Bruschetta Bar


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It’s official. It’s going to be a Bruschetta Bar kinda summer. It’s my latest and most favorite way to entertain and I’m 100% sure that you’re all going to love the concept. Are you on board? Great… here’s the deal…

Throwing a dinner party can be a lot of work! Am I right? And sometimes you want to have everyone over for a little impromptu bash and not spend the entire day slaving away in the kitchen. Bruschetta Bars are the answer. It’s essentially the best of the best when it comes to tapas style eating. Grilled bread, tons of vegetables, different kinds of sauces, meats, various cheeses…. and voila… your dinner party is done.

How To: Bruschetta Bar // What's Gaby Cooking

Last month I cooked the inaugural Bruschetta Bar party at my best friends house. It was a mega success and I can promise it will be one of many this coming summer. (and they may all be at his house, because I’m quite excellent at inviting myself over for meals!)

It all starts with a few key ingredients – and one of the most important is grilled bread. This is essential! From there, we can build it up with any kind of assorted toppings you’d like. I’m currently loving an assortment of: Basil Vinaigrette, Red Pepper Sauce, Tomato Confit, Pea Pesto, fresh arugula, charred corn, caramelized onions, caramelized mushrooms, Burrata, ricotta, goat cheese, prosciutto and thinly sliced salami. Obviously you can mix and match different toppings with different sauces and go to TOWN!

Here’s the best part – you can assign some of these topping bowls to friends! So while you might make the grilled bread and the sauces, you can have people bring over caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms, different kinds of cheeses and meats, etc. How brilliant is that?

Then when it comes time to eat you can all make your own personalized concoction from the Bruschetta Bar and dig in. It’s an interactive dinner, which makes for the best kinds of dinner parties if you ask me!

Stuck in a dinner rut? Looking for new delicious dinner ideas?  Check out my roundup of 50+ easy dinner ideas here.

Bruschetta Bar

Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian


  • 1 large loaf of bread sliced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 recipe Basil Vinaigrette
  • 1 recipe Saffron Tomato Confit
  • 1 recipe Red Pepper Sauce
  • 1 recipe Spring Pea Pesto
  • 1 handful fresh arugula
  • 1 cup charred corn you can take an extra shortcut and grab a bag of frozen charred corn at Trader Jpe's
  • 1/2 cup caramelized onions
  • 1/2 cup sautéed mushrooms
  • assorted cheeses
  • assorted meats


  • Heat a grill over medium high heat.
  • Generously drizzle the bread with olive oil on both sides. Using a pair of tongs, transfer the slices of bread to the grill and grill for a few moments until grill marks are present. Flip and continue to grill the bread on the other side for a minute more. Remove and set aside.
  • Remove the garlic from it's paper and carefully rub the garlic on the toasted bread to give it an extra layer of flavor.
  • Arrange the toppings on a large platter or table and serve with the grilled bread.

Photo Credit: Matt Armendariz

Food Styling Credit: Adam Pearson

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  5. betty

    Very great ideas and recipes. Want something special for high teas

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      Hey Chad, where is this happening for you? LMK and we can troubleshoot

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      just had my tech team look into it – should be fixed! LMK if you still have any issues

  9. Jennifer

    This looks awesome, Gaby! We are having friends over this weekend for the first time and I want to do something fun. Could I serve this as a main course? If so, what would you pair with it? I’m thinking maybe a flank steak because it seems like we need more food, but I want to keep it casual. Any thoughts/ideas?

    • Gaby

      I do it as the main course frequently!! I usually do some grill steak, chicken of fish and a salad, and this and call it a night!!

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    Hi Gaby – I made a Bruscetta bar in your honor this past weekend and it was the bomb. Thanks for the recipes and ideas!
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