2024 Catering Trends That’ll Transform Your NYC Event

As we look into what 2024 holds for events, it’s clear that the New York City catering & events scene is about to get even more exciting. From plant-based foods, to fusion flavors, to interactive food stations, caterers in New York are going to take you on a delicious adventure. We’re going to dive into what’s in store for events in the Big Apple.

1-Interactive Food Stations

When it comes to food, it’s not just about what you eat, but how you eat it. In 2024 we’ll see a rise in interactive dining experiences at catered events that blur the lines between food and art. Instead of just serving plated meals, New York City caterers will offer live cooking stations, pop-up bars, and sensory booths that let guests customize their own food and drinks.

A survey by Eventbrite found that 75% of Millennials prioritize experiences over things and are willing to pay more for unique and memorable events. By incorporating interactive elements into your event, you can create a sense of excitement and participation for your guests.

2-Plant Based Foods

If you’re planning an event it’s very likely that some of your attendees will have dietary preferences and/or restrictions such as vegan, gluten-free, and dairy free.  Not to worry, because plant-based foods will rise to the challenge in 2024. A study by Upfield Professional 85% of consumers are interested in trying plant based foods.

At Sweet Basil we’ve had a significant increase in requests for vegan food over the past couple of years. I’m not talking about packaged plant based foods (like the Impossible Burger) that hit the market hard.  People are looking for delicious, freshly made vegan canapes and dishes. We’ve leaned into this demand and made it a goal to create plant-based foods that appeal to both vegans and meat-eaters, like our  butternut squash tostadas, miso & sesame  roasted portobello skewers & mini cauliflower tacos (pictured above).

3-Fusion Catering Menus

Fusion catering, the blending of different culinary traditions and techniques, will also gain popularity in 2024. New Yorkers are always looking for new and exciting food experiences. Expect caterers to push the boundaries with bold and creative flavor combinations. Imagine trying a Korean bulgogi taco, a Mediterranean-style pizza, and a Thai-inspired cocktail all at one event. This trend not only offers a variety of flavors but also celebrates diversity and inclusivity through food. It’s a great way to bring people together and create a multicultural experience for your guests.

4-Eco-friendly Event Equipment

No one wants to leave a party feeling guilty about the waste they’ve generated. That’s why sustainability will be a major concern for caterers and hosts alike in 2024. According to a report by the World Wildlife Fund, an estimated 1.3 billion tons of food are wasted globally each year, causing significant environmental damage and economic loss.

To avoid contributing to this problem, New York catering companies are adopting various green initiatives, such as sourcing locally grown and organic ingredients, composting food scraps, and using biodegradable packaging. Bamboo disposable cocktail plates & cutlery have become a popular option at events in place of plastic or china.  By choosing a caterer that values sustainability, you can show your guests that you care about the planet as well their appetites.

5-Desserts That Go Beyond Cake

Let’s be honest, when it comes to events, dessert is often overlooked.  In 2024, NYC caterers will take this to a whole new level with innovative and Instagram-worthy sweets. From donut walls and cotton candy clouds to nitrogen ice cream stations and edible flower lollipops, these desserts are both delicious and a visual feast. Social media has made food presentation increasingly important, and catering companies are taking note by creating stunning desserts that are both delicious and photogenic.

6-The Rise of Social Media & Catered Events

In today’s digital age, social media plays a significant role in how we experience events. Some New York caterers are leveraging this trend by creating Instagrammable moments and incorporating social media elements into their services. In 2024, expect to see more catered events with unique hashtags and live-streaming of food preparation. These digital touches not only add an interactive element but also increase the reach and exposure of your event.  So make sure you choose a caterer who understands the importance of incorporating these digital elements into your event for maximum impact.

In conclusion, 2024 will be an exciting year for catering. With a focus on sustainability, interactive food experiences, fusion menus, and innovative desserts, New York City caterers are finding new ways to elevate the event experience for their clients.


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Sweet Basil Catering