DIY Box Lunch Bridal Shower Ideas

Tips and ideas for hosting a DIY box lunch bridal shower in your home, along with more bridal shower ideas. I’m sharing all the scoop on the box lunch assembly, what we served for dessert, and more!

1bridal gown pin with text box lunch bridal shower ideas 2021

*This post was originally published in 2013. It has been revamped with current information, up-to-date links, and additional ideas. Enjoy!

So…someone you love is getting married, and you need bridal shower ideas. You are in the right place! My daughter and I hosted a spring box lunch bridal shower, and I’m sharing every little detail, along with tips for making it a beautiful day. 

How to Host a Box Lunch Bridal Shower

The most important first step when planning any type of party or get-together is to make a list. Start at the very beginning, and give yourself plenty of time. (A free checklist is available at the end of this post!) We started out with a large guest list and no affordable venue. After going back and forth for a few days, we finally decided to have the shower here, in our home. When we were brain-storming ideas on how we could accommodate around 50 people, we came up with the idea of a box lunch. Pinterest helped, but we quickly found out that we had to find our own resources, and come up with our own plan.

box lunch bridal shower ideas

Our box lunch idea addressed two big concerns:

  • First, our guest list was large, but our space was not. By making box lunches, we wouldn’t have to seat every guest at a table. The boxes would contain the entire meal, except dessert, and could be easily balanced on a lap.
  • Second, I was worried about getting everything accomplished on time the day of the shower. The box lunches would have to be assembled the day before, so the majority of the work would be done ahead. This was a major plus, since we had a start time of 11 a.m. 

Box Lunch Elements

The Menu

We went back and forth trying to decide on something that was easy to pack, as well as easy to eat. This was our final decision.

Affiliate links included. Click HERE for my disclosure statement.

The Boxes

After looking around online for what seemed like hours, we decided on these brown kraft boxes. We wanted something with a flat top, so it we could tie pretty ribbon around each box. I originally planned to tie bows around the boxes, but then I realized that we would not be able to stack them in the refrigerator. The only way they were all fitting in our two refrigerators was if they were stacked…so the bows were adjusted to a simple slip knot. 

kraft box lunch idea

The Plastic Containers

fruit cups for box lunch

The Bags

We knew we wanted some sort of specialty bags for the croissant and chips. After looking around online, we chose these cute bags. Thankfully, we packaged a croissant and some chips about a week before the shower to see how they would taste after sitting in the refrigerator overnight. They tasted fine, but the food oil soaked through the bags. It looked terrible! So we used cellophane bags as a liner to solve that problem. We folded the bags over, and sealed them with a round white sticker.

5 x 7 flat paper treat bags

The Flatware

We knew we were definitely going to use disposable flatware, but we didn’t want basic white plastic forks. We chose silver, heavy duty plastic forks that looked very nice after we wrapped each one in a napkin, and tied a cute bow around it!

flatware wrapped in napkins with bows

Box Lunch Assembly

Once we chose all the elements for the box lunches, the next step was figuring out how to make it all fit. That took some trial and error, but after a few tries we came up with something that looked nice, but not crowded. 

  • Box assembly step 1: We lined the boxes with wax deli paper.
  • Box assembly step 2: the first layer contained the chicken salad, croissant, fruit, and chips.
  • Box assembly step 3: the second layer was the pasta salad and flatware/napkin.

The finishing touch was tying a double layer of ribbon around each box. Even though it was a bit tedious, this was my favorite part of the whole thing!

how to assemble a box lunch

food elements for box lunch

We assembled the boxes the night before the shower, and stowed them away in our refrigerators overnight. We used the refrigerator in our kitchen, along with an extra refrigerator we have in our garage. A few minutes before guests started to arrive, we neatly stacked the boxes on the dining room table. That was it! Not even 10 minutes on the day of the shower and the food was taken care of. 

Box Lunch Bridal Shower Helpful Hints 

  • Make sure to try out everything ahead of time. We ran into a few problems, that had we waited, could have been disastrous.
  • Make sure everything fits in your box and can sit overnight in a refrigerator.
  • Prioritize the DIY aspect. What I mean by this is don’t feel like you have to do/make EVERYTHING yourself. We made the pasta salad, but we bought the chicken salad. We had help with the fruit, and opted for a dessert table instead of packing a dessert for the boxes.
  • Where you can take a shortcut…do it. Don’t be afraid to use plastic flatware/cups/containers. After all…it’s a casual meal in a casual setting.
  • I had some questions in the comment section about refrigerator space. We have an extra refrigerator in our garage. I cleared it out and removed two shelves. We were able to stack most of the boxes in there, and we put the overflow in our kitchen refrigerator. 

white tables and chairs on deck bridal shower ideas

More Bridal Shower Ideas

When we had the box lunch assembly all planned out, we moved on to the other details. We knew we were unable to seat everyone due to space constraints, but we decided to provide some seating on our back deck. We rented white tables, chairs, and tablecloths which completely transformed the space. 

box lunches on table

Centerpieces & More

I gathered together my creamware pitchers, and filled them with daisies and baby’s breath for quick and easy centerpieces. Colorful pieces of ribbon were tied onto the handles of all the pitchers. To complete the seating area, we purchased coordinating fabric, and made square toppers for all the tables.

daisies in white pitcher

Bridal Shower Dessert Ideas

We opted not to include dessert in the boxes. Instead, we put together a dessert table for the guests to help themselves. We considered baking our own cupcakes, but decided to buy them at a sweet little bakery in our hometown. We added cute cake pops and cookies as well. My daughter and I agreed it was one of the smartest decisions we made! Not only did it save us tons of time, all the dessert choices were truly delicious.

bridal shower ideas desserts

The entire day was as close to perfect as we could get. This box lunch bridal shower turned out just like we had planned (which you have to admit hardly ever happens.) The bride-to-be felt special and received some incredible gifts to begin her life as a “Mrs.”

Complete list of sources:

See how we planned a box lunch baby shower for my daughter-in-law by clicking {HERE.}


box lunch bridal shower pin 650

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  1. Ann, I want to thank you for this post along with all the links. I hosted a bridal shower for a friend’s daughter in September and used your ideas and resources to come up with a plan! The boxed lunches turned out wonderfully, right down to your pasta salad recipe! Many, many thanks!!

  2. Nancy Powell says:

    Thank you so much for putting out such great advise. I am doing a “happily ever after” party for our son and daughter-in-law in June. (Their wedding was last August) There are 350 people are invited, hopefully the final number will be 250. I think I will rent a refrigerated trailer to hold the boxes. I’ll use the ribbon idea, but to make them really flat, I’ll have a sticker with their personalized monogram. I also appreciate the advise to make a mock-up in advance. The sandwiches will come from a local shop, I may do a fruit skewer tucked into a cellophane bag, instead of a fruit cup, so I don’t need a fork. Thank you!

  3. A thousand thanks for the great detail on this! You’re boxes are beautiful and I will definitely be using this idea. Thank you!!

  4. Such excellent ideas! I hosted a “drive thru” wedding shower last Summer for a bride in our church congregation. It was a little out of the ordinary…but it worked perfect. We placed cupcakes in small clear plastic cups and then down in a clear cellophane bag. Included a fork in the bag to make the snacking easier, tied it off with a pretty ribbon and embellished with a pretty sticker outside the package with the bride and grooms names. It worked like a charm! The options are endless. It just takes a little creative look at what is needed.
    As always, your ideas are excellent! Thank you for being so willing to share.

  5. Great ideas here! Pinned! Thank you!

  6. Mary Evans says:

    Ann, this is the cutest way to do a bridal shower with lots of ladies. I know this will be used over and over by your viewers. I would not have thought of any of this. Different and very charming. Best post ever. Blessings, Mary

    1. This is such a cool idea! Hosting a shower for my daughter in a winery that is 5 minutes from my house. Hoping this idea works! Our shower starts at 10:30 so less prep in the am is better!

  7. Love all the ideas. My niece just hosted a drive by Baby Shower with box lunches…it was so much fun.

    We got out of our cars briefly to participate in three games that were self service. Then as we completed that a luncheon box was placed at one end of a table with bottle water that she made special labels for.

    It was perfect in so many ways.

  8. 5 stars
    Oh my goodness! What wonderful ideas! Just lovely! Thanks so much for sharing!😊

  9. Melissa@TheHappierHomemaker says:

    I love it Ann! I’m totally doing this for my next party I am hosting in August, what a fantastic idea!! Thanks for linking it up to the Summer Inspiration Party!

  10. Marcia @Gathering at the Table says:

    Love, love, love!!

  11. Sue@Housepretty says:

    To say “I’m impressed” would be putting it mildly! For something “casual”, you made it look VERY professional!!!

  12. Angie@Echoes of Laughter says:

    I love this Ann! It’s so pretty and well put together! You are so talented! Have a lovely weekend! Angie xo

  13. Wow! This all looks so amazing!! You and daughter are certainly an ambitious pair! That is one very lucky bride! :)

  14. rachel @ little kitchen, big bites says:

    omg how cute is that??? you totally took a boxed lunch to the next level. i love it!

  15. Ann Drake says:

    That’s a really good question. Honestly, we didn’t even think of that. No one said a word so I guess we were OK!

  16. Ricki Jill Treleaven says:

    How precious, Ann! These would be great to take on the boat this summer. :D

  17. Thumbs up, what a great idea. And it’s pretty too:)

  18. Jeanette @ Creating a Life says:

    Love this idea, Ann. You are always so great and giving all the how-to info. The ribbon on the boxes is so pretty! Pinning this to my picnics and parties board : )


  19. Ann, what a great idea. It sure makes it less stressful the day of the party. It looks so great the way you have it in the box. Thanks for the wonderful pictures and telling us where you found everything. Love your blog. Yarlette

  20. Grace @ sense and simplicity says:

    They’re adorable and look so yummy. How did you fit so many boxes in your fridge though. I would have been afraid they wouldn’t all fit and the salads have to be refrigerated. I love how simple it made it on the day of the shower. Oh and the ribbon would have been my favourite part as well.

    1. Ann Drake says:

      We fit most of the boxes in my garage refrigerator. I had emptied it out so we would be sure to have enough room. I removed 2 shelves and we just stacked up the boxes. We had just a few left to bring into the kitchen refrig. That was a little tricky but we made it work!

  21. Jane @ Cottage at the Crossroads says:

    Oh Ann! If you ever get tired of sewing, you could be an event planner! Every detail was so thoughtfully planned and executed! I’m pinning and sharing this!

  22. Kelly @ View Along the Way says:

    I LOVE this, Ann! It would make me SO excited to go to a luncheon that was so well thought out and beautiful!

  23. Nana Diana says:

    Ann-That is just amazing! I just love the idea and you all really did a bang up job!!! Amazing and so classy! xo Diana

  24. I have done this…not on such a grand scale…but for a luncheon….the women loved it!! and I am sure the guests loved yours!!

  25. Keeping It Cozy says:

    I really love this idea and I’m going to put it to use one of these days! I love cooking for parties, but it does take an incredible amount of time the day of. How smart to finish it all the day before and package it so prettily! Beautiful job!

  26. Jane's Adventures in Dinner says:

    What a gorgeous lunch! I can see small one and I making many of these this summer.

  27. Pamela Gordon says:

    Great tips on packing the box lunch. It all looks great! I have those napkins in burgundy!

  28. grammygoodwill says:

    Thanks for all the details. I was wondering how you kept everything fresh after packaging it the night before. Did you have to borrow refrigerator space?

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Hi Patricia! No…it was close though. I have a refrig. in the garage and we took out one shelf and just stacked the boxes up. The overflow came back into the house. Thankfully we didn’t have to borrow anyone’s refrigerator space!

  29. Debra@CommonGround says:

    great idea, and I love your ribbon!!

  30. Oh, my goodness! This is precious! You are absolutely the most creative one! Now I’m hungry and I want to go on a picnic.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  31. I absolutely love this idea! I am planning a bridal shower myself and this is the perfect solution! Thank you for sharing all your sources!!~~Angela

  32. Ohmygoodness, Ann … what a creative, beautiful and genius idea! Your lunch boxes are nothing short of fabulous! And, to see them all set on a crisp, white tablecloth is perfection! Your guests must’ve been so very impressed!