How to Serve Tapenade (12 Days of Tapenade)

Tapenade keeps well, and you can use it all kinds of ways. Here are some great ideas, plus more from readers in the comments section, below.

In my refrigerator right now are two batches of tapenade—both the green and black. I adore this olive paste, because not only does it work on its own (just spread it on a cracker and serve with some French cocktails), but it’s the appetizer that keeps on giving. A few ideas:

1. Serve tapenade solo on crackers.

Remember what I told you about the French not going nuts over the appetizer spread? They don’t want you to stuff yourself silly before you sit down at their tables. So simply bring out something interesting to nibble on that just gets the appetite aroused. Tapenade does the trick.

So easy and so good. Photo by Sarmale / OAyuso via flickr.










2. Serve tapenade with hummus on crackers. 

This is a baby-step above #1, but simply adds a little something extra.

Hummus-Tapenade Crackers. Photo by Richard Swearinger.















Have you seen my Top-10 List of Christmas Gifts for the Food and France Lover? Check it out!


3. Serve tapenade with cheese on crackers.


4. Tuck tapenade into puff pastry spirals.

Black Olive Tapenade Spirals—one of my favorite appetizer recipes in The Bonne Femme Cookbook.

eatlivetravelwrite blogger Mardi shot this pretty photo of my Black Olive Tapenade Spirals.










5. Spoon Tapenade into gougères.

The richness of Gougères and the spark of tapenade do some amazing things together. And remember, you can freeze Gougères.

Slice one of these babies open, spoon in some tapenade, and serve like a little mini-sandwich. Photo by Jules M via Flickr.















6. Give Tapenade as a Gift

Just spoon some into a pretty jar, tie it a ribbon around it, and give. Maybe with a bottle of wine and some crackers. And a copy of my book. Be sure to tell the recipient to keep the tapenade refrigerated.

Photo by Marisa | Food in Jars via Flickr.










7. Spoon atop deviled eggs

Take a shortcut and go to a great deli for the deviled eggs. Top with tapenade, which of course, you have on hand in your fridge.

Right. That’s caviar. But black-olive tapenade is a nice look-alike, and tastes amazing, too. Photo by wEnDaLicious via Flickr











8. Tuck into an French Rolled Omelet

Speaking of eggs, I love serving tapenade (especially the black one) in a French rolled omelet. I serve this the day after a gathering as Dave and I go over our “post party gossip.” And of course there’s a recipe for French Rolled Omelet in my cookbook.

A French rolled omelet. The only thing that’s missing is a little black olive tapenade. Photo by thebittenword via flickr.










9. Stuff into cherry tomatoes with a little feta.

The idea comes to us via It’s a “see it do it/nothing to it” recipe, but for the full description, check out her blog.

Photo courtesy of Littleredkitchen via Flickr.














10. Put a little in some soup.

There are two ways to do this. One is to spread some on toast and float the top atop the soup. The other is to use very, very little and sprinkle it here and there as a garnish. (You don’t want it to sink into the soup). Put some on the rim of the soup bowl, and diners can spoon it into their soup as they wish. (PS: This is my Silky and Light Potato Soup from my book.)










11 & 12: HELP! Good heavens, I’ve come up with 10 great ideas….I need two more. Can you help? Post below (or on my Facebook page)! Thanks.

I suppose you be wanting the recipe! Here’s the recipe for Black Olive Tapenade from The Bonne Femme Cookbook. Enjoy.

PS: If you’ve found this post helpful, next time you want to buy something from Amazon, get to through one of my links. No matter what you buy, I’ll get a small commission from your purchase–even if it’s not the item I’m advertising. So head to Amazon and start shopping! You’ll help support more posts from Chez Bonne Femme (without adding to your costs whatsoever). Thank you so much for your consideration.








Print Friendly

21 comments to How to Serve Tapenade (12 Days of Tapenade)

  • Marsi

    Tapanade as the sauce base for a provencal-style pizza.

    Or a light layer smeared on baguette for a turkey and gruyere sandwich.

    Or a spoonful whisked into a vinaigrette.

    My favorite, of course, is on plain baguette slices with a glass of pastis on the side on a Friday afternoon.

  • Dee

    11 & 12: HELP! Good heavens, I’ve come up with 10 great ideas….I need two more. Can you help?

    I’ve spread it under the skin of chicken before roasting,(especially with the roasting vegetables underneath catching the drippings, yummers!)

    Love Bonne Femme!

  • I’ve asked for your cookbook from Santa! so let’s hope…
    I love Tapenade, but find the one big problem is, dare I say, how it stays in the teeth afterward! One has to be very careful at a party!!! Nevertheless, I will eat it any and everywhere!

  • Tammy

    11. A whisper on the rim of a darn good Bloody Mary, mighty fine for post party debrief.
    12. Grilled mushroom caps filled with a light chèvre and tapenade, viola!

  • My husband calls this his “secret” – a light spread of tapenade over foie gras on toasted baguette – try it, you’ll like it!

  • Geraldine Ventura

    I make a sauce by adding olive oil to thin out the tapenade. It is great over linguine or even as a dip for shrimp.

  • I love your suggestions. I topped in on fish and roasted it with cherry tomatoes, and I made clafoutis Provençal. Tapenade is like the best flavor booster you can have in your “tool kit”.

  • Terry

    Made the black olive tapenade for the first time after seeing this post. Luckily, I happen to have all the ingredients on hand. So good and so, so easy to make. Took it to holiday dinner as appetizer with plain water crackers. Everyone enjoyed. Will make batches next year, put in jars, and give as Christmas gifts rather than cookies.

  • Hi Wini, my name is Fran from G’day Souffle’ – I found your blog through ‘Eye Prefer Paris’ newsletter that I get through email. I’ve studied cuisine at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris (15ème)so I have an interest in French food. Another idea for the Tapenade is to serve it ‘sandwiched’ between two pieces of fish. At LCB, we filleted a Red Mullet (Rouget Barbet) and placed the tapenade filling between two fish pieces- Yum! I look forward to following your blog!

  • This tapenade makes a superb appetizer. Delightful paired with a glass of white wine.

  • Do you have a recipe for a good tapenade???

  • Heidi Pastori

    I have portobello tapenade. Well made by the gracious gourmet.

  • Nichole

    Tapenade is great on a cheese plate with honey and lavash.

  • Gail

    Would love to have a Kindle edition of the BonneFemme cookbook. I have the Braiser in Kindle. Love it! Your blog is great!!!

    • Wini

      Gail–thank you! You can definitely get the Kindle edition of the Bonne Femme Cookbook. It’s available at

      Thanks for your kind comments–I’m glad you like the Braiser Cookbook. I’m proud of that little guy!

  • […] How to Serve Tapenade (12 Days of Tapenade … – Chez … – About Wini. Most Recent Radio and TV Appearances; About: Le Chef et La Bonne Femme; A Few Disclosures; Contact; About the Book; Menus. Bastille Day Menu; … […]

  • Fauziah Petra Court

    Tapanade on hot buttered toast with wafer thin slices of Avocado on top …. yummy x

  • Melanie

    Great w/cream cheese. Using back of tablespoon or large serving spoon, press down on a softened “brick” of Philly Cream Cheese to create a “boat” for the tapenade (I do a 3-olive, roasted red pepper one). Fill the boat w/tapenade and surround it with various crackers, French bread, etc. Then use a decorative spreader for the cheese and a spoon to top it with the tapenade. Has been a Christmas holiday appetizer tradition for years in our family and great hit at parties. Looks pretty too!

  • Bobbie Kozlowski

    I am making home made humus as my Christmas Day dinner appetizer…serving thin crackers, baby carrots & celery sticks,,
    bought this green olive Tapenade and after reading your blog I have decided to serve it with the Humus & crackers…will suggest that a little dab on the top will be a must try…
    Thank you & Marry Christmas

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




three × = 18