Here are some suggestions for your reception
- Cake and punch reception: This is become increasingly popular. As most people can not afford to feed too many people, the dessert-only option is a winner. On the invitation you write something to the effect of "Dessert Reception to Follow".
- Dessert Reception: If you don't like just having a wedding cake, you can do what I did and have a dessert bar. I had a table full of all different kinds of mini-desserts. (Everything from a variety of cookies, brownies, chocolate covered strawberries, chocolate covered ________ (you name it, I had it) to cake and much more. I also had fruit for those who couldn't eat all the sugar.
- Potluck Weddings: If you are having close friends and family, or church folk, this is always a great option. Many people don't mind bringing food to share.
- Finger Foods: This is like the dessert reception except you have a variety of finger foods. If you have a lot of family in town, this is REALLY easy. Just ask each of them to help you make appetizers and finger foods. Many hands, little work!
- Dinner: I don't really feel like this is a good option or an option to save money. You can burn through money in a hot-second by doing dinners. But here are a few things to think about if you decide on this option:
- Catering: Most catered dinners are, at the cheapest, $12 a plate.
- Ask your family to help. Use easy, quick recipes that produce large quantities. Pulled pork is pretty easy to make and spaghetti is another easy one. Salads and do-it-ahead recipes are the way to go.
- Don't have servers.
- Go simple.
I hope this gives you some ideas. Inexpensive weddings and receptions can be done! :-) Good Luck!