the well-known nut allergy. When we receive word that attendees have a nut allergy, we will exclude all nuts from the menu, which includes refraining from using cooking oils with nuts in them, such as peanut oil. Because the severity of this allergy varies from person to person, it’s best practice to avoid a problem at all costs. But don’t worry! We are more than capable of preparing a delicious meal that is completely nut-free!

Vegan & Vegetarian

Naturally, we include vegan and vegetarian options on our catering menu. Because we pride ourselves on creating unique menus for each event we cater, there isn’t a static set of vegan or vegetarian dishes you can find. But rest easy; we have a  registered dietician on staff (Chef Kristin) who works closely with our clients about any specific needs or goals you might have. Our goal is not only to make sure everyone can eat safely, but it’s also that everyone deeply enjoys the food we’ve prepared! So let us know not just what you don’t want, but also what you think you and your attendees will love!

Halal

If someone adheres to a halal diet, they are following Islamic dietary laws which define certain foods as permissible (halal) and others that are forbidden (haram). While we won’t get into the intricacies of what is and isn’t halal in this blog post, it’s important to understand that the halal diet is in part characterized by eating types of animals which have been slaughtered and prepared in certain ways. For instance, the halal diet does not allow for pig-based products to be consumed. For our part at Alchemy Catering, we can ensure that all meat we serve will be halal certified if necessary, if your entire party has this request. Otherwise, we can accommodate certain attendees as needed. All you need to do is ask us!

Kosher

Akin to the halal diet, kosher restrictions tend to be the most difficult diet to cater to. While many catering companies might have difficulty accommodating this kind of request — due to the specific nature of the ingredients used along with the particularities of the way the food must be prepared — our Austin catering company is happy to! Again, just let us know what you need and we will create a customized kosher catering menu for your event.

Others

There are many other allergies and common dietary restrictions which we haven’t had time to mention in today’s blog (soy allergies, wheat intolerance, lactose intolerance, the paleo diet, and others), but if you don’t see your concern listed, don’t worry! All you have to do is ask us and we are happy to oblige. Our chefs are creative, passionate, thoughtful, creative, and dedicated to making your event as perfect as we can.

Choose Alchemy Catering

Whether you are planning a wedding, corporate lunch, or a good old-fashioned party, we’ve got you covered. We will tailor our catering services to meet your budget and nutritional/dietary preferences, so don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. We’d love to hear from you!