Whether you're looking for an elevated snack or an appetizer for entertaining, a cheese and meat board is a fun an easy item to prepare.
This Simple Holiday Charcuterie Board is sponsored by Robert Mondavi Private Selection. As always, all thoughts are my own. Thank you so much for supporting brands that make The Fit Peach possible!
The holidays are here and that means it's time to break out the charcuterie and cheese platters! In this post we'll go through all the tips and tricks to making a simple holiday charcuterie board so you can learn how to put one together like a pro!
Simple But Festive Charcuterie Board
I think it's safe to say hosting has looked a tad bit different this year. Most of my Friday and Saturday nights have been spent inside with just my husband and pup and now our baby girl, Eloise. To make things seem a little more...normal...I started throwing together a simple and small cheese and charcuterie platter for us to enjoy. Kind of like a date night in if you will!
Now that the holidays are here, there is no better time to put together a little something festive to in the spirit (even if it looks different this year)! I have lots of tips and tricks to share to make sure your platter is delicious and beautiful all at the same time.
How to Make a Cheese and Charcuterie Board
Between the meats and the cheese and the crackers, things can get overwhelming. I get it! So, let's take this step by step and construct an elegant holiday platter you're sure to love.
First, choose your platter
To get started, you'll need a board or platter to put your charcuterie board items on. You can get creative with this! If you don't have a typical cheese board, don't fret, I'm sure you have something in your kitchen that will work just as well!
I used a marble cake platter (aka a cake stand without the stand part). I love it because it's super easy to wash. Here are some other options for a cheese board you probably have laying around:
- A small baking sheet
- Pie dish
- Cake stand
- Cutting board
Add your snack bowls
Next add any bowls to the platter. I like to fill little bowls with nuts, seeds, something sweet. I used coconut dusted dates above. You should start with any bowls you have first on the platter as these take up a fixed amount of space (you can't make them smaller or shape them differently).
If you're making a smaller charcuterie board like I did here, I recommend sticking to 1 maybe 2 small bowls. This leaves enough room for all the other goodies!
Place the grapes and cheeses
Once you have your bowl(s) on the platter, it's time for the other 'bigger' items. For me, this is typically a bundle of grapes and the cheeses. Space these out on the platter. If some of your cheeses have similar colors, place them on opposite sides of the platter from one another. This is purely for esthetics. Similarly, if a few of your cheese are similar in texture (ie. you have 2 soft-style cheese), try not to place them next to each other either.
For the board here, I used a brie-style goat cheese, a red wine hard goat cheese, and a hard sheep's cheese. If you're like me and don't partake in a lot of dairy, try to stick to goat's and sheep's cheeses. Nowadays there are so many different options at the local grocery stores!
For a smaller board, I recommend 2 - 3 cheese of different styles/textures. Cheeses also keep quite well so it's okay if you have some left over!
Layer in the meats and crackers
Now comes the fun part - the meats and cheeses! This is really when you start to see your charcuterie board come to life.
Start with the meats first. Similar to the cheeses, if you have meats that have the same shade of color or texture, try not to place them next to each other.
Take one type of charcuterie and fold it into a "flower" shape by folding it in half vertically and then again horizontally. You can now stack them in a row and they are easy to pick off the platter.
With another type of charcuterie, you can simply fold it in half and again line them up in a row. If you have a third type of meat, you can simply line it up in a row laying flat like I've done above. This provides different styles to the meats and reduces the amount of space they take up.
For a smaller platter, I recommend 2 - 3 meats, similar to the cheeses. I prefer to grab different styles of meats, maybe one prosciutto and one salami. My husband also loves when I get something with a little heat to it so I typically pick one of those up too!
Fill with nuts, fruit, and garnishes
Finally, fill in any bare spots with nuts, dried fruit, and garnishes. In this board here, I used some honey roasted pecans, dried apricots, and fresh rosemary. Some additional festive options are:
- Green and black olives
- Pomegranate seeds
- Candied nuts
Pair with Wine
*For those 21 years of age and up*
What is a cheese and charcuterie board without a glass or wine?! With all the rich cheeses and salty crackers, you simply must have an adult beverage to wash it down.
To keep with the holiday theme, I recommend a dry red wine which would pair beautifully with these cheeses and meats.
Robert Mondavi Private Selection's Bourbon-Aged Cabernet Sauvignon
My pick? Robert Mondavi's Bourbon Barrel-Aged Cabernet Sauvignon! It's fruit forward with subtle hints of vanilla, toasted biscuit, and light caramel. It perfectly marries the art of red wine with the classic Southern bourbon. Like could there be a better wine?? I think not.
You can find it at your local grocery store (like Trader Joes) or you can order through Grizzly! You can have it within AN HOUR with Grizzly. Yes, 2020 has brought us many things, including wine delivery!
Check out these other apps to add to your hosting table
Simple Holiday Charcuterie Board
- Chopped dates - or alternative small snacking item
- 1 bunch red grapes
- 2 - 3 high-quality cheeses - I used 2 goat's cheeses above and a hard sheep's cheese
- 2 - 3 high-quality cured meats - I use a peppered salami, prosciutto, and a hot calabrese
- 2 types of crackers - I used these almond flour crackers
- Garnishes - chopped nuts, dried fruit, fresh rosemary, etc.
- 1 bottle Robert Mondavi Bourbon Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon - provides 4 - 6 glasses
- Place a bowl with your small snacking item on the platter first.Chopped dates
- Next add the bunch of grapes on the opposite side of the platter.1 bunch red grapes
- Place the cheeses on the board, making sure to place similar colored or textured cheeses apart from each other.2 - 3 high-quality cheeses
- Follow with the meats. Fold one type into a "flower" shape by first folding vertically and then horizontally. Lay them on the board in a line around the cheeses and snack bowl. With another type of meat, fold it in half and line in a row around the cheeses and bowl. If you have a third type of meat, simply lay a few pieces out flat on the platter.2 - 3 high-quality cured meats
- Next add the crackers in any large bare areas. You can line them up in a row or place them in a small pile.2 types of crackers
- Finally, fill in any bare areas with garnishes like chopped nuts, dried fruit, and/or fresh rosemary (I used honey roasted pecans, dried apricots, and rosemary above).Garnishes
- Pair it with a glass of Robert Mondavi Bourbon Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon (for those 21 years of age and up).1 bottle Robert Mondavi Bourbon Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon