It’s the lighter version of the classic cheese board. If you’re ready to amp up your warmer weather party platter, try infusing it with Mediterranean flavors. These ingredients are naturally full of fiber, protein, healthy fats and nutrients that will keep guests satisfied. Even more importantly, the variety of colors are so vibrant, this homemade Mediterranean Mezze Platter will easily give you party host credibility without much effort.
I am a huge fan of food boards when inviting friends and family over. It’s much like a tapas-style restaurant where sharing and conversation is encouraged as everyone hovers around the variety of offerings.
Not only do food boards encourage connection, they also allow for a fun way to serve a variety of flavors without spending hours in the kitchen making different kinds of dishes.
During the fall and winter months, I am all about the cheese board. While I do love a good traditional cheese board, I often opt to go the dairy-free route which leaves me and guests feeling a little less heavy at the end of the night.
Related post: How to Make the Best Vegan Charcuterie Board + Basic Vegan Cheese, Plus 3 Flavor Variations
But what about the Spring and Summer months when the temperature is starting to rise and we start transitioning from red wine to white wine and rose for something a little more cooling?
Let me introduce you to the ultimate Mediterranean Mezze Platter.
It’s gorgeous, full of health-boosting nutrients and will leave your guests feeling satisfied without overindulging.
Let’s break down this healthy Mediterranean Mezze Platter to boost your confidence in building your own at home.
These are going to be the star of the platter, so I suggest offering 2-3 options. Traditional Mediterranean dips include a variety of hummus flavors, tzatziki and baba ganoush. All of these dips are fantastic options for a mezze platter. When plating the platter, thinner dips like tzatziki are best served in a bowl. Thicker dips, such as hummus, can be served in a bowl, or spread directly onto the platter or board for a fun presentation! Get the recipe for the classic hummus and dairy-free tzatziki sauce I used on this platter in my cookbook.
The Supporting Whole Grains.
Tabbouleh and couscous pilafs are going to be the most traditional when it comes to Mediterranean flavors. However, for my boards I like a variety of shapes and textures, so I opted for baked falafel (the recipe is found in my cookbook Simply Swapped Everyday).
To lighten up the platter while giving it a variety of colors, try out a few different veggie options. Carrots, bell pepper and cucumber can be paired with just about any Mediterranean flavor. While not technically used to scoop up dip, artichokes are also a must when creating a Mediterranean-themed platter. Marinated in olive oil or artichoke hearts from a can both work well.
There is already so much fiber in garbanzo beans (found in hummus) and veggies, so why sell yourself short on the nutrients that crackers can add to your platter? When choosing the perfect cracker, there are several things you want to take into consideration. Most importantly, make sure the crackers are made of whole grains, nuts and/or seeds. You will also want to take into account the shape and thickness as this will affect the overall platter presentation and ease of scooping the dips. Some of my favorite brands include Mary’s Gone Crackers, Jillz Crackers and Flackers.
Mediterranean mezze platters tend to feature predominately savory flavors, but a little sweetness can go a long way to help break up the richness. Grapes or fresh figs are both in keeping with traditional Mediterranean flavors and the purple hue adds a richness of color that will stand out.
While they may take more of a backseat when compared to a traditional cheese board, nuts are a great way to add some crunch, protein and healthy fats to your Mediterranean mezze platter. Pistachios, almonds and walnuts are all great options to fill in any gaps in your platter.
You can’t have a Mediterranean-themed anything without olives, right? A staple in this popular cuisine, olives are a fantastic source of healthy fats which help satisfy cravings. I like to get the ones with the pit in the middle for increased portion control.
The finishing touches will make your platter truly stand out. You don’t have to do anything fancy, but drizzling a little olive oil, a few herbs for greenery and finishing with a crack of black pepper can go a long way!
How to Build a Healthy Mediterranean Mezze Platter Step-By-Step
Now that we’ve talked about the components of the board, let’s discuss the steps to follow when building your Mediterranean Mezze Platter:
- Place any dips that are being served in bowls on your empty board, spacing them out to allow room for fillers. If you are spreading any dips directly on the platter, go ahead and do this now.
- Start big and work your way smaller. Next, plate falafel and veggie dippers on the board, grouping together in a few places throughout the board. Keep in mind here a balance of colors and textures when looking at the platter.
- Start to fill in the gaps with crackers and whatever fresh fruit you are using.
- Nuts and olives can be added to any empty holes, or act as dividers. The board doesn’t require a lot of these foods, so little piles here and there is all you need.
- It’s time to put the finishing touches on with garnishes! You can tuck bunches of herbs in a few places around the outside of the board, sprinkle fresh herbs on top of the dips and crack some black pepper on top of the dips for added color variation.
Entertaining doesn’t have to be stressful or take hours in the kitchen to impress and satisfy your guests! With these components and steps in mind, building a gorgeous and healthy Mediterranean Mezze Platter will be easier than ever.