How to Make a Cheese Board

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Have you ever wondered How To Make a Cheese Board? Some people call them charcuterie boards, but there’s a difference between the two. When combined, they make the perfect appetizer at every party, and are super easy to create!

cheese sliced on a board with nuts, grapes and crackers.
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Cheese Board vs. Charcuterie

Charcuterie boards are basically made up of cured meats that go well together. They’re all the rage right now, and creating one couldn’t be easier!

A cheese board is just what it implies…a board or platter made up of different types of cheeses accompanied by breads, crackers and spreads.

I’ve combined the best of both worlds by using both charcuterie and cheese. The result is an ultimate blend of everyone’s favorite appetizers!

Choosing a Board

When choosing the perfect charcuterie board (ad), look for one that will be versatile and stunning at the same time. I found this amazing board on Amazon that has 3 layers of live-edged wood! (ad)

There are many lovely boards to choose from made of materials such as slate, marble, glass or wood. (ad)

However, you don’t have to buy a board to create a masterpiece! You can connect three plates in a row or use a simple cutting board if you don’t have a lot of space.


I like to decorate around the board depending on the season. Look for dried fruit slices at the craft store, or use other seasonal decor such as mini pumpkins, gourds, or fresh cranberries. Fresh foliage and berries are fun, but craft stores also sell faux-foliage that looks incredibly real.

Think of the word ‘flowing’ as you decorate. Keep it light and breezy to match the decor of your table centerpieces.

three wooden circle cheese boards.

What to Put on a Cheese Board

Once you’ve gathered your board and decor, it’s time to select the cheese and accompaniments.

Most grocery stores have a large variety of cheese to choose from. Or, you can usually find a specialty store in many cities that will allow you to taste before you buy.

Types of Cheese

As far as types go, I recommend choosing varieties your guests will recognize and at least one that will surprise them. A sharp Cheddar is always popular, and folks usually love Havarti or Muenster.

Roquefort is a bold choice, since it tends to be pungent and sharp. Throw in something unexpected like a Camembert (soft) or Manchego (hard) that will intrigue your guests. Be sure to label everything so folks will know what they’re eating!


Accompaniments put the pizazz in your board, so have fun with it. There’s no limit to what you can add to a charcuterie board (ad) or how it can be arranged.

  • Breads and Dippers – crostini, crackers, fresh veggies, bread sticks, baguette
  • Dried fruits – dates, apricots, cherries, figs, pineapple
  • Fresh fruit – grape clusters, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, pears, apples
  • Cured meats – pepperoni, prosciutto, salami, mortadella, chorizo
  • Dipspimento cheese, cream cheese, pesto goat cheese, hummus
  • Nuts – smoked almonds, pecans, walnuts, pistachios, cashews
  • Olives & Pickles – kalamata, manzanilla, roasted garlic, gherkin pickles
  • Chutneys & Spreads – apricot, fig, tomato jam, whole grain mustards, honey
  • Fresh Herbs – rosemary, thyme, oregano
meats, fruit and cheeses with crostini on the side.

How to Assemble a Cheese Board

Assembling your board is so much fun! Even if you’re not the creative type, you can make it happen with very little effort.

Remember 3 Rules

  1. Add the cheeses first, spread them out, and cut a few slices off blocks.
  2. Place liquid items like olives, hummus, and spreads in small bowls around the board.
  3. Fill in the gaps with nuts, crackers and dried fruits, then garnish with fresh herbs.

Easy, peasy! Above all, have fun with it. Your guests will rave about your creation!

Top Tips

  • Cheese tastes best at room temperature, so let it sit on the board 1 hour before serving.
  • Slice the cheese if it’s the hard type to make it easier on your guests.
  • Include different textures and flavors so guests will have a variety to choose from.

Dips and Spreads

Just about any dip will work on a cheese board, but here are a few of my favorites…

Recipe Card

variety of cheeses, grapes, olives and nuts on a wooden board.

How to Make a Cheese Board

Have you ever wondered how to make a cheese board?  Here's your guide to one of the most popular and easy appetizers to serve at holiday parties. 
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizers
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 16
Calories: 245kcal

*See notes in blog post for detailed tips, photos and instructions.


  • 8 ounce block sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 8 ounce block Havarti cheese or other cheese of your choice
  • 2 cups olive medley with roasted garlic from deli
  • 1 large red seedless grape cluster
  • 1 package sliced salami & pepperoni from deli
  • 2 cups pistachios with shells
  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 1 sleeve savory crackers
  • 1 bag herbed crostini from deli
  • rosemary to garnish


  • Slice cheddar cheese and place on cheese board (ad) toward one side. 
  • Place Havarti cheese on board diagonally from cheddar.
  • Spoon olive medley into 2 small bowls and place near cheeses.
  • Arrange grape cluster on board near cheese.
  • Roll slices of salami and pepperoni and place on board in an empty space.
  • Fill in gaps on board with pistachios, dried apricots, crackers and crostini.
  • Garnish with fresh rosemary sprigs.


  • Substitutions can be made for all of the above depending on the season. 
  • Decorate the outside of the board with seasonal decor if desired.


Calories: 245kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 485mg | Potassium: 288mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 220mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition info is an auto generated estimate.

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Recipe FAQS

How do you pronounce charcuterie?

You will find as many ways to pronounce charcuterie as stars in the sky. But ‘How Do You Say That Word‘ has an interesting commentary on how to pronounce this French derivative.

Does a charcuterie board have to be wood?

Any food safe surface makes a wonderful vessel for charcuterie and cheese. Large platters or small plates can be used, as well as cutting boards and even salt blocks.

How do you make an inexpensive cheese board?

Instead of purchasing cheeses in the deli section of your grocery store, look for them in the refrigerated section that carries shredded cheese and whole blocks. Or visit your local Aldi store or Trader Joe’s for products that are reasonably priced!

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  1. 5 stars
    I love how you arranged the meats and cheese on this board. Wish I could have been there to eat it! Where did you get those beautiful dried fruits?

  2. 5 stars
    Your party spreads are always so beautiful, and so good to graze on while visiting with friends and family. I love the ways you decorate around the rim based on the celebration. Thanks for the ideas!

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