Posted by Jen T on May 19, 2022
Bagels are such beautiful things.
So delightfully tender and chewy on the inside. So perfectly crackly on the outside. While I haven’t had the pleasure of visiting New York yet, someday I vow to eat my way through that city – savoring every slice of pizza, fresh bagel and authentic black-and-white cookie along the way. In the meantime, of course, the neighborhood bakery and deli is the next best thing for me – and for most of us.
The good news: there are a lot of delicious bagels out there, and there are all kinds of ways to make the most of them. My favorite: making your own bagel board!
You can personalize it with all of your favorite toppings. Plus, creating your own charcuterie-style board is really fun for small gatherings, like a weekend brunch with your girlfriends, baby shower or just inviting over the neighbors. Since everyone can help themselves to different toppings, it’s even family-friendly, too!
How to Create Your Bagel Board
Ready to get started? Here’s how to put your own bagel board together for breakfast or brunch:
1. Gather Your Supplies.
First, grab a large wooden cutting board, pizza paddle or other serving tray to put together your charcuterie-style bagel board. You’ll want a variety of small dishes, spoons and spreaders for cream cheese and other toppings.
2. Offer Different Cream Cheese Varieties.
Oh, cream cheese. Your luscious little bit of heaven. (If I’m honest, it’s my favorite part.) For your board, I’d recommend including three different cream cheese flavors: one plain, one sweet and one savory. That way, you’ll have something for everyone!
Tip: When choosing your sweet variety, consider a mixed berry or honey walnut spread. For a simple savory cream cheese, simply mix 2 tablespoons Spinach & Herb Seasoning or Dill Pickle Dip Mix with 1 (8 ounce) container of whipped cream cheese; chill until ready to serve. It pairs perfectly with smoked salmon or fresh veggies!
3. Bring on the Bagels.
Serve a few different sweet and savory types of bagels, like:
– Asiago cheese
– Chocolate chip
By the way, mini bagels make a great alternative for kiddos. Blissfully bite-sized, they make a cute choice for baby showers, book clubs and other little get-togethers, too!
4. Pick Your Proteins.
Love a little lox? Smoked salmon is a match made in heaven with bagels and cream cheese, and a little goes a long way.
I also love to include sliced hard-boiled eggs, 1-2 deli meats (e.g., deli ham, turkey or salami) and mild cheese slices.
5. Add a Sweet Spread or Two.
Add a couple small dishes with jams for dipping and dolloping, such as our deliciously sweet-tart Rhubarb Strawberry Fruit Spread.
Whipped with sweet honey and warm spices, Cinnamon Honey Butter is divine with plain or cinnamon-raisin bagels, too. Perfect with coffee, tea or orange juice!
6. Go Va-Va-Voom with Veggies.
Arrange your board with an assortment of fresh, crunchy garden veggies for bagel sandwiches. Try to include different colors and textures with options such as:
– Sliced cucumbers
– Alfalfa sprouts
– Thinly sliced radishes
– Sliced tomatoes
Tip: Be sure to set items that go well together next to each other on your bagel board. For example, nestle some sweet red onions beside the smoked salmon. It makes assembly easier for your guests!
7. Add Different Toppings & Textures.
If you’d like, you can also include a variety of sweet toppings like granola, chopped nuts and honey. Small dishes of salty-tangy capers, pickles and whole grain mustard make a fun finishing touch for savory bagels.
8. Fill in Fresh Fruit.
And last but not least, make your board overflow with beautiful colors and varieties of fresh fruit. It’s always the perfect accompaniment for any breakfast or brunch! Depending on the size of your board, try:
1 pint fresh strawberries
1 pint fresh blueberries
1-2 sliced avocados
½ sliced cantaloupe
9. Be Creative.
But above all, relax and have fun with it! There’s no right or wrong, so don’t be afraid to make it your own.
Oh, and by the way, even if you run out of space on your charcuterie board, you can always surround it with a couple additional plates or trays – turning your bagel board into a full bagel bar.
When it comes to bagels, it really can be “everything”!