You guys know I'm a huge fan of a giant snack board that's part-cheese board, part-crudité platter, and is always loaded with all kinds of snacky goodness like nuts, fruit, veggies, crackers, and dips. It's my go-to appetizer that's a total showstopper every time, and it's super fun to assemble and customize towards a certain occasion or season. Plus it doesn't require any cooking, so it can be thrown together pretty quickly! This board is fully Fall-themed and perfect for my favorite holiday of the year (Thanksgiving, of course!), which is just about two weeks out! You guys will flip over the Spiced Pumpkin Dip (which has browned butter & sage blended in there, omg) and how well it pairs with the cheeses, Fall produce, and Simple Mills sprouted seed crackers.
So there are a few keys to assembling a snack board that's equally gorgeous and delicious...
Variety. You always want to make sure you have something for everyone, so fill your board with several options of each of the below:
Color & texture. The more color and texture, the better! When you're buying your ingredients, take inventory of your cart to make sure you have a nice mix of colors. I noticed that almost all of my ingredients were orange, red, and purple, so I went back and grabbed some green grapes, multi-colored carrots, and gherkins (those cute little pickles). Olives would have been a perfect addition too! For texture, like I mentioned above, mix up the way you serve the cheeses (sliced, cubed, with a knife for spreading), throw some different nuts on there, and add little mis-matching bowls for your dips. spreads, and smaller items like olives or berries.
Dips / Spreads. When you're serving a board with crackers and veggies, it's always nice to have something to dip them into! I usually go with at least two options. It can be anything from pesto to hummus to romesco dip, pumpkin dip (a must for Thanksgiving!), fig jam, or honey (or if you can find honeycomb, that's a fun touch!).
Organized Messiness. In my opinion, the prettiest snack boards are those that are fully loaded up with very little empty space and are somewhat imperfect, natural, and slightly messy, yet organized. Sounds contradictory but it kind of makes sense if you look at how the board is put together. You can do this by placing everything in organized piles, and then filling in the empty spaces at the end with smaller ingredients like nuts, dried fruit, and crackers. I start by placing the cheeses, dips, and any ingredients that are in bowls, then add the fruit, vegetables, crackers, and finish with the nuts and dried fruit.
And don't forget some different cheese knives (at least one for slicing and one for spreading and maybe a spoon for your dip) and some small appetizer plates for your guests to create their own personal snack plate with all of the goodies you've put together!
Typical cheese & cracker appetizers can be pretty heavy and will likely leave you feeling stuffed and pretty lethargic. That's why I like to load up my boards with fresh, seasonal produce, nuts, and healthier crackers that are grain-free and made with simple, quality ingredients. Simple Mills crackers are perfect for this, and I'm especially loving the new sprouted seed ones because they're a little bit bigger and perfect for dipping or topping with a spread, cheese, and some sliced fruit! You can stock up on those (and all of their other crackers, baking mixes, cookies, etc.) at Whole Foods!
Aside from grabbing the Simple Mills crackers and maybe some olives from the olive bar and any other "special" ingredients at Whole Foods, I'd suggest getting everything else at Trader Joe's to save some money. They definitely have the best prices on nuts and cheeses, and even have some healthier options like grass-fed or raw cheeses and goat's milk cheeses. Another option is getting your Simple Mills crackers and all of your nuts and dried fruit from Thrive Market, where everything is discounted below standard retail prices.
Ok let's get into the specifics of everything you'll need to make this board come to life for Thanksgiving!
Simple Mills sprouted seed crackers
A couple cheeses - my go-to's: manchego, goat's milk brie, aged gouda, and goat's milk cheddar (you can also make this entirely dairy-free with almond cheeses from Kite Hill)
Fruit - persimmons, small/mini apples, pomegranates, fresh figs, and green / red grapes
Veggies - colorful carrots and gherkins
Dried fruit - I used apricots (you could also use dried figs if you can't find fresh ones)
Nuts - marcona almonds, walnuts, and pistachios
Dips / spreads - Pumpkin White Bean Dip, fig jam, and honeycomb (spread on top of brie)
Arrange each ingredient on a large board in organized piles. Dig in!
Can't wait to see all of your epic Thanksgiving snack boards! Forget the turkey, these boards will be the hit of the night!
This post is in partnership with Simple Mills. All content, opinions, and words are my own, and I only promote products that I truly LOVE. Thank you so much for supporting the brands that support Weeknight Bite!
July 28th, 2016
June 23, 2017
Lindsay is a Holistic Nutritionist who lives for a great meal, a beautiful farmers market, daily matcha lattes, and homemade chocolate chip cookies. Weeknight Bite is Lindsay's happy place where her nutrition practice, simple recipes, and wellness tips come together to inspire you to live a healthy, balanced life.