How to Make a Grazing Table
Summertime is for entertaining, pool parties, fun cocktails, and good food! When you add a grazing platter to the mix, taste buds are elevated, and palates are satisfied.
Everyone loves options, and we are no exception! As chefs, we delight in the combination of tasty varieties that complement each other. A grazing board is more than just a cheese platter or charcuterie board. We fill the board with a plethora of delicious and small bites that make it a challenge to choose which one to try first! It is a foodie paradise of sweet and salty flavors that don’t make you feel guilty for eating all day! You can find all five food groups on a well-made grazing board. If you want to know what to put on a grazing platter, you’ve come to the right place for grazing platter ideas. Here’s how we do it:
- Board options – A grazing board is the perfect way to explore flavors you’ve never had before, so don’t worry too much about the type of board you use. The most important part is the food you place on it. For best results, check out these options for a grazing board:
- Chopping board/breadboard – This board may be small, so use two cutting boards side by side for best results.
- Baking sheet/tray – A baking tray is an excellent option for a grazing board because it has edges! A baking sheet or tray is perfect if you attend a summer gathering and bring a pre-made grazing platter. By wrapping it in plastic, all ingredients will stay intact and remain fresh.
- Marble pastry board – Using this option just brings a level of luxury to your grazing board that everyone will appreciate.
- Bowls – What’s a grazing platter without dipping bowls? Although adding dipping bowls may interrupt your artistic interpretation of deliciousness on a platter, it’s just not practical to lay everything flat. It can get messy when you’re eating, and sauces or dips will need a container to hold them. Don’t be afraid to get creative with bowls by using shot glasses, molds, tins, saucers, or anything small in the kitchen. Even a halved bell pepper will work too!
- Preparation – Preparation is critical! The better prepared you are, the less last-minute shopping you’ll have to do. Before you get started on your grazing board masterpiece, you should answer the following questions first:
- How many guests are you serving?
- Do they have any food allergies or intolerances?
- Do they have any food favorites?
- What seasonal fruits and vegetables are available?
- What size grazing platter do you have?
- What size grazing platter will you need?
- Cheese, please – When you’re unsure what to put on a grazing platter, start with cheese. As a good rule of thumb, you should start with two ounces of cheese per person. If you have cheese lovers in your midst, you may want to increase this to four ounces. Starting a grazing board with three varieties of cheese is an excellent place to start. When entertaining more guests, you may want to increase this variety. If you think you’ve included too much cheese, you can always leave half out and replenish as everyone eats.
- Other options – There are so many delectable options to add to a grazing board, you can get overwhelmed. When wondering what to put on a grazing platter, you should consider dried fruit, relishes, dips, cured meats, fruit paste, olives, and more. Here’s how to make a grazing table irresistible to your guests:
- Add a few homemade dips like hummus, whipped feta, or coriander dip.
- Include seedless options like olives and grapes to keep from surprising your guests with last-minute trips to the dentist!
- Always keep the ingredients of the grazing board bite-sized. Items like berries, pretzel sticks, or cherry tomatoes are perfect.
- Be careful with fruits that brown over time, like apples, pears, or avocado. A quick dip in water and fresh lemon juice will keep them fresh.
- The natural look of your grazing board is essential because it adds to the delicious aesthetics of your presentation. To maintain a natural look, keep the grapes, cherries, and cherry tomatoes on the vine.
- Bread, of course – Grazing platter ideas are never complete without carbs! Like your variety of cheeses, you should include various crackers, bread, and biscuits. It’s a good idea to keep in mind how your guests will use the variety so that everything pairs well. Including sliced pita bread and baguettes is a tasty addition to a grazing board paired with the appropriate dip like hummus or olive oil mixture. If you can’t fit everything on the grazing board initially, add the excess to small bowls to serve alongside your artwork.
- Fun fillers – Assembling a grazing board is a labor of love, with the most oversized items placed first. You’ll want to fill up the holes with your smaller ingredients. Here’s how to make your grazing table look full and inviting:
- Fresh herbs
- Fresh arugula
- Utensils – Make it easy for your guests to experience your foodie masterpiece by including utensils. Your guests will need more than cheese knives to fully enjoy your grazing board. Be sure to include disposable cocktail forks, toothpicks, and napkins, among others. This will make it less awkward for your guests when they decide to dip things in the tasty dips you’ve made.
- Rubbish – When your guests stop using their toothpicks, napkins, and cocktail forks, they’ll need somewhere to dispose of them. Placing a small bowl for rubbish near your grazing board is a convenient way for your guests to collect their trash. Trust us; they’ll thank you for it!
- Bring it together – After you’ve gone grocery shopping and picked up everything for your grazing board masterpiece, you’ll want to bring it all together. There is a simple way to make sure you include everything. Once you’ve chosen your board and grazing platter ideas, here’s where to start :
- Place your cheese on the board first.
- Now place your bowls for dipping and deli items like olives. Move them around until you are satisfied with the placement.
- Next, fill the bowls and unwrap your cheeses.
- Place your oversized focal point items like grapes or cherry tomatoes on a vine.
- Include your crackers and other carbs in groups around the board. You’ll fill in the gaps with fresh and dried fruit, nuts, or cured meats.
Taste Our Grazing Board
When it comes to knowing how to make a grazing table, it’s best to follow your tastes and instincts. You can choose to do a mixture of meat and cheeses or go vegan. The possibilities are endless!
Join us for our grazing platter and be inspired by our combination of cheeses, Gigante butter beans, cured meats, sweet honey, Marcona almonds, pickled vegetables, olives, pesto, and toasted bread. We set up an irresistible ambiance with our weeklong specials that give you the chance to indulge in your favorite wine, cocktail, gourmet pizza, or pasta dish at a discounted price.
Bring a friend and check out our patio dining on Live Jazz Sundays featuring the smooth sounds of local musicians. Check out our modern take on Italian favorites and reserve your table today!