Create the Perfect Charcuterie Board!
What is better for snacking than a big, beautiful charcuterie board? Whether you are having a friend and family gathering, holiday party, or some sort of celebration, a charcuterie board is a great option. The best part is, there is no “right” or “wrong” way to create one, and you can theme the board to match the occasion.
What exactly is a charcuterie board? A charcuterie board typically contains some type of assortment of the following: Meats, cheeses, crackers, artisan toasted bread, fruits, veggies, olives, nuts, dips, desserts and whatever else you choose! Of course, you tailor your board to what you and your guests prefer. Additionally, with the holidays right around the corner, there are many fun desserts you can sprinkle onto your board.
Unsure of where to begin? We have you covered. The volume of items you need depend on how many guests you are providing for. Here are a few popular items for each category:
Meats: Prosciutto, salami, pepperoni, ham, smoked salmon
Cheeses: Goat cheese, Feta cheese, Swiss cheese, blue cheese, Brie Cheese
Crackers: PICS Oil & Herb Crackers, Wheat Thins, Ritz Crackers, pretzels
Artisan Bread: Ciabatta, sourdough, French, rye
Fruits: Grapes, blueberries, raspberries, apricots, figs
Veggies: Carrots, celery, snap peas, grape tomatoes, broccoli, pickles
Olives: Castelvetrano olives, Kalamata olives
Nuts: Walnuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios, pecans
Dips: Hummus, cream cheese, salsa, guacamole, honey, fig spread
Desserts (for holidays or any occasion): Chocolate covered strawberries, jellybeans, mints, candy corn, Hershey kisses, mini cookies, mini candy canes, peppermint bark, M&Ms
Charcuterie boards are a fun way to let your creative mind flow, as well as giving your guests something to admire. Enjoy!
How to Build Your Own Charcuterie Board
Charcuterie boards present a thoughtful selection of meats, cheeses and accompaniments that make for low maintenance, snack-style meals. They’re perfect for entertaining and encourage mixing and matching of ingredients that create unique, flavorful bites. The art of composing a charcuterie board can be as simple or as sophisticated as you’d like. Use these quick tips to create your ultimate charcuterie board.
The heroes of the board, charcuterie meats range in taste from mild to spicy and come in varying textures from delicate to thick and chewy. Rich, cured charcuterie meats are excellent in small doses, so choosing two to three meats to feature is sufficient. Try melt-in-your-mouth prosciutto, smoky salami, spicy chorizo or zesty pepperoni.
When selecting cheeses, consider texture, flavor, type and style. Draw inspiration from your meats – mellow out rich meats with soft cheeses like mozzarella, Brie or goat cheese. Pair milder varieties, like prosciutto, with complex cheeses that have eclectic profiles such as pungent blue cheese or sharp Manchego.
Fruits & Preserves
Seasonal eating applies to boards too! Sliced fresh fruit and berries are perfect for summer boards while winter boards give citrus, grapes and dried fruits a place to shine. No matter the season, our home.grown. produce offers the freshest, locally sourced, in-season fruits year-round. For a spreadable, fruity component, give our Pear Mostarda recipe a try!
Bread & Nuts
Slices of toasted bread or assorted crackers can balance the tastes of your board’s strongly flavored ingredients. Nuts can also intensify the crunch factor. Use shelled and salted varieties such as pecans, hazelnuts, pistachios and almonds.
The best charcuterie platters have a little bit of everything – so don’t be afraid to get creative and experiment with different components. For more charcuterie inspiration, see page 30 of our Ready magazine!