ADDICTED TO MY GROCER
Trader Joe’s and I have been in a serious relationship for a while now – It helps that it’s a 3-minute drive from my house! I love their products, their pricing, how kind the employees are, and the samples. I took our family’s current favorite Trader Joe’s products to make an easy snack board supper. Lucky for me I usually have all of these products on hand so this silly excuse for dinner doesn’t require a trip to the store either!
How to Build a Snack Board Supper
Making a successful snack board requires some strategy, but once you understand the concept, it’s easy to pull together. Here are my top tips for making the ultimate snack board. Find some of my favorite wooden boards for snack boards in March: Products I Love post.
DON’T GO OVERBOARD WITH YOUR BOARD
The best snack boards are composed of hearty bits and bites that go well together, but there’s no need to have dozens of items on your board. Start off with five or so main items, even if you’re making a snack board for a crowd. Arrange the items on a board, tray, cookie sheet or plate, using larger amounts for larger groups.
BALANCE YOUR BOARD
When making your board, choose foods that are good at room temperature to make sure things can last the length of your meal or party. I recommend including one of each of the following:
- A healthy item: Always include vegetables and/or fruit. Snack boards are about balance and the ability to make a complete meal out of easy snacks, so it’s important to include nutritious items.
- Meat: Unlike a traditional charcuterie board, the meaty options for a snack board don’t have to be preserved, smoked or cured. You can include items like chicken, cold cuts or meatballs.
- Cheese: Traditional cheese boards usually feature a few exemplary cheeses. Snack boards, however, may include cheese, but it shouldn’t be the star of the board. And it doesn’t have to be terribly fancy; your everyday Swiss makes the cut with ease, as does cheddar or Monterey Jack.
- Dip: Including a dip is essential. A dip helps bring seemingly unrelated items together on a snack board. No need for an elaborate homemade dip: Greek yogurt, vinaigrette or store-bought hummus are all great unifiers. Having crunchy crackers alongside creamy dips adds to the fun.
KEEP IT SIMPLE.
- Cooking isn’t required, so if you do make something, keep it simple. This whole fuss-free endeavor should only take 15 minutes to throw together. To make composing a board manageable, place the emphasis on what you can pull from your pantry or buy from the grocery store. Spend your time shopping for items, prepping the ingredients and organizing your board in an artistic way.
DON’T FORGET DESIGN.
- We eat with our eyes first, so think about color and texture when assembling your board. A board full of the same color won’t draw people in. And a board full of the same texture won’t keep them interested. Try to have an item or two that brings a pop of color, whether it’s veggies or sliced hard-boiled eggs.
TAILOR YOUR BOARD TO THE OCCASION.
- Consider the occasion when choosing items for your board. It’s easy to add a little extra flair without going overboard for special events. You can easily upgrade your board with just a few fancy items like smoky salt, Marcona almonds and/or a nice jam or honey. For more casual occasions, use simpler foods. The most important thing is that they taste good together and beautifully arranged.