Make a Charcuterie Board for Under $25

I don't know about you, but a charcuterie board is a perfectly respectable dinner option. Right?! Right. I love putting together a board and eating every last thing on there as a meal. I know the thought of putting a board together can seem a little overwhelming. Where do you start? What do you buy? The question list could go on and on but I'm going to try and answer most of those questions and spell it out simply! I got all of these items at Trader Joe's but they can also be found at any grocery store.

I laid out all of the items used for this board but I forgot a few things as I was assembling the board that aren't pictured here.

So, let's see if I can remember all of the tips that @tallycheeseboards told us at the workshop I took last month.

Tip 1- You want to start with a focal point. For me this time it was a mini pumpkin. I thought it was cute for fall. You could also make the focal point some sort of spread or dip!

Tip 2- Start with the cheese. Since the board I'm using for this post is small (made for 2-4 people), I only bought one type of cheese. But typically you'd arrange the cheese first around the board. You can leave it in its wedge shape or pre-slice it. Personally, I like having some sliced and some cheeses left as a wedge. If you leave the cheese in a wedge, break it up a little on the end so people are more willing to dig in. For whatever reason, people don't usually like to be the first to dig into the cheese so this tip does it for them.

Tip 3- Add the meats! I love the packs from Trader Joe's (also Costco for a larger board) because it gives you a perfect serving of each type of meat.

Tip 4- You could take the meat slices as is out of the package and put it on the board as they are usually arranged neatly but a helpful tip I was told was to fold each slice of meat to they are easier to grab and it's a bit more sanitary as it eliminates the need to touch multiple pieces to pick it up!

Tip 5- Add produce next to the board. This is going to be your fruits and veggies. I LOVE red grapes on a board so I usually add grapes if I'm doing a board or a grazing table. For a grazing table I also love to add kiwi because it adds a fun element.

On this board I added slices of cucumber and also cornichons (little pickles) which were a big hit!

Tip 6- Then you add crunch. This is my favorite part. I love to add pretzel thins and all types of different crackers. If you're doing a larger grazing table, I also like to slice up a baguette of bread to lay across the table.

Tip 7- Spreads. You want to add a dip or spread of some kind. Usually it's the center/focal piece but on this board I used a pumpkin for the center. Hummus is always a good choice!

Tip 8- Symmetry is important. It doesn't have to be perfectly symmetric because that's no fun but you don't want it to look lopsided either!

I hope these tips were helpful and I look forward to seeing the boards that you create!!