10 New Orleans Wedding Favor Ideas Inspired by The Big Easy

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New Orleans wedding favor ideas collage
Photo: The Knot Original Photography by Gieves Anderson, Getty, Stocky | Design: Natalie Romine
emily rumsey the knot editor
by
Emily Rumsey
emily rumsey the knot editor
Emily Rumsey
Assistant Commerce Updates Editor
  • Emily helps maintain and update e-commerce content for The Knot
  • Before joining The Knot Worldwide, Emily worked as a website editor and manager for The Paleo Diet®
  • Emily holds two bachelor's degrees in Journalism and International Affairs with a Chinese minor
Updated May 09, 2024

Tying the knot in the Big Easy or just looking to add a dash of NOLA charm to your wedding? We've got some seriously jazzed-up New Orleans wedding favor ideas to complete your celebration. From edible favors that give guests an authentic taste of the city to classic Mardi Gras celebration necessities, these small gifts will transport friends and family straight to the French Quarter.

Fretting over favors? Don't worry: The Knot Vendor Market Place has all the pros you need to bake then deliver local confections right to your venue and provide you with customized parasols, handkerchiefs and beads to kick off the celebration.

Ready to give your guests a taste of what NOLA is all about? Keep scrolling for New Orleans wedding party favor ideas, cher!

1. Signature New Orleans Pralines

Sweet and decadent, pralines are a beloved New Orleans treat. They combine sugar, cream, butter and pecans to create a saccharine dessert that perfectly captures the city's rich flavors and history. First introduced by French settlers in the early 19th century, pralines drew inspiration from a confection featuring almonds and caramelized sugar. Yet, due to Louisiana's plentiful pecan supply, they swiftly became the nut of choice. In New Orleans, praline wedding favors offer guests a taste of the city's delicious offerings while symbolizing the sweetness and warmth of the couple's union.

2. Beignet Mix

Edible wedding favors are always a good idea, especially when they're as tasty as beignets. These pillowy squares of fried dough, generously dusted with powdered sugar, hold a special place in the heart of New Orleans cuisine. Introduced by French settlers in the 18th century, beignets have become a beloved symbol of the city's culinary heritage. For your wedding, there are a few delightful ways to incorporate beignets as favors. You might consider having a local vendor serve them piping hot during the reception, offering guests an authentic taste of New Orleans. Alternatively, provide guests with a homemade beignet mix they can take home, allowing them to recreate this delectable treat in their own kitchen. Include a powdered sugar duster with a recipe tag for an especially unique New Orleans wedding favor.

3. Hurricane Cocktail Mixers

New Orleans boasts a variety of craft cocktails, and the Hurricane is just one of the alcohol-themed wedding favors on our list. This iconic drink, made with a blend of light and dark rum, passion fruit, orange and lime juices, and often garnished with an orange slice and cherry, derives its name from the lamp-shaped glass it's traditionally served in. The Hurricane was born in the French Quarter by bartender Pat O'Brien at the legendary Pat O'Brien's Bar. The cocktail's creation was spurred by the bar's need to use surplus rum, acquired due to post-World War II liquor distribution regulations that required the purchase of less popular spirits in order to obtain desired whiskey. Check out El Guapo Bitters to place a bulk order of their Hurricane Mixer—trust us, each guest only needs one. Once mixed with rum, they can be quite strong.

4. Mardi Gras Necklaces

Enhance your wedding favors with the vibrant flair of Mardi Gras beads. These colorful necklaces, often tossed from parade floats during Mardi Gras festivities, embody joy, unity and community spirit—echoing the sentiments of a wedding celebration. Whether draped over chairs or presented in personalized packaging, Mardi Gras beads offer a playful and festive touch to infuse your wedding with the lively spirit of New Orleans.

5. Ornate Parasols

In New Orleans, parasols serve both practical and cultural roles, providing shade in the hot Southern sun and often appearing as stylish items in traditional second line parades. During weddings, the second line parade typically commences after the ceremony, with the newlyweds leading the procession through the streets. A brass band and guests waving handkerchiefs and carrying parasols or umbrellas usually accompany the lovebirds. This lively tradition signifies the beginning of the couple's new life together and fosters community celebration. Offering parasols as wedding favors honors this cultural tradition and allows guests to participate in the joyous spirit of a New Orleans wedding. (Guests will also appreciate the respite from the sun if you're hosting an outdoor ceremony.)

6. Cajon Seasoning Blend

Share the flavors of Louisiana with guests by gifting them small containers of Cajun seasoning blend, perfect for adding a taste of the bayou to their meals. Bonus points if it's locally made! This aromatic blend of spices, including paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and more, captures the essence of Cajun cuisine, renowned for its bold and savory flavors. Whether sprinkled on seafood, poultry or vegetables, this versatile seasoning will make a memorable and flavorful wedding favor.

7. Fleur-de-lis Symbols

The fleur-de-lis—a symbol commonly associated with New Orleans—resembles a stylized lily or iris flower with three petals or leaves joined at their bases, akin to a spearhead or an inverted triangle with curved ends. Its ornate appearance often includes intricate detailing, such as decorative lines or flourishes. This symbol holds a deep significance in New Orleans, representing the city's French heritage, cultural resilience and enduring spirit. Incorporating the fleur-de-lis into your wedding decor and favors can enhance your wedding's theme. For example, it can be added to koozies or custom drinkware, printed on favor bags, incorporated on bottle stoppers or openers or featured on fans. The creative possibilities of this New Orleans wedding favor idea are endless!

8. Custom Handkerchiefs

Handkerchiefs are strongly associated with New Orleans, particularly its lively street parades and music culture. They have also become an integral part of weddings in the city, often as part of the aforementioned second line parade. Additionally, handkerchiefs are sometimes used instead of traditional rice or confetti for guests to wave as the newlyweds depart. Add a personalized touch to your New Orleans wedding favor with custom handkerchiefs featuring your names or monogram, venue location and date.

9. Locally-Brewed Coffee

The Crescent City is renowned for its vibrant coffee culture, making locally roasted coffee beans or mini bottles of cold brew concentrate perfect New Orleans-themed wedding favors. A classic choice that embodies the city's cafe scene is chicory-infused coffee, a French-inspired blend beloved by locals. It has a bold and slightly bitter flavor profile with hints of chocolate and caramel. Guests will especially appreciate the pick-me-up after a night of dancing to celebrate your union.

10. Peychaud's Bitters

For a touch of New Orleans flair, consider gifting your guests bottles of Peychaud's Bitters as wedding favors. They're a key ingredient in the classic Sazerac recipe, infusing the cocktail with its distinctive flavor profile characterized by hints of anise, herbs and spices. By sharing this essential component of New Orleans' cocktail culture, you invite your guests to savor the spirit of the city long after the festivities have ended.

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