A charcuterie board may look intimidating…but it does not have to be intimidating at all! We have put together this blog post on how to put together a charcuterie board for beginners. Sydney and I will walk you through each step!
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Al Fresco. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are our own and not influenced by the developing company and/or its affiliates in any way. #Grillalfresco #Ad @alfrescochicken
What Is A Charcuterie Board?
To start off, what is a charcuterie board? Lots of people don’t know the answer to this question and that is okay! Over the past few years charcuterie boards have really gained in popularity and have become somewhat of a fad.
Essentially, it is a platter/serving board with different types of meats, crackers, and cheeses. Lots of people will add in nuts and fruits, as well. However, this is not a set-in-stone type of thing. You can create yours to be however you like it. For example, if you only like turkey, then put a ton of turkey on it with other items to accompany it. The sky is the limit!
How To Put Together A Charcuterie Board
Choose Your Platter
First, start with choosing a platter or serving board. We chose a wooden one that looks like a part of a tree trunk, like this one. These are fun to change up depending on the type of gathering you are having! Or, if it is a low-key type of night with just two of you, you can always just put it on a simple dinner plate. There are literally no rules. 🙂
Place On Your Meats
For this platter, we chose to keep it simple and go with one meat selection. Al Fresco Chicken Sausage was our choice! This one is an Italian flavored sausage, so it paired really well with the other finger foods on the board. It’s such a staple ingredient and, not to mention, a huge time saver!
Place On Your Crackers And Cheeses
When choosing what kind of crackers, we always like to have a variety. The typical salted kind are always a classic, the crunchy mini bread slices give a crispy option, and you could even add in the thin pretzels crisps or plain/flavored pita chips. You can do as many or as little as you want.
The cheeses are nice to have a great variety, especially when you are serving this to a crowd. Not everyone likes certain kinds of cheeses, but it’s nice to have something for everyone. We stuck with the classics…a couple types of Swiss, cheddar, and colby jack. Yum!
For something different (and a texture variety), we added some fresh mozzarella balls. Surprisingly, these were a big hit! We were unsure if the odd shape would make them be picked around, but people loved them. So we highly recommend to add some of those in.
Place On Your Fruit And Nuts
Not everyone adds these onto their charcuterie boards, but we love the complimentary factor they bring to the above items. For fruit, we just used grapes. However, you could add sliced apples, strawberries, etc.
Our family isn’t big on nuts, but we think they add a bit of a crunch to the platter. You can add a couple more kinds to yours if you’d like!
When you are at the grocery store, sometimes it is hard to locate the specialty cheeses. If they are not in the normal cheese area, make sure to check the produce/deli department. A lot of times that is where you will find all of the specialty cheeses.
That is really all there is to it! And remember, there is no wrong way to do this so have fun with it!
Easy Charcuterie Board
- Al Fresco Chicken Sausage we used Sweet Italian Style
- variety of crackers pita chips, mini bread slices, pretzel thins, etc
- grape tomatoes
- variety of cheeses
- The above ingredients are all suggestions. You can add in or take away whatever you'd like to make it perfect for you!
- Start placing your meat onto the platter. If you have more than one kind, we find spreading them apart from each other to be visually pleasing.
- Next, comes the different cheeses. You can buy them presliced as a time saver or cut them into small squares yourself. To add to the presentation, lay a nice piece of lettuce underneath.
- Crackers are the next step. You can make borders with these fairly easy. We decided to put some around the bowl of nuts and it created a pattern for your eyes to draw to. Be as creative as you want to!
- Last up, fruit and nuts. If we do grapes and grape tomatoes on the same charcuterie board, we try to make sure they aren't right up next to each other. Since they are so similar in shape, it's nice to have a different textured item in between the two.We recommend to put the nuts in a small bowl so they don't spread all over the platter.
- Now you are ready to serve!
Check out some of our recipes that are great for entertaining: