How to Build a Crepe Bar
Whether it's brunch, lunch, or any other time of day, you really can't go wrong with a crepe. And if you're feeding a crowd, a crepe bar is the perfect way to make sure everyone gets exactly what they want. Crepe bars are easier to put together than you might think - here's how to get one started.
The Crepes - First things first: the crepes. These pancake-like wrappings are easy to make up, store, and serve. We recommend going with a neutral flavor - this will let your guests have a delicious experience no matter what fillings they choose to use. Start with a good recipe (like this one), then decide when to make them. Day-of is usually best, but there's no reason you can't make a few batches the day before and store them in your fridge. Keep your crepes in a 200 degree oven until it's time to serve.
The Spreads - Spreads are the foundation of a great crepe. Smear them on to help all your other fillings stick together. Sweet spreads like lemon curd, hazelnut spread, or creme pat give your crepes a rich, indulgent start. Or go with savory spreads like whipped cream cheese or pesto for a more robust experience.
The Fruit - Fruit and sweet crepes go hand in hand. Berries are an easy place to start - try raspberries or blueberries and you won't even need to cut them up. Slice bananas into discs or stew up some apples and pears. If stone fruits like peaches or nectarines are in season they can be an extra special treat.
The Toppings - Gotta love toppings like toasted coconut, nuts, and chocolate chips. Set some out in unbreakable glasses for a pretty way to top off your crepes. Not only do these toppings add a little flavor, they also mix up your crepe's texture. Don't underestimate these final touches - they can make or break your crepey concoction.
Go Savory - We've given sweet crepes a lot of attention so far, but that doesn't mean that they're the only option. Savory crepes can be just as much fun, and work perfectly for brunches. Set out cream cheese, smoked salmon, hollandaise sauce, caramelized onions, deli meats, and sliced veggies to start. Or check out this list for plenty more inspiration!
A Few Sample Combinations
If you want to get the most out of a few toppings, try sticking to one of these tried and true combinations:
Berries and Cream: Set out berries, fruit sauces, whipped cream cheese, and toasted coconut
Nut Butter Bonanza: Combine your favorite nut butters with sliced bananas and apples, then add in some chocolate chips or caramel drizzle
Steak Bomb: Go for thinly sliced steak, caramelized onions, sauteed mushrooms, and a little mild cheese.