A Holiday Charcuterie Board is a delicious way to celebrate Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year! This seasonal food board is beautifully crafted with sweet, savory, and spicy meats, cheeses, fruits, and spreads that are guaranteed to please you and your guests. Pair it with your favorite wine for the ultimate party appetizer and snacking experience!
Holiday charcuterie boards are the best appetizers! It can be as elaborate or as simple as you'd like but one thing is for certain... it will be downright delicious!
Once you learn how to make the best charcuterie board, you can treat yourself and others to delectable bites and nibbles at any time!
- Reasons Why You'll Love This Holiday Charcuterie Board
- What is charcuterie?
- Holiday Charcuterie Board Ingredients
- What should be on a charcuterie board?
- The Best Board for Charcuterie
- How to Make a Holiday Charcuterie Board
- Wine Pairing
- Tips and Tricks
- Can I make my Holiday Charcuterie Board in advance?
- Give These Other Party Appetizers A Try!
- Holiday Charcuterie Board
Reasons Why You'll Love This Holiday Charcuterie Board
- The Ultimate Party Food. This is the best way to gather a group so make it the centerpiece of your next special occasion. Whether it's a Mother's Day brunch, Easter, or Friendsgiving, this is definitely a crowd-pleaser.
- Edible Art. This board is loaded with a variety of meats, cheeses, fruits, crackers, herbs, and spreads. There are plenty of colors, textures, and flavors so get creative with the presentation!
- Totally Customizable. The beauty of charcuterie boards is that you can take what you want and leave what you don't. This board has something for everyone!
- Versatile. Dress this up for a fancy occasion or keep it casual. Charcuterie boards can serve a crowd or be a simple grazing board for one.
What is charcuterie?
Charcuterie is a French term that references the art of preserving meats. Before refrigerators were a thing, cured meats (like bacon, pepperoni, salami, and prosciutto) was all the rage because it kept longer.
This simple butcher concept has been around for centuries but today it has extended and gained popularity thanks to TikTok, Pinterest, and Instagram. Charcuturie boards have evolved to include not only cured meat but cheeses, nuts, and pretty much any bite sized food you can imagine!
Holiday Charcuterie Board Ingredients
The first rule to making a holiday charcuterie board is that there are no rules (just friendly suggestions). Use whatever you want to make the perfect holiday charcuterie board for you and yours!
- Cheddar Cheese with Caramelized Onion. I use the Trader Joe's brand.
- Brie cheese. Creamy and savory.
- Blueberry goat cheese. A sweet cheese with a delightful tang.
- 2 Cured meats. I used prosciutto and salami.
- Grapes. This pairs great with meat and cheese.
- Strawberries. Because everyone loves these.
- Candied orange slices. This adds a burst of citrusy sweetness and a pop of color too!
- Blueberries. To fill up those small empty spaces.
- Pomegranates. This is also a great filler.
- Assorted crackers. To use for spreads and cheeses.
- Honey. To drizzle on hazelnuts.
- Flavored jam. Because I can't imagine a charcuterie board without one!
- Chocolate mint stars. Chocolate elevates everything.
- Rosemary sprigs. To create the wreath framing around the board.
What should be on a charcuterie board?
If you're feeling overwhelmed, here's a guide to help you understand the basic structure of a charcuterie board. You won't necessarily use all of the categories every time and that's okay!
Charcuterie boards tend to have at least 2-3 cured meats. Fold and layer them as you place them on the board.
Use at least 2-3 cheeses. Whatever you choose should have different flavor profiles and textures. Some varieties include cheddar, gouda, goat cheese, and mozzarella.
Add a variety of fruits for freshness and sweetness. I recommend using seasonal fruits because they will taste the best. So for a winter charcuterie board, I'd add seasonal touches like cranberries and pomegranates. If I was serving this during the summer, I might add ripe sliced peaches or watermelon.
Include vegetables in order to add some nutrients to your board. Use raw veggies like carrots, broccoli, cucumbers, or cauliflower. Roasted peppers could be a nice, spicy addition.
To scoop up the other items you'll need something sturdy. Use your favorite bread, pretzels, crackers, or pita chips.
Fill up smaller spaces with assorted bites like nuts, pickled goods (like olives), and even candy.
For even more flavor and texture use spreads like jam, mustard, honey, dip, and hummus. Place them in small bowls or get creative and use another ingredient as a container.
The Best Board for Charcuterie
Use a food-safe surface for your charcuterie board. Other than that, your options are endless! Here are some common materials:
- Baking sheet
How to Make a Holiday Charcuterie Board
The easiest way to plan out your charcuterie board is to have all of your ingredients portioned and ready to go.
Add Meat and Cheese
Start by filling up sections of the board with folded meats and sliced cheeses. Each "zone" should have at least one type of meat and cheese.
Tuck fruit in various spots around the board.
Then place crackers in at least two places on the board for easy grabbing.
Finally, tuck your smallest ingredients into little nooks and crannies on the platter.
There's something very sophisticated about charcuterie boards so, of course, I'm pairing mine with a bottle of wine! I suggest having at least one red wine and one white wine on hand.
Tips and Tricks
- Prepare all of the ingredients ahead of time. Have everything measured, and sliced before assembling the board. That way, everything is at your fingertips and you can just have fun arranging the charcuterie.
- Charcuteries are about indulgence and abundance. Each part of the board should be filled so it doesn't feel like it's missing something. (Keep some refills on standby.)
- Add knives, forks, and spoons for ease of grabbing and spreading.
- Don't use softwoods like cedar or pine for your board because they can affect the taste of cheese and fruits. Stick to hardwood like cherry, olive, or walnut.
- Separate dry ingredients from wet ingredients. You don't want to dampen dry ingredients with wet ones. For example, olives shouldn't be touching the bread. (This is also why I recommend using smaller dishes to contain certain items.)
- Holiday charcuterie boards aren't just reserved for winter months. Adjust your ingredients to suit the holiday or season you are in!
Can I make my Holiday Charcuterie Board in advance?
Yes! Assemble the board without the crackers then place it in the fridge until you are ready to serve. Take the platter out about 30 minutes before you plan to serve so it has time to reach room temperature. Don't forget to add your crackers.
Give These Other Party Appetizers A Try!
- Crab Deviled Eggs
- Grilled Peaches with Mascarpone
- Prosciutto Crostini with Balsamic Glaze
- Simple 5-Minute Peanut Butter and Jelly Apple Nachos
- Jerk Shrimp Sliders with Pineapple Salsa
I HOPE YOU ENJOY THIS HOLIDAY CHARCUTERIE BOARD RECIPE!
Holiday Charcuterie Board
- ½ lb Cheddar Cheese with Caramelized Onion Trader Joe's
- ½ lb Brie cheese
- 4 oz Blueberry goat cheese
- 2 Cured meats prosciutto or salami
- Candied orange slices
- ½ cup Blueberries
- ¼ cup Pomegranates
- Assorted crackers
- ¼ cup Honey to drizzle on hazelnuts
- ¼ cup Flavored jam
- Chocolate mint stars
- Rosemary sprigs to create the wreath