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Strawberry Lilac Crostini Appetizers

platter of strawberry and lilac topped toasts

These beautiful Strawberry Lilac Crostinis are the perfect spring appetizer! Serve them at brunch or with cocktails for a sweet, savory, and gently floral hors d’oeuvres that everyone will enjoy.

If you don’t have access to lilacs at the moment (lilac season is so brief!), you can also make this recipe with an easy lavender simple syrup using dried lavender buds. I like to buy dried culinary grade herbs from Mountain Rose Herbs.

Strawberry Lilac Crostini ingredients:

These fancy toasts are easy to assemble, and once you make your lilac syrup, they come together very quickly! Here are the ingredients:

  • 12 toasted baguette slices
  • 1 ½ cups strawberries, sliced
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • ¼ cup lilac simple syrup
  • Balsamic vinegar, to drizzle
  • Flaky sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

How to make the lilac simple syrup

You can find the full lilac simple syrup recipe here. Here’s a breakdown of the process:

  1. Gather fresh lilac blooms and remove the purple flowers
  2. Combine equal parts hot water and sugar and stir to dissolve the sugar.
  3. Stir in an equal measure of lilac flowers, cover, and let steep for 4-5 hours.
  4. Strain the flowers from the syrup and store in the refrigerator in a mason jar.

How to make easy crostinis

Crostinis are so simple! Once you make them a couple of times, you’ll have the basic recipe and instructions memorized. Here’s the overview:

Pick out a nice thick, fresh baguette and cut it into slices about ½” thick. Brush both sides of the slices with olive oil and season them with salt and pepper.

Place the slices on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for about 10 minutes, or until golden brown.

Sometimes I like to flip the slices halfway through to make sure they’re evenly browned, but you don’t have to. That’s it!

Assembling the strawberry lilac crostinis

Putting these delightful appetizers together is quick and easy.

In a medium sized bowl, toss the sliced strawberries with the lilac syrup and let them sit, covered, in the refrigerator while you prep the crosinis.

Once the crostinis are done and have had a minute to cool, lay 12 on a serving tray. Top each with a generous layer of ricotta cheese followed by the lilac syrup-steeped strawberries.

Drizzle the crostinis with balsamic vinegar and season with flaky sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Garnish with fresh lilac blossoms and enjoy!

Recipe substitutions

Don’t have lilacs? No problem, this recipe is also wonderful with lavender! Lilac season is fleeting, so you can substitute with lavender the rest of the year.

Strawberry and lavender are an equally fantastic spring or early summer flavor combination.

To make a lavender simple syrup, you’ll combine 1 cup of sugar with 1 cup of boiling water and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Next, add 2-3 tablespoons of culinary grade dried lavender buds, cover, and allow the syrup to steep until fully cool.

Once cooled, strain out the lavender buds and store the syrup in a mason jar in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Don’t have / don’t like ricotta? You can also make these with goat cheese, if you prefer.

If you enjoy lilac recipes, try making lilac sugar in my How to Make Floral-Infused Sugars or pairing this appetizer with a Lilac Gin Lemonade!

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