Here's how to build a beautiful, satisfying mezze board with as many or as few homemade elements as you like. A real crowd-pleaser.
Why we love this recipe
I'm a huge fan of platters, and a fabulous mezze board is no exception. Layered with savory and a few sweet elements, and highly customizable, this dreamy dish works equally well on a buffet at a big party or as a weeknight family dinner. My favorite vegetarian mezze platter includes:
- Several savory spreads
- Pan-fried halloumi cheese
- A few of our favorite two-bite wonders
- Plenty of veggies
- A little bit of fruit
- Generous amounts of good flatbread
What you'll need
Here's a glance at the ingredients you'll need to make this recipe. A mezze board is very flexible, so you can pick and choose — or incorporate additional elements — as you like.
- A good mezze platter includes at least one spread, ideally more than one. Here I've used hummus and tzatziki.
- Including a few heartier ingredients makes the platter a whole meal if you'd like it to be, or simply a nice, substantial appetizer. Here I've included falafel, pan-fried halloumi cheese, and stuffed grape leaves.
- Fresh vegetables like bite-sized tomatoes and cucumber slices are great on their own and also for dipping.
- I'll often include a cooked vegetable or two as well. Here I've pictured charred padrón peppers.
- I like to include one sweet element — here I've halved some beautiful fresh figs. You can include more than one if you prefer. Other good options would be fresh or dried apricots, medjool dates, or pomegranate.
- Lots of good-quality pita or other flatbread scoops up spreads and keeps folks satisfied. Here I've pictured toasted garlic naan.
- To finish, I like to use a drizzle of good olive oil, some za'atar, and flaky sea salt.
If you'd like to make some of your own elements, here are my top recommendations.
- For the hummus, try this one or this one
- Baba Ganoush would also work beautifully
- Here's how to make your own falafel
- Here are my favorite charred padrón peppers
How to make it
Here's an overview of what you'll do to make a gorgeous vegetarian mezze platter. You can see the steps in action in the video that accompanies this post, and get all the details in the recipe card below.
- On a large platter, arrange the spreads
- Add the more substantial ingredients like falafel, halloumi, and stuffed grape leaves.
- Layer on the veggies, fruits, and flatbread.
- Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of za'atar. That's it!
Expert tips and FAQs
You'll find nearly infinite versions of these crowd-pleasing grazing platters throughout parts of the Middle East, Northern Africa, and the Mediterranean. I tend to incorporate my favorite elements of a wide variety of cuisines from these regions onto one board, but you don't have to.
Many of the elements for a mezze platter can be made in advance. If that's important to you, you can certainly choose ingredients that do well with advance prep or purchase. I recommend assembling the board shortly before serving. Store leftover elements in separate airtight containers in the fridge for up to a week.
More favorite platters
- 16 ounces (454 grams) halloumi cheese
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) safflower oil
- 10 ounces (280 grams) hummus
- 8 ounces (227 grams) tzatziki
- 16 pieces falafel
- 16 stuffed grape leaves
- 12 ounces (340 grams) charred padrón peppers
- 1 large English cucumber, sliced on the bias
- 12 ounces (340 grams) bite-sized tomatoes
- 12 ounces (340 grams) figs, halved
- 12 ounces (340 grams) good pita or other flatbread
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon za'atar
- Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon), for sprinkling
- Cut the halloumi into 16 slices. Heat the safflower oil in a 12-inch frying pan over medium-high. Arrange cheese slices in a single layer and cook until the underside is golden-brown. Flip once and cook until the second side browns. Drain on paper towels
- Begin by arranging the hummus and tzatziki on the platter. You can use bowls if they are on the thinner side, or place them directly onto the platter if they're on the thicker side.
- Next, layer on the falafel, grape leaves, and peppers. I like to create two to three placements of each ingredient in various places around the board.
- Layer on the cucumber slices and tomatoes.
- Cut the pita into wedges and arrange them on the board.
- Layer in the figs.
- To finish the platter, drizzle each dip with a tablespoon of the olive oil and sprinkle them with za'atar and a bit of flaky sea salt.
- Safflower oil is my high-smoke-point, neutral-tasting vegetable oil of choice. You can substitute another oil that has similar properties, such as canola, sunflower, peanut, corn, or vegetable oil blend.
- Many of the elements for a mezze platter can be made in advance. If that's important to you, you can certainly choose ingredients that do well with advance prep or purchase. I recommend assembling the board shortly before serving. Store leftover elements in separate airtight containers in the fridge for up to a week.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 452Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 755mgCarbohydrates: 41gFiber: 4gSugar: 4gProtein: 17g