It’s easy to set up a fall harvest soup buffet as a lunch or dinner for friends and family. A fall soup bar is such a seasonal treat! Here are easy tips and lots of images to help you transform your kitchen counter or table into a fall feast.
A soup buffet is one of the easiest, coziest, and most fun ways to get together in the fall. And a soup bar gives us a reason to celebrate with our friends and family! I say, “Let them eat soup”! Here’s how to set up an easy and pretty soup bar.
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Soup is such a favorite at our home! How about at yours? I actually love to make soup! When the kids come home, it’s fun to have a soup we all love!
Set It Out And Let Everyone Serve Themselves
Our kitchen has the perfect counter to set out everything we will need for our meal! I love spreading out a self-serve buffet so everyone can dig in and take what they like!
If you can’t afford the countertop space, set a soup bar on a kitchen or dining room table! Or even a utility table covered in a pretty fall tablecloth would be just perfect!
I wanted this soup bar to reflect the beauty and bounty of the fall season! It’s all about feeling cozy and well-loved!
Fall is such a gorgeous season in Lancaster County. It’s the unofficial pumpkin land of America! We get our pumpkins locally from the back of flatbeds parked in a farm lane. So, they are not perfect, but I’ve come to embrace their imperfections as something to enjoy. One thing most of the pumpkins in our area have are stems! The stems on the pumpkins in the image below are green, and that means they were just picked.
Who doesn’t love pumpkins! To celebrate pumpkins, I decorate our soup bar with lots of them! On cake plates and candlesticks and dotted here and there along the soup bar.
I even added a pumpkin to the display of my favorite square dinner plates! These plates have an interesting handmade look and a tiny rim.
At the end of the table, I made a small impromptu arrangement of more pumpkins and a large dried gourd! Super easy!
Did you notice that little baby votive in the images, like the one below? I got a box of them at Williams-Sonoma almost a decade ago and LOVE them. They are much smaller than regular-size votives and look so festive wherever I put them. I’ve looked everywhere for more but can’t find them anywhere. If you know where I can find them, please leave me a comment. Thanks so much!
On the counter in the background, coffee and spiced apple cider are also set up to be self-serve! Once this buffet is set up, everyone can sit at the table and enjoy a meal together!
Make Something And Buy The Rest
When I was younger, I would make everything homemade! I was a bit of a homemade snob. I’m much smarter and wiser now! So, I made some things for the fall soup bar and bought some, too! I love to make soup, so it’s most often the thing I make. I usually make it in the slow cooker or make it ahead a day or two and warm it up before serving. I’m also a lot wiser about time management too!
Here are my favorite soups to serve a crowd.
For our Soup Bar, I made a delicious Pork And Cabbage Soup. This soup is so hearty and perfect for fall.
I make my grandmother Nani’s recipe. She was such a big influence in my life. If you make one thing to serve on a fall soup bar, this should be it!
These are my favorite soup bowls. Like the plates, these bowls have a handmade look.
Make It Easy
When I make a big pot of soup and have it with Homemade Butter Topped Beer Bread or Sweet Cream Cornbread From A Box Mix. Both recipes are so easy to make. The Beer Bread tastes delicious toasted the next morning with butter slathered on it. Typing this last sentence made my mouth water. LOL!
But when I make the soup for the Soup Bar, I usually buy the rest! However, the next time I’m having a fall soup bar, I’ll make the beer bread. It’s just so easy!
Serving bread on a breadboard or vintage cutting board gives it an even more rustic feel! Perfect for fall!
The Pumpkin Caramel Bundt Cake is also from our local store! And it is so yummy!
If you would rather make dessert, here are my favorite fall dessert recipes. Can you tell I am a bundt cake fan?
Whether you choose to buy or make dessert for a fall soup bar, put it on a cake pedestal! Everything tastes better on a pedestal!
I like to put dessert at the end of the buffet along with cake plates and forks so people can revisit the buffet and get their cake after they eat the soup.
I don’t even give a thought to people, especially grandbabies, eating dessert first!
The only thing I add to the soup bar just before people get in line is a whipped cream dispenser. You can’t fake whipped cream. The real thing is a culinary gift!
I just add cold heavy cream, a bit of powdered sugar, and a little vanilla extract to the dispenser and shake!! It’s just sooooo good!
You can see my whipped cream dispenser. This small kitchen gadget will last a lifetime!
Keep It Simple
I keep a Soup Bar very simple. It’s all about a perfectly scrumptious soup and bread! And a few fun, well-placed nods to the fall season! Remember to play some fall-inspired music and encourage lots of conversation and laughter.
Even soup can make wonderful memories! So remember to take pictures!