How to Setup a Classic Charcuterie Board

Today I’m sharing the process I use to create and setup a classic charcuterie board which is a great way to serve your guests for a casual meal or party.  

Last year for Christmas our good friend made us a beautiful, big wooden charcuterie serving board out of a solid piece of live edge cedar with handles carved into the underside.  Since then, charcuterie has become my new favourite thing to serve at parties and get togethers and it can even be substantial enough to act as a light meal that you snack on throughout the evening.

Charcuterie Board Arrangement

The best part about charcuterie is that you really can take it in so many different directions!  As you will see at the bottom of today’s post, I’ve linked up with a group of my blogging friends who are also sharing their charcuterie ideas to help inspire you for the upcoming holiday season.  From simple & classic to sweet & savoury, kid-friendly, and even dessert-themed charcuterie boards, you can completely tailor them to your group and occasion.  Today I’m sharing my favourite way to setup a classic charcuterie board: using a classic mix of meats, cheeses, crackers, pickles, olives, fruits, and nuts.

How to setup a classic charcuterie board graphic.

There are many ways you can layout the food items on your charcuterie board, from a neat and linear arrangement to a more fluid and rustic design.  I like to group things together in a couple of places on the board, so that the same types of items can be accessed from both sides of it.  This works particularly well if you are placing it in a stationary location like on an island or table, where people will be seated around the board.

I start by laying out each end with some soft cheese, meat, fruit, and then adding the nuts and chocolate to the edges.

A wooden charcuterie board with cheese and meat on it.

Next I layer in more of the meats, cheeses, and crackers in the middle, and place items like pickles, olives, tapenade, dips, or marinated veggies in small bowls so that the moisture doesn’t spread all over the board and get the crackers all soggy.

The charcuterie board with crackers and berries on it.

I add cheese knives of spoons as needed, and call it done!

Nuts are added to the board.

Some of my favourite things to use include these “Beet crackers” (they are soft and flavourful and melt-in-your-mouth delicious; as well as Boursin cheese.  It’s honestly the best soft cheese I’ve ever had.

Up close picture of the strawberries and a bowl of cheese, and sliced meat.

Fruits like strawberries, raspberries, or (classic) grapes are also a delicious way to cleanse the palette between the stronger flavours of things like aged sharp cheeses or salty meats.

Crackers and slices of cheese are on the board.

And nuts and chocolate become irresistible for snacking on when spread out in bite sized bits like this.

Fig jam is in a bowl next to the brie.

Olive tapenade and fig jam or jelly are both delicious additions that you could include, and you could even do a vegetarian board by eliminating the meat and adding hummus and veggies to the board instead.

There are pickles and olives on the charcuterie board.

Olives and pepperoni sticks are on the board.

Such a fun idea for serving your guests as your next party or gathering!

What would you add to your charcuterie board?

There is a small cheese knife in the brie.

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How to setup a classic charcuterie board with everything itemized.

A little more inspiration…

As I mentioned, today I’ve been joined by some of my talented blogging friends who are also sharing their ideas for setting up different kinds of charcuterie boards to share with friends and family this holiday season.

Just click the links below the pictures to be taken to each post directly.  

Christmas Dessert from Happy Happy Nester
Red & Green Christmas Charcuterie Board from The DIY Mommy
Cookie Chocolate Dessert Charcuterie Board from Inspiration for Moms
Sweet and Savory Charcuterie Board from The Handmade Home

Christmas Cookie Dessert Board from Modern Glam
Gluten Free Dessert Charcuterie Board from Taryn Whiteaker
Charcuterie Board for the Holidays from Twelve on Main
Hot Chocolate Dessert Board from Jenna Kate at Home

Hot Cocoa Charcuterie Board from Hallstrom Home
Kid Friendly Charcuterie Board from She Gave It A Go
Classic Charcuterie Board from The Happy Housie
Holiday Charcuterie Board from Jennifer Maune

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  1. Hi Krista,
    I love your charcuterie board ideas. Especially the little bowls. I can’t seem to get the links to work…any idea why?

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