This is a question we get all of the time. When we do buffet style for events, we never know how much of what items people will eat. We need to be prepared for anything, and this sometimes leaves us with a large amount of leftover food. When we first started out, we were told most food pantries and homeless shelters would not take cooked food for liability reasons. This was so disheartening, because even after we fed our staff and our family and friends we often still had a lot of food left that just went to waste.
Then one day we figured it out. Tall Guy and I often get letters sent to our home from St. Ben’s Community Meal reaching out for monetary donations. After one event, we had a large amount of rolls left. Remembering these letters I sent an email to their main address and said I know they don’t take cooked food but would they take things like bread? I received an email shortly after, and the response was that they DID take cooked food! We were excited we could finally do something good with the food Tall Guy takes such care in preparing.
Some items don’t lend themselves to donating. There was one event where we made our Berry Salad. The quantity of blueberries Tall Guy had to buy from his supplier was much more than we were able to use. I’m pretty sure we had 8 extra pints of blueberries! With nothing to go with the blueberries, it was kind of a weird item to donate. We decided to take them home and flash freeze them for smoothies.