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A Guide To Your Wedding Catering & Menu In Portugal

Portuguese weddings are all about tradition, love, and food. You can uphold love and the traditions on your own. But you will need a Portugal wedding caterer to provide delicious Portuguese gastronomy on your big day.  The guests will remember two things from the wedding; the bride's dress and the food. So you shouldn't compromise on the two, especially the food in Portugal. We here at Lisbon Wedding Planner in Portugal offer our services to prepare and serve traditional and modern style Portuguese cuisine at multiple different venues around the country. 

Portuguese weddings aren't as extravagant as the ones hosted in the United States, India, and other parts of the world. Instead of focusing on the detailed accustomed affairs such as DJs, bridal parties, and thousands of dollars' worth of decoration, the wedding ceremonies in Portugal concentrate more on the love and the reunion between two people on their special day. And of course, about the food!

Portuguese Wedding Gastronomy

Portuguese wedding gastronomy is the long-standing representation of the country's traditions, which have been carried out by generations over time. The traditional food items such as the classic egg tarts, Tortas of Azeitão, and the Bacalhau still set the tables at the Portuguese events with grace. 

The traditional gastronomy is rich and diverse. Initially, most of the Portuguese gastronomy comes with the sea, which is why Bacalao, prawns, salt fish, and the grilled dish is always a part of a multi-course meal. Other than seafood, the Portuguese love their meat dishes. Smoked sausages, pork tenderloins, pork necks, beef, and chicken are paired with vegetables and salads to set the perfect meal for the night.

Each dish prepared by the Portuguese is matched with an alcoholic beverage. The entire country produces wine, which is why port wine is distributed throughout the country and enjoyed by all. And let us not forget the cheese and the desserts. All types of cheeses prepared from Alentejo, Centro de Portugal, and the Azores are served separately to be enjoyed as snacks with the delicious egg tarts and pastries. 

Wedding Menu in Portugal

Weddings in Portugal are mostly based on food. We Portuguese are heavy eaters, and we love our traditional cuisine. The two-day wedding ceremony starts with the family breakfast and ends with a heavy dinner and an open bar. Our wedding menus are mainly based on four-course meals with some additional delicacies and side items. Here is how most traditional wedding menus in Portugal are arranged.

Wedding Cocktail 

It is a tradition to welcome your guests with a cocktail. We offer a wide range of cocktails for your big day ranging from sparking water and fresh juices to alcoholic drinks such as wine, Gin, Vodka, Martini, Moscatel, and others. 

Canapé Buffet

You will be surprised by the canapé buffet that you can put together for your guests. We provide everything from seafood and BBQ to cheese and charcuterie, pastries, cured meat, and cold & hot canapés. 


The lunch or dinner mainly starts with a starter. It is a must-have in the Portuguese culture. The most popular starters at weddings are hot and cold soups, but you can also go with green salads and pastries. Who wouldn't want to enjoy a Caldo Verde, a seafood flan, or creamy, rich puff pastries? 


Instead of going with a single main course, the traditional wedding food in Portugal consists of two main courses. The first course is usually based on seafood, and the second is mainly related to meat. The bacalhau, Prawns, pork tenderloins, roasted lamb legs, blood sausages, and Morcelas de Arouca are wedding favourites. 


Portuguese weddings stick to their tradition. The desserts served at Portuguese weddings are prepared using a secret egg paste recipe passed down from generation to generation. The tradition goes way back to ancient days. 

In the past, the nuns at the monasteries used egg whites in their food but not the egg yolks.  Since they were left with a ton of egg yolk daily, which went to waste, thus they decided to use it in their desserts. Ever since then, egg paste has become the chief ingredient in their desserts, and Portuguese still enjoy those desserts up till now. 

Vegan Weddings in Portugal

Mainly seafood and meat dishes are served at weddings as part of the four-course meal in Portugal. But we have had clients that often request vegan menus for their big day. Thus we at the Lisbon Wedding Planner have started to provide vegan menus in our Portugal Wedding packages as well to cater to their needs. You can give us a call to discuss more on the vegan menus being offered. 


A Portuguese wedding is incomplete without the drinks. Portuguese love their red and white wine, along with Beer, soft drinks, Vodka, Rum, Gin, Baileys, Licor Beirão, Whisky, and tequila shots. Your guests can enjoy an open bar for three hours and more according to the wedding package that you choose. 

Portuguese Wedding Food Traditions

When it comes to choosing the menu for your Portuguese wedding, it is always best to keep the Portuguese food traditions in mind. You can always modernize the menu. But Portuguese love their staple food items, and adding them to your wedding menus makes them precious and diverse for the guests to enjoy. 

The Bacalao Wedding Tradition (codfish)

Almost all Portuguese weddings have Bacalao in their menus. The use of Bacalao in the Portuguese diet goes centuries back. Back in the 1500s, Newfoundland fishers found codfish near the cod-rich Grand Banks. It was dried and salted by the sailors for the ride back home. Over time, Bacalao became a staple part of the Portuguese diet as it was cheap, could be preserved and was rich in proteins. 

Since the Portuguese government and fishers had to go through multiple hardships to secure the codfish business in the country. Thus the tradition is still upheld, and the Portuguese treat it as a luxury food item, which is why it is still widely popular among the people. 

The Cheese and Charcuterie Table Tradition in Portugal

Apart from the starters, the main and the desserts served at weddings. It is also a tradition in Portugal to set up a Cheese and Charcuterie table for the guests to enjoy throughout the wedding. After dinner, a Portuguese wedding can stay lit at 5:00 am. Therefore, you need some side items to keep your guests full and energetic throughout the night.

The Portuguese love cheese and meat in their diets. The country produces all types of cheese, ranging from hard and sharp to creamy and mild. The cheese is paired with bacon, ham, sausages, terrines, and pork to add flavour and taste to the table. Over time it has become a tradition, and a separate table is a setup at weddings to serve different cheese as snacks for the guests to enjoy. 

Check more popular dishes in Portugal - HERE

Wedding Cake Portuguese Tradition

The cake cutting ceremony in Portuguese Weddings usually takes place at midnight, mostly after dinner at a different location in the venue. It is a wedding cake Portuguese tradition which many couples still follow on their big day.

If you are upholding tradition, then you need the delicious and delightfully almond egg cake.  This traditional rich cake comes with the traditional Portuguese egg paste filling, which is surrounded by the satisfying and deliciously ornamental almond marzipan layer. The cake is accompanied by sparkling wine, which adds to the ambience. 

Wedding catering in Portugal 

When it comes to upholding promises, we tend to provide our clients with the best possible options. Although we work with different catering suppliers to get you the best wedding menu for your big day and trust us when we say – we are picky just like you! 

We aim to deliver food and serve food at your wedding with the utmost professionalism. Our staff is highly experienced and has the required training to cater to your wedding for long hours. We are equipped to cater small to large crowds. Not only that, but we also provide cleanup services after the event to take the mess off your hand. 

We, along with our catering supplier, aim to deliver food that is fresh, tasty, and traditional, which is why we partner up with the best and the most experienced caterers in the country. Our two to catering supplier are:

Penha Longa Catering

Penha Longa Catering is one of the most recognized, trustable, and leading catering companies in Portugal. They are known for their exceptional cuisine, exquisite creativity, and sophisticated catering styles. The Penha Longa Catering Partnership with Lisbon Wedding Planner goes way back; thus has enabled us to provide you with their luxurious and exquisite courses on your big day.

Example of Wedding Venues catered by Penha Longa Catering:

Check our Article:

Casa do Marques 

Casa do Marques is a family run business that has been operating for more than 30 years in Portugal. Their team of experienced and multifaceted chefs manages to satisfy all eater with their traditional family recipes. You will find Casa do Marques Catering with Lisbon Wedding Planner almost at all the Portugal wedding venues offered by the Lisbon Wedding Planner

Example of Wedding Venues catered by Casa do Marques

Wedding food in Portugal 

Whether you want a vintage wedding at the Quinta, a beach wedding on the Lisbon Coast, a traditional church style wedding at the Monserrate Palace, or a Luxury wedding in Portugal at the Pena Palace – we are here to take care of the catering services for you. 

Wedding Venues in Portugal - Find HERE

Reach out and discuss your Portugal wedding catering with us. Plan to enjoy a stress-free, all-day-long worth of fun and enjoyment with a scrumptious and mouthwatering wide range of meal courses and drinks being served throughout the day. 

Frequent Questions and Answers about Wedding Catering in Portugal


Is your menu customized as per venue or theme?


No, the menu for the wedding food not customized as per venue. It all depends on the customer preferences. We provide the options related to the sites and preferred list they offered as a serving. Moreover, you can customize your menu and beverage requirements. We will accommodate you at our best with high-quality options.


Do you offer customized wedding planning services?

Yes! We work with the customers and love to create positive relationships. Our team makes sure to enlist customer priority about wedding services, and we believe in providing satisfactory services.


Can you manage to customize food options with caterers?

Yes, we can manage all yours customize food requirements with the caterers. But it is essential to discuss and provide a brief list of the priority food options you are looking for at your event. Make sure we will not accommodate extraordinary dietary requirements like vegan, gluten-free, etc.    


Do you offer the wedding cake in your wedding planning package?

Yes, in most packages we will provide the wedding cake or customize wedding cakes in the wedding planning package.


What to do if the guests count revised?

We took the order almost one or two months before the wedding event. So, if the guest count revised before a month, we will accommodate after that period, we will not adjust the cut down for the guest. But if your guest count increases then expected, then you have to pay the charges as per the emergence situation.


How to accumulate the charges of servers and teams available for the management?

The charges of the servers available to serve the guest at the location are dependent on the number of guests. Usually, it is estimated at the time of contract when customers provide a proposed guest count. We usually arrange servers as per that count and include the charges in the overall budget presented to the customer. There is no need to pay extra fees for the team or the servers.


Have you written down the details of the charges in the contract?

Yes, in the contract we provide the complete detail about the services and their charges whether it is related to decoration, venue arrangement, catering, servers, or any additional services. We are professional wedding planners serving customers for years and believe in transparent dealing with the services and charges.  


In the contract, you will find the separate charges related to the individual services or the per head charges that you have to pay according to the guest count, including taxes. The breakdown will help to understand the actual cost of the services you are acquiring for the event.  


Do we need to pay the extra charges for additional services?

If you acquire any additional services at the time of the event or make changes in the contract, then we will charge it accordingly. But we will not charge you for the extra hours worked by the workers or the servers because we have been working for years and believe in excellent customer relationships.


Can we make changes to the wedding packages?

Yes, you can make changes to the wedding packages offered by our company. We appreciate our customer’s priority and make sure to accommodate with the best services. Wedding planning services are all about providing the best experience to offer exclusive events that make your big day memorable for you and your guests.  


Do you have your caterer or we can hire by ourselves?

We provide wedding planning services with comprehensive services packages. When it comes to catered services, we work with the best catering services providers that offer high-quality food options. Moreover, we can arrange your priority caterer if you have any. But if you want to go with your own catering choice, then we will help in serving if you need it.


How much do we have to add for gratuity?

Gratuity is an appreciation for the servers, workers, and other helpers who help to make the event successful. According to the policy, companies share equal gratuity between the workers that is defined by the customers. You can ask us for the recommendation and tell us about your plan to share with workers as an appreciation.


It depends on the customer's own will, whether to add a percentage or choose a specific amount per head. We will let you know about the workers count that is available on your event for serving and management.


What will be the worker’s duty at the event?

Our workers will arrive at the venue one day before the event and look after all the arrangements. They will look after vendors, install setup, watch out decoration, and manage all equipment that is required for the settlement. On the day of the event, we make sure every detail should be as per the customer’s requirement.

We will make sure to attend the guest and carry out all the events smoothly. After the event, we will look after the things well. In case you require additional duties or services other than the package, then it has to be discussed before and charged accordingly.


What will be the most feasible choice in food arrangement, buffet, or table serving?


When it comes to arranging food serving for the wedding, there are multiple types usually common in the ceremonies. It includes buffet, table serving, stalls, etc. the choice is depending on the menu chosen by the customer for the wedding occasion. Table serving is a formal serving style that goes with the selective food options, but in the buffet, you can add multiple food choices. The last choice depends on the budget, preference, and guests invited to the event.


Do you offer the destination wedding planning?

We are professional wedding planning service providers and believe in making your big day memorable for you. We offer destination wedding planning services. You can ask us to book destination venues if you are planning to arrange a Portugal destination wedding. We work with the best vendors that