How to make an impressive and affordable appetizer board
June 3, 2019
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AnytimeIsPickleTime #CollectiveBias
When summertime arrives, I can’t help but think about all of the fun get-togethers that are in store. Picnics, barbeques, girls nights, book clubs – I’m all about them! But, with the summer season also comes high temperatures, so you won’t be finding me slaving over a hot stove to create meals. One of my all time favorite dishes to create in the summer is an epic appetizer board. I love how you can use simple ingredients to put together a platter that looks like a mini work of art. An impressive and affordable appetizer board is definitely a must for your summer entertaining this year, especially when it features Mt. Olive Pickles!
Why an appetizer board?
Appetizer boards are a great option for parties/gatherings with a crowd, or even just for the family at night. I personally love to graze on different foods, and a board like this gives so many different options in flavors, textures, and fun!
Another bonus with an appetizer board – the prep time to put together an impressive platter is very minimal! If you want to make shortcuts by purchasing pre-cut vegetables, fruits, or pre-made dips, you can absolutely do so! Plus, the ingredients are easily portable, and because you don’t need to heat anything up, they’re perfect for a picnic.
Tips to make an impression
First and foremost –use what you have on hand in the kitchen! Appetizer boards are a great way to use up a box of crackers that only has a handful left or use the second half of a block of cheese. Assess what items you have in your kitchen before heading to the store, and then purchase the items you need to fill in the blanks, so to say! The more variety you have, the better, so make sure you open the fridge and pantry first.
Play with textures and colors. You don’t want your appetizer board to be completely brown! Add crispy, colorful vegetables and fruit (carrots, bell peppers, apples, berries, etc.). Include a spread or two. Cut your cheese into different shapes! Cube one of your cheese options, cut one into sticks, maybe have one that crumbles. It will make the board more visually interesting!
Make something simple look fancier! Did you buy a tub of store bought hummus? Do what I did – add a dollop onto your appetizer board, make a small well in the center, and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil. If you have some fresh herbs on hand, sprinkle them on top – your hummus will now look over the top amazing with very little effort! I’ve used that handy trick for entertaining purposes in the past – it really takes store bought hummus to a much more “homemade” looking level!
Think about transport. Are you setting up your appetizer board at a picnic? Place your components in disposable containers or bags, and then assemble the platter on site. For this particular board, I could fit all of the items that needed to be chilled into a small cooler (one that typically holds 6 beverage cans), and could pack the rest into a reusable tote. To make things easy if you’re not at home, use disposable items or things that can be resealed (like my Mt. Olive pickles!) so you can easily clean up afterwards!
But seriously – we need to talk about the new Mt. Olive pickle pouches. They are a NEW product you can find at Publix (along with all of the other Mt. Olive pickles), and they’re going to change the game for snacking and on-the-go pickle needs like this appetizer board! The bags are resealable, which makes them super easy to transport. I purchased the 4.8oz bags, but they also come in a larger 11.8oz size! The 4.8oz bags were the perfect size to add to my appetizer board, and would be a great size for snacking in general. I purchased the Kosher Petite Dills and the Buffalo Kosher Dill Chips. Having two different pickle options on your appetizer board is great! You can go for a classic flavor with the Kosher Petite Dills, or go bold with a kick with the Buffalo Kosher Dill Chips (which are now my new favorite – hello spicy goodness!!!!).
For an appetizer board, you can truly get creative with what you add. You can go for a theme, or just toss a lot of different items onto the platter to fill it up. The sky is truly the limit.
Must haves definitely include:
Pickles! I always reach for the pickles on an appetizer board, so they are front and center on mine today! Mt. Olive pickles are a go-to in our house, and as I mentioned before, I am loving the new resealable pouches for easy to transport snacking!!! They’re such a convenient addition to their repertoire of offerings. Who knew you could bring innovation to pickles, even when Mt. Olive has been around since 1926?!?!? I love it!
Cheese. Go for a variety of texture/flavor. I used a goat cheese, a sharp cheddar, and a mushroom and leek cheese.
Crackers/bread. I like to mix it up with a baguette, some crackers, and maybe some pretzels so you get a variety of flavors/textures!
Fruit and vegetables. Anything goes for this! I like crisp apples, carrots and bell pepper slices, since they make great dippers! Berries are always a great option. Dried fruits are also a hit.
Dips/spreads. I personally like hummus, but get creative! Perhaps a spinach artichoke dip, a different kind of bean dip, a buffalo dip, etc!
Nuts – for convenience, you can grab a container of mixed nuts! Or, pick 1-2 favorites and sprinkle across the board. I picked honey roasted almonds for this particular board.
Go for the unexpected. Maybe you toss some wings, nuggets, or other options on the board. Why not? There are literally no rules to how you form your appetizer board!
So – are you ready to make your own appetizer board?
To get you started, make sure you take advantage of the coupon offer currently happening at Publix so you can save on your Mt. Olive Pickles for your board (offer ends 6/15 – expiration date of 6/30)! You absolutely need to get to your local store to grab the new resealable pouches for all of your summer snacking needs.