You might have come across a charcuterie board in lots of places. But aside from being a great statement piece on the food aisle, it adds a fun and fancy twist to finger food.

Simply put, it’s an assortment of meat cuts, from smoked to cured, paired with complementary cuts of cheese, fruits, veggies, and a side of condiments. So, how exactly should you build it?

Here’s a guide to making a charcuterie board for beginners.

The Charcuterie Board Basics

Generally, you only need a few things to make a charcuterie board. Even so, how you build it varies on your preference and creativity.

Let’s start with breaking down the basics.

Your Platter

The foundation of your charcuterie board is your platter. Not only does it put together the entire vibe, but it also determines how much you can serve. So, you want to pick a board or platter in the right size, shape, and material.

You can go for a wooden one if you’re aiming for a cozy and simple aesthetic, or a silver tray for a more elevated and sophisticated look. If you’re adding dips or small toppings, you can also add little dishes to the mix.

The Meat

Keep in mind that the meat is usually the highlight of your charcuterie board. So, you want to invest in picking unique and fresh meat options, from simple ham to smoked sausages. You can also add spreadable ones if you want more texture.

The Cheese

Most people recommend having at least three different types of cheese, including hard and soft options. You want to get cheeses with contrasting flavors and textures to give your guests broader tastes.

If you want to use the cheese for later, consider going for hard cheese since it contains less moisture, allowing it to last longer in the fridge.

The Crackers

For spreadable meat, cheese, and other toppings, you want to have crackers and bread to complete the picture. Many suggest having at least two types of bread or crackers, like a plain and seasoned one.

Extra Color

You can give your board extra color and flavor by adding fruits and vegetables. This way, guests can make it saltier or sweeter according to their preference. Other add-ons can include nuts, seeds, and dips or sauces.

Quick Step-by-Step to Building a Charcuterie Board

Building a charcuterie board for beginners isn’t too far off from making it with experience. It’s because it generally follows similar steps. Here’s how it goes:

Create Your Structure

Take a good look at your ingredients and dishes and try to figure out the overall ambiance. You can also consider this based on your event’s theme.

One tip is to cluster the same ingredients together to keep it cohesive or spread it across the board to give it more personality.

Add the Meat and Cheese

Start with the meat and cheese to ensure it spreads evenly on the board. It helps to consider their sizes and shapes for a more organized appearance.

Try to arrange it in a way that keeps them as the center of attention. After all, they are the stars of your platter!

Add the Crackers

Insert the crackers and bread by placing them on accessible parts of the board. You also want to have them close to each of everything. This way, multiple people can grab what they like at the same time.

Give It Some Color

Lastly, add the rest of the ingredients to complete the look. Throw in some fruits and vegetables around it to make it pop with color and place the dips in centers or corners for easy access.

Create a Simple Charcuterie Board for Beginners

Making a charcuterie board for beginners is as simple as gathering ingredients, putting it together, and enjoying it! What makes them so fun is the freedom it gives you to make unique combinations and get creative with presentation. This way, you get a fun centerpiece and a quick finger food dish for your party.