How To Assemble A Charcuterie Board – HexClad Cookware
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How To Assemble A Charcuterie Board

by HexClad Admin

How To Assemble A Charcuterie Board

There’s no appetizer or hors d’oeuvre that can top a gorgeously arranged charcuterie board. No matter what kinds of snacks you want to serve for your guests, the charcuterie board is up to the task (even if you’re a vegetarian). It’s not hard to understand why this crowd-pleasing starter has become popular with hosts and guests alike: it’s relatively easy to assemble, customizable, and beautiful, too. Below we’ve got the answers to common questions about charcuterie boards and tips to assemble this no-cook simple party snack that everyone can enjoy.


You’ll see a variety of rules of thumb for putting together a great charcuterie board. Some advocate an equal balance of cured meats, cheeses, fruits and nuts, and vegetables. The truth is, there are a variety of ways to put together a great charcuterie board.

First, you’ll want to choose the right board. Our cutting boards are ideal for serving a showstopping charcuterie board. Choose the medium walnut cutting board for 4 people, the large walnut cutting board for 6 to 8, or the extra-large beechwood cutting board for more than 8.

Here are some things to consider when putting your charcuterie together:

  • Cheeses and creamy spreadables: Though charcuterie means cured meats, we recommend starting from the cheeses. Balance different kinds of cheeses (and other creamy spreadables like pimiento cheese dip or sour cream and onion dip) based on texture and intensity. A creamy cheese like Brie pairs well with a crumbly blue like Stilton and a semi-firm alpine cheese like Gruyère. If you’re hosting anyone vegan, there are many delicious cheese-like products on the market that will blend in well. Plan on 2 to 3 cheeses, around 4 ounces per guest.
    • Assembly tip: start by placing your cheeses down on the board, spacing them out evenly. These act like your anchors for the board.
  • Sliced cold meats and/or cured fish: If you’re a meat eater, a pile of prosciutto, folds of sliced sausage, or rolls of mortadella will not go amiss. If you want to build a pescatarian board, you have plenty of options: Consider putting out marinated anchovies, folds of smoked salmon, or a tin of smoked oysters, too. Or, build a surf and turf charcuterie board by combining both. Don’t forget delicious treats like pâté or rillettes for spreading on crackers. Plan on 2 to 3 meats and/or fish, around 4 ounces per guest.
    • Assembly tip: Twist ribbons of prosciutto slightly before placing them down on the board so it’s easy for people to pick them up. Roll pieces of ham or thinly sliced salami, or stack thicker coins of salami. Serve spreadable meats or fish in their pots or a small dish to keep them neat.
  • Vegetables and fruits: Though you might think loading up just on meat and cheese is the right call, a pop of fresh crunch is essential for building the perfect charcuterie board. Grapes are a great choice, as are fresh figs, spears of Persian cucumbers, carrot sticks, thinly sliced apple or pear, endive leaves, clementines or other small citrus, and strawberries. Plan on 2 to 3 each vegetables and fruits, around 6 ounces per guest.
    • Assembly tip: Pile and tuck the fruit and veg around and between the cheese and meats. If you’re making a large board, divide them up so guests can easily reach them. 
Flavor boosters: Take your charcuterie board up a notch with intensely flavorful extras. Savory flavor boosters include nuts, olives and olive tapenade or pickled things like cornichons, cocktail onions, and pickled vegetables. Sweet items to add include honeycomb, fig jam, membrillo (quince paste), and dried fruit like dried apricots, raisins, dried figs, and dates. Plan on at least 2 savory and 2 sweet flavor boosters per board.
  • Bread and crackers: The carb-y portion of the charcuterie board isn’t just about cheese delivery-vehicles. When done right, the bread and crackers can be as exciting of a portion of the charcuterie board as any other. Mix slices of baguette with a variety of crackers like seed-and-nut slices, buttery rounds, and grissini. Don’t forget to provide gluten-free crackers if you are hosting people who eat GF. Plan on 2 to 3 different types of bread and crackers, around 4 ounces per person.
    • Assembly tip: Because the board can get crowded, serve breadsticks in a jar standing up. Tuck a few crackers on the board for visual appeal, but offer guests more crackers in bowls on the side.

The key is to have fun and be playful with presentation. The reality is there’s no one way to assemble a charcuterie board, so try out new combinations and arrangements to find your own style. Don’t forget to serve with napkins and small snack plates. Place a small dish of toothpicks on the board for things like cornichons and olives and make sure there’s at least one knife per cheese and spread.

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