From funeral potatoes to the funeral biscuit, funerals and food have a long history together. As today’s funeral traditions continue to evolve, many families are choosing to create new food trends along with them.
Let’s take a look at the latest food trends found at funerals.
Planning a funeral is stressful enough. To help ease the burden and give families one less thing to organize, funeral homes have started partnering with local caterers to offer funeral catering services. From small sandwiches to a full formal luncheon, families have an array of options to choose from.
Some funeral homes are renovated with dining in mind. As families seek out more modern services, funeral homes now have catering kitchens, indoor and outdoor dining areas, and even bars.
Today’s families want to celebrate the memory and life of their loved one. And funeral toasts have become a popular way to do so. To accommodate families, funeral homes have started partnering with caterers and local restaurants to serve alcoholic beverages. Some funeral homes have even started applying for their own liquor licenses.
Minnesota funeral director Scott Mueller told NBC News in an interview that “People said, ‘When we go [to a funeral], we want to have a party atmosphere. More of a celebration,’ … So we decided to put a bar in.”
Some states still won’t allow food in the funeral home. But funeral directors are getting creative. They’ve begun hiring food trucks to cater before and after the ceremony. Families “tailgate” after the ceremony. It’s a touching way for them to gather, share stories, and say their final goodbyes to a loved one.
Funeral food trucks also can help personalize the funeral. For example, Harry Ewell’s funeral honored his life by offering families and friends his favorite comfort food. Mr. Ewell spent several years driving an ice cream truck. His old ice cream truck led the procession, and families were treated to ice cream at the end of the service.
Another funeral food trend is the outdoor picnic. Just like with food trucks, families can enjoy a nice outdoor catered picnic. Some choose to have it at the cemetery. Others opt for a special park or other unique location special to their loved one. It’s another way for families to gather, be social, and share stories about their loved one.
In addition to serving food and liquor, funeral homes now offer comforting cups of warm coffee. Some of these funeral homes have even built their own café. For example, this South Carolina funeral home built a lobby with a café that sells Starbucks. In an interview with CNN, funeral director Chris Robinson said he hopes the café can provide an escape and break from the stress of losing a loved one.
Organic Funeral Food
The green funeral movement is another growing trend. And to help accommodate families who want to go green, funeral homes are parting with caterers that provide locally-grown organic food.
Looking for other funeral food inspiration? Check out this article on funeral food cookbooks.
What’s your favorite comfort food? Share with us in the comments section below!