If My Sister-In-Law is Allergic to Gluten, Should I Plan a Gluten-Free Wedding Menu?

Wedding reception appetizers

Photo: Jessica Craig-Martin

As if picking the perfect menu for your wedding isn't hard enough, serving meals and hors d'oeuvres to wedding guests with food allergies can make it even trickier. Whether you have friends and family that are vegetarian, keep Kosher, are allergic to nuts, or cannot consume gluten, it is difficult to pick and plan multiple courses that will satisfy all tastes and needs. Should you create an entire menu based on these dietary restrictions, or is it acceptable to provide a few options? Our wedding etiquette experts are here to answer your wedding catering questions in our daily post.

My sister-in-law is allergic to gluten. Do I have to plan a wheat-free wedding reception dinner menu?

No—it's your wedding, and as long as you accommodate your guests, you should have the cuisine of your dreams! Still, you should ask your chef or caterer to create one gluten-free (or nut-free, vegetarian, and so on) appetizer and one diet-appropriate entree, says New York City caterer Olivier Cheng. (Delicious dishes like steak and sauteed kale count!) For close family and members of the wedding party, it's especially important. She's probably used to having just one or two options on a menu, so don't feel the need to overhaul your entire menu for her. Do, however, consider asking for her input on what dishes are most amenable to her allergy. And for dessert, give her a sweet surprise by putting a few no-wheat cupcakes on the dessert table next to the traditional wedding cake.

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