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Sending in food to a grieving family

Last post Apr 26, 2012 10:11 AM by mrsmarkdave . 22 replies.

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  • Sending in food to a grieving family

    Do people in your area still take food to families who have experienced a loss?

    It has always been the norm here, until recently. It seems that people just arent' doing that as much now.

    Probably busy lives have changed this tradition.


  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    Yes, in my area they do.  In fact tonight I am making up some food to take to a coworkers father who just lost his wife.  

    Witty Whitney!
  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family


    We still keep that tradition going around here.  WE have done that many times for good friends and it's always greatly appreciated!

    Ok...I just have to ask.  What wonderful things have you whipped up?


  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    I have noticed here too that the tradition of taking food to the family just isn't done a lot... but for the funeral reception it seems that  many still bring food.... I am old school tho and if it is someone close I will take some deli sliced meats and cheeses and breads for the family... often times it is easier to fix sandwiches and the last thing you want to do is go shopping for lunch/snack items....I normally will buy a pound each of Turkey, ham and roast beef, and half pounds of cheddar, havartti and provolone.... and a loaf of white, wheat and a dozen croisants! I don't tray it out as storage is easier if it is in the ziplock sealed deli bags....I guess I am still old school!!!


    Old age ain't no place for sissies . -Bette Davis-
  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    When FIL died 23 years ago, friends and neighbors brought a lot of food to MIL's house. We mostly got a lot of ham and fried chicken. One thoughtful person brought several cases of pop...nice to have on hand to offer those coming to pay their respects.

    We've had quite a few deaths in our family in the last 5 or so years. People still bring food, but not as much. When both parents died, the care team at church brought food to the funeral home for the family to eat.

  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    YES! And NO!

    I have seen where in some cases the family and friends have not recieved any food when a loved one died. Then I have seen family and friends with a loved one that passed on recieve to much food. Especially plenty of cakes, and other food. There was one case where there was so much vegetable soup brought in to the family, that the family didn't want to see it go to waste. But they didn't know how much was previously frozen and recooked or how much was fresh.

    I will ask the friends or family if they wish to have some food brought over when a loved one has passed on.

    If they do, I will buy different lunch meat sliced at the deli or pick up packaged lunch meat, and pick up variety of cheeses. I will make a deli tray, rolling the lunch meat up and stacking it on a tray, laying the cheese with it. I will pick up lettuce and tomatoes to go along with it.  I will also pick up a package of hamburger rolls to add to it. I make a fruit salad, where you put a variety of fruit in a container, then mix in a box of dried banana or vanilla pudding to make it creamy. I place it in a container I do not want back. I pick up a bag of chips,paper plates,and throwaway cups. I pick up some cheap costing pop.  I buy mayo, ketchup, mustard, and jar of pickles. I make candykisses jello bundt cake recipe I found here years ago.  The recipe will be included in another post here. Sometimes I make cheeseburger soup to go with everything and sometimes not. To me this variety of food, lets people eat when they want through the funeral arrangements and viewing process or for a midnight snack if needed. I have not be unpleased yet with the reception I have been given by the family or friends who recieve this meal. Some people have recieved casserols from other people and enjoy having something to pick and go with. Some friends and family will ask me for the recipes for the soup, cake, or fruit salad. 

  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    When my grandpa died 10 years ago, a lot of people brought food to my grandma's house. In my experience, it's mainly been a ministry through our church. We actually had a ministry dedicated to this.

    However, we recently changed churches, and I'm not sure if my current church has this ministry or not. Preparing meals is really not my gift, but I want to help. So, I often send a gift card to a grocery store - usually one that is close to their home.

  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    Posted by: candykisses_Oklahoma Posted on: 4/14/2004 7:23:15 AM

    Serves: 12
    Effort: easy
    Comments: Our favorite is lemon

    1 pkg. (small) Jell-O
    3/4 c. boiling water

    1 cake mix
    4 - 5 eggs
    3/4 c. oil

    Dissolve Jell-O
    Mix cake mix, eggs, & oil well.
    Add Jell-O
    Bake 350 in bundt pan 30 - 35 min.
    Grease & flour pan

    Use same flavor Jell-O & cake mix.

    Use a glaze frosting or sprinkle with powder sugar



    Cheeseburger soup

    • 1/2 pound ground beef
    • 3/4 cup chopped onion
    • 3/4 cup shredded carrots
    • 3/4 cup diced celery
    • 1 teaspoon dried basil
    • 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
    • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
    • 3 cups chicken broth
    • 4 cups diced peeled potatoes (1-3/4 pounds)
    • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
    • 2 cups (8 ounces) process cheese (Velveeta), cubed....  I use two cups of shredded cheddar cheese instead
    • 1-1/2 cups milk
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon pepper
    • 1/4 cup sour cream   Sometimes I add it sometimes not


    • In a 3-qt. saucepan, brown beef; drain and set aside. In the same saucepan, saute the onion, carrots, celery, basil and parsley in 1 tablespoon butter until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the broth, potatoes and beef; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10-12 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
    • Meanwhile, in a small skillet, melt remaining butter. Add flour; cook and stir for 3-5 minutes or until bubbly. Add to soup; bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Stir in the cheese, milk, salt and pepper; cook and stir until cheese melts. Remove from the heat; blend in sour cream. Yield: 8 servings (2-1/4 quarts)
    • I have made this in the slowcooker and add the cheese and sourcream an hour before I am ready to serve it.



  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    Now see my thinking, especially in the case where one has lost a spouse, is that they would want more home-y/comfort foods-like casseroles and things like that.  Not cold cuts and sandwiches etc where they could easily make themselves (and probably will be living on for awhile if they do not cook etc).  I think they would want something more homemade and comforting.  Remembering when my father passed away we got a TON of deli sandwiches.  They did come in handy for when people came over the first couple of days, but sandwiches and cold cuts just dont last long and you get really tired of eating them really quick.  

    Tonight I plan on doing a few casseroles where they could be easily frozen and heated up at a later date.  

    Also I am not talking about taking foods to any of the funeral services or wakes or things like that.  Around here that is almost always handled by the church.  I am talking about taking food over for later, when everyone and everything is over and they are alone.

    Witty Whitney!
  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    I always wait one month and take food or a food card. I sit with the person or people. I cannot tell you what it means to all of us. They are back to a normal and lonely life that they need to see someone come by. They talk more easily and say things they need to get off their heart. I love  your idea of frozen casseroles for when they want to cook them.

  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    I don't know Whitney... I was pretty happy to have the sandwich stuff in the fridge when my dad passed away... I had people in and out and family that had to travel in and were in and out.... we went out for dinner at night  but to have the stuff here for lunches was pretty darned nice... a couple cousins kept track of what I had and made sure there was plenty.... it was nice to not have to worry about that while doing all the other things that HAD to be done... I knew that everyone could fix a sandwich if they were hungry.


    Old age ain't no place for sissies . -Bette Davis-
  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    Casseroles are nice to have for someone to enjoy anytime during the funeral or after the funeral or  a much later time period after the funeral has passed on weeks and days. But!!  you really need to make certain what you put in the casserole will be eaten in the first place. Also if it's just for one person to enjoy, in  some cases people feel the size of one casserole is to much to eat. I have found this true in the elderly who like comfort food. But sometimes don't like to eat the casserole because the large size that has been fixed, even if it was in a small amount to begin with. The elderly cannot digest things to eat like they once did. Now if the casserole is big enough for a family that is a different story. But it has to be gauged just right even then to feed everyone.  It also again  has to be a casserole fixed with something in it that everyone will enjoy eating. Also with  having casseroles on hand in the freezer they can certainly be handy. But one also needs to keep in mind if the reciept even has a big enough freezer or refrigerator to hold the casseroles in the first place. It's alway nice to ask the benefactor on what they would appreciate in some cases. Before you just bring whatever food you decide to fix over with a gracious giving heart  in mind . No one wants to see their time and money go to waste especially with the price of food.

  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    Around here the churches would, now, not so much. My uncle died a few months ago, we have a large family and for some reason the daughter told the church it would only be for them. Because she didn't want they to put themselves out for it. We have 2 aunts that live 100 miles away one is 102 and the other is 92 sisters we found this out the night before the funeral and had to call to let my cousins that were bringing them not to. WHY because my cousin didn't want to be put out herself. Was a very cold funeral we didn't even sit in the family section of the church, the procession left the church before all the family was even in there cars.

    We didn't even stand close enough to the grave to even hear the preacher talking. Sad because we had always been a close family and took care of my uncle when his own kids didn't even come to the hospital.


  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    I suspect that fewer people think to cook something for a grieving family because fewer people cook for themselves.


    I was going to buy an elephant,but I couldn't figure out any way to get it home in my car.
    I just don't have the trunk space.

  • Re: Sending in food to a grieving family

    I send homemade soup (usually chicken noodle or beef barley) - some homemade bread and some macaroni or potato salad.  I find these are things that can be munched on without much bother.  I believe that cold cuts and/or casseroles can all be a big help and both of them are appreciated.  

    I do find that we are more recently going out to a restaurant for the wake rather than having it at the home.  For my FIL in 1988 we all came to my house and I appreciated the gifts of food.  When my MIL died by 2006 it was easier (and we were more financially stable) to have everyone go to a restaurant for a luncheon.  

    I think the most important thing when cooking for people who lost a family member is to be flexible.  Sometimes something will work and sometimes it won't - try and feel the situation out to realize what is necessary.  If there are a lot of young people sometime it would be nice for a gift certificate for pizza.