Do something different for your next brunch and put together a lox bagel board! Let everyone assemble their own bagels with their favorite schmears, smoked salmon, and toppings.

Overhead view of a lox bagel board with many toppings and assorted bagels.

We’ve shared an Epic Egg Sandwich Board here on Pancake Recipes a while back, and of course we have our Pancake Board, Mimosa Bar & Brunch Board, and Christmas Brunch Board, but if you want your guests to have all the fixings to make their own bagels, then this lox bagel board is for you!

What is Lox?

Lox is brined salmon; it’s often smoked, but not always, and its origin can be traced to 19th century Scandinavia. When lox is served on a bagel with cream cheese, it’s common to also add fresh tomato, sliced onions, cucumbers, and capers. (But because this is a DIY bagel board, your guests who aren’t fans of fish can make theirs without the lox!)

You’ll love this lox bagel board for all your brunching needs – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Easter, baby showers, bridal showers, or those casual just-because get-togethers! Don’t forget the mimosas, beermosas, and mimosa mocktails. Something for everyone!

Effortless brunch idea

The beauty of breakfast boards and bars is that they look like an elaborate spread (and they’re fun for your guests!), but they’re a cinch to put together. All you need is a big board or tray and all the ingredients—and for this lox bagel board, you don’t even need to cook anything!

The most work you’ll have to do here is slice the cucumbers and tomatoes, and maybe cut the bagels in half if you buy them fresh from the bakery. 

Totally effortless, right?!

Bagels, lox, cream cheese, tomatoes, cucumbers, and more.

What you need

A variety of bagels: Everything, plain, and sesame work well with the savory flavors on this board. Salt bagels and asiago bagels are other fun choices.

Toppings:

This is really just a jumping off point, feel free to add or remove anything you’d like to make this perfect for your group of friends and family.

  • Smoked salmon
  • Capers
  • Mini English cucumbers 
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • Sliced tomatoes – Heirloom tomatoes would be especially pretty! 
  • Alfalfa Sprouts
  • Block cream cheese – Let this soften to room temperature so it’s easy to spread.
  • Everything bagel seasoning – you can also make your own!
  • Fresh Chives 
Ingredients needed for recipe.

How to serve

Prep the ingredients. Slice the tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers, then cut the block of cream cheese into 6 triangles. (Depending on the size of the board you use and how long you’ll be keeping your lox bagel board out, you might want to only put some of them on the board at first and replace them as they are used.)

Cream cheese cut into triangles.

Arrange the toppings. Place the cream cheese triangles on the board, with the smoked salmon on one side.

Cream cheese and smoked salmon on a board.

Place a bowl of capers in one corner, then fill in the other corners with cucumber slices.

Capers and cucumbers added to board.

Fill in the remaining spaces with the tomatoes, onion, and sprouts.

Vegetables and sprouts added to the board.

Season the cream cheese. Sprinkle the cream cheese with the everything bagel seasoning and chives, if you’re using them.

Bagel board set up with smoked salmon and tomatoes.

Set it all out. Place your board of toppings on the table, countertop, or serving area, next to a tray or basket of sliced bagels.

Close up showing components of board.

FAQs

Is lox and salmon the same thing?

Lox is salmon that has been cured in salt. Sometimes it’s smoked after curing, sometimes it’s not.

(There is some debate about whether smoked salmon can be considered lox; the fine folks at Wikipedia say that smoked salmon is still classified as lox, while the gourmands at Epicurious say that lox is cured, but not smoked.) Whatever way you look at it, both will work for this recipe!

How do you eat a lox bagel?

A lox bagel is usually eaten open-faced (and very carefully, since there are a lot of toppings involved!). If you prefer, you can make it a sandwich and add another bagel half on top to help hold it all together.

What bagel is best with lox?

Classic, savory bagels are the traditional pairing with lox—we’re talking plain, sesame, poppyseed, onion, garlic, everything, and salt. 

How to make it your own

Here are some more ideas for customizing your lox bagel board!

  • Add more veggies. Sliced or mashed avocado, green onions, arugula, radishes, cornichons, pickled red onions, and other pickled vegetables are all great additions to your build-your-own-bagel spread.
  • Use flavored cream cheese. Instead of seasoning plain cream cheese, you can buy tubs of flavored cream cheese and set those out, or get creative and make your own!
  • Make it sweet and savory. Arrange lox and savory toppings on one side of the board, then add fruit, honey butter (for those who prefer a bagel without cream cheese!), and sweet bagel toppings on the other.
  • More topping ideas. Roasted red peppers! Grilled asparagus! Hard-boiled eggs, fresh dill, chimichurri (hey, why not?!), olives, sliced cheeses… feel free to mix things up and make your own epic lox bagel board.
Lox Bagel with tomato, sprouts, cucumber, capers.

Make Ahead Ideas

You can assemble this board, cover it in plastic wrap, and keep it in the fridge for up to a day. When you’re ready to serve, take it out and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes to soften up the cream cheese so it’s easy to spread.

More breakfast board recipes

Lox Bagel board with an assembled bagel next to it.

Get the Recipe: Lox Bagel Board

Do something different for your next brunch and put together a lox bagel board! Let everyone assemble their own bagels with their favorite schmears, smoked salmon, and toppings.
5 from 2 votes

Ingredients

  • 6 bagels (choose a combination of everything, plain, and sesame)
  • 8 oz smoked salmon
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 3 mini English cucumbers, sliced
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large tomato, sliced
  • 1/2 cup sprouts
  • 1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, softened
  • everything bagel seasoning and chives for topping

Instructions

  • Slice block of cream cheese into 6 triangles. Depending on the size of the board, you might want to only put some of them on the board at first, replacing them as they are used.
  • Place the cream cheese triangles on the board, spaced out, and place salmon pieces along one side of each triangle.
  • Place bowl of capers at a corner and then fill in the other corners with cucumber slices.
  • Line the open spaces with tomatoes and purple onion.
  • Fill the edges with the sprouts and top cream cheese with everything seasoning and chives, if desired.
  • Build your bagels as you like.

Notes

  • Add more or less bagels depending on how many people you plan to serve.
  • Nutrition information is an estimate and will depend on how you build your bagel.
  • The board pictured was bought at TJ Maxx and is 17.5 in long (excluding the handle) and 5 inches wide.
Serving: 1bagel, Calories: 521kcal, Carbohydrates: 89g, Protein: 28g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 13mg, Sodium: 1592mg, Potassium: 421mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 375IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 53mg, Iron: 3mg