Who doesn’t love a good party? Party prep, on the other hand, can be less of a blast. From cooking countless dishes to mixing pitchers of cocktails (OK, that’s pretty fun) to tidying up before and after, being a host is no easy feat.
But there are lots of shortcuts you can take — ones that will appear far from simple to your guests. Our favorite hack: party platters.
With the right ingredients — most of which don’t require cooking — and strategic plating, party platters can easily be the prettiest (and tastiest) way to please guests.
From cheese to chocolate to dip galore, these no-fuss party platters are definitely worth celebrating.
It’s hard to go wrong with a classic meat and cheese board. The hard part: picking the best pairings. We love this board’s mix of textures and flavors and pop of color from the fruit and olives.
Though we love the assortment as is, it’s also fun to try different nuts (like pistachios or spiced almonds) and whatever fruit is in season. Another pro tip: Throw in homemade crackers for extra brownie points.
Who needs crackers? This meat and cheese platter uses melon as an alternative, adding all kinds of color and juiciness to a seemingly simple plate.
Top with fresh herbs and chopped pistachios, and hey, if you fancy some baguette, we won’t tell. Perfect for a summer barbecue or beach party, these flavors pair wonderfully with a glass of crisp white wine or rosé.
Can’t decide between meat and cheese, hummus and veggies, or bread and fruit? You don’t have to! This party platter uses a bit of everything — berries, nuts, olives, dips, cheese, meat, bread — to make everyone happy.
Stick to lighter cheeses like goat, feta, and mozzarella, so everything blends well. Feel free to go wild with everything else.
This is an excellent example of how buying your favorite snacks at the store can actually come together to create the perfect party platter.
We love how the plate keep things (slightly) on the healthy side with chocolate hummus and lots of fresh fruit and nuts. But don’t worry — there are plenty of meats and cheeses too.
Can’t decide what to make for dessert? How about serving a little bit of everything?
Sliced fruit, chocolate, and a few simple spreads go a long way — and mean you don’t have to commit to one flavor. For more options, throw in some oat crackers and slices of gluten-free zucchini bread.
Party for 2, 5, 10… no matter the size, it’s hard to go wrong with chocolate fondue. Chocolate-caramel fondue, to be exact. (Oh, and a cheesecake fondue too.)
Add whatever dippers you fancy — fresh fruit is our fave — as long as there’s a nice balance of sweet and salty. Decorating with flowers is optional. Pairing with Champagne is strongly encouraged.
Mezze platters are a great way to spread the (nutritious) love. Full of healthy fats, protein, fiber, and fresh produce, this is a great plate to accompany grilled meat — or a few pizzas.
To keep things simple, opt for hummus and tzatziki and pair with toasted pita wedges, whole-wheat crackers, and sliced veggies. And don’t worry about waste: Leftovers can be used to make a great Greek salad.
This brunch platter couldn’t be simpler — or more beautiful. Filled with fresh fruit, yogurt, honey, and granola, it’s the perfect way to keep things healthy (and mellow) so you can still cherish your morning cup in your pajamas.
For a large party, consider offering a few different types of yogurt. We love Greek yogurt and unsweetened coconut yogurt for anyone avoiding dairy, as well as various granolas. And since it’s so simple, we say there’s no shame in a mimosa (or two).
We love that this platter keeps thing so low-key that you don’t even have to take the store-bought hummus out of its package.
It’s dressed up with a fresh bruschetta topping — which is a breeze to make — and drizzled with thick balsamic. Since the chopped veg make such a great topper, we say put a bowl of extra to the side so people can load up as needed.
Gluten-free, nut-free, vegetarian, vegan… this platter provides a healthy assortment that will satisfy everyone’s dietary needs.
With a whopping five dips — spicy olive tapenade and smoky artichoke hummus, just to name two — and various vehicles for dipping, even cheese and meat devotees won’t miss their staples.
An easy way to spice up classic crudité platters is to go extra colorful with the veggies.
Instead of orange carrots, opt for multicolored ones. Fan of radishes? Try the watermelon variety. Tzatziki goes with literally every type of veg, so pile the platter high with anything you’d like.
We also love serving it with olive tapenade and hummus to encourage even more veggie consumption… and because they’re delicious.
Throwing a party can be a blast, but only if you’re not too exhausted from all the prep work, right?
These party platters will help you prep like a pro, create an Insta-worthy spread, and still have the energy for a great time. Go on and dig in to these masterpieces with your guests. You deserve it.