How to Make Vegetable Trays for Large Crowds

Always use fresh vegetables in your trays.
Always use fresh vegetables in your trays. (Image: vegetable tray image by nutech21 from

A vegetable tray is a plate of appetizers common at social gatherings, providing a variety of healthy snacks and dips to the guests. The design of a vegetable tray typically places several types of vegetables around a bowl of dressing or sauce in the center. Your guests can select different types of vegetables to dip and snack on throughout the length of the gathering. Making vegetable trays to suit large crowds requires a bit of planning, ensuring you satisfy everyone’s tastes.

Things You'll Need

  • Various dressings
  • Toothpicks
  • Small bowls
  • Small trashcans
  • Assorted vegetables

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Make several small trays that you can set throughout the room in which the crowd will be congregating. Several small trays, rather than one large tray, keep people from cluttering around one area to get access to the snacks.

Use two to three different types of dressing. To ensure you suit most of your guest’s tastes, you should select different dressings for them to dip the vegetables into. Do not put multiple dressings on one tray, however. Instead, make sure you have at least four vegetable trays for each type of dressing you provide.

Place a bowl of toothpicks beside each vegetable tray. Toothpicks will prevent guests from picking the vegetables up with their hands, and getting their fingers in the dressing. Place several small trashcans throughout the main room for your guests to throw away their used toothpicks.

Provide a wide variety of vegetables on each tray. Providing several selections to your guests will ensure that you have something everyone enjoys. For example, ensure celery, baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, green peppers and cucumbers are on each tray throughout the room.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure you do not place vegetable trays close to the edge of a table. Guests might accidentally knock them to the floor while attempting to skewer a vegetable with the toothpick.


  • "Cooking For Crowds For Dummies"; Dawn Simmons and Curt Simmons; 2005
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