Learn how to make a gorgeous fruit platter for your next party or gathering! Piled with fresh fruit, cheese, olives, and nuts, this fruit tray is always a hit.
How pretty is this fresh fruit platter?! It’s a colorful combination of fruits, cheeses, spreads, and snacks that I’ve been absolutely loving lately. I’m sharing it today because it would be a fantastic last-minute appetizer for a Labor Day party or cookout, but honestly, it’s a great easy dinner idea, too.
On warm nights when I’m not in the mood to cook, I slice up some fresh fruit, grab a handful of herbs from the porch, and pile them onto a fruit and cheese platter like this one. Jack and I savor the sweet, juicy fruit with the rich, salty cheese, crisp crackers, and aromatic herbs. It’s simple, satisfying, and delicious.
You won’t find a recipe below, per se, so much as a set of tips and ideas for creating your own late summer fruit tray. Whether you serve it at a party or for a laid-back meal, I hope you love it.
Choosing Fruit for a Fruit Platter
Needless to say, a great fruit tray starts with amazing fruit. Right now, in late summer, so many types of fruit are in season – peaches, nectarines, cherries, berries, melon, figs, grapes…
Use whatever types of fruit look best at the farmers market or store. Keep in mind that if you want to add stone fruits like peaches, nectarines, plums, or apricots to your platter, you’ll want to shop a few days in advance. These fruits are often sold before they’re fully ripe and may need some time to soften on your counter.
When you’re ready to arrange the fruit on the platter, leave bite-sized fruit, such as berries and cherries, whole. Cut larger fruit like melon, peaches, and nectarines into slices or wedges. It should all be finger-friendly, so cut the fresh fruit into shapes that are easy to eat without utensils.
More Fruit Platter Ideas
Once you’ve prepared the fruit, deck out your platter with other components to create a variety of textures and flavors. I like to choose at least one item from each of the following categories:
- Cheese. If you can, use a mix of hard and soft cheeses. On this board, I used white cheddar, blue cheese, and herbed goat cheese, which offered a really nice mix of textures and flavors. Tip: slice any hard cheeses, such as cheddar, on a cutting board before arranging them on the platter. That way, they’ll be easy to grab and enjoy!
- Jams or spreads. Along with the fresh fruit, jams and spreads provide a delicious sweet contrast to the salty cheese. I especially like fig or tart cherry jam.
- Olives. They add a fun briny bite to this mix of sweet, fresh, and funky flavors.
- Something for crunch. Round out your party tray with something crunchy. I love toasted almonds and cashews as well as roasted chickpeas. And of course, you’ll want crackers for pairing with the jam and cheese.
- Fresh herbs. Basil or mint are fantastic with all this summer fruit.
What do you like to add to a fresh fruit tray? Let me know in the comments!
More Easy Appetizer Ideas
If you love this fruit and cheese platter, try one of these easy appetizers next:
Summer Fruit Platter
Choose one or more ideas from each category below to assemble a gorgeous fresh fruit platter!
- Peaches or Nectarines
- Tart Cherry Jam or Fig Jam
- Basil Leaves
Cheese & Crackers
- Herbed Goat Cheese or Sheep’s Milk Cheese
- White Cheddar Cheese
- Blue Cheese or any funky cheese
- Crackers or Flatbread Crisps