Don’t make entertaining more difficult than it should be. When you need an easy, crowd-pleasing appetizer that looks impressive, baked Brie is your ever-reliable and ultra-easy standby.
I'm one of those people who has a hard time showing up anywhere empty-handed. And while I'm always searching for new snacks and treats to bring to events so I don't get into a rut of showing up with the same dip or baked goods every single time, I think it's important to have a few go-to dishes. For me, that ever-reliable, always-crowd-pleasing appetizer is baked Brie.
When I need to pull together a no-fail, shareable snack in minutes, this darling French cheese always has my back--all I have to do is dress it up a bit. It's delicious and really couldn't be easier. Just unwrap, trim, bake, and top it with the topping ingredients of your choice. (Caveat: based on your toppings, sometimes you will add them before baking). Then, serve the warm, gooey goodness with your favorite sturdy crackers. Whether served alone or as a part of a simple meat and cheese board, your guests will rave over it every. single. time. I mean, really, what's not to love about warm, melty cheese covered in a sweet-salty glaze?
Because it's really just that simple, I firmly believe every home cook should know the general rules for baking Brie and have a few favorite topping ideas to keep in their back pocket for easy entertaining anytime. To start gathering inspiration, check out Our Best Brie Recipes.
General rules for preparing baked brie:
1. Preheat oven to 400°.
2. Using a serrated knife, trim and discard the topmost rind. Place Brie on a lightly greased baking sheet or oven-safe serving dish, and bake 5 to 8 minutes, or until cheese is just melted.
3. While Brie is baking, prepare your topping ingredients. Remove Brie from the oven, top as desired, and you're ready to party.
Our easiest topping ideas:
1. Honey + chopped toasted walnuts + dried cranberries + fresh thyme leaves
2. Cherry preserves + balsamic vinegar + cracked black pepper + chopped toasted pecans
3. Sliced strawberries + toasted, sliced almonds + honey + chopped rosemary
4. Fruit preserves + toasted, chopped pecans + golden raisins
5. Brown sugar + toasted old-fashioned oats + toasted, chopped walnuts + diced apples + cinnamon
6. Puff pastry + fig jam + dried cranberries + toasted, chopped hazelnuts
*Note: If you've never tried brie en croute--which means to wrap it up in dough and bake it--stop what you're doing and go buy puff pastry, like now. See this recipe for Harvest-Baked Brie as an example.
7. Fresh cranberries + sugar + shelled, chopped pistachios + orange zest