Grazing tables are the perfect way to feed a crowd and, as we found out at our Brunch Party, they are a great conversation piece too! We are obsessed with how it turned out. Below are all the tips and tricks we learned through the planning and execution phases of this project don’t miss the printable grocery list we have for you at the bottom of this post!
This can be a daunting step because the possibilities seem endless when it comes to a grazing table. I found that once I narrowed it down to loose “theme” (ours was brunch) and decided which accessories I was using, it became easier to make a plan.
Things to know before you shop
- Size of the table you’re using
- Dishes/cutting boards you will use
- How many people you need to feed
Don’t be afraid to look at inspiration photos, print them off and then physically draw out how you want your grazing table to look! It doesn’t have to be perfect, but if you’re a visual person like me, it helps to put things in perspective.
Because of the nature of the food you are getting, I would recommend shopping no more than a day or two before your event. Heather and I knew we had to make a trip to Raley’s for all of our grazing table needs! You may remember that we used Raley’s party catering for Sullivan’s birthday party over the summer, too, so we knew we wouldn’t be disappointed. This time, we did the shopping and we were able to easily find every single fancy cheese, fresh fruit, and charcuterie on my list.
Other Ideas (Not Included On The Shopping List)
Depending on your theme and vision, your shopping list may vary from ours, that’s the fun of it! Here are a few other ideas to make your grazing table unique to your event:
- Antipasto salad (we got ours from the Raley’s deli)
- Nuts (we decided to go nut free for our event, but they are great filler)
- Fancy cutting board(s)
- Small bowls
- Cake plate
- Craft or parchment paper
- Greenery (eucalyptus, sprigs of herbs, flowers–lots of options but stick to just one, maybe two)
- Cheese knives
- Serving spoons
Grazing Table Prep
I highly recommend prepping what you can the night before your event, if at all possible. Chop up the veggies, wash and dry the fruit, slice the salami, roll the deli meat. These are all things that will hold up creation on the day of. The one thing I don’t recommend slicing beforehand is any of the soft or crumbly cheeses–save that task for day of.
Grazing Table Creation
First, cover your table with your craft or parchment paper. Then lay out the dishes/platters/bowls/cutting boards/cake plates/etc. Whatever you are using, it is helpful to build around them!
Place food items in this order: cheese, charcuterie, loaves of bread (sliced), crackers, veggies/fruits, other grains, then anything else you have.
Keep in mind that the point is to have all the real estate of the table completely covered, so don’t be afraid of some overlap or foods touching.
Utilize your serving platters and bowls
I used platters and a cake plate to house the soft cheeses that couldn’t be sliced and needed cheese knives. I then filled in around them with carrots, cucumber, blueberries and jars of jam or honey.
The small bowls were used for “wet” things like olives, pickles, mozzarella pearls.
Other grazing table tips
To keep your table from looking to “perfect” or uniform, garnish some of the items ahead of time. For example:
- Pour the pomegranate seeds over a loaf of bread
- Drizzle honey on the Brie
- Place sprigs of rosemary in with the butter
- Scatter nuts all over
The goal is to have no “gaps” on your table so lots of filler is important!
There you have it! Tag us on Instagram and pin the image below on Pinterest so we can see your beautiful Grazing Table creations!