Need a show stopping appetizer for this holiday season? Look no further, this Antipasto Salad Christmas Wreath is as festive as it is delicious!
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Antipasto Salad Christmas Wreath
One of the mainstays at our holiday celebrations (and most get togethers in general) is a good Antipasto platter. It's light and delicious, without being overly filling which makes it an excellent appetizer for a crowd or a great side dish (although I could happily make a meal out of one too!). It's also seriously easy to assemble without any unnecessary extra work or cooking.
A good antipasto has all sorts of fresh and tasty fixings. For mine I ent with sweet cherry tomatoes. Briny olives and marinated artichoke hearts give a nice zing. Fresh mozzarella and chunks of sharp provolone and savory chunks of soppressata round out this antipasto salad recipe.
I wanted to make this extra festive, 'tis the season, after all. So I used some fresh rosemary and fresh basil to help make this salad resemble a wreath, complete with a deliciously creamy bowl of whipped ricotta in the middle. Now that is a showstopper appetizer, if ever there was one!
Tips for making this antipasto recipe
- You can adapt this to any amount of people you'll be serving, just alter the amounts and platter accordingly.
- It's best to go with a flat plate to get the full wreath effect. I used one of my dinner plates and a small bowl in the middle for the whipped ricotta.
- Feel free to change out ingredients based on your taste.
- I didn't use salad dressing because I didn't feel it necessary, but I added it into the recipe card as an optional addition if you prefer this to be served dressed. Just dress it in the bowl before assembling the wreath. Make sure you don't over dress it! You could always have a bowl of dressing on the side for those who prefer more.
- Mix all the antipasto ingredients together in a large bowl before assembling the wreath.
- To make assembly easier, I like to start by placing the bowl of whipped ricotta into the middle of the platter. I place some sprigs of fresh rosemary and alternating it with pretty basil leaves. I like to do a small section at a time by placing some herbs so that the pretty ends stick out a bit and the cut ends are on the plate and then I place some of the antipasto salad onto that section to hold the herbs in place. I slowly make my way around until the platter is full and the herbs on the outside of the plate make it all the way around. Then I carefully place smaller sprigs of the herbs around the whipped ricotta bowl.
- Be sure to refrigerate until you're ready to serve. I covered mine lightly in plastic wrap.
Frequently asked questions about Christmas wreath antipasto tray
- Why do they call it an antipasto salad? Antipasto is derived from latin with "Anti" meaning before and "Pastus" meaning meal. It's also the traditional first course in an Italian meal.
- Can I make this ahead? You can certainly prep the ingredients ahead, I'd encourage you to mix them together and assemble the wreath the day that you'll be serving them.
- How long with antipasto salad keep? It will still be tasty for a few days if kept covered in the refrigerator, but it's definitely at it's best on the day it's assembled.
- What goes well with antipasto salad? I like to serve it with a nice loaf or slices of Italian bread of baguette to spread the whipped ricotta on and a glass of good wine.
- How do you make the whipped ricotta? I have a seriously easy recipe in this recipe for Broccoli Rabe and Ricotta Crostini.
Antipasto Salad Christmas Wreath
- 1 16 ounce container ricotta cheese (I use full fat because yolo!)
- 3 heaping Tablespoons Romano or Parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 ½ cups Fresh mozzarella balls
- 1 cup Sharp provolone cheese, cut into bite-size chunks
- 1 ½ cups soppressata, cut into bite-size chunks
- 1 8 ounce container cherry tomatoes
- 2 ½ cups olives, I used black and green
- 1 14 ounce can quartered artichoke hearts in brine
- You favorite bottle vinaigrette dressing optional (I didn't use dressing)
- 4-5 bunches fresh rosemary sprigs (ours come 4 to a bunch)
- 1 large bunch fresh basil
- In a large bowl, whip together the ricotta, Romano cheese, salt and pepper until smooth and creamy. Place into small bowl and put the bowl into the middle of your platter.
- In another large bowl, combine all antipasto ingredients except for the herbs in mix until well combined.
- Working in small sections at a time, place some sprigs of fresh rosemary and alternating it with pretty basil leaves. Placing the herbs so that the pretty ends stick out a bit and the cut ends are on the plate. Then place some of the antipasto salad onto that section to hold the herbs in place.
- Slowly make your way around until the platter is full and the herbs on the outside of the plate make it all the way around.
- Carefully place smaller sprigs of the herbs around the whipped ricotta bowl.
- Cover and refrigerate until serving.
f you tried this recipe please comment and rate it 🙂 I love hearing your feedback and answering your questions!
Try some other easy and festive appetizers include:
- Pomegranate Thyme Baked Brie
- Bloody Mary Cheese Ball
- Spinach and Feta Stuffed Bread
- Clams Casino
- Shrimp with Pesto and Proscuitto
- Easiest Ever Hot Artichoke Dip
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