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How Much Pizza Should You Order For a Party?

Planning a party can be a daunting prospect, fraught with many details, both consequential and inconsequential.

Setting a guest list, securing a convenient date, sending out invitations and putting together an itinerary are a few crucial tasks that need to be handled with grace in order to successfully pull off a rockin’ party.

But perhaps the most important detail that needs handling is the food. And we all know that pizza, in all its cheesy and crowd-pleasing glory, is the perfect party meal.

So, how much pizza should you order for your shindig?

While there’s never such a thing as too much pizza in our opinion, we also acknowledge that you don’t want to be drowning in cardboard boxes once all your guests leave. And, on the other hand, inadvertently ordering too little can be a major faux pas: Having insufficient sustenance for your guests is the ultimate party fail.

Determining the perfect portion of pizza to order for your party, therefore, can be a challenging calculation. But there are a few considerations you can take into account to make the decision easier.

Here are several factors you should mull over before you jump on the phone with your local pizzeria. And remember to give your local pizzeria advance notice if your order is especially massive.

Type of Party:

Is this a lunch or dinner event? A pre-teen’s sleepover party? Did you make it known to guests that you’ll be providing a proper meal? Or are you ordering the pizza as a snack to munch on?

These type of questions are important ones to ask yourself when calculating the number of pies to purchase. If your visitors are expecting a full meal or if you branded your get-together as a “pizza party,” then make sure your generous with your pizza offerings. If they are just expecting refreshments, then you may be able to get away with a smaller order.

Type of Guest:

Like the type of party, the type of guest will directly affect the supply of pizza you’ll ultimately order.

The amount of pizza that would satisfy a party for the local high school football team would likely far supersede that of a 5-year-old’s birthday party. And a post-meet celebration for a girl’s swim team will likely require more and more pizza than an after-party event where most of the guests have already eaten dinner.

Eating habits vary widely and having a general grasp of your guests’ hunger level and appetite will help you make a better ordering decision.

Rule of Thumb

Generally, stick to the rule of ordering three standard slices per teenager or adult, and then adjust the total number of slices depending on how much supplemental food you’ll be serving on the side. If you’re planning a kid’s party, two slices per child will suffice.

And, if you plan on serving sides like breadsticks or salad, ordering 2.5 slices per adult may be more practical. Either way, there will likely be a few guests who eat more than their allotted share and some who eat less. It will all even out in the end.

In sum, when it comes to party etiquette, it’s always better to err on the side of caution. Better to have a few leftover pizzas and ensure your attendees depart happily with full stomachs, rather than famished party guests who are full of hanger. And if you have a few too many leftover pies, you can always send a couple home with your friends.

After all, pizza makes for a pretty delicious party favor.