I have been loving all of the charcuterie boards that I have seen floating around Pinterest – I am a sucker for all things meat and cheese.
I decided that I wanted to make one for my family, but soon realized that there weren’t many ideas out there on how to make a board that is kid-friendly.
So today I am sharing the charcuterie board that I made for my family. We actually ate this on Christmas day – just snacked on it as needed and with people coming and going all day, it made the perfect food that was available at any time.
The foods that are on my charcuterie board are simple and kid-approved, but I will share ideas of other foods that you could substitute in it’s place.
The awesome thing about charcuterie boards is that anything goes! You can make it using foods that you and your family love and it will be an instant hit!
What is a charcuterie board?
So, when I first used the term “charcuterie”, my husband thought that I had made it up.
It reminds me of a grown-up word that Fancy Nancy would say . . . ha ha! (We love Fancy Nancy at our house).
Charcuterie is basically the art of preparing meats which are often cured or smoked (such as bacon, ham or salami). A charcutier is a person who prepares charcuterie and while the term is loosely translated in English to “pork butcher”, any kind of meat can be used.
A charcuterie board is commonly seen on menus as a platter of meats and cheeses, commonly paired with crackers, vegetables, fruits, nuts . . . anything goes!
Step 1: Grab a board or platter.
Before you go out and purchase a fancy board, I would recommend looking around your house.
Even a big cutting board works perfectly (that is actually what I used). This cutting board is very similar to the one that I used in the picture.
Another idea is to use a large platter – just anything that is a large flat surface will work great!
Step 2: Start with foods that need to be contained to a bowl.
I also put some black olives and green olives in bowls, plus some trail mix. These are all items that would roll away if they weren’t in a bowl on the board, so I like that the bowls contained them.
The bowls that I used are actually small ramekins – a little dip will go a long way! Use bigger bowls if you plan on serving more people.
I wanted the bowls to be spread out, so I put a bowl in the middle of the board and then a bowl in each corner.
Step 3: Spread out the cheese.
The cheese is probably my favorite part!
My grocery store sells “cracker cuts” over in the deli, so it made my life easy to just pick that up.
The cheeses that I used were:
- sharp cheddar cheese
- Swiss cheese
- Havarti cheese
- Gouda cheese
- Fuego Jack cheese (it’s like pepper jack and cheddar cheese together)
If your store doesn’t sell cracker cuts, you can make your own! Just buy a few blocks of cheese and cut them to be about the size of a cracker. You can use any types of cheese that your family will like.
There is no rhyme or reason to how you lay out the cheese. I tried to spread the little squares out, but you could put all the cheese together in one area if you prefer.
Step 4: Add the meats.
The meat is my second favorite part! 🙂
To keep with the kid-friendly theme, I used meats that I know my kids love. I went to the deli and had them thinly slice some ham and turkey breast, and then I picked up some pepperoni and salami.
I cut the turkey into squares the same size as the cheese, but then I decided to try something different with the ham and roll it up.
My kids were not really impressed by my rolling skills, so know that it is not necessary. But I thought that it looked cute. 😉
Step 5: Add some vegetables.
My kids only love a few raw vegetables, so that is what I included. I added some baby carrots, sliced cucumbers, and grape tomatoes (they were out of red grape tomatoes at my store, but had orange ones in stock . . . I think that red really would have been a nice touch of color, but orange works too).
Any vegetables will work here. Some other vegetables to add:
- sliced celery (you could even make ants on a log if your family likes that!)
- chopped broccoli
- chopped cauliflower
- sliced bell pepper
- mini bell peppers
- sugar snap peas
Step 6: Add the crackers.
No charcuterie board is complete without crackers!
The crackers that I used on my board are:
Step 7: The finishing touches!! (aka the “fillers”)
Now you just have to fill in any remaining holes on your board.
I sliced up an apple, peeled some small oranges, and added some dried mango.
I also had some peanut butter filled pretzels, so I threw those on the board for good measure.
And there you have it! Your charcuterie board is ready to eat!
Other items that you could put on your board:
- string cheese
- any kind of cheeseball
- fresh berries
- salsa and chips
- sliced baguettes
- deviled eggs
- flavored mustards
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