Have a Coffee and Dessert reception. This is only a possibility if you hold your wedding at an appropriate time of day (either in the afternoon before dinner, or in the evening after dinner) when you are not obligated to feed your guests a complete meal. We had the following:
This was my dream reception, which was made even better by its low cost. My sister-in-law purchased the chocolate fountain, but they only cost about $30, so it's still inexpensive, especially considering the wow factor. I asked a variety of (very close) friends and relatives to each make a cheesecake. I purchased cookies and other sweet finger foods (frozen cream puffs for example) through a food warehouse like Sam's Club or Costco. A friend made our wedding cake as a gift, but if you have a dessert reception, you can have a much smaller cake because no one wants to eat it after all those sweets:) We had TONS of leftover cake. Just make enough to feed each other and take the pictures.
For a smaller wedding (we had 200 guests), I think the chocolate fountain, drinks and wedding cake would suffice. Provide some meaningful entertainment (we had close friends and family sing some of "our" songs, and we had a slide show, among other things) and everyone will be enjoying themselves so much they won't notice you've saved so much money on food.
Our reception was very intimate, meaningful and elegant, exactly what I wanted. To top it all off, it was super cheap as well!