Mix Up Your Everyday Eating Routine with These Exciting Pancake Board Ideas!
Bored with same old – same old? If you’re searching for a way to take your breakfast experience of eating to a whole new level, keep reading because there’s something about filling up a board with an eye-catching bounty of delicious breakfast foods that changes everything.
To gather more than a few delicious breakfast ideas, giving you everything you’ll need to create an exciting gluten-free pancake board. And then outlining ideas from toppings and sides to how-to tips for making it super simple – so you can create a feast among breakfast feasts that will have everyone torn between adoring and devouring your ultimate breakfast creation.
There is no easier way to break up breakfast mealtime boredom (or to entertain) than with a simple but super impressive Breakfast Charcuterie Platter. Add all your favorites for a casual feast that doesn’t involve hours spent in the kitchen!
Why I L♥VE 'em!
I love serving boards of all kinds because it means hungry eaters can build their plates themselves, and I have to admit there’s a lot less hassle for me when it’s self-serve. And you’ve got to love that “Willy Wonka” first-sight split-second few moments of “Oooohhh! And, Ahhh!” when everyone sees the food piled onto the board before they move in to devour and gobble everything up!
Cheeseboards, charcuterie, dessert bars? Yup, always the same response.
This gluten-free pancake board is no different. It’s impressive, easy, and a perfect option for feeding the masses, or just a few, to make things memorable for breakfast or Sunday brunch. It’s also highly versatile, so how much you make and making it your way is entirely doable and scalable with whatever you have on hand!
How To Make A Breakfast Board
1) Choose your board or platter: A board or platter acts as the frame for the food. You don’t need something fancy for putting this breakfast board together. But you’ll typically want the surface of what you use to be larger than a typical cutting board. Big cutting boards can be pricey! We get it. So, you could use anything from a baking sheet or giant size cutting board to a serving tray or large platter for a family-sized meal.
Other alternatives for creating large breakfast boards for displaying food might include:
- Get Creative: Using two or three cutting boards or platters pushed together or arranged artfully to create a more extensive food spread on your counter or table may be all it takes.
- Hardware stores and Home Improvement retailers: Many stores have trained staff and equipment for cutting down boards to the exact size you need. With lots of wood options from knotty pine, oak, or maple boards, coming up with something with the look you want and sized right might be just down the street. And you can always finish board(s) by sealing or painting, cover them with parchment or kraft paper, or wash them in hot soapy water to make them food safe.
- Salvage Store and Lumber Store finds: You can often uncover large butcher block countertop cutoffs or pieces of wood, tile, or slate that are reasonably priced. Just be sure to scrub anything you get in hot soapy water before using it.
2) Pancakes or waffles?: If eaters prefer filling and rolling up their breakfast to eat, pancakes are an easy, logical choice. Waffles are thicker, more crispy, and typically larger with more texture than a pancake. Either way, both are usually enjoyed with syrup, and they equally offer a lot of possibilities for garnishing with berries and fresh whipped cream! You could also make Dutch Poffertjes (mini, fluffy pancakes, traditionally made with yeast and buckwheat flour) served with powdered sugar and warm butter, or Russian Blini (tasty savory or sweet mini pancakes), or pancake shapes for kid-friendly serving.
3) Add a few small bowls: Fill bowls with yummy foods and condiments like honey, nuts, toasted pumpkin seeds, Greek yogurt, small fruits, or fruit butter.
4) A sweet spot: In ours, we’ve added blueberry syrup (see Step 1 in the recipe); you could also add sweets like honey, berry sauces, or whipped cream. Additionally, applesauce, pudding, or granola are delicious sides. And who could forget fresh fruits – sliced apples, banana, kiwis, peaches, pears, pineapple wedges, melon, oranges, cherries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries are all healthy natural sweet additions.
5) Some savory: We’ve added crispy bacon, but you could also include sausages, prosciutto, smoked salmon, salmon roe (caviar), or other proteins like nut butter, toasted or spiced almonds, pecans, or walnuts.
6) Include some Eggs: Don’t forget eggs. Ideas range from fluffy scrambled eggs, deviled eggs, or eggs baked into quiche or frittatas; all would make delicious savory choices to incorporate on a breakfast board. When including eggs, you may also want to add toppings for eggs that make sense, like grated cheese, sour cream, sautéed mushrooms, guacamole, salsa, or fresh veggies like cherry tomatoes or sliced avocados.
7) Potatoes: Cheesy hash browns, crispy butter-fried diced or sliced potatoes are great because you can prepare them first thing in the morning, keeping them in the oven to stay warm while you’re making your pancakes.
8) Garnish: This is entirely optional, but it’s also fun for making the breakfast board look super appealing to diners. I like to include spices such as star anise or cinnamon sticks, both for the aromatics and to decorate the board.
Can I Make A Breakfast Board Ahead?
Absolutely! Pancake batter can be prepared up to two days ahead and kept in the fridge. Another option is to make the pancakes the night before, quickly warming them up in a hot pan or the microwave before assembling the board. Bacon and eggs taste best when they’re made just before serving; the best way to make the bacon is to bake it on a large sheet pan (see our recipe) for no mess and no fuss!
How to Create A Breakfast Board In 6 Easy Steps
Step # 1 - Save time by getting things ready to go the night before:
You can do several things to make the following day go smoothly. If feeding a large crowd, prepare 2 to 3 batches of pancake batter ahead of *time, storing it in covered containers (like mason jars). You can also wash fruits (but wait to slice them), prepare your pan with bacon, whip up fancy syrups (see recipe), make candied nuts, dish up things like chocolate chips or granola, etc.
*Note: If you’re making buttermilk pancake batter, mix and store the dry ingredients in one mason jar and the wet ingredients separately in another until the next day. When you need them, mix the wet and the dry right before you’re ready to make the pancakes. Doing it this way will keep the batter from going flat overnight.
Step # 2 - Map out what your board will look like:
You can make a sketch or lay things out the night before or arrange many of your board’s components in the morning, but it’s helpful to get a basic concept of how your board will look. Gather things like plates, bowls, and serving utensils that you’ll need, and organize them where you want them. Use scraps of paper or sticky notes for where everything goes, and double-check any list you have made to be sure you’ve accounted for everything. You can always make changes as you start adding the food, but it’s nice to plan ahead of time for how you want things to look.
Step # 3 - Day of - What to make first:
Make all your hot items like potatoes and bacon first, then put them in a 200°F oven or under a heat lamp (if you’re lucky enough to have one) to stay warm while you make the pancakes.
Step # 4 - Arrange room temperature and cold foods on the board:
While the pancake griddle is heating, assemble and dish up toppings like syrups* and fruits, items that will be okay being out of the fridge for the next 20 minutes or so onto your board. Be sure to take the butter out of the refrigerator so it can soften too. Slice up any “finger fruits” like apples, oranges, bananas, kiwis, pears, etc., and set them aside. If you’re slicing apples, pears, and bananas, give them a quick dunk in lemon water or orange juice so they don’t turn brown.
* Optional: Heat the syrup (but don’t boil), so it’s nicely warmed when diners pour it over the pancakes.
Step # 5 - Make the pancakes:
Using a measuring cup or ladle, to keep your pancake size consistent, scoop the batter onto the griddle (a scant ¼ cup for each pancake), and cook for about 2 minutes until tiny bubbles form on top of the batter. Flip and continue cooking until golden brown. To keep them warm while making additional batches, arrange them in a single layer on a cooling rack, placing them uncovered in a warm oven for up to 20 minutes.
Step # 6 - Fill the board:
The final step before breakfast is ready is to add anything else from the fridge that needs to go on the board. You’ll want to save things like filling bowls with fruit toppings or setting out whipped cream for the last-minute right before arranging the pancakes. Then, put on the things you’ve kept warm like bacon, potatoes, scrambled eggs, or breakfast casseroles. Finally, pancakes! Arrange them by fanning them out, stacking them up, or however, you’d like. Lastly, fill in any empty areas on the board with sliced fruit, small dishes of yogurt or granola, and garnish with things like sprinkling a tiny bit of powdered sugar on the top of a few pancakes or spreading a few spices such as star anise or cinnamon sticks here and there.
Yell to everyone that breakfast is ready! Or whatever your Come and Get It call is 🙂 Step back and enjoy!
Picture the recipe step-by-step...
Sit Back & Enjoy!!
Enjoy these easy and creative ways to serve your favorite pancake breakfast, no matter what time of the day you eat it.
And whether you go all-in with plain pancakes, mix them up with whole grains or berry-fill your pancakes, make mini pancakes, or include pancake shapes for kids, I hope you’ll go wild with the entire pancake board idea – making yours as elaborate or simple as you wish!
Other Pancake Recipes:
When you make a pancake board yourself, be sure to leave a comment below, share it, and rate it – it’s super helpful for other readers and us. Just click the blue-green comment bubble on your screen’s bottom-left to jump to the comment area below.
And as always, don’t forget to take a picture and tag it #CookingGfreeDeliciously on Instagram. We love seeing what you cook up!
Gluten-Free Pancake Board (Breakfast Charcuterie Platter)
- mixing bowls
- Sheet pan
- Aluminum foil
- Non-stick Griddle or Skillet
- Utensils (Measuring Cups & Spoons, Whisk, Spatula, Knife)
For the Pancakes
- Gluten-Free Pancake Mix , or substitute your favorite gluten-free pancake mix recipe
- 1 large Egg
- ¾ cup Milk
- 1 tablespoon unsalted Butter melted
Toppings & Sides
- 8 ounces Bacon
- Toppings such as fresh fruit, nut butter, chocolate chips, etc.
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a sheet pan with foil.
For the Syrup
- Whisk together 1/3 cup maple syrup with ¼ cup Blueberry Jam. Set aside.
- Lay 8-ounces of bacon (about 9-10 strips) in a single layer on the prepared sheet pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until desired doneness. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain and cool.
- Meanwhile, whisk together Gluten-Free Pancakes mix, egg, milk, and melted butter or oil for the batter according to the package instructions. Heat a greased nonstick griddle or heavy skillet over medium heat. Add batter a scant ¼ cup for each pancake, and cook for about 2 minutes until tiny bubbles form on top of the batter. Flip and continue cooking until golden brown.
(Nutritional values are an approximation. Actual nutritional values may vary due to preparation techniques, variations related to suppliers, regional and seasonal differences, or rounding.)
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